Exclusive

Matt's Inside Line: Scoop on Vampire Diaries, The Good Wife, Chuck, Criminal Minds and More

What has Vampire Diaries‘ Stefan been up to? Is Will bitter over his break-up with Good mom Alicia? What’s nudes with Chuck and Sarah? Read on for those answers, plus other teases from TV’s hottest shows.

The Vampire Diaries | Let’s start by dipping into the mailbag and helping fans of this CW drama cope a bit with the holiday hiatus. Amy asks, “Can you give me any TVD scoop? Specifically, Caroline and/or Stefan scoop?” Amy, here is exec producer Julie Plec’s holiday gift to you: “When the show returns [on Jan. 5], Stefan has been MIA since he stole Klaus’s family coffins, but we’ll learn he’s been busy trying to figure out a way to stay one step ahead of Klaus. When Elena and Damon finally have the opportunity to confront him about his recent actions, his response makes Damon think twice about acting on his feelings for Elena.” Caroline, meanwhile, doesn’t resurface until Jan. 12, when, Plec says, “she and Tyler come to terms with their recent breakup and what Tyler’s sire bond means for their future. Oh, and it’s her 18th birthday!”

TVLine’s Guide to Fall Finale and Winter Return Dates

Criminal Minds | Iris tweeted at me, “Can you get some scoop on the 150th episode? Need more ‘intense plane scene’ deets!” Well, the milestone hour, as TVLine previously scooped, guest-stars Dina Meyer (Birds of Prey) as a rape victim who takes into custody her own suspect (The Shield‘s Jay Karnes), leaving the BAU to determine A) if she got it right and B) what to do with this lady vigilante. As exec producer Erica Messer explains, “We took a typical episode where the good guys find the bad guys and put it on its head. We’ve got a victim who thinks she’s found her offender… but she may be holding the wrong man captive.” As for the “intense plane scene” Iris alluded to, I am hearing that it’s not so much intense as… different.

The Good Wife | In the wake of Alicia breaking up with Will, there’ve been a lot of questions, so I went digging around for answers. For starters, an insider tells me, yes, Will was in fact set to become a “commitment” guy and be there for Alicia when she gave him the hook. And though she cut him off at the pass, I am assured that Will will not be bitter – in part because, in his heart, he knows it’s best for the firm. As for those of you fretting that Good Wife will now amp up the flirtation between Will and newbie Caitlin (played by Anna Camp), I hear that will not be the case – if only because, my source notes, “Will is going to have a lot going on” with the State’s Attorney’s investigation and eventual legal action against him.

Chuck Preview: Community‘s Danny Pudi Stirs Up Drama at the Buy More

Chuck | If a guest-starring turn by Community‘s Danny Pudi isn’t enough to make you check out this Friday’s episode, know that significant skin will also be on display as Chuck and Sarah go undercover at nudist colony — and that created quite a challenge for Zachary Levi, who also directed the hour. “When I read the script the first time, I thought, ‘How the hell am I supposed to do this?!” Levi relates. “I haven’t seen this done on television before. Well, I have, but Game of Thrones is not really throwing blur boxes on it — and thank God for that.” The bigger challenge may have been sporting the (sparse) wardrobe. As series cocreator Chris Fedak quips, “I was like, ‘Zach’s robe is shorter than Yvonne’s. We made a mistake here.'”

ABC Family Sets Winter Premiere Dates for Liars, Lying Game and More

The Lying Game | Speaking with series star Alexandra Chando at ABC Family’s Winter Wonderland party, I was sure to ask for the 411 on Char’s aunt, Annie Sewell, to be played by Buffyverse alum Charisma Carpenter. “She comes on as a foxy lady and stirs up some trouble,” Chando teased. “She definitely has a past with Alec (Adrian Pasdar) and Ted (Andy Buckley), and that’s revealed as soon as she sees both of them.” I then shared my take that the resemblance between Carpenter and Chando should not go unnoticed on the show. In fact, could this Annie be Emma and Sutton’s real mom? “I don’t know, maybe…,” Chando shrugged. “She very well could be!” (Lying Game returns Jan. 2.)

American Horror Story Star Teases Season Finale: ‘It’s Happy… And It’s Not’

Against the Wall | I’ve had some readers ask if this Lifetime drama will be renewed for a second season, and as of Tuesday, Treat Williams claimed to not have “the faintest idea.” With a nod to the drama’s so-so ratings, he said, “[Lifetime is] a corporation and they’re going to make money, and if the show helps them, we’re on; if the show doesn’t, we’re not on…. If you look at the numbers, we were very much on the fence.” Whatever the outcome, Williams said, “I loved working there and it is a great cast to be with. But as an actor you just have to sit on the river and go with the flow.”

30 Rock Scoop: James Marsden Nabs Major Arc!

Casting About…. | Maybe the American Horror Story season finale won’t be as ugly as Taissa Farmiga makes it sound? The show’s final, yet-to-be-filled guest-starring role for Season 1 is “Helen,” a Jewish beautician. Let’s hope the shampoo girl is good at rinsing out blood…. 30 Rock, which launches its new season on Jan. 12, will be flashing back to Jack’s childhood, and as such is looking to cast a younger version of Emmy winner Elaine Stritch (who plays mom to Alec Baldwin). Applicants should probably have a Words With Friends account.

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)