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Criminal Minds' Josh Stewart Says Playing Will Became 'Second Nature' To Him

If there's one thing that "Criminal Minds" has never lacked, it's an abundance of characters. The crime drama has brought in many main characters over the years to replace departing characters, as is the nature of long-running television shows. But it has also excelled at crafting compelling recurring roles for actors to embrace. One such character is William LaMontagne Jr. (Josh Stewart), who is the husband of JJ (A.J. Cook). While one might assume that it's hard for an actor to really settle into a role that's not exactly constant, for Stewart, this has never been an issue.

"I've played that character for so long, it's second nature," Stewart told Tell-Tale TV in 2019. "Sure, I come in and out so it may be hard to find my rhythm back with the story because they tell over 20 stories a season, but I know this dude. I know his bones and his heart."

It's obviously encouraging for an actor to warm to any role they play as it can add authenticity to the performance, but it's even more impressive that Stewart has done so with a recurring character who isn't exactly always at the forefront of the narrative going on. And as for some of his favorite moments with the character, Stewart has one portion of the show in particular in mind.

Stewart is a big fan of the early days of playing Will

During his interview with Tell-Tale TV, Josh Stewart was asked about some of his favorite parts of playing the character Will in "Criminal Minds," and his answer was actually quite simple: He really enjoyed his earlier days with the character. While it's clear that he's enjoyed playing Will as a whole, for Stewart there's just something about the earlier incarnations of his arc that resonates, especially in regard to how reckless he was.

When asked what his favorite scenes with the character were, Stewart shared, "Probably the very first one I did when we meet LaMontagne." He continued, "He was full bore then. He's been watered down from his southern roots after being away for so long [now], but back then, he was a trip. Young and stupid, but smart at the same time."

This certainly makes sense. Will has calmed down in his more recent appearances, especially after his marriage to JJ. But that earlier version had a lot more grit and wildness to him that was probably a lot of fun for Stewart to play. Still, character development is an important tool, and when it comes to Will, the writers have managed to do a pretty solid job with him, especially considering he's not really a mainstay for "Criminal Minds."