Rizzoli & Isles is premiering the second half of its second season on TNT, and coming up you can expect a lot more complicated cases, as well as interpersonal drama between characters, namely the BFFs and partners in crime (solving), Jane (Angie Harmon) and Maura (Sasha Alexander). Before you check out the winter premiere, “Can I Get A Witness?”, Alexander tells you what to expect from the twists and turns to come.
Click here for LA TV Insider Examiner’s advance review of “Can I Get A Witness?”
LA TV Insider Examiner: One of the first things that struck us in the first episode back, “Can I Get A Witness?” is how Maura is budding up to Jane’s mom, Angela, and even has a bit of a bonding moment with Roselyn Sanchez’ Valerie Hudson. Where does that leave Jane? How is their relationship different, if at all, in the episodes going forward?
Sasha Alexander: I think that the relationship between Maura and Angela is completely just– I think it suits Jane fine. Because Jane doesn’t do that girly stuff with her mom, so if her mom is happy and going through that stuff with her divorce and if her and Maura want to sit around having baking contests, I think she’s fine with that. I think the issue that will come up is that Maura starts to have a little chemistry with her screw-up younger brother, so it’s more what happens when that happens. That’s a much more sore subject. Their friendship gets tested in some really unexpected ways.
We’re so glad you brought him up, because we were going to ask: when will we first see the return of Tommy?
S.A.: You’ll see him in the second one back.
And what is the nature of their relationship these days? It’s been awhile since we’ve seen them together, but we assume they’ve still been hanging out.
S.A.: Look, they have chemistry. They definitely have some kind of a connection, but it has not gone any further than a flirtation. I think that there is a moment where Jane’s like ‘Wait a second, what is going on with my brother? What’s happening?’ And then we did have that episode that I think solidified their bond where [Maura and Tommy] both get held hostage in a way by Maura’s father, Paddy Doyle.
That episode could have been a turning point for their relationship.
S.A.: It makes it a lot trickier because now he is in the fold of knowing this little bit of information that nobody else knows, and that’s tricky. In addition, what came out for me when I watched this episode– which is funny because I didn’t necessarily feel that way when I was shooting it, but then when I saw it– you know, when you’re dealing with somebody who’s been in jail, who’s been a troublemaker most of his life, there is that unpredictable part of his personality that I wonder how he feels about this guy, Paddy Doyle, who is maybe somebody that he– do you know what I mean? This guy was kind of a badass, and now I just wonder if it is sort of opening up a whole can of worms that now [Tommy] is connected to this thing. It could lead him down an interesting path…But I think he also sees it’s an opportunity for him to see Maura in a very different way, and they’ve connected; they bonded through this experience.
Even without the bonding from knowing her secret, it’s a traumatic situation, and that can make two people latch onto each other on its own.
S.A.: It was a traumatic situation, right!? But you know, also nobody knows, so it could make it dangerous for him, as well.
Should we assume we haven’t seen the last of Paddy Doyle, then?
S.A.: Oh, absolutely, we’re not done with Paddy Doyle! Paddy Doyle is always wreaking havoc in Maura’s life, so I don’t think he’s going away yet. He does make a return. Along with Maura’s biological mother, played by Jacqueline Bisset. She’s going to make a return as well.
Let’s talk about some of the most intriguing cases you had in this batch of episodes. Which did you have the most fun with on set, and which do you think fans will enjoy most?
S.A.: The finale is just really powerful, and I can’t wait for people to see it. I think the editing is just going to leave you wanting more, and it’s interesting to see what’s going to happen with the girls and what they’re left with. The finale’s pretty intense!
But the other episode I think is a really interesting episode is the episode that we called ‘The Dance’ episode because it involves this dance company, but it’s a whole storyline with Korsak and his ex-wife, played by Lolita Davidovich, and it’s a big storyline for him and his sort-of adopted son that he doesn’t see anymore, who gets himself in some hot water. I found that really interesting. I think it’s always really cool– I like stories that deal within the law. Like, if you’re somebody who works in the law and you can’t break these rules but then you have somebody personal involved, it just gets so emotionally tricky, and I like to see how that breaks down the characters.
Getting emotionally involved, perhaps moreso than is advisable for most law enforcement, occurs more often than not on a lot of crime dramas. How is that affecting Jane and Maura these days?
S.A.: The same thing happens for Jane and Maura in, I think, the twelfth episode. The same thing happens where they have to work within the law, and I think it really tests the boundaries of their relationship, of their work. I do think those are some really good mysteries.
The thing I love about the show is it’s women who value women, and I think people can relate to the characters because they do have this strong friendship, but it’s not just people who are friends; they have to work together; it deepens. I think these episodes deepen the characters even more because when you’re put in conflict, you learn a lot about both of these women. They’re very, very different, but they’re equally right in the conflict. And that’s what’s interesting to me about Janet Tamaro’s writing; she does put the girls in increasingly tricky situations, and it’s going to be interesting to see who sides with who, right? Because they’re not wrong; they just [have different approaches].
One of our favorite episodes was the one where you guys ran the marathon because it started out with just this fun, almost everyday experience for two friends and then evolved into the murder and the case and the law issues. It blended the two elements of the show together very well, and in a completely unique way. Anything like that coming up?
S.A.: Maura tags along to Jane’s high school reunion because she’s never been to one, so she’d like to do a case study. [Laughs] So we meet all of these people from Jane’s past, you know, but a murder happens…and it’s really clever, and it’s really funny.
And let’s talk about the first episode back for a moment. What do you think fans should look out for the most in this episode– a particular moment you really enjoyed shooting?
S.A.: The best part for Maura, specifically, is that she gets to get into Bill O’Reilly’s face a little bit. I thought it was a really funny surprise, and it’s a nice juxtaposition to what the actual crime is and what’s happening there because it is a crime of the streets…It was fun to have this big personality there and to be able to share a few words with him.
Rizzoli & Isles airs on TNT on Monday nights at 10pm.
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