Sunday, November 26, 2006


Q&A with Matthew Gray Gubler
Sunday, November 26, 2006
By Rob Owen, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Matthew Gray Gubler

Actor Matthew Gray Gubler, who plays socially awkward but brilliant special agent Dr. Spencer Reid on CBS's "Criminal Minds" (9 p.m. Wednesday), visited Pittsburgh earlier this month to promote the series. In a conference room at KDKA-TV, Gubler, who's also a filmmaker, added artistic designs to the show's first-season boxed set that will go to winners of a call-in contest on "Pittsburgh Today Live." The DVD ($58.99, Paramount Home Video) is in stores Tuesday.

A self-deprecating guy, Gubler, 26, told "Pittsburgh Today Live" host Kristine Sorensen his pre-acting modeling gigs were confined to a period when models who looked like "emaciated weirdos who look like Muppets" were in vogue.

Q: Which Muppet do you most identify with?

A: I look a little like Beaker. I think I'm a cross between Beaker and The Count. My hair looks like Oscar the Grouch. It's Muppety hair.
Q: Does it bother you that your competition on ABC, "Lost," gets more media love than "Criminal Minds"?
A: It's weird, it doesn't [bother me]. It should and I think it bothers some of my compatriots. I'm honored with the fact that we do incredible numbers and we're beating "Lost," but, how to express this? I'm happy the people watching our show are the real people. I feel like "Lost" is a New York-L.A. show, and firemen and nurses and real Americans stop me on the street. That means more to me than some dumb celebrity magazine.
Q: "Criminal Minds" started to beat "Lost" in the ratings in recent weeks. Any guesses as to why?
A: I know why, I don't have to guess. The nature of storytelling, since the dawn of man, has a beginning, a middle and an end. No one wants to hear a story, "I saw a tiger coming at me and then it lunged." [Gubler goes silent for a few seconds.] That's not interesting to me. Our show has a definite three-act structure.
Q: Why did Dr. Reid start wearing glasses recently?
A: I was allergic to contact lens solution and wasn't able to wear my contacts. Those are my real glasses. Half the people think they're great and the other half think they're the ugliest they've ever seen and say, "You look like a nerd." I think they fit the character. Someone described it as a 1960s accountant look. It's the new black, I read in Vogue.
Q: Why did Lola Glaudini leave the show?
A: I think she was unhappy in L.A. Being on a TV show is incredibly daunting. It's not like a movie where you're [in one place] for six months. This is nine months. I think she wanted to be in New York and do more theater.
Q: On the new "Criminal Minds" DVD, you say you prefer to wear mismatched socks because when you wore matching socks, you sprained your ankle. What are you wearing today?
A: Carnival-style animals on one sock and stripes on the other.
Q: Does your "Criminal Minds" character wear matching socks?
A: He does not. Some directors have tried to get it in there, but it's been unsuccessful so far. ... There's no continuity to the socks, which may be why the socks haven't made it into the show.
Q: On the DVD special features you mention the dark circles under your eyes and your aversion to having makeup applied to hide this Dark Eye Syndrome. Have you started a nonprofit to raise money for research to end this disorder?
A: It's really a travesty and affects a lot of us, especially in the entertainment business: Bob Dylan, Gwen Stefani. Jeff Goldblum has a pretty bad case. Martin Scorsese has the worst case of Dark Eye Syndrome. Hopefully we can beat this together. We're making progress collecting for the kids.
Q: On the DVD you say it's not the result of late-night partying.
A: I am embarrassingly 1920s in style. I like to be in bed at 11, and I like to get 11 hours of sleep. I've been to three parties in my life and two of them with [co-star] Shemar [Moore]. He's slowly trying to wean me into [that scene.]
Q: On your Web site,, you hand write news about your life and career. Did you never learn to type?
A: I just like to make it more intimate and real. I don't like technique. I would rather see a scarecrow that a farmer spent a week making for himself than go to MoMA [Museum of Modern Art] and see some masterfully-drawn art. ...

And with the Internet it's getting eerie in the lack of humanity and being able to fake someone's MySpace [page]. I wanted something nobody would fake.
Q: You not only star in a CBS crime drama, you're also in a handful of videos on playing a pirate ("Temptation Island 2"), a dancing fool ("Boyztown") and a vain version of yourself ("Matthew Gray Gubler: An Unauthorized Documentary").
A: There's more to come on that last one. We have all this time on the set, and I'm a big fan of improv-based shows like "Curb Your Enthusiasm." So I said, let's make a documentary about me acting like the people I see or hear about who I hate. Certain actors get under my skin, so we started filming these episodes. One of the guys on the show, Andy Swan, the prop master, he's amazing at capturing things with telephoto.

We've got tremendous stuff in store for that. I want to do an episode were I pitch [the "Criminal Minds" executive producer a story for] an episode of the show and he wants to fire me. Everyone is somehow willing to be in [these shorts]. I'm more excited about that than the shows. On "Criminal Minds" we're dealing with 17 million people watching every week, and we're checking YouTube every two hours to see how many people have watched this dumb documentary.


callie said...

wonderful interview.

callie said...

wonderful interview.

B.J. said...

I loved it also. Callie you are too funny. Love ya babe.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Thank you


I agree with all of you. Great interview. :)

recklesskellie said...

Love that he is checking to see how many people see his youtube video! That's us, girls!!!

marissa said...

Thanks for posting this awesome interview.

jazz said...

I really wanted to know more about Matthew Gray Gubler. This show is the first thing I had ever seen him in and I had no idea who he was so I really liked this interview. Thanks so much for posting it for us. I really appreciate the time you take to keep us informed.

Jemma said...

What a fantastic interview!!!

Jemma #44

immertreu said...

I didn't know he had his own web page. Thanks for the great interview.

Sabine #44

JJ said...

It is an amazind intrview but I would still like to Know more about Matthew
Jessica # 32

jacqui said...

roflmao! muppety hair?! and, wow...he does have interesting taste in eyeware.

I adore his stupid YouTube documentary. it's absolutely hilarious.

I'm beginning to look forward to these Matthew interviews.

jacqui #49

Jasmine* said...

dumb's the best i've seen on Youtube XD

Anonymous said...

...Is dark eye syndrome for real or was he kidding?

Anonymous said...

I love the roll that mathew plays in cm
He plays his part to the u mathew..keep it up!!!