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Matt's Inside Line: Scoop on Horror Story, Smash, Weeds, Scandal, The Good Wife and More!

Who’s who in American Horror Story 2? Will Derek’s love life be Smash‘d? With whom will Weeds‘ Nancy play doctor? Read on for answers to those questions plus other teases from fall and summer shows.

American Horror Story | This much is known about the next “chapter” in FX’s Horror Story: The setting is an East Coast insane asylum circa the 1960s, and several Season 1 cast members – Zachary Quinto, Lily Rabe and Evan Peters included — will be on hand in new roles. Save for the fact that SAG/Globe winner Jessica Lange is playing the head honcho at said institution, other character deets are few. And Ryan Murphy wants to keep it that way. “I don’t want to say what Zach and Lily are doing, or what anybody else is doing, until we get closer to [fall],” he tells me. “But I’ll continue to say that everybody is playing the opposite of what they played last year, which I think is why they’re all so into it. Like, I have talked to Zach and Jessica and they were very excited… and that’s a rare thing.” But in keeping with the “opposite” theme, does that mean Peters, who in Season 1 played the rather evil Tate, will be the new chapter’s hero? “Knowing me it will be the anti-hero,” Murphy teases. “It won’t be what you expect.”

RELATED | American Horror Story Pits James Cromwell Against Jessica Lange in Season 2

Smash | Though much about Season 2 – now under the purview of showrunner Josh Safran and minus the characters of Ellis, Dev, Frank and Michael – is up in the air, Ivy of course will still be a key player. As such, I picked Megan Hilty’s brain about what new obstacles the Bombshell production could be met with, having already burned through leading lady woes, showstopper problems and, you know, the peanut smoothie caper. “Oh, there are so many different things…,” the Broadway vet mused. “There could be rival musicals, and there is awards season to tackle…. So many things!” As for Ivy herself, Hilty suspects that Derek’s bed sheets might cool some come when the NBC drama returns at midseason. “I think they will always have a very strong mutual understanding of each other, and they’ll always be in each other’s lives,” she says, “but I’m kind of hoping that Ivy gets a boyfriend – like a really good boyfriend! – in Season 2.”

RELATED | Smash Shakes Up Cast, Adding Three New Regulars for Season 2

Weeds | It appears the bullet Nancy took in the Season 7 finale just might give her love life a “shot” in the arm, seeing as the Showtime comedy is casting the guest-starring role of a handsome doc who piques Nance’s interest. Not to be left out, Silas will also get a new honey, named Kendra. Meanwhile, I know many are wondering what the new NBC comedy Animal Practice means for Justin Kirk’s Weeds role. Rest assured that Andy is still around, and will be running a summer camp populated by rambunctious lads.

VIDEO | Watch the Weeds Season 8 Teaser

The Good Wife | Now that Kalinda’s husband is about to come knock-knock-knockin’ on her (guarded) door, it’d make sense if we wound up getting a visit from the guy who first started poking a stick at that dark corner of her past – Blake Calamar. So how ’bout it, Scott Porter? Think you can sneak away from Dixie for a week? “I’m really good friends with a lot of the [Good Wife] cast and whenever I see them we talk about it,” Porter told TVLine at last weekend’s ATX Television Festival in Austin, Texas. “In fact, Matt Czuchry (who plays Cary) said he’d love to see Blake back, and I would too, but scheduling-wise right now it doesn’t seem like it would work.” The operative words being right now. “[Series creators Robert and Michelle King] are so smart that they’ve left a lot of doors open for Blake to come back if the opportunity ever presented itself,” Porter notes. “Hopefully we can do it again in the future.”

Drop Dead Diva | Lawyers/onetime lovers Kim and Parker will “go through some interesting ups and downs this season,” show boss Josh Berman tells TVLine — and it all begins this Sunday. “For Kim, the biggest moment comes in Episode 2, where she encounters her father, played by John Ratzenberger from Cheers,” Berman previews. “That’s a real fun storyline.” Above and beyond that father daze, “There are some twists and turns in [Kim and Parker’s] relationship,” Berman promises, though he’s mum on exactly what.

RELATED | Shonda Rhimes Weighs In on Scandal Season 1, the Finale’s Killer Reveal and Fitz’s Future

Scandal | Yes, Olivia’s deal with Mellie involved keeping her mitts off Fitz. But as Shonda Rhimes herself assured me, Mr. President will not be MIA in Season 2. After all, as series lead Kerry Washington put it, “Who could stand that? He’s so great!” Exactly how the show facilitates more intense interactions ‘tween “POPUS” (as I call them) will be “part of the magic of Shonda Rhimes,” Washington ventures. Referencing one of her boss’ other creations, she says, “I was watching Private Practice once and thinking how we felt so badly for Addison, because she wasn’t able to conceive, while Amelia was pregnant. Cut to two weeks later and the tables have completely reversed!” So it’s not unheard of that Scandal will keep its UST-filled duo within proverbial arm’s reach. “That’s one of the fun things about working for Shonda,” says her star. “You really do have to surrender to the ride.”

If there’s a show 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)