Paget Brewster Talks Prentiss vs. Bailey on ‘Criminal Minds: Evolution’ (VIDEO)

“It was exhilarating but also, ‘wait a minute, is this really going to happen?’” Paget Brewster (who plays Emily Prentiss) recalls from the Zoom where the team discussed Criminal Minds returning.

It did happen, with Criminal Minds: Evolution taking the profilers of the Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU) from network with CBS to streaming with Paramount+. (Streaming, via Netflix, has also brought in a new generation of fans, the star notes.) “It was [grisly] when on CBS. Looking back now, there was some questionable stuff,” Brewster says in TV Insider’s video interview above. “We did what they said and we had no cursing and no graphic sexual content. We did what we were told to do.”

With Evolution, Prentiss now has two jobs (Unit Chief and Section Chief) and a new foe in Deputy Director Bailey (Nicholas D’Agosto). He wants to shut down the BAU and has even gone so far as to force them to work a case with Domestic Terrorism — and then made sure the other unit got all the credit while Prentiss could only stand there during the press conference.

If you’re not a fan of Bailey yet, “that’s why he’s there,” Brewster says before raving about his portrayer. “He hit the ground running, knew every line, was invested, is dedicated and excited. He’s just a dream. We just were so lucky to get him.”

While many know Brewster from her 15-plus seasons as Emily Prentiss now, there are also people who still recognize her as Kathy (love interest for both Matt LeBlanc’s Joey and Matthew Perry’s Chandler) from Friends. “What they recognize is the voice,” she explains. “Because what happens is I’ll be talking to someone or in a restaurant and I see a person next to me, they freeze, and then they slowly turn around and they go, ‘Kathy, you’re Kathy,’ and it’s because they recognize my voice. It’s amazing.”

Watch the full video interview above with Brewster for more about the return of Criminal Minds and what her UnSub name would be.

Criminal Minds: Evolution, Thursdays, Paramount+