When Beau Garrett first auditioned for Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior, she admits producers didn't think she was tough enough to play FBI Agent Gina LaSalle. Before her second audition, she recalls, "I played a little basketball, took a shot of tequila and mellowed out. The combination really relaxed me. I went in there owning it more."
Garrett's LaSalle gets a bigger, tougher role in tonight's episode, involving a serial killer who brings along a bizarre guest to his murders. As the deaths escalate, team leader Sam Cooper (Forest Whitaker) "gets frustrated, and Prophet [Michael Kelly] and I take the reins. It's a pretty heavy episode," she says, adding with a laugh, "They're all heavy."
Garrett, who recently appeared in the film Tron: Legacy, says the writers and actors are "still trying to find our voices. We're a new team; we're still trying to establish who we are, which may take a season, if not more."
While she's philosophical about it taking time for the show to find its feet, she's as determined as her character in knowing where she wants it to go. "There's such a soul to this group," she says, praising the writers for penning "beautiful banter" between characters. "We have to find something to lighten it up a bit."
Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior airs Wednesday at 10/9c on CBS.