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October 13, 2015

A.J. Cook Officially Returning to 'Criminal Minds' As Series Regular

by Chris Harnick, posted Apr 16th 2011 10:30AM
A.J. Cook Criminal MindsA.J. Cook has signed a new two-year deal and will return to CBS's 'Criminal Minds' as a series regular this fall. And who says the studios and networks don't listen to the fans?

According to Deadline, Cook will guest star in this season's finale before rejoining the cast as a series regular.

"JJ's back! Just signed 2 year deal," the actress said on her Twitter account. "Excited to work with cast and crew again. Thanks to all of you!"

She was reportedly offered a chance to return after producers came up with new stories for her character, Jennifer "JJ" Jareau. Her return also coincides with the departure of executive producers and co-showrunners Ed Bernero and Simon Mirren.

Cook was let go from the series last June when producers decided not to pick up her contract option. She appeared in two episodes in the fall, then returned for what could be Paget Brewster's final episode and will reappear in the finale.

Brewster has a part in an NBC comedy pilot. However, Brewster could also return to 'Minds' as a full-time cast member if the pilot doesn't make it to series.

Deadline reports contract negotiations for next season between ABC Studios and Thomas Gibson and Shemar Moore are still ongoing.

Tell us: Are you looking forward to the return of A.J. Cook on 'Criminal Minds'?

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So happy JJ is coming back. Yea!!!! This is one of the few times that the big tv corporations have listened to their fans. So glad they did. Welcome back JJ!!!!

October 13 2011 at 12:01 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Raine S

I'm thrilled that A.J. Cook is back as Jennifer 'JJ" Jareau. The powers that be should not have let her go in the first place. Rachael Nichols' character just flitted about on the show and didn't work out at all.
I've also read that Paget Brewster is back in the fold as well since her pilot didn't pan out into a series.

May 31 2011 at 12:16 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm thrilled about A.J. Cook; however, I am on the edge about Thomas Gibson or Shemar Moore. Criminal Minds needs that core cast. They just make the whole package. With one missing, it's just not the same. I am enjoying seeing the "softer" side of Hotch, since Hailey's death. And we ALL know we need Derek Morgan to open a door for us!

May 25 2011 at 6:11 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jim B.

I'm one of those who deplored A.J. Cook's leaving the Criminal Minds show. I watched a couple of ho-hum episode after she left and then quit watching. Criminal Minds is a unique show where ALL the characters added their unique chemistry to the show which made a strong team. With A. J. Cook gone, too much of that chemistry went with her.

Rachael Nichols is a very attractive young lady but she doesn't have that "something" that made Cook such an important team member. Hopefully Rachael can do better in another type of show.

Since I've just learned that Cook will be back, I will definitely start watching again. The same things can be said about Padget Brewster though, if a choice has to be made, I would still go with Cook

I don't know what it is about producers that are always trying to fix "what ain't broke. If they have any sense at all, they will aggressively try to get Brewster back as well.

Jim B.

May 22 2011 at 9:01 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I am so very happy that she is coming back she held them together. Her character was growing and she helped determine which cases. I did not like the new girl on the unit. Don't think she fits in the unit. The show was not as good without her and was going to stop watching it.

May 20 2011 at 7:39 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Absolutely fantastic!!!! I missed AJ Cook and Paget Brewster as well. These were strong female lead and added so much to the cast!!!

May 18 2011 at 10:44 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Best thing that could have happened. The show has not been the same since she left. Hope they bring back Paget Brewster as Emily Prentiss, too!! I have watched this show since its beginning and I have to say that the loss of these two characters, in my opinion, really hurt the series. Glad somebody finally woke up and corrected a really, really big mistake!!

May 18 2011 at 5:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Shan Jord

I think it's one of the best things that Criminal Minds could have done . The show wasn't the same without her .

May 04 2011 at 10:51 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I'm ticked off! A.J. Cook is coming back, which is absolutely wonderful! It was idiotic to let her go, and it's fantastic for the network and the show to realize that they royally screwed up and moved to fix it. But I'm ticked off because, on a show where there was an even bigger outcry -- House -- when they dumped Jennifer Morrison at the height of the show's popularity, TPTB pretended the outcry didn't even exist and instead enjoyed themselves enormously by ridiculing their unhappy fans. And yet they wonder why their ratings have diminished. Way to go, CBS! And way to screw over your loyal fans, Fox!

April 30 2011 at 12:36 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Yes, very excited, she was and is an integral part of the series. Will certainly hate to see 'Prentis' go.
Can't she do two shows???????

April 23 2011 at 11:17 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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