Tonight on CSI: Miami (CBS, 10/9c), sure, Horatio digs up a bit of political scandal and Malcolm McDowell puts in an encore as ruthless legal eagle Darren Vogel. But the beating heart of the episode belongs to Calleigh Duquesne, who pulls the trigger on what promises to be a life-changing decision — and one that prompts Delko to go out on a limb himself.
The catalyst for this storyline was planted earlier in the season, when Calleigh helped a pre-teen boy and his sister with the transition to foster care after she put their father in prison. When Calleigh, while working a case with Delko, crosses paths with young Austin again, she takes a look at the lad’s life and how it might be better, as well as what’s missing from her own.
“[It’s] really a modern woman’s problem,” Emily Procter shared with us during a visit to the Miami set. “I think Calleigh’s probably starting to notice she’s always in the lab, she just only works.”
And upon seeing what Austin’s been up to, “She finally realizes if he’s going to be in the foster system, she’d rather he be with her,” says Procter. As well as his sister, too. “She decides she’s going to adopt both of them.”
Calleigh, though, may wind up with yet another addition to her life once longtime coworker and sometime flame Delko gets wind of what she’s up to. “My curiosity’s piqued,” says Adam Rodriguez. “And when I find out what’s happening, I offer to take on that responsibility with Calleigh — if she wants me to.”
Um, “take on that responsibility with Calleigh”? Does that mean what we think it means…? “There’s no marriage proposal – yet,” says Rodriguez. “But it’s definitely along the lines of, ‘I’m willing to commit to taking this on with you, if you want me to.'”
Again with the “if you want me to”! So, does Calleigh “want him to”? “How could she not?!” Procter answers. “Look at him! He’s beautiful. He’s sweet….”
Surveying his CSI’s motivations, Rodriguez notes that Delko has always been game for romance with Calleigh, while she has expressed reservations based on past relationships gone sour. “He sees an opportunity here to be something more than just a boyfriend,” says the actor. “His willingness to take on that responsibility is an indication of how much he wants this relationship.”
However this shakes out — the story further develops in the yet-to-be-renewed crime drama’s Season 10 finale, airing in two weeks — Procter and Rodriguez are just both enthused to see movement on the personal front for this pair.
“I always thought it would be interesting to see what it would be like to work with someone you’re married to,” says Procter. “We have been [CSIs] together for 10 years, so it would nice to see that familiarity at work and then to have a relationship along with it.”
Adds Rodriguez: “I’m hoping that it goes somewhere, that it’s not what we’ve typically done in the past, just nibbling at things and never really taking a bite. I hope we’re actually going down the road and see what there is to see as opposed to just imagining it.”
But it’s perhaps the ever-patient Delko/Calleigh ‘shippers for whom Procter and Rodriguez are most excited.
“I like to think of us as the Downton Abbey of broadcast television,” Procter says with a laugh. “It’s like, ‘Will they or won’t they?’ — and I’m always as drawn in as the people who watch the storylines. And now we’re kind of smushing back together!” (With reporting by Vlada Gelman)