[WARNING: The following story contains spoilers about Tuesday's episode of Rizzoli & Isles. Read at your own risk.]
Jane played the hero on Rizzoli & Isles, but it came at a cost.
On Tuesday's episode — which also introduced new team member, crime scene analyst Nina Holiday (Idara Victor) — Jane (Angie Harmon) goes rogue looking for Tasha, a homeless teen who was witness to a contract killing. Before she could get Tasha to safety, the hitman shoots Tasha in the chest and Jane in her vest, forcing them to hide in a freight elevator of a building under construction. After Jane fashions a tourniquet for Tasha and gives the teen her vest, she comes face to face with the killer, who beats her up. Just when he's about drop a pipe on her, he gets shot in the back by Korsak (Bruce McGill).
Tasha and Jane are both OK, but what about Jane's unborn baby? If you've already seen the logline for next week's episode, which teases that Jane is trying to recover from a loss, you know the prognosis is, well, not good. "I think people will be able to draw their own conclusions as to what happens!" executive producer Jan Nash tells TVGuide.com. "You can figure it out, but I think it's pretty obvious. Jane Rizzoli has done something heroic and there is a price to be paid for it."
Nash says she deliberated for a while as to how to handle Jane's pregnancy, which was revealed in the Season 4 finale after she and Casey broke up for the umpteenth time. The former Without a Trace producer joined the TNT drama in between seasons and previously said that she didn't want the pregnancy to be a fake-out. "This pregnancy pre-existed my arrival on the show. It was one of the things I had to come up a plan for this year," she says. "I think there are a lot of different ways this could've been spun out for the show — do we want to see Jane as a mother? Is that something we want to do right now? — and we just made a decision to handle it in a way that we felt honored the seriousness of the situation. We just used our best judgment."
Fans have been divided about the pregnancy story line and Nash is already anticipating the flurry of reactions in the aftermath of Tuesday's episode. "I have a small, devoted Twitter following who read the logline [for next week's episode] about the 'devastating loss,'" she says. "One of them said, 'It's a miracle at the start of the season, we were almost 99 percent against the idea of Jane being pregnant, and now it appears we're 99 percent afraid that Jan is going to do something we won't enjoy.' If it resonates, any reaction means we've done our jobs."
Going forward, Maura (Sasha Alexander) et al. will be by Jane's side as she prepares to return to work, help Tasha and move on. But the turn of events won't hang over the show too much.
"We'll deal with it, but life goes on. I think that's the message of Episode 2 [Frost's tribute]," Nash says. "It's painful to talk about this. The whole notion of it is very painful. It is a devastating loss. As much as this is fake, in life it is not fake. You don't want to do anything that is hurtful to anyone who has had a life experience like this. ... We were given something that we felt like we wanted to deal with as honestly as we could on a TV show. If people are impacted by it, then we have told a good a story that has perhaps played out in a way that makes for good television."