Season 2 of TNT’s Franklin & Bash (June 5, 10/9c) will be filled with the irreverent lawyers’ usual courtroom highjinks — including a shirtless Bash in full gladiator regalia — as well as a slew of notable guest stars. In this Q&A, Mark-Paul Gosselaar dishes about the familiar faces that’ll stop by, previews the pair’s potential new jobs and responsibilities and contemplates a reunion with his Saved by the Bell love interest, White Collar’s Tiffani Thiessen.
TVLINE | How would you describe Season 2?
The whole undertone is more responsibility — they don’t have to necessarily mature, they just have more at stake. Our tactics worked for us when it was just Franklin and Bash, but now being equity partners of a firm, if we’re held in contempt or we take a client down, the whole firm is at stake. And we find out at the end of the season why Stan Infeld hired us initially, and it isn’t what he had said — that he wanted us to come in and shake up the rusty culture that was eating at his firm — there was another motive behind him hiring us.
TVLINE | Will viewers be blindsided, or is it led up to throughout the season?
I think it’s sort of led up to throughout the season, but we do leave it that Franklin and Bash could potentially leave the firm and turn their back on Stan.
TVLINE | What excited you about Season 2? Any stand-out moments?
I wouldn’t say there were any moments, but I think for us, what did stick out were the guest stars that came to play with us this season, starting off with Kevin Nealon in the first episode. We get excited when we get these names that want to come and play these characters, because you can read it on paper, but then when somebody tells you that Sean Astin is going to be playing a superhero or that Seth Green is going to play Breckin’s doppleganger, you get really excited!
TVLINE | Kevin Nealon had a great dynamic with you two. Will he be sticking around as such a big client?
No, no, but I’d love for him to come back; we left him as a client that we could go back to. I thought he was a great addition, and I’d love to have him on our show if Weeds — you know, if that whole little show called Weeds — doesn’t work out for him, he could always come onto our big show. [Laughs]
TVLINE | Among the amazing guest stars is Jane Seymour, who plays your “freewheeling Earth mom.” What was that dynamic like?
She was great! She came to set and really got our humor and fit in wonderfully. There are some very classic moments between her and Reed Diamond — who plays Karp — that I think the viewers will really enjoy. And of course, you get excited when you hear that Jane Seymour is playing your mother!
TVLINE | Shiri Appleby is coming up, too. When will she pop up, and what’s her story?
She comes on for the last two episodes, and her and Jared have a bit of a romance. She is part of an HR squad that has come in to investigate us and some of our tactics now that we are equity partners at the firm — there’s a lot more at stake.
TVLINE | Beau Bridges is also returning as Jared’s father. Does he have a big role?
I think he comes in for one or two episodes this season. He has a pretty substantial part in one of the episodes, and it’s sort of toward the end of the season when the outcome of whether we stay with Infeld Daniels is up in the air; it’s in the balance. He plays a very integral part in our decision.
TVLINE | Among all of these guest stars, did you bring any of your friends onto the show?
Funny story: Chris Klein and I walked into each other at Whole Foods, and he had said, “Oh, I love your new show!” and I said, “Well, you should come on!’ and he said, ‘Well, if there’s any part that comes up, let me know!’ And that’s how that happened — he’ll be playing my former classmate that I played football with that is now into politics and needs our help.
TVLINE | And I have to ask: Tiffani Theissen is on White Collar, a show where legal help could come in handy. Would you ever do a crossover?
I would go on White Collar if it was a good role; I wouldn’t want to do something that was a gimmick. But if they had a good character for me to play and I got to have some fun, I would most definitely want to be a part of her show and vice versa! I just don’t think it’s good television to just put people on a show just for reunion’s sake. It’s cheap and it’s not fair to their show, and it wouldn’t be fair to Franklin & Bash either.