Felicity and Her Hair Are Back

ByGayl Murphy

October 4, 2000 -- As the third season of Felicity kicks off tonight, Felicity (Keri Russell) and Ben (Scott Speedman) are still on, Noel (Scott Foley) is looking for a new love, and — most importantly — Felicity's hair is back to an executive-pleasing length.

Rightly or wrongly, Keri Russell's super-short 'do from last season was blamed for the WB college drama's severe drop in ratings. Now, with that hurdle out of the way, are the show's writers committing another TV no-no by letting the two main characters be happy in love?

Tonight's season premiere has Felicity and Ben finding an apartment in Brooklyn, N.Y., and at her suggestion, shacking up. It's a coupling Russell is pleased about.

"He's great. I think he's a great actor, and I love the character," Russell says of Speedman, whom she's also reportedly dating off-screen. "I love that [Felicity] followed him to New York, and … that this fantasy person is now becoming a real relationship — and what that means."

But what about the pitfalls of actually getting your man? Will relationship bliss prove to be the kiss of death for the TV series?

Speedman doesn't think so — especially not when it comes to Felicity and Ben. "I think it's dangerous to say that once two people are together that it becomes less interesting to watch. With any relationship, there's a lot of dynamics and problems, especially in college at age 20. I mean, there's a lot that can go wrong and we're going to explore that."

Felicity creator-producers J.J. Abrams and Matt Reeves agree and say they should have brought the characters together sooner. "We were afraid there wouldn't be enough to keep it afloat," Abrams says. "But the opposite is true, because this year they're together, and it's almost like opening a box and finding these amazing things inside — and last year I just wish we'd opened that box."

Of course, Felicity and Ben aren't the only characters on the show, and Russell promises more from the other characters. "It's much more of an ensemble feeling and much more of a family-oriented show," she says.

Other plot twists promised for the upcoming season include Sean (Greg Grunberg) and Meghan (Amanda Foreman) getting closer, a health scare for Sean, and a "nice" spell for Meghan. New additions to the cast include English actress Sarah-Jane Potts, Three's Company's John Ritter as Ben's dad, and Tyra Banks as a new love interest for Noel.

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