Fall TV Preview

Matt's Inside Line: Scoop on NCIS: LA, Scandal, Castle, Haven, White Collar, Nikita and More!

Is more fun ahead for NCIS: LA‘s Deeks and Kensi? Will a Scandalous exit hit a gladiator hard? Who else on Castle is gettin’ good lovin’? What White Collar crime will darken the Burkes’ doorstep next? Read on for answers to those questions plus other teases from fall and summer shows.

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NCIS: LA | Leading off with a dip into the reader mailbag, Laura wants to know if there’s any “Densi” goodness coming up in Season 4. The good news: There is. The better news: You won’t have to wait long for it. Coming off the super-intense season opener (airing Sept. 25), Episode 2 will deliver what Shane Brennan is calling “the funniest episode we ever made.” The show boss is mum on why exactly the outing’s a riot, but says, “The Kensi-Deeks fans are going to love it. It has a lot of fun in it. [At the table read] everyone was rolling around on the floor laughing.” Brennan gives proper due to the interplay between Daniela Ruah and Eric Christian Olsen. “You can write the material, but unless there’s chemistry… it can just lay there very flat,” he explains. “But we have a cast that’s very good with humor.”

Body of Proof | Part and parcel with the many casting changes on tap for Season 3 of this medical drama/procedural, fans should expect a shift in intensity, as well. “ABC really liked our last couple episodes, because they had really high stakes,” Dana Delany says of the outbreak arc featuring guest star Luke Perry as a CDC bigwig, “so right off the bat we’re back to that.” The series lead goes on to note that while Megan & Co. are not dealing with the same threat, the drama is “just as crazy and just as dangerous. It’s going to be a little bit insane for a while!”

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Haven | Aimee asks: “Any word on Haven, which returns in September? Word is Nathan and Audrey are torn apart. Please tell me it’s not some trouble that prevents them from touching à la Dark Angel.” Ah yes, the memorable hands-off sitch between Max and Logan. So sad. Well, “Audrey and Nathan are definitely going to face challenges,” series cocreator Sam Ernst responds. “[But] Brian Milliken, our staff writer and a Dark Angel fan, assures me there is no overlap.” All told, Ernst promises a new run of episodes (kicking off Sept. 21) that is “explosive from start to finish, more so than any season so far — by a mile.”

Cougar Town | If you follow the cast of the ABC TBS comedy on Twitter, you know that on Wednesday they had their first table read for Season 4. What new drama might be on tap for newlyweds Jules and Grayson? It looks like the man of the house is already in the doghouse… for something he did in Jules’ dream. Meanwhile, though the show is famously loath to visit most of the characters’ work places, expect to meet Andy’s boss (and under less-than-ideal circumstances)

White Collar | Wahiba tweeted at me with this impassioned plea: “I need a spoiler about Elizabeth Burke, please!” Erm, file this under Be Careful What You Wished For: Later this season, Elizabeth will again find herself abducted – only this time she won’t be alone. Hubby Peter is nabbed, too.

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Scandal | Each Shonda Rhimes show this fall will need to deal with a dip in male potency. On Grey’s, Eric Dane needs to be written out after a couple of episodes, Private Practice has to account for a suddenly MIA Pete, and Scandal is unspooling a sophomore run sans Henry Ian Cusick. And while Shondaland is mum on the how of any of the above exits, Darby Stanchfield can confirm that Scandal‘s Abby will be hit hardest by Stephen’s absence. “It’ll be really fun for fans to see how she’s handling it,” she tells me, noting, “Abby had a really big crush on him.” That spark of something, however, was only hinted at in the drama’s first six episodes. “There were some moments that we had and things that were written… but they didn’t include it,” Stanchfield shares, echoing what Cusick told me last spring. “There were definitely scenes left on the cutting room floor.”

RELATED | Castle Season 5: 11 Reader Questions Answered!

Castle | Via Twitter, @Esplanie_Org (fittingly) beseeched me for “any scoop on Lanie and Esposito’s relationship.” Let’s just say that, with barely any time passing between seasons, they’re enjoying more of the same somethin’-somethin’ — meaning, a friendship with benefits. “There are still booty calls going on,” says Jon Huertas. “She’ll make a booty call to me, and I follow through. After all, I never want to leave a damsel in distress!” And though Huertas reminds that the first post-breakup hook-up was Dr. Parrish’s idea, “I’m sure I hit redial…. I hit *69.”

Nikita | The CW’s edgy spy drama meets… Game of Thrones? A new casting call is looking to fill the potentially recurring role of Anne, a former Division agent who is loyal to Amanda and is described as a “cold and intimidating, long, tall drink of scary,” someone who could boast an unusual look à la the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Tilda Swinton, Grace Jones or, yes, Thrones‘ Brienne of Tarth — AKA no one I would want to run into in a bar, let alone a dark alley!