Criminal Minds executive producer Erica Messer wants to assure you that Jeanne Tripplehorn's Alex Blake will not stir up trouble in the BAU.
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Tripplehorn will make her debut on the Season 8 premiere, filling the void left by Paget Brewster's Emily Prentiss, who exited in the season finale. And though Messer previously described Alex as a "threat" to the team, she clarifies that it's merely a case of a newbie joining a tightknit group.
"Anytime there's a very close coworker environment, as we have here, it's hard," Messer tells TVGuide.com. "There's just a natural hesitation to accept, but in that friendly way. She certainly doesn't have an ulterior motive or anything."
What else can we expect from Alex? Get the scoop on her and more below.
Criminal Minds executive producer Erica Messer knew very early this season that she wanted to do something out of the ordinary for the season finale.
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"I wanted to ground it with our team and I wanted to end with the idea that good things happen to good people," Messer tells TVGuide.com. "Our team puts up with all this crap from horrible people all year long, so let's actually celebrate them. We see so many bad images all season long, can't we just have our heroes be happy and smiling and dancing? We knew early on there would be a wedding at the end, not an SUV explosion [like in the Season 3 finale]."
Get ready to meet JJ's mom!
Oscar-nominated American Graffiti star Candy Clark has been cast as Sandy Jareau, the mother of JJ (A.J. Cook), on Criminal Minds, TVGuide.com has learned exclusively.
Clark will appear ...
Check one off the wish list for A.J. Cook. After seven seasons, the Criminal Minds star's dream has come true: She's getting beat up.
"My wish was granted! I was so excited when I got the script," she tells TVGuide.com. "It was like a kid in a candy store moment. I was just super giddy about it."
Check out photos from Criminal Minds
Cook will show off her combat chops on Wednesday's episode (9/8c, CBS) when JJ faces off with an unsub who's been leaving dead bodies in lifeguard towers. And frankly, if you ask Cook, it's been a long time coming. After all, half the cast has been tortured and battered by the likes of C. Thomas Howell, James Van Der Beek and Luke Perry already.
"It started out as a joke. I guess there was a fan video put together with all the action and everyone getting beat up and shot, and we're like, 'JJ's done nothing but shoot a dog [in Season 2's "The Big Game"]. That was the most danger she's faced! It's her turn!'" Cook says. "It was that realization it's my ...
Now that A.J. Cook is back on Criminal Minds, she has one goal: to get beat up.
"I have volunteered to get beat up! I want to get into a really bad fight this year," she tells TVGuide.com. "I'm like, 'Everyone else has gotten the crap beaten out of them! It's JJ's turn!'"
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She may get her wish now that JJ is a full-fledged profiler since she returned to the BAU after a year in the State Department. Though JJ said way back in Season 2 that she had no plans to take extra classes to graduate from media liaison to profiler, Cook believes the promotion is "organic" and in line with JJ's story — not to mention her own story off-screen.
"Someone thought that that character wasn't necessary, so in order for me to come ...