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Matt's Inside Line: Scoop on Damages, Fringe, Glee, Leverage, OLTL and More!

Will Damages fans get more than they bargained for with Season 4? Can Broyles handle two, warring Fringe teams? And who’s hot to serenade Glee‘s Rachel Berry? Read on for those answers, plus a flurry of other teases and sound bites from some of TV’s hottest shows and stars.

Damages | Fans of this gripping drama can expect more of the same – quite literally – when Season 4 arrives on DirecTV on July 13. Exec producer Daniel Zelman told me at the NYC premiere event that, since DirecTV doesn’t air commercials, each episode will be “anywhere from 49 to 56 minutes” long — robust running times that probably make Mad Men boss Matt Weiner weep. Also, with no standards and practices peeps to answer to, the producers expect to “push the envelope” while not altering the established tone of the series. Another Season 4 bonus: Since Damages was picked up by the dish service for two more cycles, “It allowed us to end this season with a big question between [Patty and Ellen], knowing that we’ll have the opportunity to address what that means,” says EP Todd A. Kessler. Of course, what’s a season of Damages without giving up a ghost or two, especially since Tom Shays is no longer with us. “We love bringing back characters and actors that we enjoyed working with,” says Kessler, “and Tate’s at the top of the list.”

Damages Season 4 Trailers: Patty Growls, Ellen Strips, and John Goodman Roars!

Fringe | When it comes to the fallout of the finale, I’m the first to admit I’ve been focused on the Peter puzzle and the fun of now having double the Walters and Olivias in our midst. But what about Broyles? Does he now get two Fringe divisions to lord over, bickering doppelgangers and all? Lance Reddick suspects as much. “I think the challenge for Broyles is going to be balancing his relationship with his own Fringe division and the other one – the whole, ‘Who’s in charge?’ kind of thing,” he tells TVLine. But yes, Reddick also is fixated on He Who Never Existed. “I just want to find out what’s going on with Peter,” he shares. “But I’ll find out when everybody else does!”

Eye on Emmy: How Fringe‘s Anna Torv Finds the Reality Amid the Unreal

Glee | Mystery solved! Recurring player Josh Sussman pretty much confirmed what we suspected, that McKinley High gossip king Jacob Ben Israel was forced into a particularly low profile this season as the result of rubbing people the wrong way with his orgasmic writhing during last fall’s “Toxic” performance. “People found that episode very offensive [so] I guess they wanted to give the audience a break from me,” Sussman surmises. “But then I was so happy when I got the phone call and I got to come back [for an April episode]. It was such a relief, like, ‘OK, they’re giving me another chance.’” Sussman’s hope is that as with semi-reformed bully Karofsky, Glee now takes a moment “to redeem Jacob and show a side of him that’s less hateful” – and perhaps even carrying a song in his heart. “I’d love to serenade Rachel,” Sussman suggests. Eek, I’m getting uncomfortable already.

Glee Boss: ‘Amazing Stories’ Are Coming for Mercedes, Mike, Tina and Sue

Leverage | Now that Nate and Sophie’s unresolved sexual tension has been, well, resolved, what about the team’s other crushes – Parker and Hardison? As Season 4 plays out, “Their relationship grows, but it also becomes much more intense in unexpected ways,” says exec producer Dean Devlin. After all, he notes, “These are not normal people, and this is not a normal relationship. So as that heats up, it causes other kinds of tension that I think the fans will be surprised by.” Wait, did he say it in fact “heats up”? Win.

TVLINE Q&A: Timothy Hutton Previews Leverage‘s ‘Especially Great’ Season 4

One Life to Live | Ever since news broke that Erin Torpey would be returning to Llanview before the ABC sudser she called home for 13 years signs off, there’s been speculation about with whom, exactly, her non-Jessica character will “reunite.” I’ve seen many folks pin their hopes on “mom” Viki, but alas that is not meant to be. Instead, I will tell you that Torpey’s wink-wink scene will be with one of Jessica’s peers, and not an elder. Guesses?

OLTL‘s Trevor St. John on Early Exit: ‘They’d Rather Press On Without Me’

Burn Notice | While chatting up the Damages ensemble at the aforementioned red carpet event, I asked the always compelling Dylan Baker – who plays a very bad man on the DirectTV drama – if we might see him back on Burn Notice, as Michael’s new “boss,” CIA chief Raines. Though the Damages gig kept Baker from sticking around Miami longer, “I think they’re going to have me down so shoot a couple [scenes] this summer,” he told me. Fun fact: Baker and his missus, Becky Ann, play Katherine McPhee’s parents in the totally terrific midseason NBC series Smash.

Reader Mail | In response to the news that one Dollhouse alum, Dichen Lachman, has joined Syfy’s Being Human, Thomas (aka @bagelsvswaffles) Tweets: “What ever happened with Enver Gjokaj’s pilot for USA?” Answer: Eden — in which Gjokaj plays a con artist who helps his cousin (Heroes‘ Nick D’Agosto) pull off the impossible as an elite NYC hotel concierge – is still in play and awaiting a series order, as are Common Law (starring Michael Ealy) and Wild Card (with Jennifer Finnigan).

If there’s a show or hot topic you’d like the Inside Line on, email mattmtvguy@gmail.com, and maybe it’ll get some love the next time around! (With reporting by Vlada Gelman)

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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56 Comments
  1. Trista says:

    Looking forward to Erin’s return on OLTL. I really hope her screen time is spent with Jessica’s high school love Christian Vega. Their chemistry was very special during her time on the show and he needs a great love!!!

  2. abbytaz says:

    Matt, for Damages I think you meant July 13th. Can’t wait for the new season. :) From the photos, both Glenn Close and Rose Byrne looked terrific last night at the premiere.

  3. d says:

    Thank you Matt for including a OLTL tidbit!. ITA with Trista, this will be a reunion with Cristian Vega and I can’t wait!

  4. Sivat says:

    There are pics of Erin outside the studio with David Fumero. Clearly her character is here to usher Cristian off the canvas. Rumour has it she’s a recast Sarah Roberts (her original character Jessica’s first cousin/another one of Cristian’s exes).

  5. hollywoodgirl2005 says:

    I think Erin’s return to OLTL will have screentime with Cristian Vega, they were amazing together back in the day, I would LOVE to see them act together one more time :)

  6. Sarah says:

    I love Hardison, but he so clearly does not understand Parker. She and Eliot make the much better couple. I don’t know why the writers write these scenes of Hardison misundertanding her, Eliot getting her and then expect us to root for Parker/Hardison! Eliot and Parker would be a couple of lost souls I would love to see navigate a relationship together.

    • Mikaylah says:

      I think the fact that Eliot and Parker are so similar is the reason they wouldn’t work as a couple. Hardison is able to offer Parker something she has never had before. I’m rooting for them, but I definitely see the chemistry between Parker and Eliot too.

      • Linda says:

        I want all three of them together. :D

        • Sarah says:

          AGREED!

          • sladewilson says:

            I actually love Hardison and Parker as a couple. And she said in the season premiere – “You know this is not going to be a normal relationship, right?” Plus Eliot and Hardison are best buds, no way would Eliot date Parker. He thinks of her more like a lil’ sister anyway.

            I was actually checking on the chemistry between Eliot and Sophie… hmmmmmmm…..

  7. Mikaylah says:

    I hope we get to see all 3 of the USA Network shows mentioned. There hasn’t been one show from USA that I haven’t liked.

  8. april-ann says:

    I’m just glad they spared us: Real Jessica is Back!!…the one playing her for the past several years is a fake!!

    • mandy says:

      The article does say that she will not be playing Jessica. The actress that plays Jessica now does a great job too…

      • april-ann says:

        It was just a joke, a feeble attempt on my part to poke a little fun at the current Real Todd is Back!! story. I said I was glad they “spared us” that.

  9. abbytaz says:

    Matt. I forgot to say thank you for the Damages scoop and your hard work. It’s greatly appreciated. :)

  10. Gavin says:

    Fringe: What struck me about last year was how much more juice Reddick got as an actor playing the alternative Broyles. Out of the two Broyles’ he was definitely the more interesting, and had a lot more to do — The Candyman episode and him sacrificing himself for peace between worlds was brilliant. Please make Broyles less of a supporting character and give him more meat like you gave Colonel Broyles from the other side!

  11. NickC says:

    I Loved last season of Fringe but i thought it ending was weakor a better word would be disappointing…I felt like it needed a rewrite.So I hope they can fix it and get things back on track.I don’t see this show making it out of this season…I wish they would set an end date like LOST and work towards it.

  12. raelee514 says:

    Okay if it’s not Viki, Erin Torpey meets up with, please let it be Cristian Vega, since they ended him and Natalie he’s been hooked up with bad romance to worse romance for years, the latest with Rama has been spectacularly unworthy of him. Please let it be Cristian!

    Intrigued by the Parker/Hardison spoilers.

  13. Luis M. says:

    GLEE: I’m glad they scaled back on Jacob Ben Israel. His character has always irked me a bit and his ridiculous tirade (along with Ashley Fink) during the Toxic performance completely marred it for me — which is a shame because it could’ve been an awesome performance sans the constant interruptions.

    • Mel31602 says:

      People actually found that offensive? It was part of the plot! They had to show some people getting all sexed up by the performance to explain why Sue and the Principal found it offensive…

    • ade says:

      You know what I find weird? While they make him keep a low profile, they promote ashley fink, when she was acting the same way he was. Although, I’m not going to lie, I have nothing against the actor, but his character has always made me really uncomfortable.

  14. Teresa says:

    Oh Erin’s co star is definitely David Fumero aka Cristian. He’s the only “peer” that makes sense. I’m soooo happy. No words to describe it. David and Erin had the best chemistry.

  15. BHM1304 says:

    Nice going for Dichen Lachman. She can currently be seen getting knocked out by Gwen (Eve Myles) in the “Torchwood: Miracle Day” teaser. 8 days and counting til Jack’s back….

  16. tvfan says:

    Nate and Sophie’s unresolved sexual tension resolved? What? Even with sleeping together once, there’s plenty of sexual tension there left as seen in the season 4 premiere. I think they’re hotter than ever together, especially now that they’ve been together once. What I wanna know is when do we get to see it resolved some more? ;)

  17. Gwen says:

    I look forward to streaming the fourth season of DAMAGES illegally. We’ve already waited an entire year between seasons … it’s ridiculous to expect fans to wait ANOTHER year for the dvds.

    I’d be more than happy to purchase the episodes from iTunes, but DirecTV is not giving us that option. They’re going to lose money the moment a single Directv subscriber downloads everything to the internet and fans WITH NO OTHER OPTION start secretly trading online viewing links.

    • Amber says:

      Unfortunately, I will also stream. I can’t wait a year for this season. I would gladly pay a reasonable amount to watch it online, on DirecTV’s website.

    • mykey716 says:

      I was so upset that FX decided to drop ‘Damages’ and even more so when it went to DirecTV. I have cable and I’m not going to change over to satellite for a TV show. Same thing with BBCAmerica letting ‘Torchwood’ go over to Starz…I can’t afford premium channels…I’m already pushing my budget with top-tier cable just to ensure my DVR, HD and channels like BBCAmerica and FX!!
      Will be very glad to find alternate ways of viewing these 2 fave shows…

  18. max says:

    Ugh. I wish “Damages” would stop bringing back old characters in the form of ghosts/dreams – it’s lame, weak writing. Tate Donovan needs to stay away. Tom was my least favorite character and I look forward to a new season without his whiney nostril flaring.

  19. Tania says:

    I’ve already conditioned myself to no longer seeing “Damages” thanks to the exclusivity of DirecTV’s contract. I wonder if Daniel Zelman cares that so many of us who watched the series religiously on FX were thrown by the wayside? Sure, we’re happy that it got a two season renewal, but it was at many of the fans’ expense. It will be interesting to read how many viewers will tune in.

    • sarah says:

      Just download it, like the rest of us who live in different countries.

    • bhm1304 says:

      DirecTV was the only way “Damages” was going to be anywhere because FX canceled it. Hec, DirecTV even guaranteed at least two more seasons. DirecTV is more reasonably priced than most cable providers and really gives you the best options at a reasonable price. The 101 is one of the best channels on, they’ve shown “Deadwood” from beginning to end, “The Wire” from beginning to end, “Damages” without commercials, which makes it better to watch, and you pick up great shows you can’t see in the US as well. They’ve been showing a Canadian show “Call Me Fitz” that has Jason Priestly in it which will seriously make you wonder why the hell he isn’t on a US comedy. Its a completely original idea for a comedy which is as foul as it is funny. Can’t wait for the new season of “Damages” and glad it found a great home.

    • max says:

      Daniel Zelman was given a VERY simple choice: say goodbye to “Damages” forever or agree to DirecTV’s rules and create two more seasons (which will be available to everyone once the dvds are released).

      God, you’re dull witted.

  20. Jennifer says:

    I like the idea of Erin being there to help write David Fumero off the canvas, much like Jessica Tuck did when Joe Lando’s Jake left after Megan’s death. While I’d prefer that, I took Matt’s “peers” clue to mean she’d be involved in the Jess/Tess mess. I certainly hope that’s wrong.

  21. Manuel says:

    It’s not poor Josh’s fault that Glee’s Britney episode was awful. Lazy writing + crappy music = bad television.

  22. Joe R says:

    I remember watching Erin Torpey grow up as OLTL’s Jessica, much like we’ve seen Kristen Alderson grow up as Starr Manning. One day she’s a child actress, and the next day they thrust Erin into her first major teen storyline, surrounded by a bunch of hotties, and I thought “Poor Erin – this is ridiculous!” But somehow she and David Fumero made it work, and it was very sweet. I really hope they share some screen time again.

  23. Jim says:

    Oh, go for the obvious and give her a scene with Bree Williamson so they can do the cheesy double-take.

    • april-ann says:

      dingdingdingding….and folks, we have a winner!! I think that’s what is meant by “peers” (plural), meaning she will run into Jess and Tess, and it will be so funny because this will confuse Jess/Tess into wondering if Erin’s character is another alter! LOL. To please fans, they know they need to place her opposite Christian, but that’s probably not likely going to happen since she had a long term relationship in real life with David Fumero and now he’s married to the actress who played Adriana, unless they’re all like um, friends and all and like, everything’s cool, like ya know?

      • Sivat says:

        There are pics of David and Erin taken outside the OLTL studio on Wednesday. They are both grown-ups, not 16, and are mature enough to film scenes together.

      • Teresa says:

        Erin and David dated on and off during their time together on OLTL. And they always managed to stay friends then. David confirmed in an interview that he and Erin are still friends and he’s even met her husband. They are mature, professionals. And she’s not going to run into Jess/Tess. I think it was specifically said that it was a former co star that she was going to work with.

        • april-ann says:

          I don’t think we’re getting serious enough. Obviously we need to stop smiling and keep straight faces because commenting on a tv website about a soap opera is serious stuff, a solemn ritual. Would it help to bow our heads, observe a moment of silence, post a serious comment, then bow our heads afterwards and observe another moment of silence?

  24. laylagalise says:

    Great news about Hardison and Parker; they’ve always been my favorite pair on “Leverage.”

  25. Sivat says:

    I was actually disgusted by Jacob Ben Israel, and I’m not easily offended. Glad they backburnered his character–I really don’t want to see him again.

    • Just a question says:

      Why were you so offended by him? All he did was play a part in a FICTIONAL tv show. And quite possibly bring to the surface a very real part of our childrens lives. I have come to realize that if you find yourself deeply moved by a character so much so that it colors your perseption of the person who plays that character, that they actually must be a very good actor to elicit such a response from you. For example, for years I absolutely hated the actor tony goldwyn because of his role in Ghost. I wouldn’t watch him in anything I was going to boycott him in any movie/tv show he played in. Then I watched the Last house on the Left (see how long I didn’t watch him!! lol) and realized just that… He is a very good and compelling actor! It was like OMG lightbulb!!

  26. Julia says:

    I still think that Eliot has been supressing feelings for Parker. In the San Lorenzo Job and the Long Way Down, I thought I saw him making some moony eyes at Parker.

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