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Saving Hope returns to its roots for Season 4

If this is the final season for Saving Hope, fans will be happy on one front. Erica Durance and Michael Shanks were mum when asked directly if the current season will be its last, but they did acknowledge CTV’s homegrown medical drama is returning to its roots.

“Charlie and Alex become mature adults,” Shanks says of Hope Zion’s central doctors. “One of the reasons the love triangle [with Daniel Gillies’ Dr. Joel Goran] ended is because that story only has legs for so long. To be playing CW love triangle stuff with the level of angst that they write … why is Charlie getting into another fist-fight with Joel?! It became time for these characters to move forward.”

Things have moved forward significantly in Thursday’s return, “Sympathy for the Devil.” Eleven months have passed since Joel was blown to smithereens. Alex (Durance) leaves baby Luke for her first day back at Hope Zion and it doesn’t take long for her to become embroiled in drama both in and outside of the operating room. The headstrong, brilliant doc finds herself competing with one of the hospital’s newest hires, Dr. Patrick Curtis (Max Bennett), over how to treat a car crash victim. Then Alex tackles her next case: a man named Tom Crenshaw (Rookie Blue‘s Travis Milne) who was convicted of murdering his wife. And while Alex and Tom connect on the operating table, the accused killer turns to Charlie for help. Shanks explains almost every ghost who has interacted with Charlie has been well-intentioned and a resulted positively.

“With this one, we don’t know,” he teases. “There is a bit of a raised eyebrow.”

Meanwhile, Zach (Benjamin Ayres) is struggling to deal with Goran’s death, going so far as to put his life on the line by entering a quarantined area to help a sick patient rather than take the time to don a hazmat suit.

“For all of the fans of Zach, this is going to be a really big year for him,” Durance says. “He really gets to unpack some emotional stuff and deal with the guilt that he feels.”

Saving Hope airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on CTV.