Matt's Inside Line: Scoop on NCIS, Vampire Diaries, Once, Scandal, Cougar Town and More!

NCIS, Scandal, Vampire DiariesIs any McGoodness ahead for NCIS‘ McAbby? Who’s the new hunk heading for Mystic Falls? Is Scandal‘s First Family tree adding a branch? Will Once Upon a Time‘s Storybrooke team ever solve the portal problem? Read on for answers to those questions plus teases from other shows.

NCIS | We open this week’s column with a dip into the reader mailbag, where Ruby seeks “good scoop on McAbby” aka McGee and Abby. “It has been a whole decade of cute moments, and the recent lack of their scenes together is making me suspicious that something is going on.” Well, Ruby, I come bearing promising news. Or, more accurately, show boss Gary Glasberg does. “Plan on meeting McGee’s dad, the Admiral, in a compelling, emotional story during February sweeps,” he says. There, “Abby will be a comforting shoulder for McGee to lean on during tough times.”
    Elsewhere on NCIS, I can tell you that the return of Eli David – and in turn the midseason Ziva twist we told you about previously – appears to be taking shape, as the show is casting the guest-starring roles of a Mossad associate director, an American businessman whose oil fortune burdens him with ties to the Middle East and Gavriela, a sexy and smart Israeli informant for the CIA.

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The Vampire Diaries | Sink your teeth into this, Armchair Casting Directors: The CW drama is casting the possibly recurring role of Vaughn, who is described as “ruggedly handsome, charming, built and tough as hell.” Ideally, the gent landing the part will wield an Irish, Scottish or Australian accent. Could this be the new member of The Brotherhood of The Five we will meet later this season?

Scandal | I have a tweet from @Nikki528, asking for “#Scandal spoilers/scoop, particularly of the Liv/Fitz variety.” Having seen this week’s episode, I can report that Fitz… sadly is MIA, being off at the G8 summit and all. Nonetheless, he looms large as Olivia fields overtures from her ex, Senator Davis. (Plus, one fun theme throughout the hour is: “All roads lead to Fitz.”) Elsewhere, the “Evil Quinntet” may not have a David Rosen problem after all. Then again, they very well might. (You’ll catch my drift in a few hours.) You’ll also get to see Liv give a mere “spokesperson” a firm lesson in Extreme Fixing 101, and find out what Huck likes to do on a date. And by the end of the hour, Olivia will ID a surprising new adversary. Looking further down the road, and speaking of Fitz, this just in: The ABC drama is looking to cast a name as “Big Jerry” — aka POTUS’ funny and overbearing pop! It kinda has to be Ken Howard, right?

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Once Upon a Time | This Sunday’s episode not only delves deep into Ruby’s hairy identity crisis – what with the first full moon coming since the curse was lifted from Storybrooke – it also takes some big steps in the name of solving the portal problem that thus far has stymied Charming. “I can’t say a lot about it, but a lot of questions regarding the portal and all of that are answered in this episode, like right from the get-go. It’s a crazy episode!” Meghan Ory, who plays Ruby/Red, tells me. But before anyone goes leaping back and forth between realms, a short-term solution will allow the Storybrooke contingent to at least (if dangerously) communicate with those in the fairytale land that is.

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Bones | TVLine reader Delirious asked me for “any news on agents Genny Shaw (played by Tina Majorino) and/or Olivia Sparling (Danielle Panabaker) returning? Especially now that Sweets is ‘free as a bird.'” I like your thinking, D – and lord knows either of those lasses would be a fine follow-up to Daisy. But as of right now, I am told, neither actress has booked her next appearance.

Suits | Colleen is “dying to know more about the second half of Suits” Season 2, including “Any scoops on Amanda Schull’s character.” I can confirm that Schull — as Katrina Bennett, a tenacious ADA who exploits people’s weaknesses to get what she wants — will guest-star in Episodes 13 and 15. And since the show returns Jan. 17, 2013, with Episode 11, that lands her first appearance on Jan. 31.

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Cougar Town | The Cul de Sac crew may be expanding after its relocation to TBS — and in a most unexpected way. I’m hearing that by the end of Season 4, Jules will have a decision to make when her sale of the house next door comes with the condition that the 70-year-old buyer and her hard-of-hearing husband are allowed to hang with the gang. Time to pound… Metamucil?

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!