<EM>Cold Case</EM> Cold Case

For a cop show, CBS' Cold Case isn't big on shoot-'em-ups. Maybe it's because the drama's Philadelphia detectives usually sift through evidence from long ago. The team recently closed the books on the murder of a 1919 suffragette. Let's just say they didn't have to call in a SWAT team to solve that one.

But Lilly Rush and Co. will end their fourth season (this Sunday at 9 pm/ET) with a bang. Two bangs, actually. "Our detectives are getting shot," reveals executive producer Veena Sud. "I can't say who. They're all in jeopardy. It's very big."

Almost unprecedented. Beyond the show's trademark flashbacks, George — the serial-killer tormentor of Rush (Kathryn Morris) — is the only character to have taken a bullet in nearly 100 episodes. Det. Kat Miller (Tracie Thoms) was once a shooting victim, but that was before she joined the squad.

The trouble in this season's finale begins with Rose Jacobi, a 17-year-old girl whose family was murdered in 2006. Rose survives with only scant memories of that night, which detectives scramble to reconstruct. Their hunt brings the culprit himself to Philadelphia police headquarters — and a tense hostage situation ensues.

And that won't be the only tension. As Cold Case viewers know, Rush's mother (Meredith Baxter) has reared her alcoholic head again in the season's final run of episodes. Her repeated failure to dry out finally catches up with her. When she becomes seriously ill, Rush must reassess her own tough-love approach.

During recent episodes, Morris has asked producers if she's been playing her scenes with Baxter "too mean." "They said no," Morris explains, "because she does this over and over. Right after I bail her out of jail, she goes right home to drink again — like, the same day."

How will Rush be affected by her mother's illness? "She's going to have to look at herself a little deeper," Morris says. And according to coexecutive producer Liz Garcia, the outcome will likely edge Rush into new emotional and psychological territories.

As if being held hostage at police headquarters wasn't drama enough.

Let our shiny new Online Video Guide dig up some Cold Case clips for you.

Procedural fans can find scoop on CSI: Miami's season finale in the May 7 issue of TV Guide. Try four risk-free issues now!

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