Question: Any scoop on Once Upon a Time? —Rae
Ausiello: Something will happen this season that will ensure Mary Margaret and Emma get a lot of mother-daughter bonding time, whether they like it or not. Bonus clue: Think Lost.
Question: This break-up episode of Glee has be so worried for Klaine. Can you confirm or deny that they split? —Melissa M
Ausiello: I can’t. But I can confirm that they will hit a major rough patch in the Sept. 13 opener. “The real first obstacle for them is that Kurt is still in Lima and it’s kind of depressing,” explains Glee co-creator Brad Falchuk. “Kurt is a little bit stuck in his old life and Blaine really pushes him to go to New York.” Of course, Kurt’s move to the Big Apple paves the way for Speed Bump No. 2. “The distance [causes strain],” concedes the EP. “Kurt finds new things that excite him. The minutia of high school life is not quite as compelling to him, and that’s hard for Blaine. He can’t lean on Kurt the way he would have the year before. And I think it’s also strange for Blaine to be in this school that he came to really only for Kurt. He didn’t come because he wanted to go into public high school. So now he has to find his place [at McKinley] not as Kurt’s boyfriend.”
Question: I’m losing hope we’ll ever see Sebastian again on Glee. Can you offer any reassurance? —Annalisa
Ausiello: Sadly, I can’t. As of now, Grant Gustin is not going to be part of the show’s fourth season, although a rep for the actor says he remains “open to returning.” Bonus tidbit unrelated to Glee: Wanna watch Fox’s new fall comedies in advance?! I thought you might. Click here for deets.
Question: Any scoop on Leonard and Penny on The Big Bang Theory? As long as they’re not heading for another break-up, I’ll be happy! —Roxanne
Ausiello: They’ll still be together when the new season picks up, but in the wake of his ill-advised marriage proposal “things are a little weird,” shares exec producer Steve Molaro. “Leonard’s trying to make things better. His first thought is to have a nice night that’s all about her. And things may not go as planned, shockingly.”
Question: Got a How I Met Your Mother slap bet update? —Kelley
Ausiello: Slap No. 7 will hit when you least expect it, according to exec producer Craig Thomas. “I don’t want to say exactly when the slaps are going to happen, but my personal opinion is if the very last moment of the entire series was a slap and you just cut to black, I’d be happy,” he tells us. “I don’t want to say where, when or how, but there’s more slap action coming.” Bonus HIMYM scoop: The show is rapidly aging Lily and Marshall’s son for a series of a flash-forward sequences. We’ll see Marvin at age 2 when he blurts out his first word, then again at age 6 when he’s facing a crisis at home, and then finally at age 13 when he suffers his first heartbreak.
Question: Will Barney’s Ducky return on HIMYM this season? —Javiera
Ausiello: Sounds like it. “How I Met Your Mother is a bad horror movie,” says Thomas with a laugh. “Everything comes back at some point. You think it’s dead, and it just rears up at you one more time.”
Question: What will Clark Duke and Jake Lacy be up to when they join The Office this season? —Chris
Ausiello: They’ll be cleaning up the mess that Kelly left behind. More on that here. Meanwhile, exec producer Greg Daniels teases that Dwight is going to literally become a terrorist during the show’s ninth and final season. “Nellie is trying to have a charity drive at the office and she’s putting a lot of pressure on people to pick a charity to donate to,” he reveals. “And Dwight decides to donate to the Taliban in protest.”
Question: Any Suburgatory scoop on Dallas and George? —Kayla
Ausiello: As it so happens, we recently chatted with series creator Emily Kapnek about that very subject. She said the show’s late premiere means that the second episode of the season covers Halloween, and it’s also “the one where Dallas dips her toe in the pool, puts herself out there to George and asks him if he would like to go in this couples’ costume idea that she has.” But Tessa’s dad thinks the concept is more trick than treat and rejects the offer. Dallas, of course, “takes it much more personally,” Kapnek said. “But he’s rejecting the costume, not the overture.” Don’t despair: Dalia helps them straighten things out, and the two go on their first date in the very next episode — and this guy‘s their chaperone!
Question: As a longtime reader of yours from back in the Lost days, I wanted to let you know I’m selling a set of 16 Smurf Happy Meal toys I won in a contest. And since you’re the biggest Smurf fan I know, I was wondering if you were interested in buying them on eBay. —Alex
Ausiello: Wow. That is so sweet of you to give me the opportunity to pay you for something you got for free. You are Too. Good. To Me. Alex. Let me sleep on this incredibly generous offer and get back to you in the morning.
Question: I am dying for some Rookie Blue scoop! Please tell me the season will have a happy ending after all of the show’s depressing events this summer. –Claire
Ausiello: Happy Endings scoop coming right up, Claire! I hear the ABC sitcom’s Thanksgiving episode is going to be delicious. The gang celebrates the holiday by watching a previously unaired episode of The Real World that they appeared on in college – which precipitates them learning some shocking new dirt about each other. And here’s a bonus spoiler, just because I can tell you’re such a huge Happy Endings fan: Dave’s wallet and car get stolen… by Pilgrims!
Question: Any word on whether any other Dawson’s Creek peeps are going to show up on Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23? –Derrik
Ausiello: I do know of one new face we’ll see this season, but she’s definitely no Joey Potter from down the creek. June’s going to get a dastardly nemesis named Fox Paris, who’s a pretty junior analyst at the financial firm where Chloe’s roomie lands a job. She’s a scheming manipulator – which naturally means Chloe loves her. But when June’s sweet side goes into hiding, Paris realizes she’s in for more trouble than she bargained for. And because Fox is a recurring guest star, look for her to pop up multiple times during the season.
Question: Can I get a spoiler on Season 2 of Person of Interest? —Andres
Ausiello: Finch going missing in the Season 1 finale raises a big question about the Machine’s identification of the next POI — and viewers will get that answer when the hit drama returns Sept. 27. “[Exec producer] Jonah [Nolan] and [writer] Denise [Thé] have found a really novel, interesting way to present the number in the absence of Finch. Who does the Machine turn to?” says EP Greg Plageman. “And that is answered in the premiere, per the title ['The Contigency'].” Wait, so it’s not simply some pneumatic tube like at the bank drive-up? “We toyed with that!” Plageman admits.
Question: Okay, I’ll bite — how does Emily end up tied to a post in the ocean on Revenge! —Tess
Ausiello: Let’s ask the guy who put her there — series creator Mike Kelley! Teases the boss man: “I can tell you that Takeda has something to do with the predicament she finds herself in.”
Question: I really enjoyed USA’s Political Animals. What are the odds of it getting a second season? —Scott
Ausiello: My man in Vegas puts them at 40/60. My man in Jersey, meanwhile, is ready to make trouble for the folks at USA if it gets cancelled.
Question: What will Meredith’s role on Vampire Diaries be now that Alaric is gone? —Tiffany
Ausiello: In a word, complicated. “Meredith in the beginning is just trying to keep her head above water, realizing that she’s found herself dropped into this supernatural world she never really meant to get involved with,” offers exec producer Julie Plec. “She has a choice to make: Does she want to dive in head first and embrace it? Or does she want to pull back and say, ‘Hey you know what? Why don’t you guys leave me out of it.’ We’ll be seeing a little bit of her in the beginning of the season.”
Question: Scandal was flawless in its inaugural season. Any scoop on Season 2? How much time will have passed between seasons? —Mike
Ausiello: Though Kerry Washington wouldn’t nail down the exact time jump since Olivia promised Mellie to keep her mitts off Fitz, she did tell Matt Mitovich that Season 2 picks up “more than a month, less than a year” later, with the “Who Is Quinn?” mystery rolling to a boil. “We do find out who she is, but we’re still like, ‘But why? And how?’ All of that,” says the series lead. And, interestingly, some of Olivia’s fellow gladiators are champing at the bit to get the complete story. As Washington teases, “There are reasons why certain people need more answers right away, and other people don’t. Even that’s complicated.”
Question: Do you have any information on the person from Hotch’s past who is set to appear on Criminal Minds? –Rachel
Ausiello: As EW.com reported last week, his brother, Sean (Eric Johnson), resurface in this season’s eighth episode. Meanwhile, here’s some scoop on an upcoming case. The show’s currently looking for a white teen to play Toby, a somewhat creepy loner who graduates from hurting animals to hurting humans – and his Dexter-like extracurricular activities attract the attention of another new character, an older alpha male named David Roy Turner who “won’t be told what to do.” Minds is also casting Hollie, Toby’s boss at a pet store who pushes him too far (watch your back, Hollie!), and Jose, who has a run in with Toby and David Roy.
Question: Shameless scoop, please? –Brad
Ausiello: Fiona’s going to start working at a family-run business, where we’ll meet a charismatic dude named Mike. He’s in his late 20s/early 30s, he’s regular-guy cute and he’s scheduled to appear in several episodes in Season 3 – and possibly some in Season 4.
Question: Any new Castle scoop to tide us over until the premiere? –Cheryl
Ausiello: Those fond of comparing Richard Castle to Jessica Fletcher will enjoy the title of Season 5’s Episode 5: “Murder, He Wrote.” In that ep, Castle and Beckett will deal with an inexperienced police chief and his right-hand man as they investigate the homicide of someone whose testimony sent at least one person to jail for insider trading. And the crime-solving twosome strike so much fear in one potential suspect, he dives off his boat and tries to swim to safety!
Question: Please, I’m dying for some Grey’s Anatomy scoop, anything will be good. Thank you. — Mateo
Ausiello: I’m hearing some really cryptic rumors about the fate of a beloved character that makes me think this title has less to do with death and more to do with… something else.
Question: What’s up on the Covert Affairs front? —Bernadine
Ausiello: Annie’s closeness to her Mossad counterpart will come under scrutiny when Eyal’s boss pays a visit to Langley in the episode airing Oct. 23 — and playing the role of Mossad bigwig Rivka Singer will be four-time Tony nominee Tovah Feldshuh, whose TV credits include The Good Wife, Crossing Jordan and Law & Order. Seriously, Rivka asks Eyal point blank, “Are you shtupping [Annie]?” Wonder what his answer is by then….
Question: Can we please get a Gossip Girl spoiler? I’d love to know more about Serena’s love interest. Is there any hope for Serena/Nate lovers? —Amanda
Ausiello: Nate and Serena’s new beau (played by Barry Watson) will share a surprising connection — one that could land the cougar magnet in the pokey.
Question: How about a tease on Breaking Bad‘s summer finale? —Justin:
Ausiello: Those eight episodes are sure flying by fast. We caught up with Emmy nominee Anna Gunn at this week’s Academy of Television Arts & Sciences’ Performers Peer Group reception and she shared this morsel about the Sept. 2 climax: “Skyler started off [the season] really, really, really unraveled and almost paralyzed as a human being. And let’s just say she starts to gain her footing a great deal more by the end of this half of the season.” Translation: Hell hath no fury like a drug king’s long-suffering wife scorned. (At least that’s how I interpreted that quote.)
That’s a wrap! Please send questions, comments, and anonymous tips to firstname.lastname@example.org. (Additional reporting by Meg Masters, Kim Roots and Vlada Gelman)Follow @MichaelAusiello