AJ Cook Returns to Criminal Minds for TWO YEARS!!!
Last year around this time CBS made the decision to fire AJ Cook, it was part of a huge cost cutting strategy that also saw Melina Kanakaredes, Eddie Cibrian, Liz Vassey and Peter Cambor all found themselves without jobs along with the casts of Ghost Whisperer, New Christine, Gary Unmarried, Numbers and Cold Case.
The Criminal Minds staff got hit hard, not only was Cook fired but co-star Paget Brewster was fired too, she’d star in half the episodes and leave at the end of this season. During all this Criminal Minds got a spin-off and the flagship’s Kristen Vangsness, the spunky Penelope Garcia, got hired as a regular on Suspect Behavior and was effectively collecting two pay-cheques. Then in December, Brewster was effectively re-hired for the rest of the season and Rachel Nichols was hired to play cadet Ashley Seaver.
It was a wildly unpopular decision. At the start of this season JJ was promoted and sent to work in the Pentagon, she left after two episodes. She came back for her co-star Paget Brewster’s send-off.
And now she’ll guest star in the season’s two final episodes before becoming a full-fledged regular in the fall for CM’s 7th season and the 8th if it should happen (it will).
This comes on the heels of a similar deal attempt. Weeks ago CBS tried to re-enter negotiations with Brewster and were pretty much told to self-fornicate, Brewster is headlining a sitcom pilot on NBC called My Life as an Experiment along with Canadian comedian Jon Dore (The Jon Dore Show) and legend Donald Sutherland. Should the pilot not work out there is always a chance Brewster might return to Minds.
Criminal Minds could use JJ back, an original cast member, the series felt odd without her. JJ not being a field agent was relegated mostly to background, she was the one stuck making sad eyes with the families, hopefully upon her return she’ll get to see a little more action.