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Guest Star Goodness

Guest Star Goodness: Franklin & Bash 2-Hour Season 3 Premiere 

Photo Credit: Darren Michaels/TNT

[WARNING: Major Spoilers for 2-hour season premiere]

TNT’s Franklin & Bash is back for another season with our favorite trouble-making, party-having, girl-crazy defense attorneys, Jared Franklin and Peter Bash. For me, it’s pretty much the perfect summer series. It’s fun, flirty, flashy and doesn’t take itself too seriously. It also catapults courtroom scenes to a whole new level of insanity.

So far here’s what we know: Hanna got a new job (bye, Garcelle), no more Shiri Appleby for Breckin Meyer‘s character — apparently Emily and Jared broke up. Infeld is as kooky as ever. Pindar is as quirky as ever and, oh yeah, he burns down his bosses’ place of residence. They all end up moving into Stanton’s Malibu beach house. There’s a new boss in town (Rachel King). She gives Damien some interesting advice on paving the way to a judgeship. And Jared and Peter are on felony probation for the plane hijinx that went down in the season two finale.

Here’s hoping that this season we’ll continue to learn more about the boys, Damien becomes a little less douche-y (I love Reed Diamond‘s portrayal, however) and we get even more Carmen. She’s such a fierce investigator for F & B, but I’d like to see more story develop for her.

Wednesday’s season three premiere featured two episodes: “Coffee and Cream” and “Dead and Alive.” I have to say that the more successful of these back-to-back hours of TV had to be “Dead and Alive.”

I like that we were introduced to an Army buddy of Bash’s dad — it resulted in an interesting case of the week. Donald French was declared dead and subsequently lost his house. Hearing Don talk about Peter in terms of his dad was great — it gave a little more depth to Mark-Paul Gosselaar‘s character.

My Moment of Goodness had to be when Bash put John Doe aka the “late” Don French on the stand. Don was forced to talk about his life as if he were just another witness. I fell for his testimony just like the jury did. He basically told his story — of losing his son in the first Gulf War and losing his wife in 2004. The war veteran only had his nephew and his house left. That was his legacy and he didn’t want it to disappear. It was a nice moment that tugged a tiny bit on the heartstrings. Plus, winning the case gave Jared and Peter the chance to score some major points with their new boss.

Speaking of Rachel, it was great to see Heather Locklear back on the small screen, of course. I haven’t seen her since the CW redux of Melrose Place. Well, Locklear’s new character is a bit Amanda Woodward-ish, don’t you think? She’s smart, tough, intimidating and takes no BS. Yup, just like Amanda. But her skirts aren’t as short. I don’t think they are, anyway. I’m going to wait a couple more episodes before deciding on how I feel about her character’s presence. What did you guys think?

Now let’s get to two episodes worth of Guest Star Goodness:

“Coffee and Cream”

Piers Morgan

Photo Credit: Darren Michaels/TNT
Photo Credit: Darren Michaels/TNT

F&B Role: Himself. It’s how Jared and Peter met Rachel King. She humiliated the defense duo while appearing on Piers’ show, Piers Morgan Tonight. She ended up winning a bet and Franklin and Bash ended up naked on national TV.
TV Credits: Since January 2011, Piers Morgan has been hosting Piers Morgan Live, a CNN talk show. Morgan basically replaced Larry King when the veteran TV host retired. He also was a judge on America’s Got Talent for the reality competition’s first six seasons. He also was the very first of winner of Donald Trump’s Celebrity Apprentice.

Photo Credit: Darren Michaels/TNT

F&B Roles: Goldberg played August West the magician as well as his twin brother, Tim. There were some brotherly issues that took front and center. It all resulted in August West’s solo act being a thing of the past. The twins magically found a way to end their feud and decided to start a brother act.
TV Credits: On Friends, he was Chandler’s shady new roommate after Joey moved out. He appeared in several episodes of Matt LeBlanc’s spinoff, Joey, as well as on HBO’s Entourage. He was also in the short-lived series The Unusuals and NYC22. He’ll be playing Howard K. Stern in an upcoming Lifetime TV movie about Anna Nicole.

Caroline Aaron
F&B Role: Caroline is back as Judge Rebecca Bayles — she first appeared on Franklin and Bash during season one. This time around, she’s the owner of a videotape that features Damien being the master of his domain, if you know what I mean. And if you’re a Seinfeld fan, then you know exactly what I mean. Let’s just say Judge Bayles doesn’t give Damien the tape without watching it one more time…with Karp by her side. Eww…
TV Credits: Caroline Aaron’s worked on a lot of shows over the years. But, most recently, I recognize her from playing a judge on a sitcom. She was in the season 4 finale of ABC’s Modern Family. She had the fortune — or should I say misfortune — of facing Mitchell in court. He was representing Gloria — and basically every other defendant in the room.

Gates McFadden
F&B Role: Much like CBS’ The Good Wife, this show likes to utilize some of the same judges they’ve used in the past. Gates McFadden returns for another go as Judge Mallory Jacobs. She’s on the bench of F&B’s latest case involving magician August West and a woman’s bracelet (worth a lot of money) that he allegedly stole.
TV Credits: She was Dr. Beverly Crusher, the Enterprise’s talented doctor in my favorite Star Trek incarnation: The Next Generation.

Laurie Fortier
F&B Role: Allison Burien, the woman whose bracelet was stolen via magic trick. Turned out this Coffee & Cream-type trick was only made possible because August had a twin brother, Tim. Fortunately for all, Allison got her bracelet back. Jared and Peter won their case. The brothers decided to bury the hatchet. And nobody went to jail. That’s a win win win win.
TV Credits: Fortier plays Dougray Scott’s estranged wife, Marie Godfrey on season one of Netflix’s Hemlock Grove, which was just renewed for a second season. She’s also guest starred on CSI: NY.

Joe Holt
F&B Role: Deputy D.A. Mark Everett. We’ve seen Everett face Franklin and Bash before. He’s back as opposing counsel in the case of the missing bracelet.
TV Credits: Holt has been in several episodes of ABC’s Scandal. But he’s listed as Defense Secretary in press releases and on imdb. That means he might be in those war room scenes that happen periodically on the show. I’m going to have to look harder for him next time I watch “Boom Goes the Dynamite.” But the project of his that stands out for me the most isn’t Scandal, Prison Break or NCIS. It’s when he played Sheriff Roy Dobbs on a season six episode of Supernatural called “Unforgiven.” This is the one with the Soulless Sam flashbacks. Holt played the unlucky sheriff that came across a Sam without his soul. He was used as bait. Turned into an arachne. Poor Sheriff Dobs.

“Dead and Alive”

Nicky Whelan

Photo Credit: Darren Michaels/TNT

F&B Role: Charlie, Jared and Peter’s new Malibu neighbor. She’s a kinesiologist that eventually gives Peter an adjustment and makes his pain go away. There’s a nice, easy chemistry so far that exists between Whelan and Gosselaar. We’ll see how that all develops.
TV Credits: This Aussie actress did her requisite time on the popular Australian soap, Neighbours. Here in the U.S., Whelan played medical student Maya on Scrubs for a few episodes. She’s also part of a TBS comedy pilot called Do it Yourself. No word yet on whether it has been given a series order.

Dan Martin
F&B Role: Donald French, the Army buddy of Peter’s dad. He enlists Peter and Jared’s help when he can’t figure out a way to save his house after mistakenly being declared dead. Martin did a really great job in this episode.
TV Credits: This veteran actor played a principal in a couple episodes of Roswell and often played a detective/cop in shows like the original Melrose Place, the USA Network series Pacific Blue, The Wayans Bros., The Practice, Everybody Loves Raymond, Judging Amy, Boston Legal, Numb3rs and the daytime soap The Bold and the Beautiful. Wow. He was also in several episodes of Malcolm in the Middle.

Corbin Bleu
F&B Role: Jordan, Donald’s nephew. It’s sweet that he’s there to support his uncle the whole episode. After all, Jordan is almost all  Donald has.
TV Credits: Sure Bleu was in the short-lived CW series The Beautiful Life. But I think we all know the actor from his Disney days as part of the High School Musical franchise. He’s currently playing freelance journalist Jeffrey King on The Online Network’s One Life to Live, which can be accessed on Hulu and iTunes. The production, however is currently on hiatus.

Robert Wuhl
F&B Role: I really enjoyed Wuhl’s return as the Hon. Maxwell Nulis. He originally appeared in the season two episode “Last Dance.” This time around, however, he’s a judge in Franklin and Bash’s case. And it’s pretty awesome because it’s clear that Nulis is a big F&B fan and can’t wait to see what crazy things they’re going to do pull in court. Hilarious. Hope we see him again.
TV Credits: Wuhl, of course, played the title character in the late great HBO series, Arli$$.

Rob Benedict
F&B Role: Sandy Hall, the attorney for the greedy real estate development company. Loved his reactions to going up against Franklin and Bash as well as to the judge’s fawning over Peter and Jared.
TV Credits: Rob Benedict is one of my favorite actors. He’s probably best known for his recurring roles on Felicity (he played annoying dorm neighbor and eventual friend to Noel, Richard Coad) and Supernatural (where he was the prophet Chuck Shurley aka Carver Edlund, author of a (not so) popular series of books that detailed the lives of Sam and Dean Winchester). Benedict is always awesome.

Ana Alexander
F&B Role: Nataliya Filas — she comes thisclose to marrying Stanton in order to stay in the country. Jared almost marries the couple. But Nataliya comes to her senses.
TV Credits: Alexander has guest starred on shows like Showtime’s Sleeper Cell, The Exes, Reno 911! and Las Vegas.

Franklin & Bash airs on TNT Wednesdays at 9/8c.

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