Today’s cuppa: Fortnum & Mason Irish breakfast tea

Aaron_Ashmore_Smallville.jpgNews has circulated that Aaron Ashmore (left), who played Jimmy Olsen in The CW’s “Smallville,” is joining the cast of Syfy’s hit series “Warehouse 13,” which returns this summer with 13 new episodes.

After the abrupt departure of Secret Service Agent Myka Bering (Joanne Kelly) in the season-two finale, following her betrayal by H.G. Wells (Jaime Murray), the all-powerful Mrs. Frederic (CCH Pounder) recruits ATF Agent Steve Jinks (Ashmore) to be Secret Service Agent Pete Lattimer’s (Eddie McClintock) new partner in chasing down powerful artifacts to be housed in the mysterious Warehouse 13 in South Dakota.

Jinks is also a human lie-detector, which could come in handy, coupled with Pete’s ability to receive warning “vibes.”

Series executive producer Jack Kenny took a few minutes over the weekend to answer some email questions about these developments and the series at large (questions in bold)…

Q: You left fans hanging at the end of last season, when Myka suddenly resigned. What sort of response have you gotten from fans?

A: Mixed, as always. Some are furious that we would let Myka leave the Warehouse. Others are confident that she’ll be back. But the nice thing is, they all love the character so much, that, one way or the other, they’re passionate about her. And who wouldn’t be??

Q: How have fans responded to the announcement of Aaron Ashmore as Pete’s new partner, Jinks?

A: It’s so new, but so far I’ve only seen positive responses. Again, there’s passion about the thought of him “replacing” Myka. But Aaron is such a winning guy, I think fans will welcome his addition to the Warehouse team. He brings an entirely different energy from our other characters, a wonderful energy.

Q: What sort of a person is Jinks?

A: Agent Steve Jinks joined the ATF for reasons that will unfold as the season progresses.Warehouse_13_Allison_Scagliotti.jpg Above all, he’s a straight shooter and an honest guy. There’s something he can see in a person’s eyes that tell him whether they’re telling the truth or not, and that kinda thing makes him hyper-aware of his own truth.

He’s a Buddhist — which is to say, he is striving towards that goal. He certainly hasn’t achieved Nirvana, but it’s always more interesting to me why a person chooses a particular path, rather than the path itself.

He’s also the closest in age and temperament to Claudia (played by Allison Scagliotti, at right), so they can become sounding boards for one another, and confidants in a way that no other character has been able to do that for her.

Q: What did you like in particular about Ashmore?

A: What’s not to like? He’s charming, sexy, a terrific actor, willing to try to do anything and excited about what we’re all doing together. And there’s something that the camera sees in his eyes — they absolutely pierce through you! Very disarming .. also a great guy!!

Q: Since this has rapidly become a very successful show, has Syfy been supportive of your creative vision or are they keeping a close eye on the show?

A: I would say, both. They have always been supportive of my vision for “Warehouse 13,” and the directions, additions, mythology and story arcs that we’ve planned. I can honestly say that I’ve never had such a collaborative and easy relationship with any other network. They’re insightful and flexible at the same time.

“(Syfy president) Mark Stern has been particularly protective of the show, and that wonderfully translates to exciting involvement and lots of terrific promotion. The whole team has been a Warehouse_13_Joanne_Kelly_Eddie_McClintock.jpgjoy to work with from the start. We actually spend half of our pitch/notes sessions laughing.

Q: Did the whole H.G./Helena Wells storyline turn out the way you hoped — and how was it received?

A: Yes, absolutely, and terrifically. Seems that our amazing fans were willing to jump right in with us on that journey. And it’s not over yet.

Q: Have you figured out the key to the show’s success?

A: Family. This show has been about family for me in every way. I think that’s what attracts most people to stick with a lot of series. Everyone can relate to family, and the relationships, troubles and triumphs that families share. I think any show can be successful if you write and create characters that the fans want to spend time with, get to know on every level. Why else would you watch them every week?

And I believe that’s what we’ve done with “Warehouse 13,” created a family of compelling characters that love each other and that would do anything for each other — and so the viewer will, too!

Also, we try to respect our audience. We don’t talk down to them, and we don’t pander. We race ahead, asking them to keep up — and I think they love that. I know I do.

Posted by:Kate O'Hare