When Private Practicereturns (Thursday, 10/9c on ABC), Pete is hanging on for dear life after a heart attack, Amelia is hitting the sauce, Addison and Sam have reunited even though they disagree on the children issue, and her mystery man from the finale? He's a fertility doctor! Also, Oceanside Wellness is no more. Get ready to welcome Seaside Wellness Center to the mix. That being said, before diving in to Season 5, you might need a quick refresher on where we left off — and a juicy tease about what comes next.
Addison Montgomery (Kate Walsh)
Where Were We? After a rocky season with Sam, the pair eventually broke up. Addison then went out with a stranger from the supermarket, with whom she shared a kiss and was enticed by his offer to run away to Fiji. Ultimately, she stood him up at the airport and went back to Sam, still intent on having a child, even though he doesn't.
What's Next? Addison is on a mission to have a baby, which will make things slightly awkward with Sam. "They want to try to make it work," Walsh says. "They're both really questioning it every step of the way and being honest with each other and talking about it like adults in very mature, realistic way." The good news? The mystery man may be able to help her achieve her goal. The bad news? She's not pleased with his return. "He's a little too close for comfort, let's put it that way," she says. With the possibility of both old and new loves meeting, she'll continue her therapy sessions. "You see her sort of explore those issues, those questions of guilt," she adds.
Violet Turner (Amy Brenneman)
Where Were We? After hitting a rough patch with husband Pete in dealing with the fallout from her book, Violet had her medical license suspended, which enabled her to run away from her problems and go on a book tour.
What's Next? "The first bunch of episodes is her trying to be an at-home mom and failing miserably at that," Brenneman says, noting that Violet will eventually fight to get her license back. In the meantime, with Naomi (Audra McDonald) out of the picture, Violet and Addison will develop a newfound friendship, which is fortunate because there's still hard feelings because of her book and the subsequent fallout. "Violet's way of processing in a very public way and expressing herself very publically has negative repercussions," Brenneman says.
Pete Wilder (Tim Daly)
Where Were We? The blissfully married Pete contended with returning family issues and the aftermath of Violet's book. The Season 4 finale saw him stricken with a heart attack with no one around to help except their child, Lucas.
What's Next? First off, the team will attempt to save Pete's life. "What's scary about it is that he's been in that house for a long time so there's a question of how compromised will he be if we are able to save him at all," Paul Adelstein says. Moving forward, "Pete's recovery is very rocky for both of them," Brenneman says. "He is not a very pleasant patient. He just goes into these rages, which is totally beyond his control, so I think Violet is trying to hang in."
Sam Bennett (Taye Diggs)
Where Were We? When the investigation into the practice began, Sam fought the hardest to keep Oceanside Wellness together. He also gave his blessing to ex-wife Naomi to run off with Fife and then reunited with Addison, despite her wanting to have a child.
What's Next? Now that Addison is determined to have a child, the couple will have to figure out how to balance that with their relationship. "Just the balancing act of being in a committed, passionate adult relationship while dealing with the fact that Addison wants to bring a child into her life, that's going to be the challenge for Sam," Diggs says. On the up side, Addison is his new boss. "He thinks it's sexy," he says. "They have a relationship where, if Sam doesn't think things are going down the way they should, he'll voice his opinion. So I think it's a good thing."
Cooper Freedman (Paul Adelstein)
Where Were We? Cooper weathered the ensuing storm after Charlotte was attacked, which included questioning their relationship both sexually and emotionally. The pair eventually eloped in Vegas after their feuding families suggested they call off the wedding.
What's Next? Cooper will make a morally questionable decision that will stir up old trust issues with Charlotte. "He may do something that's not entirely ethical to hopefully save someone's life," Adelstein says. "There's many risks involved and Charlotte is not happy about the risks that Cooper is willing to take, especially given that she is Chief of Staff at the hospital where he's breaking the rules."
Charlotte King (KaDee Strickland)
Where Were We? In the aftermath of being sexually assaulted by a mentally unstable patient, she turned her attention to helping Amelia, a fellow former addict who began to slip back into old habits.
What's Next? The trust issues between Cooper and Charlotte continue as a woman (A.J. Langer) from Cooper's past returns with news. "Charlotte is like any other wife would be, she is damn suspicious," Strickland says. "She takes issue with the situation and has got some issues with this woman." She'll also be attempting to help Amelia as the doc falls deeper into substance abuse.
Amelia Shepherd (Caterina Scorsone)
Where Were We? After confiding in Charlotte about her issues with substance abuse, Amelia began to slide back into her old ways. Once Charlotte, who tried to get the doc help, discovered that Amelia operated on a patient while under the influence, she revoked her medical privileges.
What's Next? Since the season picks up right where it left off, Amelia is still boozing it up — which is problematic when she's paged into Pete's surgery. "There's another neurosurgeon who is en route to the hospital but isn't there yet," Scorsone says. "She's placed in a situation where she either steps in in the state that she's in, or waits for the surgeon who's on call who is far enough away that disaster could happen by the time he arrives." Moving forward, Amelia will continue drinking. "She's fallen off the wagon so Charlotte is concerned about Amelia, but doesn't always express that concern in a way that is necessarily constructive and helpful," she says. "They will butt heads."
Jake Reilly (Benjamin Bratt)
Where Were We? After flirting with Jake at the supermarket, Addison took a "no details" approach to their fling. She nearly ran off with him to Fiji, but decided against it at the last minute.
What's Next? Jake returns from his vacation and crosses paths with Addison. "We discover early on that while there may still well be a mutual attraction between Addison and Jake alive, it's put aside for the sake of professionalism," Bratt says. "Things do get complicated because she's still on her personal quest of getting pregnant and she's with a man who has no interest in participating in that." Jake will attempt to convince her to use him as her IVF specialist, but she thinks it's a conflict of interest. Plus, with a vacancy at the practice (Bye, Naomi!), it seems he may the perfect person to fill that spot.
Sheldon Wallace (Brian Benben)
Where Were We? Against his better judgment, Sheldon started a relationship with the writer who gave Violet's book a bad review, which damaged their friendship.
What's Next? Because Violet isn't practicing, he'll become the person everyone turns to at the practice, whether it be for the aftermath of Pete's heart attack or his giving unsolicited advice to Charlotte. The one person not going to him? "Violet's pissed at Sheldon," Brenneman says. "She's given him a lot of her cases to look after while she's gone, and I think she differs with him on how he's handling it."
All caught up? Now tell us: What are you looking forward to in the new season?