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Suits went through quite a switch up in the offseason, and while the writers certainly could have eased into the new show's new dynamic following the departures of Mike and Rachel, they're apparently opting to hit the ground running instead. The USA legal drama added Katherine Heigl for Season 8, and the actress is already letting fans know they won't be too fond of her character in the early going. Heigl explained Samantha Wheeler's unlikability, and why she thinks making waves for Harvey is better than trying to be buddy-buddy right from the start:
I don't know if that has ever worked. I don't think so, because Harvey's one of those guys who sort of demands ultimate loyalty and in order to be loyal to somebody you have to get to know them, right? And I think that having that butting of heads is just so much more dynamic than kind of walking right in and being like everybody's best friend...and [Samantha] definitely comes in butting heads. For sure. . . . When she first gets there her goal is helping Robert Zane. That's her guy, that's who she is loyal to, and they have a really, really great professional and personal relationship. They're very respectful of one another and have worked together for years. So, she's not there to make friends with the Specter Litt group. She's there for Zane, you know? She makes that very clear in a couple of the first episodes.
Harvey lost his right-hand-man in Mike, and Samantha Wheeler is not about to slight right in to be anyone's replacement. Nor does she want to to such things, as Katherine Heigl explained to TVGuide her go-to role in Season 8 is being Robert Zane's go-to fixer. For that reason, Suits fans should expect Wheeler to stick with familiar company, and while Heigl seemed to hint things could change for the better as the season goes on, the first few episodes will show her strictly working squarely in Zane's corner with his best interests in mind.
Katherine Heigl's description of Samantha Wheeler, combined with the brief looks that Suits fans have seen of her so far, makes it sound like she'll be as unlikable as advertised. Of course, being unlikable for her business tactics doesn't mean she has to be bad on all fronts, and Heigl said that while her character's relationship with Harvey is "contentious" at the beginning, there's a level of professional respect she has for him beyond her personal feelings:
It's a really contentious relationship at the beginning. There's a lot of mistrust like neither one trusts the other. But by the end of the first episode, I think it's clear to both parties that there is much respect to be had. It's undeniable that Harvey is a guy that deserves respect, and I think that Samantha really admires his ability, you know, how good he is and how smart he is. But that doesn't mean she likes him, you know? And I think it's the same for him, as far as --- I don't know you'd have to ask Gabriel --- but that's how I feel that Harvey feels about Samantha too.
Suits fanatics will get to see Samantha and Harvey's dynamic unfold on the Season 8 premiere, which premieres on USA on Wednesday, July 18, at 9:00 p.m. Fans should take a break from being glued to Meghan Markle's life as a royal to tune in for Suits next chapter, if only to see Katherine Heigl back in primetime television. For more on Heigl and the history she's had with "unlikable" behavior, be sure to read up on what Shonda Rhimes had to say about the star's tenure on Grey's Anatomy. For a look at what else is on television that night, or any other night in the next couple of months, head over to our summer premiere guide.