SDCC 2016: An Interview With CBS’s Fan Favorites Part One

This summer CBS brought their “Fan Favorites” to SDCC. From NCIS to Criminal Minds, there was no shortage of excitement. We chatted with Wilmer Valderrama (NCIS, Nick Torres), Tyler James Williams (Criminal Minds: Beyond Boarders, Russ ‘Monty’), and Kirsten Vangsness (Criminal Minds, Penelope Garcia) about what it takes to become a fan favorite.


Tyler James Williams and Kirsten Vangsness at SDCC

We began our interview with Kirsten Vangness and Tyler James Williams, both Criminal Minds experts in their own right. We needed to know what it’s like being a fan favorite, even if you’re not the main character.

“They work more days than me, they work more hours than me but I end up getting all the glory for what I end up doing (as a character)” Vangsness commented. “It’s crazy to see which characters people latch onto” and latch onto her character they have. Just from a quick Tumblr search, you will find thousands and thousands of GIFs and fan art of Penelope and Monty. But all the attention doesn’t bother Williams and Vangness. “Please latch onto us. We’re made of velcro!” Vangness commented jokingly. “Please be a leech” Williams added laughing.

But sometimes fans can go a little too far. Lately, the Criminal Minds cast has had an excess of Brazilian fans commenting on their photos. “The entire cast will post a photo and there will be one line in Portuguese and then literally 36,000 of that same line” Williams explained. “Every photo is different. None of us understand it.”

Vangness has been experiencing the same problem, “There will be like 100 of them ‘Say hello to Brazil. Say Hello to Brazil.’ I give my love from afar” she explained.

Finally, we needed to know what’s in store for our favorite characters in their upcoming seasons.

“Adam Rodriquez is now on the show, Shemar Moore is gone, Patrick Booster is going to be on multiple episodes, Aisha Tyler is going to be on, and everybody else on the team is back. We (also) have a lot of bad guys that have escaped jail, which is basically our greatest hits and now we have to go catch them again.” Vangness commented without taking a breath. Did you get all of that Criminal Minds fans? It looks like you’re in for a treat.

As for Williams and Criminals Minds: Beyond Borders;  “We’re going around the world saving Americans again. But, now we’re starting to explore what that means for each person and how that affects their personal lives. We kinda get back into their backstories…. we can really figure out who these people are.”

Get ready, it sounds like these shows are about to go on a wild ride.

Criminal Minds returns Wednesday, Sept. 28 at 9 p.m. ET on CBS and Criminal Minds: Beyond Boarders season two will premiere in 2017.

Don’t wanna wait until 2017? You can watch season one of Beyond Boarders on CBS

Stay tuned for part two: NCIS’s William Valderamma.


Madeline Potts is a Sophomore Journalism student and lover of tea, ginger cats and Comic Con. She once got in a fight with Steven Moffat.