‘CSI: Vegas’ Star Jorja Fox on the Latest Suspect: Sara ‘Thinks Maybe This Is It’

William Petersen as Dr. Gil Grissom, Jorja Fox as Sara Sidle in CSI Vegas
Spoiler Alert
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[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for CSI: Vegas Episode 6 “Funhouse.”]

While Joshua Folsom (Matt Lauria) and Allie Rajan (Mandeep Dhillon) are investigating a bit of a horror show — murders at a clown-themed hotel! — those back at the Crime Lab are in the middle of their own nightmare: lockdown, potentially with the prime suspect in the seasons-long evidence tampering case in their midst.

The latest CSI: Vegas first points the finger Chris Park’s (Jay Lee) way, when they trace back chemicals used to clean up part of the crime scene of Martin Kline’s murder — he was working with someone — to him. And he took all the grenades in the lab without signing them out. But, it turns out, one of theirs wasn’t used to kill Kline and someone stole those chemicals from him at a crime scene. In fact, it all leads back to none other than Anson Wix (Jamie McShane), the lawyer heading the class action. They realize he stands to make a lot of money from the case.

Jorja Fox (who plays Sara Sidle) teases what’s next.

They’ve identified the person behind everything, but now they have to prove it. How’s Sara feeling? Does she feel like, OK, maybe this is it, or this can’t be it?

Jorja Fox: She thinks maybe this is it. Kline had a very, very insulated career and so I think when they get that additional clue, I think she thinks, “OK, there’s maybe there’s a chance.”

Now they no longer have to sneak around behind Nora’s (Kat Foster) back, but they do have to be sure not to alert Wix. What does that mean for their investigation?

They have to do what they do best. They have to completely think outside the box. And the other problem, which I think is a cool plot point in reflecting it against real life, is it’s really hard to take down powerful people and people that are in a position of law enforcement and authority. So that then becomes the real challenge and they have to do it without anybody finding out about it. Because they’re still not sanctioned in the higher ups. They have Nora Cross and they have Max [Paula Newsome] and I think without them, they would not succeed, but it’s not like they can go out there and be like catch the bad guy, or pick up the walkie talkie and put out an APB.

Paula Newsome, Kat Foster, William Petersen, Jorja Fox in CSI Vegas

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At one point in this episode, Gil (William Petersen) notes that they live in international waters. But as is said in Episode 4, Sara is made for this job. Where does Sara feel she belongs — back out at sea with Gil or maybe back at the lab permanently?

Sara and Gil have been through so much. They’ve been on again, off again, married, divorced, back together. I really think when Sara got on that boat with him in 2015, at the end of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, at that point she was like, “I’m going to stand with my man, and come what may, I know that I want to be with this man.”

I love their relationship. And I love their relationship in these episodes. They’re so solid. It’s nice to see it onscreen.

Right? That’s entirely new. For William Petersen and I, that is the really, really new piece of the puzzle. So much of what happened over those 15 years played offscreen, and it was risky, too. We were like, “Oh gosh, are the fans even actually really going to want to see this?” I think there was even a time back in the day where the fans were very split about whether they even wanted Sara and Grissom to be together. You had people who were very much against it, very much for it. That’s always a good thing, if your audience is passionate one way or the other. It’s always great when they are for you. But even if they’re against you passionately, it means that they’re invested in the story, so it’s always a good sign. And so when Sara and Grissom come back together as a couple, it was a risky decision that [showrunner] Jason Tracey made, but it’s been so fun to play and honestly an homage to long-term love and what does it mean to be with somebody really through the good times and the bad times over an extended period of time. I’m a romantic and I believe in love and I’ve never had an opportunity to play a long-term relationship like this.

Matt Lauria as Josh Folsom, Mandeep Dhillon as Allie Rajan in CSI Vegas

Sonja Flemming/CBS

I also feel like watch out for Matt Lauria and Mandeep Dhillon because I think I see a little bit of sparks flying in the characters. It’s also so cool to me that love can find its way and kind of flourish in this sort of very dark, isolating, violent world. And quietly, I do think that has been one of the biggest underdog themes of the whole series: you know what, love wins.

A couple episodes ago we learned Gil’s landsick, but we haven’t heard anything more about it. Will it be coming up?

There’ll be some developments there. That’s all I can tell you.

I have to say how much I’ve enjoyed seeing Sara and Gil get back into the CSI work, especially in these two episodes. How much does that continue?

We were really rusty. It was really easy to sit back and make fun of the new kids and watch them struggle through learning how to do all this science and talk at the same time. It was really fun watching them and getting to play rusty, where we don’t know some of these new techniques. But then you’re going to see a little later that we’re actually going to get in there ourselves. And so we stopped laughing pretty quickly when all of a sudden we were the ones — we’ve done some of this stuff over the years, but there’s so many new techniques and toys and gadgets that have come out in the last five years. It was a real learning process for William and myself as well. And I enjoyed watching him struggle through it too. We’re like, what’s this thing? How do you do it? Suddenly we had to practice and practice, too.

Dalt tells Folsom and Allie that “this was just the beginning.” Are we going to see more of the new team’s cases with some sort of tie to the season-long one?

That’s definitely a theme of the 10-episode arc. And everyone ultimately will become very invested in that case. In every episode we’ve had a story that resolves within the episode and they’re just going to get better and even crazier. My hat really goes off to Jason Tracey, who’s been responsible for developing a lot of these stories. I can’t imagine how difficult it really is to come up with fresh stuff after 20 years of three different CSIs and several NCISes and other shows, and even the Law & Orders. He continues to come up with original, fresh stories that are just really fascinating.

CSI: Vegas, Wednesdays, 10/9c, CBS