‘Criminal Minds’ Stars Joe Mantegna & Kirsten Vangsness Defend FBI Against Detractors

In an era in which the White House is attacking it’s own FBI, ‘Criminal Minds’ stars Joe Mantegna and Kirsten Vangsness are defending the hallowed institution EXCLUSIVELY with HollywoodLife.com!

The FBI may not have the support of its own government but the TV stars that tackle those roles certainly do! Criminal Minds star Joe Mantegna, 70, and Kirsten Vangsness, 45, visited HollywoodLife.com‘s own podcast to express their profound respect for FBI agents amid a fraught political climate. “The integrity is palpable,” Kirsten said when asked about visits from real FBI agents to the set. “I mean, smart and strong, the gun show, just the musculature on these people, and just to hear them talk about experiences that they’ve gone through and things that they’ve accomplished and what they’ve given of their life is extraordinarily brave.”

She went on to add that it upsets her when she sees their reputations tarnished by critics. “They actually look exactly like superheroes… We’re lucky to play them, but they’re really incredible people,” she said. “It actually, it’s gotten my hackles up when I hear them getting a hard time.” Then Kirsten mentioned that her mother was a teacher: another tough job that often comes under fire.

“There’s a couple of bad teachers every once in a while,” she said. “I was a sub for a long time. Yeah, there’s a couple, of course, in every job. There’s a couple wackadoos in every single job. Overall, that particular job takes a certain amount of fortitude and strength of character that would be really, really difficult to keep under wraps around a whole group of people that are so full of integrity and these incredible backgrounds.”

Then Joe explained that in LA alone the FBI holds a yearly event where they honor agents who died doing their jobs. “You go to a ceremony like that, and they literally take the time where they ring a bell… and they read off the names of every FBI agent that’s been killed in the line of duty since its inception,” he explained. “They take that very seriously, and you start to realize some of these people have given their lives to try to keep us safe.”

Catch the Criminal Minds marathon, which is on WeTV through the month of June on Saturdays and Sundays. And hear HL‘s full chat with Joe and Kirsten right here!

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