'Drop Dead Diva' premiere postmortem: Creator talks Old Jane reveal

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Image Credit: Richard DuCree/Lifetime

Spoiler alert! If you haven’t watched the season 5 premiere of Lifetime’s Drop Dead Diva, stop reading now. Below, creator Josh Berman dishes on Old Jane.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: We learned that Old Jane isn’t in Owen (Lex Medlin), she’s in the body of a blonde (Pretty Little Liars‘ Natalie Hall). Did you ever consider having her in Owen for more than a dream sequence?
JOSH BERMAN: As an avid TV watcher, I love when my expectations are subverted. So as I writer, I try to do the same thing for the fans. It’s funny, all my actors thought that Old Jane was in Owen. So after [last season's finale], I got calls from the actors with suggestions on how to take that story line. That never happens, but everyone was so intrigued by that notion. I loved hearing the actors debate how the show was going to unfold. Lex Medlin was all excited about it. He couldn’t wait, and he had lots of ideas of where the relationship could go. I just kept my mouth shut because I knew that wasn’t the direction I was going to go in. Given where his character goes [in episode 3], he’s loving [that it didn't happen].

So we will see more of Owen.
He’s gonna be in every episode this season. Lex Medlin became a series regular.

Tell me about Old Jane.
Since the pilot, fans have asked me over and over again, “What happened to the original Jane, the Jane who was shot?” I always knew that I wanted to bring her back, but I felt like I couldn’t bring that character’s soul back until New Jane reached a more elevated state of existence where she was more confident with who she is both in her body and in her profession. So I always thought season 5 would be the time to bring that character back. So I’m grateful for our second chance and our pickup so I could actually do that. Just as Brooke Elliott so seemed to understand the notion of a supermodel in a plus-size body, Natalie Hall seemed to completely understand the notion of an introverted lawyer brainiac stuck in a gorgeous skinny model’s body. So when she walked in for her audition, she was so cute and so on point with who she was — not playing into her sexuality, but trying to play into her brain — that she just nailed it. I was also a fan of hers on Pretty Little Liars.

How much of her will we be seeing?
She is in multiple episodes, but we are not sure how many yet.

Old Jane said she wants her life back.
We explain what she means in the very top of the next episode. 502 starts about five hours after the end of 501, and we quickly understand exactly why Old Jane came back — and it’s not the reasons you think she’s back.

And Grayson will keep pursuing New Jane?
Absolutely. I really think it’s time to turn over some cards, and we are going to push Jane’s love life further, and it will have repercussions for both Grayson and Owen.

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Read more:
‘Drop Dead Diva': Season 5 case and guest star scoop from creator Josh Berman

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