Rizzoli & Isles returns for a new season this Tuesday with "We Are Family."
In anticipation of the premiere, the lovely Sasha Alexander chatted with us about the darker turn we'll see this season and whether her alter ego will find a little love... with someone who isn't a serial killer.
Read on for the scoop on Rizzoli & Isles Season 4 …
TV Fanatic: Welcome back. It's great to see Rizzoli & Isles back for season 4. Rumor has it this season is going to take a bit of a darker turn. What can you tell us about that?
Sasha Alexander: Well, in the first episodes we're dealing with some major drama with Paddy Doyle's RICO trial. He's on trial but he's still managing to you know, cause havoc from jail. Maura's recovering from giving her kidney to her half sister, and her and Cailin develop a relationship. So that Cailin will come to her and start revealing some things about Hope and Hope's involvement with Paddy. So there's a lot of complicated problems and a lot of lies. A lot of half truths. So Maura finds herself kind of in the middle of that. And because Paddy is still creating a lot of problems for the city of Boston, Jane is in the middle of it as well. That's the major stuff we're dealing with. Oh, and Maura ends up in jail as a murder suspect in one of the earlier episodes. She's just at the wrong place at the wrong time.
It sounds like we'll get to see a lot more of Maura's biological family.
We are. It's a major part of the beginning of this season.
Please tell me Maura has a love life this summer...that doesn't include a serial killer.
Well, you know it's looking up. There's a bomb tech by the name of B.T., Brandon Thomas and he's played by the actor Eric Winter. So he's somebody that I think Maura connects with. A good looking nerd. He's like a science nerd. They have a lot in common. I'm not sure where it will go but I'm hoping he's not a serial killer.
Yeah, Maura's had some pretty lousy luck when it comes to men.
She hasn't had luck in love, definitely. So I'm hoping that that will be a moment of some peace for a little while.
Speaking of love interests, there is a part of the Rizzoli & Isles fan base that is rooting for Maura and Jane to get together as a couple. Are you and the creators of the show aware of that and how do you feel about it?
We're absolutely aware of it. Are you kidding? There's a whole fan base and fan fiction. It's funny the way they create all of these graphics and these pictures that are just absolutely hilarious and provocative at the same time. I think it's fine, you know. If that's what people get from it, art is subjective and I feel like it's a compliment to how much they like this relationship between these women. Whether they see them as a couple or they see them as their relationship with their mom or their best friend or their sister but the important thing is that they believe their relationship and they like it. Angie and I are constantly asked if we're best friends in real life. We both laugh about it because they like our characters so much that they want the two of us to just go home and hang out. It's very sweet. It's nothing but a compliment to me. Whatever somebody sees it as, that's fine. They're not gay. They're not gay in the book so they're not going to be gay on the show.
Have you read the books by Tess Gerritsen that the series is based on?
Before we shot the pilot I read one of the books and then have since read most of them. Yeah, they're great. They're really a great book series. The books are much darker than the show because it's different when you're writing about it than showing it. But I like them a lot.
In the beginning, what made you decide to sign on to do this series?
First of all, I loved Maura Isles. I just found her to be a really interesting character. Just kind a unique dichotomy of a woman who was so feminine and well educated doing this job. So that was the first thing. The second thing I loved was the relationship with Jane. And I like the show. I enjoy it. I like that it has really strong mysteries but I like that it's a small cast, the familiarity of it. The setting. I was drawn to it immediately. I enjoyed it. I just really liked the script.
You've played many roles over the years. Have you had a favorite or a most challenging?
This might be one of my favorites because I get to do the comedy which I love to do but then I get all this other drama and darker stuff to explore. So for me that's kind of the ideal situation. I wouldn't want to be on something that's just depressing every week and heavy handed. I don't like to watch that kind of television. For me it's fun to do something that has more comedy. It's just a lightness. I like shows where you get involved with the characters and know them, in a way that…like a family. I like that.
If you could star on any other current TV show, other than Rizzoli & Isles, what show would you choose?
Game of Thrones! Game of Thrones! Game of Thrones! And I'd like to be every single character. No, I'd like to be Peter Dinklage's character or his girlfriend or…I'm totally in love with Game of Thrones. I also love Girls. I would like to be Lena Dunham's Upper East Side girlfriend or something. I don't know. I love Girls and Game of Thrones. I would love to be on those shows.
What can you tease us about the season premiere or what we can expect from this upcoming season?
There's going to be some really good mysteries, some really fun crimes. A lot of the same familiar fun between the characters. Jane and Maura find themselves in some really fun situations. But I think the crimes and the mysteries go back to the first season of the show where they were just really strong mysteries. I think that's what people loved about the show and so it's just a lot more of that.
C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.