SPOILER ALERT! If you haven’t yet watched Drop Dead Diva‘s season 3 finale, stop reading and come back to us once you’re done gasping, cheering, and/or tearing up. Creator Josh Berman answers our burning questions below.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Did you always know season 3 would end with Grayson finding out the truth?
Josh Berman: We knew that the cliffhanger had to be that Grayson was gonna find out the truth, but we didn’t necessarily know how we were gonna do it. And then we realized that it needed to come through Stacy. You hear all these stories in real life about men who marry their dead wife’s sister or dead wife’s best friend, and when looking at the psychology of that, it’s always about them trying to find someone who’s most like the woman they loved and lost. On our show, the woman who’s most like Deb is Stacy. So it makes sense that in a case that brought them together, he would begin to see the Deb in Stacy and start to fall for her. That felt very organic.
When I watched the scene a second time, I realized “I’m not Deb, Jane is” could just mean “I’m not the woman you love, Jane is,” or “I’m not the woman who loves you, Jane is.” It doesn’t mean she actually told him off-screen that Jane has Deb’s soul.
Absolutely, that’s one of the options to come back to next season.
And you’re going to tell me which option you’ll go with…
I can’t tell you that! It’s so funny. We had a party last weekend with the cast and friends up in Hollywood, and the gasps and screams – [Laughs] — I’ve never watched anything in TV like that, where people are so emotionally invested in this little triangle. Next season, we know we’re gonna jump ahead a little bit in time. It will most likely begin with Jane and Owen getting off the plane and Grayson being there to meet them. I can’t wait to write it.
I’m excited by the thought of Grayson having to woo Jane after watching three seasons of her pining for him. Regardless of whether he now knows that Jane has Deb’s soul, or just that Jane is a woman he could love like Deb, that’s something we’ll see, right? The roles are now reversed?
Absolutely. Grayson is now smitten by Jane at the beginning of season 4.
[Giddily claps]. That was a little applause.
[Laughs] I love the idea of reversing the dynamic. It’s gonna be so fun.
I know that originally, you had a different idea for the character of Owen. Did casting Lex Medlin in the role change how that character’s arc played out, or was he always going to be this important to Jane?
I had several different endings in my mind. The chemistry between him and Jane is so incredibly strong, that it pushed me to do what I had wanted to do. When I wrote him as a 29-year-old surfer, I told our casting director that that’s loosely what I’m looking for, but I don’t want you to feel like your pigeonholed. I want the best actor, and I want someone who will make Jane pop. He came in and read for us, and we fell in love with him in the room. I think that Owen is the whole package. He’s cute. He’s funny. He’s Jane’s intellectual equal. They seem to get each other on so many levels. And there’s real chemistry between the two actors. They’re very playful with each other off-camera as well. They’re friends and they admire each other’s skills. They’re adorable together, whether the camera’s rolling or not. I think it’s magic when you find that kind of chemistry, especially in a relationship that challenges the core relationship in a series, like Jane and Grayson. I know, but I don’t want to reveal, who Jane will end up with. But for Jane, and for the writers certainly, the journey is most of the fun. And Owen’s going to be an important part of her journey as her character continues to grow and develop.
What’s ahead for Parker and Kim?
We don’t want to play any more will-they-or-won’t-they. When Parker returns, their relationship will be completely different, and there’s a twist that I don’t want to reveal, but it will set both characters in a completely new direction. I love working with Josh Stamberg, who plays Parker, and Kate Levering, who plays Kim. They’re such fantastic actors, I can’t wait to give them more juicy bits to sink their teeth into.
It seems like you’d have to keep Parker away a little bit longer than Jane so we could enjoy seeing Kim as Jane’s boss.
Kim will become Jane’s temporary boss next season, if Jane comes back to the firm… We haven’t decided if it will be half an episode, or how long it’s going to be, but yeah, we have to mine that.
Where did Fred go, and how are we going to get him back? Ben Feldman broke my heart in the airport when Fred said he was going to propose to Stacy, and Jane told him she’d seen Stacy kissing Grayson.
We have so many ideas for Fred that we don’t know what we’re gonna do yet. He’s the one that I’d say I’m most up in the air with. I love writing him, and I get teased by some of the other actors that I see myself in him, so I write a lot for him. But I think Ben’s a marvelous actor. He will be back someday, but regardless of how we bring him back, he will be a changed man because of what he’s gone through. He’s never really suffered this kind of pain and betrayal, so he’s gonna have to learn what that feels like, and that would change anybody.