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The New Season: Will CBS finally shed its stodginess?

July 18, 2007 | 10:43 am


CBS has been lamenting since last season that their very popular shows don’t get a lot of water-cooler buzz. But we must say Wednesday morning’s press tour executive session with President of Entertainment Nina Tassler was kinda juicy!

There were Mandy Patinkin’s “personal issues,” Don Bellisario's ouster from “NCIS” at the insistence of Mark Harmon, and last night’s scary incident involving “CSI” star Gary Dourdan, who attacked a TMZ photographer outside Hyde nightclub for no apparent reason.

Is this really my grandmother’s network?

It’s hard to focus on the new season after all that, but let’s try. Here are some tidbits Tassler shared about stuff happening on the network’s returning shows:

-- “CSI” and “CSI: NY” will have crossover episodes on the same night in which William Petersen and Gary Sinise visit each other’s hometowns.
-- Horatio Caine (David Caruso) on “CSI: Miami” will discover he has a biological son.
Howimetyourmother300 -- On “How I Met Your Mother”  viewers will start getting hints about who the mother is.
-- Hard to believe but on “Two and a Half Men” Jake (Angus T. Jones) will begin junior high school.
-- An episode of “Cold Case” will feature only Nirvana music.
-- And drumroll please for "Jericho" — yes, people, "Jericho" — Stanley (Brad Beyer) and Mimi (Alicia Coppola) will get engaged.

-- Maria Elena Fernandez