CBS crime drama Criminal Minds takes us into a world of violent, mind-boggling, and unimaginable crimes. The FBI agents from the Behavioural Analysis Unit (BAU)-are the men and women who try to solve these crimes by understanding the minds of the perpetrators to get psychological insights into the motive behind the crimes. Sometimes characters are written in a way that leaves a bad taste on the readers. The character Kirsten Vangsness plays on Criminal Minds draws love and hate in equal measure. Many can’t stand the character, and most are justified in their reasons.
Kirsten Vangsness’ Character on Criminal Minds
Kirsten Vangsness plays the character Penelope Grace Garcia on Criminal Minds as the Technical analyst for the Behavioral Analysis Unit and later became the Media Liaison Officer for the team. The story of her life is that she hails from San Fransisco, California. She bears the guilt for her parents’ death after they were killed in an accident by a drunk driver while they were out looking for her.
Unable to deal with her parent’s death, she drops out of the California Institute of Technology and goes ‘underground’. She continues teaching herself computer coding and eventually becomes so good that she makes it to the FBI’s most-wanted list of hackers. Garcia is mentored by Shane Wyeth, a vigilante hacker who hacks into suspected criminal businesses and companies. Garcia gains the name “The Black Queen” due to her gothic style.
The BAU eventually arrests her while they were investigating a case she was involved in. she is offered the choice to either serve jail time or join the BAU team and work as their Technical Analyst. Garcia always wanted to put her hacking skills into better and noble use instead of just vandalizing websites, so she accepted the job.
Things we love to hate about the character Kirsten Vangsness plays on Criminal Minds
Do not get me wrong, Kirsten Vangsness is awesome, and she plays her character so well. Penelope Garcia brings a certain cheerfulness and playfulness in an otherwise sordid and depressing show, and we appreciate her for that. However, sometimes she tends to go a little overboard with her character, which gets on our nerves. Here are some of the things people don’t really like about her character;
She is Highly Unprofessional
Okay, in the real world, Garcia would have been fired so many times. In almost every episode, she does something that could prove grounds for dismissal. Many fans have pointed out that they wouldn’t be able to work with someone like her. She is extremely flirtatious, which would otherwise have been cute, except there is a time and place! It was just cringe-worthy at work.
In one episode, she plays a game on her laptop at work, allowing a hacker to get into the BAU’s computer system and access their files. If this were to happen in the real world, someone would be losing their job.
She is an Emotional Wreck
It is understandable to get caught up in your feelings, especially when working in a place where you witness violent crimes daily. However, when you are one of the people who are supposed to keep it together for the sake of the victims, it is unbecoming to fall apart in front of everyone each time and family and victims of the offenders. She also tends to flip out over the tiniest of things and becomes irrationally angry.
There is also a way she tends to make most things about herself. Granted, she has had a traumatic past, and she is allowed to feel things more than others. But sometimes time is of the essence, and falling to pieces because of something that did not happen directly to you takes away focus from the real victims. If she can’t stomach any of the cases, then she should probably find a different job, just saying.
She is Annoying and Nosy
By the start of season 4, the character of Kirsten Vangsness gets annoying. She can make you want to claws your eyes out sometimes. She constantly exerts herself into other people’s business and wants to know everything about everyone. Like hello, personal space?
She is Needy
Penelope Garcia finds herself in constant need of validation from people. She is always at odds ends about something and needs someone to make her feel better about it or herself. Like you are an adult, get over yourself.
Her Ridiculous Sense of Style
Okay, what is with the dressing like a carton daily? We get that she is supposed to be this fun character with a playful personality but come on, for someone who works at the FBI, dressing as she does is plain pushing it. She even puts on cat ears while at the office. Are you going to Disney or what?
Admittedly, Kirsten Vangsness is a great actress, and she is probably one of the few people who could effortlessly pull off Penelope Garcia’s character.