Criminal Minds Season 13

Criminal Minds: Kirsten Vangsness and A.J. Cook Secure Raises for Season 13

Original Criminal Minds cast members Kirsten Vangsness and A.J. Cook have sealed new deals to stay on as Penelope Garcia and “JJ” Jareau.

After costars Joe Mantegna and Matthew Gray Gubler re-signed for the fall, Vangsness and Cook held out for salary parity with the latter, our sister site Deadline reports, and emerged from their negotiations “essentially on par” with Gubler.

The actresses’ deals come on the heels of the news that Damon Gupton was not asked back for Season 13, after less than a full season as Agent Stephen Walker.

Retaining both Vangsness and Cook, especially in the wake of Gupton’s ouster, saves the CBS crime drama from sustaining another major cast shake-up as it did in Season 12, when original cast member Thomas Gibson was fired, Adam Rodriguez was added to the ensemble and Paget Brewster returned full-time as Prentiss, while Aisha Tyler got promoted to series regular.

Criminal Minds Season 13 premieres Wednesday, Sept. 27, now airing an hour later at 10/9c (after the new David Boreanaz drama SEAL Team).

Want more scoop on Arrow, or for any other show? Email and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line.

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  1. ziggybr549 says:


    • Jane R says:

      So I guess this is why they didn’t keep Damon Gupton around. Sure didn’t help. Yeah, Erica Messer and her “writing” buddies … bunch of backstabbers, all of them. Show’s in the toilet and things are just getting worse. I wonder who’s going to jail this season? I say Erica Messer – she’s awful.

  2. Jimmy says:

    Thank God. The last thing Criminal Minds needed was to lose either of these two. As for Damon Gupton’s firing, I never understood why he was brought on in the first place. He never really fit in to the cast, and the fact that it was the network who meddled in the process of his hiring makes it a frustrating situation.

    But since they weren’t mentioned in the article, does this mean Paget Brewster, Adam Rodriguez and Aisha Tyler are also returning for season 13? What is the status of their contracts?

    • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

      Paget, Adam and Aisha are on different contract cycles.

    • After watching a season of Damon, I think the network put him there as the strong, silent, dour type that the Hotch character filled. But since he wasn’t the leader, that didn’t work out all that well within a team dynamic, in my view. It worked with Hotch, as he was the leader and can be a bit aloof.
      Replacing Damon with Daniel Henney will probably work better. The character is relatively developed and he seemed to work well in the Beyond Borders team.

  3. Ingmar says:

    Yes! Thanks for the report!

  4. Casey says:

    This is great news! But why are they moving it to 10 pm!

  5. Olivia says:

    Guess I’ll watch the upcoming season then, CBS. See? Business.

  6. Eric Fitch says:

    Good, but they need to bring back Gibson!

  7. Angela says:

    Hooray! Fantastic news :).

  8. Anne says:

    Good for them. They deserve to make the same amount of money. It’s ridiculous that after this many seasons they aren’t at pay equity.

  9. Em says:

    Glad they got their raises or else criminal minds would have bee cancelled probably mid season

  10. kmw says:

    Good for the ladies. Why does it always have to be so hard for the people at CBS to get these things done

    • CBS is a giant raging sausage party that treats its actresses like crap. This exact same thing has happened on multiple CBS shows, and its always the women not getting fair pay. Plus, in the biggest screw up in tv history, CBS once fired all the women from CM so they could give Charlie Sheen more money. Its time we stop letting them get away with treating their actresses worse than most people treat their dogs

  11. Yay. There is no way I was ever watching the show again if they left

  12. r says:

    phew – I don’t know if I could watch this without the bodacious aj cook


    Very excited, “Baby Girl”
    and “JJ” are signed into Season 13 !
    Now I will be waiting to Watch the new S13. Yay.
    Wait a minute, I Hope All the original Cast comes back where is Morgan, Hodge, David Rossi are they ?

  14. Ernie says:

    Thats great, i love them both .
    The show would not be the same without them.

  15. Susan says:

    Thank goodness!!

  16. lrdslvrhnd says:

    I haven’t watched in years (I don’t need help with nightmares lol) but it’s great to see this, especially getting parity with the only other original castmember.

  17. Wilma says:

    Good!! They deserve to be payed as the men on the show.

  18. A. Slaughter says:

    Good for them! They should get just as much pay as their counterparts!

  19. Jim J. says:

    Even though I am unlikely to ever get into “Criminal Minds”, if you asked me which of these two actresses I like better, I would pick Kirsten Vangsness over A.J. Cook.

  20. Cheryl F Kizer says:

    Love the show so much… I hate to hear Damon Gupton is not going to be on there anymore.. Really did like him.. Can’t wait to see what will happen next.. will always be a fan…

  21. Catherine D Sears says:

    If anyone else leave our fan club want look at it again we want Morgan back

  22. GraeLeigh says:

    Great news although I still don’t get why it’s always the same discussion every time their contracts are up … CM is in its season 13 damn it’s not a rookie show!

    And that must although be hard for the creative team to pen the season ahead when those possible cast shakeup :(

  23. Angel Redmond says:

    Love Criminal Minds. Glad “Garcia” and “JJ ” got those raises. Hate to see CM:Beyond Borders has been cancelled.

  24. Yoko says:

    If they had left I was done with the show….so I’m glad the ladies held out on negotiations and got what they felt comfortable with.

  25. Donna says:

    I think that they should fire an kick him out on his bum hard an break something..!!! the co- executive of criminal minds who fired Thomas Gibson…!!!! He is the one who needs replaced he is ripping a good show apart for his ego I’m sure!!

  26. CalabZ says:

    Not that my opinion matters, but I thought this was the best team we’ve seen with the exception of Walker. I agree he didn’t fit If Hotch comes back, Prentiss will probably leave again unless Hotch takes Cruz’s position. By doing that, it opens more doors for Morgan to make special appearances. No, Hotch was not the top dog in my opinion. Morgan was. I like this new team and Daniel Henney will only make it better.

  27. Yvette Betts says:

    Hi series 13 of criminal.minds – what cbs station will it be shown on ? I have just purchased a freesat box – thank you