The Dark and Mysterious World of 'Criminal Minds'
December 20, 2006
Cast members insist the show is different from other procedural dramas because the crimes are solved by using psychology instead of forensics.
Murder, serial killers and ... psychology? For years, the "CSI" shows have tracked down killers through forensic science, but "Criminal Minds" uses profiling to catch the murdering scum of America.
The drama centers on a group of F.B.I. profilers in the Behavioral Analysis Unit (B.A.U.), who solve twisted and high-stakes serial murders across the country by getting inside the psyche of the criminals.
"It's dark, mysterious and weird but very real," said SHEMAR MOORE, who plays Agent Derek Morgan, when asked why he thinks the show is so appealing. What's really kind of eerie and humbling about it is it's based on real life. There are girls getting raped, there are children getting molested, people are dying. [Also] there's somebody on the team you can relate to, no matter who you are."
A new character viewers may relate to is Agent Emily Prentiss (PAGET BREWSTER), who joins the team after the recent departure of Agent Elle Greenaway (LOLA GLAUDINI).
"Paget's a doll. I'm not going to compare her to Lola, who's on to bigger and better things in New York. This is Hollywood and the show must go on," Moore confessed. "Paget brings a whole different sensibility. This machine's already rolling and she's been real good about jumping on board. Everybody's really finding their own identity, and it makes for a colorful group. "
The show may have a colorful group, but so do a lot of other crime shows, right? AJ COOK, who plays Agent Jennifer "JJ" Jareau, insists that "Criminal Minds" is different from other procedural dramas.
"We get thrown in the procedural heap and I think our show's a little bit different. I think it's more of a thriller," Cook explained. "I think we're different from the 'CSI's because we're trying to save [the victims], whereas in 'CSI' the people are dead. So there's the element of the clock. We're racing against time."
Moore, who starred on "The Young & the Restless," also believes "Criminal Minds" is different from any show he's appeared on in the past.
"This is the biggest stretch of my life because it's a character that's so far removed from who I really am. A lot of the characters I've played are a little more streetwise," he revealed. "I'd [also] never shot a gun in my real life until I got this job, and now I've gone to the range a few times just to feel what it's like to hold, use and respect a weapon."
Currently in its second season, the show is only growing more popular. In November, it beat "Lost," the biggest competitor in its Wednesday night timeslot, in total viewers.
"I'm excited that we beat 'Lost' because I think that if nothing else, people are paying attention," Moore shared. "I'm more excited that people who wrote us off as just another procedural are now finally giving us credit."