"Franklin & Bash" on TNT is a quintessential bromance light comedic drama with the combo of Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Breckin Meyer helping make the show a success its first two seasons.
But the creators wanted to shake up the duo's genial smugness as "we break the rules" attorneys by bringing in an older woman with piercing blue eyes, incredible legs and a reputation for injecting fresh life into any scene.
Heather Locklear is back!
She turned around "Melrose Place" as the ambitious, bed-hopping Amanda Woodward. She gave Michael J. Fox and Charlie Sheen conniptions on "Spin City."
Now she plays a successful, no-nonsense attorney named Rachel King who joins Franklin & Bash's firm as a partner and tries to rein in their excesses.
"She knows we’re good at our jobs," Meyer says in a recent press conference, "but I don’t think she likes us very much, as opposed to Malcolm [McDowell's Stanton character] - who really does... if they can bring in good clients she’ll tolerate them."
Stanton, who had brought Franklin & Bash in season one to shake things up, tells them that this is the time for a "market correction." She proves her power by having a wall between Franklin and Bash's desks.
"Kind of bratty," Locklear admits in a phone conference. "I think she wants to wield her power over them and show them what she can do. She means business!"
At least in the first two episodes airing tonight, Locklear's character does not appear to be quite as mean as Amanda Woodward, but she says Rachel will "have a few sexcapades."
She opens the third season on "Piers Morgan Live" (corporate synergy with sister station CNN!) and wins a bet that makes Franklin and Bash lose their shirts - literally.
"They have very nice" butts, she notes, with a laugh, using a more graphic word.
Gosselaar says she fit right in: "She came on set, she’s always prepared, and she fit right in with the family. She has a great sense of humor and doesn’t take herself too seriously. She was a perfect fit for all of us on the set and the characters. And yes I think she had a good time. We had a good time with her."
I also give high marks to Turner Broadcasting for blatant cross promotion of other properties.
The first episode tonight not only features Morgan but also the main characters making multiple references to Conan O'Brien, whose talk show is on sister station TBS. And you don't need to be "The Mentalist" to notice some blatant MillerCoors placement in the first episode. Why? Turner has a deal with the beer company for exclusive product usage on several of its shows. So neither Franklin nor Bash will be sipping a Bud Light any time soon. Coors Light? But of course!
"Franklin & Bash," 9 p.m. Wednesdays (starting June 19, 2013), TNT