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Matt's Inside Line: Scoop on Arrow, Castle, NCIS, Criminal Minds, POI, TVD, S.H.I.E.L.D., Supernatural and More

Arrow Season 3 LaurelIs Arrow‘s Laurel about to hit the storyline bull’s-eye? Will Ward still vex the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.? What’s the skinny on NCIS‘ DiNozzo? Is a Criminal mind having trouble coping? Read on for answers to those questions plus teases from other shows.

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Can we have any scoop on Laurel Lance’s storyline for Arrow Season 3? –Anita
Oh yes, you can. We spoke with exec producer Marc Guggenheim at a Thursday night CW soiree, where he professed, “One of the things we’re most excited about is Laurel’s story. Everything that we’ve been gearing up for, for the last 46 episodes, will come to fruition” — possibly including that passing of a baton/leather jacket in the season finale. As the season opens, “She’s still in the DA’s office,” Guggenheim added, “and there will be some interactions with a new character that we haven’t announced yet…. Her fans will be really, really happy.”

Are we going to learn anything about Felicity’s past on this season of Arrow? Like possibly who her father is? –Becca
As Felicity/EBR’s fans very well know, “We have had a backstory for her for over a year now that we keep saying, ‘This is the episode where we’re going to do it,’ and we don’t,” Guggenheim shared. “But this is the year we’re going to do it. That script is getting worked on as we speak.”

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Can you give us a hint on how Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s Ward will find himself working alongside the people he betrayed? –Rachel
“Alongside” is perhaps an optimistic way of viewing things! As exec producer Maurissa Tancharoen reminds, “He did very bad things” toward the close of Season 1. That said, “He’s in our custody now, and he’s a great villain to have around.” And he WILL be around. “Ward is definitely in the mix” as Season 2 opens, says EP Jed Whedon. “Brett [Dalton] has done a great job, and we love who Ward has become.”

With Michael Weatherly having gotten in such good shape this summer for his triathlon, will this be addressed for NCIS‘ DiNozzo? –Joni
The actor’s lean, mean physique apparently will help Tony’s game. Show boss Gary Glasberg tells us he’s in the “formative stages” of crafting a new love interest for Tony, someone that NCIS’ most eligible agent (G Callen excepted) will meet through a case. “It’s time for Tony to continue to grow a little bit,” says Glasberg. “He went through a lot last year emotionally and tried to deal with Ziva’s departure as he could. And it’s time” for someone new. “We’ll be mature about it and handle it properly, and Michael’s excited about it.”

Any scoop about Supernatural, please? –6Spike
Fresh from TCA, show boss Jeremy Carver tells us that Episode 5, the series’ 200th, will be titled “Fan Fiction,” a meta bit of fun written by Robbie Thompson.

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Got anything on Criminal Minds’ Garcia? –Kay
Early this season, we will find out that Garcia has been struggling with shooting the nurse that tried to kill Dr. Reid in the season finale. Her solution: a trip to Texas to try to make things right. Bonus scoop: In addition to the pair of episodes Matthew Gray Gubler is helming this coming season, Joe Mantegna and Thomas Gibson also are returning to the director’s chair.

Got any Castle scoop? Like, guest cast or who’s writing 7×02? –Sandra
On the casting front, you probably have seen this fresh bit of scoop. As for the writer of Episode 2, which involves the murder of a toy mogul, that’d be a gentleman named Andrew W. Marlowe. (IOW, the premiere isn’t a two-parter per se.)

Greetings from Germany! You talked to Castle‘s Andrew Marlowe and David Amann. Soooo, is there anything else they shared about the new season in their interview? –Mandy
Greetings from America! Your new showrunner Amann teased “a really fun episode,” somewhere in the first four of the season, “that deals with what seems to be an invisible killer — and the characters take a lot of pleasure in that.”

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I need something on Person of Interest — this hiatus is killing me! –Bradley
The season premiere – which airs Sept. 23 and picks up about six weeks after the finale – is titled “Panopticon.” (I’ll sit here while you Google that….) OK, are you back? Exec producer Greg Plageman also told us that viewers will be “pleasantly surprised” by who Mad Men’s Cara Buono is playing, only adding that her character does not work for Decima.

What coping mechanisms will Elena from The Vampire Diaries be using to deal with the fact she lost Damon (seemingly) forever? –Ana
It sounds like she’ll be burying her nose in the books, of the medical stripe. As indicated by a flurry of recent castings – and likely a pure coincidence now that TVD has Grey’s Anatomy as a time slot rival — “When we come back, we’ll see that Elena is actively pursuing a degree in pre-med,” show boss Julie Plec told us. “She’s a smart girl, and Elena’s father was a doctor, so she’s trying to figure out how to help people and save people, just as her family did.” And merely as an added bonus, “We’ll meet some hot young pre-med guys and sexy doctors” as she does so.

I know it’s midseason and all, but is there any casting news for The Following yet? – Jill
As a matter of fact, casting calls have just gone out for the series regular role of Gwen, an ER doctor and single mom who’s sophisticated and calm on the outside, but can “cut loose” as needed. (Perhaps a new honey for Ryan?) The killer drama is also filling the recurring role of a charming husband and dad who’s got — wait for it – a dark side, one he’s been hiding his whole life.

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In honor of The Last Ship’s renewal, how about some scoop for us? –Teena
After chatting with Titus Welliver about his Amazon series Bosch, I sought the 411 on his role in The Last Ship’s final two episodes. “He’s a former military/law enforcement guy who’s trying to secure areas on land from the pandemic, and things are not what they seem with this character,” he shared. “What appears to be obvious is not so.” Fun fact: The TNT drama drop-by reunited the erstwhile Man in Black with Lost director Jack Bender, “which was a great treat,” he said.

Can you confirm/deny rumours that Rookie Blue Season 5 is only 11 episodes? –Etain
Rookie Blue Season 5, as always reported, runs 22 episodes. Stateside, at least, the first 11 are airing now, and the rest will come around next summer.

You never share scoops on Unforgettable. How about any little something for this loyal fan? –Debbie
You will never guess who shows up in the season finale.

Real questions, real answers. If you need the Inside Line on a favorite summer or fall show, email InsideLine@tvline.com! (With reporting by Vlada Gelman and Andy Swift)