June 2016 Archives  

28 June 2016

Rizzoli & Isles Ratings

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EP701
L+SD
Viewership (000s, Live+SD) - 3.913
Adults 18-49 rating (Live+SD) - 0.6

L+3
Live+3 Viewers(000s)
EP701 -5655 (45% increase)

Live+3 18-49 rating
EP701 - 1.0 (67% increase)

Live+7 Viewers(000s)
EP701 -6216 (59% increase)

 

Live+7 18-49 rating
EP701 - 1.1 (83% increase)

 

 

EP702

L+SD
Viewership (000s, Live+SD) - 3.577
Adults 18-49 rating (Live+SD) - 0.5

 

Live+3 Viewers(000s)
EP702 -5576 (56% increase)

Live+3 18-49 rating
EP702 - .9 (80% increase)

Live+7 Viewers(000s)
EP702 -6192 (73% increase)

Live+7 18-49 rating
EP702 - 1.1 (120% increase)

 

 

 

EP703

L+SD
Viewership (000s, Live+SD) - 4.001
Adults 18-49 rating (Live+SD) - 0.6

 

Live+3 Viewers(000s)
EP703 -5765 (44% increase)

Live+3 18-49 rating
EP703 - 1.0 (67% increase)

 

EP704

L+SD
Viewership (000s, Live+SD) - 4.129
Adults 18-49 rating (Live+SD) - 0.5

 

 

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14 June 2016

Jordan Bridges Interview

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Jordan Bridges – Rizzoli and Isles By starrymag

Q) The show has been a ratings giant, we’re you surprised by the cancelation?

A) I wasn’t exactly surprised because it has been a wonderful run, but it seems like the network is starting to go a different direction with some of the new shows coming in. There’s also a new administration over at TNT and we were a product of the people who came before. I feel like the show had a really great run and sometimes it’s better to go out on top than to try and keep extending it beyond its natural life.

Q) What’s next for you after “Rizzoli and Isles” wraps?

A) There’s nothing in the tank right now, but I have a few irons on the fire. There is nothing I can really talk about because you know I don’t want to ruin it before its fully realized. I’m going to be moving to New York, which I’m really excited about. I sort of started my career there and so I’m looking forward to getting back into some more theater, that’s always been a big part of what I love to do. I’m also developing a number of projects that I’m going to be creating and writing and I’m hoping will be made.

Q) Last week we saw some sparks between Frankie and Nina. Now that they seem to be starting a relationship has Frankie gotten over his crush on Maura?

A) [laughs] Yeah, well, Frankie’s crush on Maura (Sasha Alexander) got squashed kind of quickly when it was clear it wasn’t reciprocated. You know, Frankie’s a practical guy. When something is clearly not going to go his way, has going to move on. He has a lot of genuine affection for Maura, but he’s moved on from his infatuation.

Read the full interview here


 

 

12 June 2016

Sasha attends 15th Annual Chrysalis Butterfly Ball

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7 June 2016

Sasha Alexander on the final season of 'Rizzoli & Isles' (Q&A)

ImageFans of TNT's "Rizzoli & Isles" are bound to relish the seventh season premiere tonight. The popular drama series, starring Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander, captured our attention last year when Season 6 bowed — shots were fired at Korzak’s (Bruce McGill) big wedding. We can expect to learn the fates of those newlyweds and their guests — as well as finding out who the shooter is — however one of the main reasons to tune in to this well-executed, long-running drama is that it will be the series' last season.

It's their seventh — and last — season. Let the drama begin.

A chart-topper from the getgo, "Rizzoli & Isles" won over audiences for its inventive writing, and the spunk and grace of its two leads. Harmon plays a tough Boston cop (Rizzoli), Alexander a Chief Medical Examiner (Isles)—TV addicts may recall Alexander's head turning role as Lip's provocative professor on "Shameless" back in 2015.

The show ranked as basic cable's No.1 summer drama last year and no doubt it will leave a mark this year as the show's writers unveil to viewers what lies ahead in the professional and personal lives of the main protagonists.

I caught up with Sasha Alexander to learn more about the season ahead, and her fondness for playing Dr. Maura Isles.

You folks are a remarkable team. What are your thoughts now that this is the last season? What’s going through your mind?

Well, I can’t believe it’s been seven years. A full cycle. A seven-year cycle. I am very grateful that our show went on for so long. It’s very hard to keep shows on long as we have been on. It has remained popular and done well, and that’s a really good thing. I feel like we are leaving on an “up.” I’m grateful and I am sad, and I am also grateful to move on.

What do you think has made it successful?

We have a wonderful cast and casting on a television show is so vital. I also think we have a family that people seem to really like watching every week. And second is Jane (Rizzoli) and Maura (Isles). These two women are a really dynamic duo. It’s been a magical partnership in a sense that is has been two opposites. It just worked. People really love it. When was the last time we seen a series where two women supported each other and were friends? And both who are independent and strong, and beautiful and not beautiful? It doesn’t matter. Just the fact that they were friends beyond anything else really attached itself to people.

What have you love most about your character?

I have loved playing Dr. Maura Isles. Truly. Deeply. From the moment I auditioned for this character, she just brought a lot of light into my life. She is very funny and curious and smart. I learned a lot of vocabulary I never knew. I feel like I could help somebody now if they were in a dire situation. I learned a lot of medical things I never knew before. It’s been really fun to play her. And I think that’s a huge gift, because a lot of time, no matter how long you are on a show and play a character, it can get tedious. I will miss her. I miss the spunkiness and how she approached life, because that translates back to my life as an actor ... when I see this woman approach something with lightness and curiosity. I will miss that little push to do that every day.

There is something to that, right? Approaching life with lightness and fun. So what are a few things you learned working alongside Angie Harmon?

Well, you better work fast because she moves fast. She memorizes fast. She walks fast. And I am shorter than her—and in heels. So a lot of times, I would tell her to slow down. But you know, she is a strong woman. She approaches things with everything she’s got. We laugh a lot. What I like is that she is very flexible and if things in a scene might not be going well, she doesn’t take it so seriously.

What can we expect this season?

We'll be looking at these characters and seeing where they will go, and what their futures will be. I mean, what would happen if your greatest asset was challenged, and what does that mean to you, your humanity and who you are? I think the girls have gone through a lot of stuff. Jane (Harmon) has been put in a lot of dangerous situations and she’s dealing with how that impacts her family and everyone around her. So, I think at this stage, they are evaluating where their futures are going … without giving too much away.

What do you love most about performing, and acting … stepping into another characters’ shoes?

I love storytelling. I always have. I used to dance. And that was a way of telling the story of the music. And then I moved to theater. And then I went to film school to study how to do it behind the camera technically. I love television because we are telling the story every week. And you get to live in that character for more than just one week. For me personally, acting has been a really important way to express myself. I love exploring emotions. I love working with other actors. It excites me. Human beings are fascinating. My mother told me that when I was a little girl, I would want to go to places where there were a lot of people, and I could just sit there, watching people. And then I would imitate them.

Who inspired you the most growing up?

Lucille Ball and Gilda Radner. Those were the two I always imitated. That was the kicking of point. I remember seeing Lily Tomlin in a play and that was where I felt I belonged.

One last question. What’s some of the best advice you have been given about life, or living, or thriving?

Maybe … don’t take things so seriously. That’s the one piece of advise I’ve been given a lot and the one that is sometimes the most hard to remember. You know, people for the most part, are doing their own thing and their actions are not a reflection on you. And if you are a sensitive person, you can take in that energy and respond to it. But the reality is ... it’s not about you. And as long as we are in our own lane, doing the best that we can and the best that we can be, you really can’t worry the choices other people are making. You can’t take it seriously. And as far as thriving, I always think … take something that you love to do, some passion, no matter what it is, and allow that you to drive in you the enthusiasm and the joy of having a passion. It’s important to have something, especially in this age of selfies, and social media, people are more and more alone, and not connecting. So … find that passion.

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7 June 2016

Rizzoli & Isles: Everything You Need to Know About the Final Season

ImageRizzoli & Isles kicks off its seventh and final season tonight -- and showrunner Jan Nash was well prepared for its swan song.

"We had started talking about what we wanted to do with the characters," Nash tells TVGuide.com, "[and] we had designed the arcs that could provide interesting endings, if the show was coming to an end."

Season 6 ended in a cliff-hanger: a shooting broke out at Korsak's (Bruce McGill) wedding at the hands of Jane (Angie Harmon) and Maura's (Sasha Alexander) latest big bad Alice Sands (Annabeth Gish). But during the planning period for Season 7, TNT officially canceled the procedural.

"We did get the news before we started the season that this would be the final year," Nash continued, "so we were able to take all those things that we set in motion and take them to their logical conclusion."

Season 7 kicks off with a two-hour premiere (9/8c, TNT) that will wrap up the Alice Sands arc, but the repercussions from that case will reverberate until the very end.

Here's what you need to know about Rizzoli & Isles' final season.

Who got shot? The premiere immediately picks up from the finale shooting, and two of the team are injured. They don't appear to be grave injuries at first, but one of them will soon manifest itself in a very alarming way that will play out "very interestingly" the rest of the season. Nash says the idea came out of a desire to challenge the actors and the characters in the final season. "We wanted to give everyone something interesting to do in Season 7 so they know they left it all on the field, that they got to play all the colors of these characters," she says.

De-powered: Piggybacking off that, one of Nash's goals for our heroines was to test their skills and their will. "One of the things we thought about when we were just thinking about it as Season 7 was, 'Was there a way for us to challenge Jane and Maura's superpowers?'" Nash says. "Maura is so smart but she ... makes some mistakes and starts to doubt herself. ... Jane is a supercop. If she does not define herself as that, then who is she? And what does she want?" That theme of identity and fulfillment morphed into a fitting setup for the series finale. "The answer to 'What do I want?' hopefully carries you into one's feelings about the show after we stop making it."

Summer lovin': In happier news, love is in the air -- and we're not just referring to Korak's recent nuptials. Not one, but two new couples will be, at the minimum, hinted at in the premiere. "All I will say about that is every character will get to have opportunities and some sort of arc that will carry them through the season and into the finale," Nash says.

In terms of old flames, don't expect any of Jane's to pop up. Nash says the show did reach out to Amaury Nolasco to return one last time as Martinez, but schedules conflicted. "We did try. Amaury was on Telenovela and right after he finished that, he went to work on Prison Break, so he simply wasn't available unfortunately."

Old faces: Returning guest stars include Colin Egglesfield as Tommy and Sharon Lawrence as Maura's mom Hope, who makes her first appearance since Season 4, the last season before Nash took the reins. "When I came on the show ... people can like what I did or not like what I did, but one thing I think people did like was I simplified the world of the characters and tried to focus more on the families that existed closer to home. But I think there were characters that were established [before me] that played very meaningful roles on the show and we could work in interesting things," Nash says. "This year we tried to close the bows on some of those stories, so Hope does come back. There is a story that ... the idea that Hope in Maura's life does become an important element in Maura's journey even though we don't get to see Hope after Episode 5."

New faces: Sharon Gless, Yvette Nicole Brown, Kristoffer Polaha and JoBeth Williams are among the guest stars the show has lined up. "There's a case involving the postal service and Yvette shows up as a postal inspector, and she's utterly delightful," Nash says. "She is so funny and she was such a wonderful to have on the show."

The big 100: Gless appears in the 100th episode, which will be the eighth episode of the season. The case revolves around the murder of two bikers and will serve as a "linchpin." "From a dramatic perspective, it's important," Nash says. "It's got some nice elements that involves Jane going undercover to try to figure out an important part of the case. There's some good prison stuff. The nature of the case challenges Jane in a way that sets up some of the stuff at the end of the season. Hopefully people see that it's laid before already by then. Even the Alice Sands story plays into where she ultimately goes."

No more big bads: Speaking of Jane's former FBI academy foe, Alice Sands will go down as Rizzoli & Isles' final serialized villain and case. "We simply did not have the time to do [more] with [11 episodes] left while doing the other stuff we want to do and end the show," Nash says. "But there are arc-ing stories that go through the episodes. ... All of the episodes this season are very different. Some are more comedic, some are more thriller, some are about relationships between the characters. Others are about the cases. I think we have an interesting balance this year and some nice episodes."

No deaths: Nash has "zero interest" in playing grim reaper, so you can rest easy that nobody will bite it before the show is over besides, you know, the bad guys. "While this show has done some dark episodes, this is a happy show full of happy relationships. This has been a show that has had comedy very much at the forefront of what it's done. I think to have a sad episode where somebody is killed or dies would not be true to the organic chemistry of the series," Nash explains. "And I also don't think it would be very satisfying. There certainly have been series that have done very dramatic, very ambiguous endings, and they have been, for those series, exactly right. This series is not that. It would be a little bit weird."

So how will it end? Well, the series finale, currently, is only half-written. "The half I should be writing has not been written," Nash says, laughing. "It will be written next week." Nash says she had her own idea of how the show should end, but the finale went through "three or four" incarnations after discussions with the network, production studio Warner Bros. and executive producer Bill Haber.

"I think as we talked about the final season, I think we had a sense of what we wanted for these characters," she says. "We have aimed for that. Each of the characters, no just Jane and Maura, will in the final season have things that happen in their personal lives and professional lives that will get them to a place where you're like, 'Oh, that makes sense. I understand why Angela (Lorraine Bracco) is here and when this show goes off the air, I understand where Angela is in her life.'

"Hopefully people will have a sense that the characters are in really happy, satisfied places, the relationships that they have in their lives are good relationships and that the characters will go off into the sunset in a satisfying way."

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3 June 2016

Sasha Alexander bids farewell to Rizzoli & Isles

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Six years ago, TNT tried a show both conventional and unconventional. On paper, a police procedural called “Rizzoli & Isles” set in Boston and focused on a grouchy cop and a super smart medical examiner seemed mundane But in this case, the difference was gender: the two leads were women.

On top of that, the writing was crisp, the humor sharp. It became an immediate hit, eventually becoming Atlanta-based TNT’s most popular show in network history. The seventh and final season begins Monday (June 6) at 9 p.m.

Over the first four seasons, creator Janet Tamaro infused Angie Harmon‘s Jane Rizzoli and Sasha Alexander’s Maura Isles with an endearing odd couple flair. They were the current generation’s “Cagney and Lacey.” Since Tamaro left, the show has focused more on secondary characters and the crimes, much to the chagrin of many of its fans.

We recently spoke with Alexander about the show’s appeal, why she thinks it’s ending and how the show changed over time.

Q: You won a People’s Choice for favorite cable TV actress earlier this year. Were you surprised?

Alexander: Yah. It was such a lovely surprise. I think that it’s a nice award because it is really the fans and people who take the time to vote. We’ve had such a great fan base. They’ve only grown and stayed strong with us. That’s been a real light throughout this whole show.

Q: Were you at all surprised TNT decided to end the show now?

Alexander: I wasn’t that surprised. Our contracts were going to be up. It becomes a renegotiation issue. The network was going in a different direction. We were part of an old regime. There’s a new regime looking to do different things. To keep us going was going to be expensive. It’s politics. The fact that we even got to seven seasons and get to finish this out is fantastic.

Q: Do you think this was the right time to end the show?

Alexander: I have really enjoyed playing Dr. Maura Isles. I really can say in seven years, I never had a boring day playing her. It was never tedious for me to play her. She’s a sunny personality and curious and interested and funny. I was constantly amused by the role. I will miss playing her. We’ve had seven seasons to explore so many things and creatively I’m ready to move on.

Q: How has the character matured over seven seasons?

Alexander: When we first met Maura, she was a little Asperger’s. She was socially awkward. I think it took some time to massage her relationship with Jane and other characters. She matured in a way. I do think there has been some intense situations with her family and when Jane shot her father. That changed the tone of her character. She hardened. She became jaded a bit. It chipped away at her chirpy sunny spirit but made her more colorful and deeper in certain ways. I still think she’s quirky. They’ve moved away from just the comedy stuff into a more well-rounded human being.

Q: What do you think was the key to the success of the show that enabled it to last as long as it has?

Alexander: Jane and Maura. That’s the formula. We’ve rarely seen two women at the helm who get along and support each other. We’re friends. I think that people connect with that relationship. It made them feel good to see women in this dark crime world navigate personal lives along with solving crimes. Besides the crime of the week, it had tonal flexibility. It had a lot of comedy that translated universally. Ultimately, I think the chemistry between Jane and Maura and all the cast made it a little family.

Q: Some fans have said they really felt the chemistry wasn’t quite the same between the two characters in recent seasons, that they weren’t quite as close. Have you read the social media comments?

Alexander: Yah. That has happened the last three years. It was a creative decision. I don’t want to be controversial, it was a creative choice where they just went more into the cop world. It wasn’t as much about our relationship. The first four seasons, we were under direction of Janet Tamaro. We have since changed creators to Jan Nash. That means a changed sensibility. Janet was very interested in the dynamics between women. You can tell she wrote things between the mother and daughter, between the girls. Jan was more into the cop thing. I don’t think Jan didn’t service the women. I do think we’ve had really fun stuff to do over seven years. You can’t keep doing the same thing with the girls all the time. You have to break away. Some episodes were Jane heavy, some Maura heavy. Let me add, also by doing that, in the last three seasons, Jan has been able to heighten the roles for the rest of the cast as well. By not having us together all the time, you get the opportunity to play with other people. But I love watching Jane and Maura. To me, that was always the hook.

Q: Could you give us any idea how season even will play out?

Alexander: I don’t want to give anything away. I do think they’ve grown up. They are thinking about their futures. They’ve been through a lot. Jane has been through a lot of dangerous situations. I don’t know what that has done to her and her family… Both women have been unlucky in love. That hasn’t been on the forefront. Both are independent working women. Something is going to happen to Maura healthwise. She will have to evaluate her future… I hope that at the end, we’ll know these people will remain tight no matter what direction they go in.

Q: I hear you’re trying your hand at directing for the first time in episode 10 [of season seven].

Alexander: I am! This is my first episodic. It’s gone amazing. I haven’t had this much fun since film school! I’ve been collaborating with the team, just being able to have perspective, to work with these wonderful actors… It’s been really fun. I’ve been all smiles for two weeks. I hope I can get good performances from all the characters that matter in the overall picture and tell a good story. And of course, stay on budget and on time! So far, so good.

Q: What did you learn most about yourself playing Maura?

Alexander: It’s okay to be different. It’s okay to beat your own drum. We all work on different frequencies. There’s nothing wrong with that. There’s no one way to do things. I like that Maura was an odd duck. She’s comfortable with her own odd way of looking at things. Some of my favorite scenes on the show have been those where she’s spewing some strange vocabulary and weird analysis and Jane is looking at her like she has no idea what she’s saying. ‘Can we just go get ice cream?’ Those moments between them have been so much fun to play.

Q: You found some time to have a recurring role on “Shameless” as a lusty professor. How’s that been compared to “Rizzoli”?

Alexander: I’ve done the last two seasons over there. I did six episodes last season. It’s an incredible show to work on. I felt grateful to be able to do it. Warner Brothers allowed me to do it. It’s so totally different. When you play a character as pinched as Maura for so long, it’s nice to literally strip it off and be someone entirely different. It’s much more raw and edgy. It’s provocative. Jumping into that was uncomfortable. You have to let go of any preconceived notions of anything. You shoot faster. You shoot in a more crazy way. They’re wild and emotional and nuts. I loved the experience. It’s been the perfect gift.

Q: Did “Rizzoli & Isles” fans freak out?

Alexander: It’s funny. I wasn’t sure they would accept me in this role… I think some people were shocked. But once they saw the arc of the role, most of the fans understood my creative decision to try this different role. They were on board with that. I hope I brought ‘Shameless’ some new fans!

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2 June 2016

Angie Harmon Reveals What to Expect in Final Season of Rizzoli & Isles

ImageWhen Season 7 of TNT’s buddy dramedy Rizzoli & Isles premieres on June 6, it will mark the beginning of the end for the fan favorite, as this season will be its last. We chatted with star Angie Harmon about her memorable moments, what she’s taking from the set and what she’s really taking away from her time as Detective Jane Rizzoli.

How will this season be different from the other ones?
Well, obviously, there’s a conclusion. I think that’s going to be a fun thing for everyone to see and just sort of bring a little closure to each character, which I think is necessary. Personally, as a viewer, I want to know what’s going to happen to the characters after it’s over and done with, because you’ve lived with the characters for a long time. I think that everyone’s going to be pretty happy about all of our futures.

Do you get any input into where Jane’s character ends up?
I did, and I was very grateful for that. I think I’ve stayed pretty spot-on with who Jane is and what her character is. I received a really wonderful compliment from (author of the Rizzoli & Isles book series) Tess Gerritsen, saying that other than the way that I look, Jane was exactly as she had written her. And when she writes the books now, she hears my voice. That was a huge honor for me.

What are you going to miss about Jane?
Oh God, everything! I’m going to miss her sense of humor. It’s a fun time to be able to play a character like Jane, because Jane gets to say sometimes bitchy, sometimes snarky, sometimes funny, sometimes biting things, and it’s understood and funny and people get it, as opposed to being out in the real world and not knowing if anyone’s going to get your humor or understand what you mean or understand the nuance.

Can you tell us about some of the fun you’ve had behind the scenes of Rizzoli & Isles?
There’s always a time when we’re all exhausted and the giggles set in and anything is hilarious. We laugh about it all the time that Jane’s half-man, half-superwoman. It turns real inappropriate, real quick. I know I’m really doing well when my cameramen and my focus guys and everybody, they just have their heads down and you can’t see anything but their bodies shaking.

Is there anything that you’re looking forward to about the end of the series?
I don’t have the manicure that I want, and I haven’t in seven years. I don’t necessarily have the haircut that I want, and I haven’t in seven years … the only thing I’ve worn for seven years is a sensible pantsuit. I took a picture of Jane’s wardrobe the other day, and it was just 90 T-shirts — in a rainbow array.

What episode stands out as a favorite?
The pilot is definitely my favorite, one of my favorites. Everything was so new and everything was so wonderful. Another favorite episode of mine, I think, is when Jane sort of ran around the city chasing Barry. That was a pretty important episode for us, and for me personally.

Are there any episodes this season that you’re especially excited about?
We’re coming up with a 100th episode, which I’m actually getting ready to direct. Jane has to go undercover in a women’s prison, which is something that we’ve never done before. I’ve got a tattoo going up my neck and down my arm and the whole nine yards, so I’m excited about that. I’m excited to be in the thick of it, but also to be watching it from the other side of the camera and directing.

Is there anything that you’ve mentally earmarked to take from the set?
There are a couple things in Maura’s house, in her kitchen, that I think I’m going to have to probably trip Sasha [Alexander] for and run in and get them real quick. I don’t know. Hopefully she’ll give up easily. I’ll probably take Jane’s belt. I’m definitely going to take my badge, because Jane’s badge number is the birthday of one of my best friends.

How are you different at the end of the series from who you were at the beginning?
When I started this show, I was in a very different place in all things. Very naive. I was a child essentially, in a lot of ways, and I’m not anymore. To have these people sort of go through that process of growing up with me and allow me to do it ; I mean, my friends here, they tell me they’re super proud of the person that I’ve become and they’ve watched what I’ve gone through. I’ve just learned to handle — let’s see, how would Jane put it? — I’ve learned to handle the b******t of life a lot better.

You just deferred to Jane to answer a question. Are you taking a bit of Jane with you from the show?
Absolutely. Absolutely. I think the hardest thing for me when shows end is, it’s like all of those characters die, because you don’t ever get to see them again. You don’t ever get to play them again. You don’t get to play with the other characters and play with the other people. They’re just gone. That’s very difficult for me. I’ve lived this person for seven years. I haven’t acted; I’ve lived her. Jane has protected me in a lot of times when I really needed it. Jane has been a witty sense of humor in many times when I didn’t have one. Hopefully, in this process of becoming an adult in my 40s, I can honestly say that I truly hope that Jane Rizzoli had a lot of influence on who I am now and who I’ve become.

A lot of our readers are huge Rizzoli & Isles fans. Is there a message you’d like to share with them?
There’s such deep, heartfelt gratefulness for their support and their love, especially the ones that have stood up for us and who have fought for us and who have fought back the mean girls, so to speak.


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