Emily Prentiss (Paget Brewster) is an FBI agent and daughter of a former United States Ambassador. She was first introduced in Season 2, when she replaced Agent Elle Greenaway (Lola Glaudini), who had resigned from the unit. Both of Emily's parents worked all over the world, making her a product of a very cosmopolitan and worldly upbringing.
When Emily is assigned to the FBI Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU), Unit Chief Jason Gideon (Mandy Patinkin) and Supervisory Special Agent Aaron "Hotch" Hotchner (Thomas Gibson) are both surprised. Neither of them were consulted about assigning a new member to the team and were unaware of the transfer. This meant that Emily had to defend herself against criticisms of nepotism and using her political connections. She was very adamant that her mother had not pulled any strings to get her the position. Regardless of her claims, she still had to work hard to prove herself. Emily is originally assigned to the team on a temporary basis but achieves permanent status after showing her skills to the team.
Emily has had a very adventurous past. When she was living in Italy at the age of 15, she became pregnant and decided to have an abortion. It is hinted that an old friend named John Cooley (Walton Goggins) might have been the father. This plotline was revealed in the Season 4 episode "Demonology", where Emily investigates the death of an old friend from her childhood named Matthew Benton (Jaret Sacrey). Benton had previously helped her get the abortion, which created a strain in his belief in the Catholic faith. His family never forgave Emily for her role in leading him to a troubled life.
Emily has become an invaluable member of the BAU and developed strong relationships with the rest of her colleagues. She has a special rapport with Agent Derek Morgan (Shemar Moore) over a shared taste in literature. Her relationship with Dr. Spencer Reid (Matthew Gray Gubler) started out a bit rocky but they now work well together. Emily also has a strong bond with both technical analyst Penelope Garcia (Kirsten Vangsness), and media liaison JJ (A.J. Cook), other members of the BAU team.
"Derek, I have a tremendous amount of respect for you, but there are some questions that, if you have to ask them, it means you probably couldn't handle the answer."
"In the city, crime is taken as emblematic of class and race. In the suburbs, though, it's intimate and psychological - resistant to generalization, a mystery of the individual soul."
"You're finally gonna meet your soul mate Joe... in prison. Only you're not going to be able to push him around the way you did those women. And when he comes for you, in the middle of the night, when you're least expecting it you do me a favor... play along."
"British Historian James Anthony Froude once said, "Wild animals never kill for sport; man is the only one to whom the torture and death of his fellow creatures is amusing in itself."