On Criminal Minds' Glendale, California, soundstage, cast members look far happier than they ever do on the show. A massive cake, spattered with fake blood splotches to commemorate the CBS series' 200th episode, rests before a podium as star Joe Mantegna, who plays Special Agent David Rossi, speaks triumphantly to the actors and crew.
Erica Messer wants to set the record straight: JJ and Cruz are not having an affair on Criminal Minds.
"I'll say it again: They did not and are not having an affair," the showrunner tells TVGuide.com. "It only seems like they are."
Fall TV Report Card: How is the new class doing?
And don't JJ (A.J. Cook) and Cruz (Esai Morales) know it — the former especially. On Wednesday's episode (9/8c, CBS), Cruz returns to the show for the first time since he was suddenly named BAU ...
Criminal Minds showrunner Erica Messer can sum up Season 9 in one word: backstories.
"That's our focus this year," she tells TVGuide.com. "We're telling backstories and origin stories. We want to give everybody some insight into our heroes because we give insight to the unsubs every week. We're going to hit 200 [episodes] and it feels like, 'Let's tell the audience things they never knew before.'"
That involves an old beau for Garcia (Kristen Vangsness), The Reaper (C. Thomas Howell) and Haley (Meredith Monroe) returning (but not from the dead), and filling in the blanks of JJ's (A.J. Cook) year in the State Department during Season 6 — with some help from new BAU section chief Matt Cruz (Esai Morales), with whom she worked there. What's the deal with those two? How does Garcia's ex come back into the picture? Get the scoop on the season below:
No one saves face in director Steven Soderbergh's ghoulishly entertaining, opulently produced Behind the Candelabra (Sunday, 9/8c), HBO's grandest, gaudiest and most fascinating movie in quite a long while — probably since last year's Game Change, in which Julianne Moore's uncanny impersonation of Sarah Palin swept the awards the way Michael Douglas is likely to repeat with his equally astonishing transformation into the flamboyant but closeted "Mr. Showmanship" Liberace.
[SPOILER ALERT: The following story contains spoilers about the Season 8 finale of Criminal Minds. Read at your own risk.]