If you've been catching the commercials on ABC for a new series that looks like it could be "Desperate Housewives" but sounds like it could be "Vampire Diaries," then you're well aware "The Gates" are about to open upon us.
We'll be the first to admit, the show, which premieres this Sunday (June 20 at 10p.m. ET/9p.m. central) has a bit of a confusing premise — is it 100 percent about supernatural creatures? What town is this supposed to take place? Why do I need another show in my life about bloodsuckers? Well, lucky for you, we recently brought in one of the stars, Janina Gavankar, to the MTV newsroom so we could get some legit answers to our questions.
WHAT IS THE PLOT?
"It's a gated community where people go to find solace and be safe, and be normal and suburban," says Janina, who plays a cop named Leigh. "Pretty much everyone has something to hide, and that's why they need safety. There are a lot of secrets in 'The Gates.'" Facing those "secrets" head on will be the new police chief, Nick Monohan (Frank Grillo), whose family is a central part of the plot.
SO WHAT ARE PEOPLE "HIDING"?
"There are a lot of secrets — some of them are supernatural, and some of them are human," she said. "What's really the best part of the show — it's not about, 'Oh I've got fangs' or 'Oh, I'm turning into a werewolf,' it's not about that — is really about dealing with trying to be human and keeping your life together."
WILL WE KNOW RIGHT OFF THE BAT WHO HAS SUPERNATURAL POWERS AND WHO DOESN'T?
"You're not going to know everything right away," she responded vaguely. "They definitely have a serious mystery bent on this show. You're not going to be able to just tune in on episode 5. You're going to need to know what these characters are going through in order to understand, otherwise you'll be confused. People who you think are human, aren't. People that you think have something going on, don't."
THIS SOUNDS ODDLY LIKE (INSERT NAME OF VAMPIRE MOVIE/SHOW BASED ON A BOOK HERE), IS IT?
According to Janina, the supernatural storylines differ from "True Blood," "Twilight," etc because of the picturesque setting. "It's every town America," she noted. "It could be anywhere. ...It's like looking in a Rockwell painting and seeing the apple pies mixed with monster mythology."
THE SHOW ISN'T BASED ON A BOOK SERIES, IS THAT HELPFUL OR HURTFUL?
It's a definite positive! "We don't have to stay true to any specific already-out-there material," the actress points out. "We get to evolve and change our minds and go left if we want to at any moment. It's very freeing."
LET'S GET REAL: IS THE CAST HOT?
Janina specifically requested the Hollywood Crush audience pay attention to three key names: Travis Caldwell, Skyler Samuels and Colton Haynes.
Those three good looking actors fill the shoes of the main teenagers on the show. "There's a whole high school element here which is fascinating to watch," she said, adding, "some of them don't know what they are because it hasn't been revealed to them by their parents yet." Travis plays new kid Charlie Monohan (yup son to the aforementioned Nick) who sparks an interest in Andie (Skyler) upon his first day at school. But, she (of course) has a boyfriend, the BMOC Brett (Colton), who Janina described as "the most beautiful boy in school."
There you have it, crushers, your "Gates" cheat sheet. Knowing all of the above, will you be watching the series premiere on Sunday night? Do you think there's room for more supernatural material in pop culture?