Comic-Con

Matt's Inside Line: Scoop on Chuck's First Last Mission, White Collar Baby Talk, Nikita and More

What’s the early word on Chuck‘s first (and dangerous) Season 5 assignment? Are White Collar‘s marrieds on the baby track? Is Mad Men willing to get groovy with the ’70s? Read on for those answers, plus other teases from some of TV’s hottest shows and stars.

Chuck | What do we know thus far about the return of NBC’s spy comedy? For one, Season 5 is also its final season. Also, we know that  there will be 13 (and only 13) episodes, to air Fridays at 8. Oh, and now there’s this: TVLine has learned that the season premiere is titled “Chuck vs. the Zoom.” The zoom, hmm? As in zoom lens? As in those TV kids in the striped shirts from P.O. Box 354, Boston, Mass.? No, and nope. All series co-creator Chris Fedak will say for now is, “The zoom is a very dangerous secret.” It’s also a helluva fitness workout. What?

Mad Men | Now that both Jon Hamm andseries  creator Matthew Weiner are signed through a possible seventh season — and allowing for the occasional between-cycles time jump – the inherently 1960s-flavored AMC drama could ultimately bump up against the groovy 1970s. Is such a possibility “boss” as far as Weiner is concerned? “Sure! There are no rules about that,” he tells us. “Honestly, in my mind, 1972 is the apex of the ’60s.” Ever venturing too far into that decade, though, seems entirely off the table. After all, as Weiner notes with a laugh, “1979 is the biggest bell-bottoms you’re ever going to see” – and  dapper Don Draper must draw the line somewhere.

Private Practice | That Addison’s season-finale crush was such a mystery man is due to, yes, the fact that she and he agreed to not exchange any personal deets – but also because when the episode was shot, even Shonda Rhimes had no idea who Benjamin Bratt was playing. “When we wrote that, there was no particular plan,” Rhimes told me, “so a lot of it was me keeping options open – we don’t know anything about him, and that’s kind of exciting.” By the time the finale aired, Rhimes had worked out the details, to be divulged when the new season arrives this fall. Could it be that Bratt’s character will, ironically, hold the fate of the Oceansiders in his hands? “That’s a lovely pitch, I wish I had thought of that,” Rhimes responds. “If you see that next season, you’ll know that I borrowed it directly from you.”

White Collar | While fans of this USA drama enjoy themselves much bromance between lawman Peter and conman Neal, some also tune in for the occasional romance between Peter and his wife Elizabeth. In fact, more than a few readers have tweeted me asking if the Burkes might soon look to start a family. (Liz does pull together a swell kiddie party and all.) But in a word or three, series boss Jeff Eastin told me, “No, absolutely not” — though the writers have dabbled in baby talk. “There was a discussion [about such a storyline], but no, not this year,” Eastin shares. As for Neal’s family ties, Eastin fully plans to climb that tree, just not during this run. “We decided to dedicate an entire season or half-season to Neal’s family at some point,” he says. “Look for that in Season 4 or 5.”

Nikita | Lyndsy Fonseca promises it’s going to be “very interesting” to see how formidable a foe Alex will be now that she knows Nikita’s role in her father’s death and is privy to the birthright she was denied. And Fonseca is champing at the bit for the challenge. “I’m excited for something different,” she says. “Alex is now standing one her own as her own woman, as opposed to being some little recruit.” Indeed, now that Alex is detached from BFF Nikita and determined to dig up all the dirt on her father’s murder, Fonseca says, “She’ll find an inner strength that we all should be very, very scared of.” You hear that, Mikita?

Teen Wolf | Tyler Posey says fans are already on the prowl for scoop on what’s to come — especially regarding the identity of the “alpha wolf” that bit Scott and made him what he is today. “It’s really cool to see what they come up with, thinking it’s my dad or something,” Posey shares. Of course, the MTV series is out to deliver more visceral thrills than merely looking out for the leader lycanthrope. And as the freshman season reaches a fever pitch, things will get very, very hairy. “The last three episodes are the most intense, epic things I’ve ever been a part of,” Posey teases. “I cannot wait to see them and watch everyone else see them.” (With reporting by Vlada Gelman)