With Criminal Minds now in its 10th season, A.J. Cook told BuddyTV that her character has become like a sister to her, when discussing the recent episode, “The Forever People,” which saw her character forced to deal with her PTSD from her abduction.
Read on for the second part of this exclusive chat, in which Cook discusses what she still loves about playing JJ and whether Will and Henry will show up again. Plus, she previews a special episode and the return of the arc introduced at the beginning of the season.
Criminal Minds Exclusive Part 1: A.J. Cook on JJ’s PTSD and ‘Incredible Relationship with Reid >>>
It’s been a tough couple of years for JJ, physically and emotionally. Being abducted and tortured last year, talking about her sister this year… Even in season 10, I love that there are still stories to tell about these characters. What are the best and toughest parts of still playing JJ 10 years later?
She’s like a sister to me. I’ve played her for so long now, and I love her and I want to protect her and keep her safe, and I think that’s how a lot of people kind of feel about her because we’ve seen her grow up, from like this little FBI Barbie to the mature woman she is now. I love that she’s evolved so much. I always have fun playing her. I’ve never been bored playing her. She’s always changing, she’s always growing, and that’s how I am, and that’s how everyone I know is. Everyone’s always learning and growing and changing, and so that’s been really exciting.
It can be hard to play her at times, just because we’ve been doing this show for so long, and you can get kind of caught up in the monotony of it a little bit, but I love playing her. She’s a lot of fun, and I love when she gets to do the stunts. The little kid inside me comes out whenever I get to do all that fun stuff. The hard part is standing in a room, delivering a profile, that’s the hard part, just the information.
Are we going to see Will and Henry again this season?
I sure hope so. It’s been way too long that we’ve seen Will. You’re kind of like, ‘Is JJ still married?’ So, hopefully. He’s so busy, and he’s always working, so hopefully – I know he would love to come back and play with us, but we just have to figure out how that can all come together. But I really hope it’s not the last we see of him this season, so fingers crossed. I have a sneaking suspicion we’re definitely going to see again before the end of the season.
That’s good. I like seeing JJ’s family, but then at the same time, you always worry if you see a family member, they could be in trouble.
Yeah, right? I know. We need to figure out happy ways to get the family involved.
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Can you tease anything about the episode that flashes back to the early days of the BAU?
Oh, man, I’m excited for that episode. Yeah, Kirsten Vangsness and Erica [Messer] wrote that episode together. It’s going to be good. They cast Ben Savage as young Gideon, and wow, he was like, a doppelganger. He was so perfectly cast, and he did such an amazing job as young Gideon. Yeah, it’ll be cool. It’s sort of the beginnings of the BAU and sort of how it all came together. It’s going to be a really exciting episode. I’m excited to see that one.
Can you tease anything about what’s coming up with the Internet arc introduced in the premiere?
Yeah, it’s not the last you’ve seen of that, that’s for sure. That’s going to be sort of a personal storyline for one of our characters, so stick around for that. …That’s definitely going to come into play.
With your costars directing and writing episodes, do you have any interest in doing the same?
Yeah, that’s always been something I’ve wanted to do, from a young age. I’ve always wanted to direct. I directed a lot of plays and that sort of thing, before I started my professional acting career. That’s definitely something I’m interested in. It’s definitely a scary thing, and it’s a lot to take on, but hopefully I’ll be up for that challenge some day. It’s definitely something on my list, so we’ll see.
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Criminal Minds season 10 airs Wednesdays at 9pm on CBS.
(Image courtesy of CBS)