Mandy Patinkin was recently interviewed by New York Magazine, and he opened up about Homeland, Criminal Minds, and his regrets with the CBS procedural in 2007 after only two seasons.
“The biggest public mistake I ever made was that I chose to do Criminal Minds in the first place,” Patinkin said. “I thought it was something very different. I never thought they were going to kill and rape all these women every night, every day, week after week, year after year. It was very destructive to my soul and my personality. After that, I didn’t think I would get to work in television again.”
Thankfully, Patinkin changed his mind and signed onto the critically acclaimed Showtime drama last year. And while Homeland features a fair amount of violence, according to Patinkin, it’s of a completely different nature than Criminal Minds.
“I’m not making a judgment on the taste [of people who watch crime procedurals],” he explained. “But I’m concerned about the effect it has. Audiences all over the world use this programming as their bedtime story. This isn’t what you need to be dreaming about. A show like Homeland is the antidote. It asks why there’s a need for violence in the first place.”
Patinkin’s former boss, Criminal Mind’s producer Erica Messer responded to his criticism in a statement to Entertainment Weekly: “Criminal Minds is about the heroes who protect men, women and children everyday. Mandy is an outstanding actor and we wish him continued success with Homeland.”
Criminal Minds returns Wednesday, Sept. 26 at 9/8c on CBS. Homeland returns Sunday, Sept. 30 at 10/9c on Showtime.