Last week, when shooting Scrubs’ probable series finale (which will likely air this spring), creator Bill Lawrence gathered all of the significant guest stars from the death-defying comedy’s past eight years for a jaw-dropping scene that’ll rival the mass reunion in Seinfeld’s send-off. But two alums currently appearing on NBC programs — Heroes’ Masi Oka and Chuck’s Sarah Lancaster — weren’t permitted to participate. Turns out that almost four months after ABC plucked Scrubs out of NBC’s scrap heap for its final season, absence has made the Peacock’s heart grow, well, the opposite of fonder. ”[Masi and Sarah] wanted to do it, but NBC said no,” explains Lawrence, who has never been shy in calling out his old network for its lack of Scrubs promotion and constant time slot changes. ”Typical classy stuff.” NBC declined to comment.
Granted, networks tend to frown on letting their stars fraternize with the enemy, but things have been loosening up in recent years. For instance, ABC let Scrubs leading lady Sarah Chalke continue her recurring gig on CBS’ How I Met Your Mother this fall, and in turn the Eye loaned out The Unit’s Scott Foley for Scrubs’ penultimate episode. Even NBC has played nice on occasion: The net is allowing its newest Law & Order: SVU ADA, Michaela McManus, to revisit her alma mater, The CW’s One Tree Hill, this season.
The double standard is not lost on Lawrence, who suggests that the sleight is almost certainly sour grapes over Scrubs’ defection. ”But [Masi and Sarah] should not have been part of that fight,” he sighs. ”It felt kind of petty to me.”
Q: Any scoop on Jennifer Aniston’s appearance on 30 Rock? —Matt
A: Yeah, and stop me if you’ve heard this one before: She’ll play a neurotic urbanite who once shared an apartment with two female, ahem, friends in a major U.S. city. Only, in this case, the pals are Rock stars Tina Fey and Jane Krakowski, and the city they roomed together in was Chicago. You guessed it — it’s a takeoff on…Leprechaun!
Q: What’s the latest on Elisha Cuthbert returning to 24? —Dominic
A: Ladies and gentlemen, we’ve got a signed contract! Cuthbert has inked a deal to reprise her role as Jack’s lightning rod of an offspring for a season-ending arc that will no doubt trigger a new round of wholly outdated and painfully unfunny cougar jokes. Per my 24 mole, Kim returns minus her old beau (sorry, C. Thomas Howell) and with a child of her own. Responds 24’s incendiary puma: ”Mmmm…fresh meat.”
Q: I just saw a promo for Grey’s Anatomy in which Rose says she’s carrying Derek’s baby. Is she lying? —Courtney
A: Someone is, and it’s either the ad or series creator Shonda Rhimes. Last May, Rhimes assured fans that Grey’s would not be employing any soap operatic stunts to keep Mer-Der apart — and she specifically ruled out knocking up Rose. So what’s with the clip? In an unusual move, the typically spoilerphobic Rhimes is speaking out, insisting that she ”would not deceive our fans.” The ABC promo department, however, has no such qualms.
Ausiello sniffs out new tidbits every day and posts them on EW.com