6:05pm PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Glee's' Darren Criss on Klaine's Future, Plus the Couple's Deleted Christmas Scene (Video)
Glee's Darren Criss hasn't made it a secret that he's looking forward to some new conflict for Blaine and Kurt heading into Glees fourth season.
With Kurt (Chris Colfer) having graduated from McKinley and Criss' Blaine now a senior member at New Directions, the story line already has an inherent conflict built in, the actor tells The Hollywood Reporter.
"Challenge is good for any relationship," Criss says. "So whether or not it ultimately is staying together or staying apart, I think it's good for both of them to have some kind of medium factor in their lives."
While producers have said Kurt will open the season at McKinley High after failing to gain acceptance to his dream college NYADA, Criss says the inherent challenges that come with life after high school are not only realistic but also good for the fan favorite couple.
"They're kind of verging on an old married couple path right now," Criss says with a laugh of the couple, with Kurt sticking around McKinley to help Mr. Schuester (Matthew Morrison) repopulate New Directions.
With so many faces having graduated -- farewell Rachel (Lea Michele), Finn (Cory Monteith), Mercedes (Amber Riley) and Santana (Naya Rivera) -- Criss said his recent return to the choir room to begin production on Season 4 has been very different.
"Not having everybody in the choir room is strange; it's different energy, but we're just happy to still be there," said Criss, who joined Glee in its second season. "It's a different show now … you're meeting the new people, the younger kids and it's very exciting to see how they fit in."
Indeed, while several seniors moved on from McKinley -- all 15 of the series' Season 3 stars are expected to return in some capacity -- Glee has already added four fresh faces, including Puck's (Mark Salling) younger half-brother Jake Puckerman in Jacob Artist and Dean Geyer, who will play Brody Weston, a potential love interest for Rachel on the New York side of the series. Becca Tobin and Melissa Benoist will recur as new students at McKinley.
"I'm excited for their adventures and how they're going to play things out; I still consider myself the new guy," Criss said, noting part of the fun of Season 4's dual location story lines is seeing new locations for the cast to explore.
"I can see more of the world that these people live in," he said. "It's bigger, better, stronger and faster and I have a lot of cool stuff happening."
Among the "cool stuff," Criss teased that there will be some songs performed on the show that won't be a total shocker to fans of the show -- and summer music.
"There will be some songs that feel like this is not a surprise at all," he said with a laugh. "Just do the math, popular summer songs, and then you hear them and you're like oh yeah. This really isn't shocking." "Call Me Maybe," anyone?
Hit the comments with your thoughts what you'd like to see for Klaine's future and in the meantime, check out the deleted scene from Glee's Christmas episode featuring Blaine's holiday gift to Kurt.
Glee's fourth season returns Thursday, Sept. 13 at 9 p.m. on Fox.