Monday, December 5, 2011

CM_SetReport Chat Transcript for Rick Dunkle and Kim Harrison 12/3/2011

KH: Hey guys, thanks so much for being here.

CaffeinatedMe: To both of you: What's the HARDEST part about writing for CM?

KH: The hardest part is trying to tell stories that we haven't already done. lol

Kitten0409: Hi Rick & Kim! The unsub in last season Into The Woods, even if he was identified, was one of the few that got away. Will we see him/hear about him again?

KH: I wanted to play the REALITY that these types of offenders get away all the time.

BubblegumFox: Rick Dunkle what led you to start writing for CM?

RD: It was kind of a no brainer. I started as a script coordinator on Criminal Minds season one… They gave me the opportunity to write a freelance episode season four and, of course, I took it! They liked the script enough that they decided to hire me on full time as a writer. This has been my first TV writing job and I can't imagine being anywhere else.

Thisiscalmanditsdoctorwho: So, Rick, what exactly is a hotchrocket?

RD: A "crotch rocket" is a motorcycle… I felt "Hotch Rocket" was appropriately amusing for Garcia to say :)

Twistedcistern: Thank you so much for both the chat and your awesome scripts, Since there are two of you, which *two* BAU members do you most enjoy writing dialog exchanges for?

KH: Prentiss

RD: Hotch

KH: Rossi

RD: Reid

KH: Morgan


KH: Garcia

RD: Strauss

KH: Agent Anderson

RD: CSI Tech Gina

KH: BAU security guard #1

RD: Red shirted Receptionist

LovessumCM: How do you ensure continuity when you have so many different writers working on the show?

RD: We have a CM "bible" that we update after each episode goes to air. It's our cheat sheet. Fortunately, Messer, Kim, our Script Coordinator Jason Bernero and I have been around basically since the beginning… We try to be the encyclopedia of memory for the show.

Kitten0409: Last season, Strauss stepped down/took a leave of absence/not sure what it was and left Hotch in her place. Is there going to be a follow up to that, some explanation about what happened there?

KH: You'll find out next Wed. #709

KH: Rick corrected me... it will be THIS Wed.

FluffyJJ: Do you watch the episodes when they air? What goes through your mind when they do?

RD: If I'm home in time, yes… but, it's still work then, even when watching it air… I think… Oooh, that scene works really well, I want something like that in the one I'm writing… I usually try to steal all the scenes Kim writes.

KH: No comment

JJfans: What episode(s) did you feel the most pressure writing for? Were they big ones like 100 or a season finale? Or did they just mean something special to you?

RD: Sometimes, you have to start from scratch at the last minute… Issues forced Kim and I to have to write the first draft of The Stranger in one weekend. There wasn't enough coffee in the world for that kinda stress!

KH: It was a great writing excercise lol

Thisiscalmanditsdoctorwho: Rick, we know Beth is back as Hotch's training partner in Closing Time. What else can you tell us about the episode?

RD: We just shot the first day of this episode yesterday and I have to say… I heart Hotch & Beth… the on-screen chemistry is simply amazing and Bellamy is so talented… I know all the Prentiss/Hotch shippers out there aren't wanting to give her a chance, but I have to tell you… You're going to love her. Plain and simple.

RD: Also, in the words of Virgil Williams, "people die."

ChocolateDivine: To both: which scenes in season 7 are your favourites?

KH: Yesterday, we watched the cut for the 150th episode. There were a few scenes in there that I would say are my favorite of the season. You're going to love the Prentiss/Hotch jet scene. It's going to be great!

FluffyJJ: What has been your "best day ever" on set?

RD: Meeting Kim Harrison...

RD: And Dallas Clark Day

KH: Meeting Rick Dunkle...

Twistedcistern: To Kim, totally fangirl question: We know how tall Rick is. How tall are you?

KH: 5'6"

SesameSquirrel: So Rick, does someelse besides Dash share your affections? You know, of the female human variety? ::cool

RD: Wait, is my name Rick or TTTO? I'm confused!

KH: I'll step in for this one... the answer is YES! lol

RD: Her name is Kim… or, as I call her, Boo!

FluffyJJ: What are 3 things you absolutely need when writing an episode?

KH: Chips, coffee and more coffee

RD: Oreos, Jalepeno Chips, Turkey jerkey & Coke Zero

Rusalka: Why do you sometimes choose to reveal from the beginning who's the unsub? Personally I find it much more fascinating when we discover his/her identity through the work of the BAU.

RD: It just depends on the story… We can't always have Garcia give us the entire backstory of the UnSub of the Week in act three/four… So it helps to be able to show part of that story up front so you can learn more as the team does. We try to vary it up as much as possible but basically, it's called "Criminal Minds" so we want to show you the mind of the serial killer as much as we can.

Thisiscalmanditsdoctorwho: Kim, what can you tell us about your next episode, 7.16? Do you have an episode title? Any special character focus?

KH: It's called "A Family Affair" enough said.

JJfans: Who will be the next team member to be in peril?

RD: You'll find out in 7x14… and the result won't be anything like you're expecting!

CriminalMusings: How does Hotch have the time to date when he didn't have time to be a husband before his divorce, is now a single dad, and presumably works more than he did before (given the fact that Strauss asked for his help)? That and the triathlon...I think that season 7 is great so far in terms of getting into the characters' personal lives, but I along with a lot of other fans aren't sure how Hotch does these things.

RD: Here's the thing… we have to be real about this… Hotch can't stay single his entire life. He hasn't dated since his divorce from Haley, let alone the tragedy of her death. Haley wouldn't want him to stay alone and neither do we. We've played that Morgan is helping with extra paper work/late nights… and I personally think Jessica would also like Hotch to move on so she doesn't have to babysit so much. Hotch needs a new baby momma!

JJfans: If it were up to both of you, and anything were possible, where would you choose to go with the main characters? Any scenarios in the backs of your minds? Any character you're just waiting to get your hands on and write a great episode for?

KH: I'd love to take the team to Hawaii :) How cool would it been to see them all on vacation together.

CriminalMusings: Do you take it personally when fans react negatively to a story line? I'm talking specifically about Beth, but this goes for anything. You can't make everyone happy, right?

RD: Not at all. A lot of you actually disliked Prentiss when she started. We actually expect it. The team is a family and no one likes change… but change happens whether you want it or not and it's up do us to tell good stories, whether it's the path you want to see or not. Having said that, I can assure you… Morgan and Reid will never hook up!

RD: I stand corrected… Reid and Morgan will not hook up until Season 10 when the plane crashes… Sorry, Breen!

BubblegumFox: Is there a reason all the characters have some relation outside of the BAU eg. Hotch and Beth, JJ and William, Reid and his mom.... But with Morgan and Prentiss there is nothing??

KH: Or is there? *wink wink*

FluffyJJ: Will we find out more about Reid's headaches?

RD: He discovered advil.

KH: He's taking tylenol.

Avferreira: But they're all regenerating for season 11 right?

RD: Absolutely… Wouldn't Dr. Reid make a great Dr. Who!?!?!

a-dilemma: Rick: You posted on Twitter news about the 2 hour season finale. What can you tell us about that? Also, what do you have to say about the rumors on Gideon's return?

RD: It's too early to say much about the season finale. I'm still shooting 7x14 and that's not until 7x23 & 7x24… We won't even break the episode until the new year… Having said that I can assure you that 1) it will be awesome. 2) the rumors of Gideon's return have been greatly exaggerated and 3) Paul McGann is definitely returning to regenerate into Christopher Eccleston in the 50th Anniversary episode of Doctor Who, lol.

Freakingdork: will we ever see Morgan's family again? even just one sister or just his mom or something would be nice.

RD: Yes.

Thisiscalmanditsdoctorwho: So if the Reid headaches storyline has been dropped, what can we expect in terms of development for him this season?

RD: It's not necessarily dropped… we're just not focusing every episode on it… There is a fantastic episode re: Reid in January. "True Genius" written by Sharon Lee Watson and directed by Glenn Kershaw is off the hook good. You'll see Reid questioning things about what it means to be him, and coming to terms with a certain part of his life I can't mention. Also, he and Prentiss have a scene alone together that had the screening room in tears… not saying whether those were tears of sorrow or laughter :)

KH: What just happened? lol

BubblegumFox: How much coffee do you end up going through when writing a script for an episode?

KH: Let me put it this way... I'm working on my 3rd cup right now... it's only 11am lol

RD: This is what happens when writers get together on a Saturday morning!

Encarter: my ears!!!

BubblegumFox: Please dont start this Rick Dunkle and Kim we had this war last time with Kirsten..

JJfans: It seems like not too many people like writing/talking about JJ? What's up w/ that?

KH: JJ is amazing.

RD: You'll see more of Henry & Will this year.

RD: You'll see JJ like you've never seen her before in 7x14

KH: And in 7x24

JJfans: Any plans yet for MGG's episode?

RD: The one he's directing? Breen's writing it and it will connect to a storyline from the past. With Frazier & Gube at the helm, you know it will be fun-tastic.

UnknownSubject: Reid/Maps is the only canon ship, right? We've seen him with those maps, there's definitely something going on.

RD: Oh for sure… I think his firstborn will be named Garmin… or Thomas… or Thomas Garmin Reid!

Kris: So Rick, unfortunately it looks like the Colts are headed for the #1 draft pick. Time to draft an heir to Peyton?

KH: Forget the Colts, the Lakers are back on xmas day!!!

RD: Personally, I would hope Peyton could be our Quarterback forever! Also, the Colts may need a little Luck, too… Perfect scenario, if Peyton doesn't come back… He coaches Andrew Luck to Colts glory and a decade of consecutive Super Bowl victories!

Summer: When can we expect a fight to brew between the main characters?

KH: 7x09 things get a little heated between a couple of team members.

Paparossi: What happened to Sergio?

KH: 7x12 will give us a little insight as to what Sergio has been up to.

KH: dropitlikeitshotch... LOL love the name.

Dontstopdontbreak: I know everyone is a fan of reid x maps but will prentiss x turtlenecks make a comeback?

KH: Those turtlenecks have been sitting in her closet since shes gotten back from Paris. They will make their network return in 7x12.

KH: Rick is wearing a turtleneck right now lol

ChocolateDivine: Any major developments happening with Garcia and Kevin Lynch?

RD: Yes. Next question.

HeTalksAboutYou: Will we ever get to see Morgan outside of work, e.g. smashing down walls? Is that a private thing, or does he ever do a Grey's Anatomy and bring people to his houses to let them take out their anger with a hammer?

KH: Yes. Next question.

RD: Okay, no more sounds, please. Dash is getting worked up. He thinks Sergio is here!

Thisiscalmanditsdoctorwho: Is 7.13 going to have a Valentine's Day tie in? What about 7.10 and Christmas?

RD: 7x14 is probably the most romantic episode we've ever done… Having said that, people die!

CriminalMusings: Can you two please get married?

KH: Done!

RD: I often think we're already married.

Carol: what can Emily fans expect for her?

KH: More turtlenecks.

BubblegumFox: Do either of you like spinach... I is eating spinach!

KH: I liked mine steamed.

RD: I like mine on pizza with chicken.

Paparossi: Why do you keep blowing off Morgan questions?

KH: What was the question?

RD: Done and done.

FluffyJJ: Have you ever just wanted to grab Matthew and kiss his face?

KH: Done and Done!

Summer: If the cast members were vegetables, what would they be?

RD: Hotch would be a radish.

KH: Rossi would be an onion.

RD: Reid would be a carrot.

KH: Prentiss would be a squash.

RD: Garcia would be a beet.

KH: JJ would be taro root

RD: Morgan would be a snap pea.

SergioCushion: Do you like roast chicken? Do you think any of the team does?

KH: I don't care for roast chicken but I think the team likes it in their salads

RD: I think they prefer duck.

RD: "Hope" has been my favorite so far. It was so different and tragic.

a-dilemma: To both: what episodes (aired and not aired) have been your favorites this season?

RD: Sorry, folks, jumped the gun. Read backwards.

RD: Also, the episode with Morgan in a towel.

KH: We just had the table read for Rick's episode that he's shooting right now and I told him after the read that it was one of my fav. episodes of the season.

Swankyhoodrat: Do any of you have a dream dramatic scenario you'd like to write for one of the characters

RD: Aside from Hotch and Prentiss hooking up?

KH: Dude, I was thinking the same thing.

Em: What is your favorite show besides CM?

RD: Doctor Who.

KH: Jersey Shore!!!!


RD: Seriously, Kim?

KH: Yes!

RD: Could Snooki guest star?

KH: Awwwww :(


CriminalMusings: Prentiss x The Situation. OTP!

KH: Yes!!!! I can see it now

RD: We're getting ready to bounce. Any final Q to ask?

Avferreira: What was the show that made each of you think you wanted to be a screenwriter?

KH: The Cosby show. I loved watching it as a kid and it's the first show that really got the wheels turning in my head that I could write for TV.

KH: Ugh! Rick... the people are waiting.

RD: For me it's a tie between Doctor Who and Buffy… I grew up with the original Doctor Who and just wanted that wonderful blue box to come and whisk me away. I think the new series is very clever and well done. I'm addicted. For me, the smartest show, IMHO, was Buffy. I freaking loved that show. It handled real topics admidst a fantasy world and had real drama mixed with fun. I wanted to be Joss and JJ Abrams growing up… Now I just want to be Kim Harrison.

KH: They didn't ask for an essay!!

KH: And on that note...

RD: Thanks for your time. This was fun!

KH: Thanks for your time!! We enjoyed chatting with you all!

RD: Keep watching!

RD: Chat again soon!

RD: "The Doctor, the Widow & the Wardrobe" airs soon!

KH: New Season of jersey Shore, Jan 5th 10pm

chat-admin: Also, new Criminal Minds this wednesday!

RD: And catch Criminal Minds Wednesdays at 9 p.m. on Wednesday on CBS!

KH: Ya, that too.


  1. Excellent! Can't wait to fall in love with Beth. I love Hotch and am happy for him! Can't wait to see the episodes! : )

  2. I so can't wait for episode 7x12! Wanna know more about what Emily did in Paris and how she is coping with the whole Doyle situation.

  3. Fantastic chat. I want to meet Beth too, I'm so happy for Hotch !

    I wonder what part of his life Reid will have to come to terms with, I'm really intrigued.

  4. Good stuff, Hotch and Prentiss all the way!

  5. "True Genius" is set to air on my birthday. BEST. PRESENT. EVER.

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