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Geekscape Interviews: ‘Major Crimes’ Jessica Meraz

Thursday 21st December 2017 by Alexandra Gallarza

Detective Camila Paige, portrayed by the extraordinary Jessica Meraz, is new to the Major Crimes family. Now, with the show ending, the audience wasn’t really granted the opportunity to spend a whole lot of time with the new Detective. We were still given bits and pieces of her character. She had a history with Lieutenant Provenza (GW Bailey), was trained by the newly appointed Chief Leo Mason when she was in Missing Persons, and raised her siblings.

Geekscape talked to Jessica Meraz and asked her about Camila Paige.  She’s bubbly and happy. Yet also very determined and focused when it comes to her job. How it plays out in the rest of the season?

“Cami is always focused on how she can be a better detective and help the case,” she said, adding, “one distraction will be too difficult (attractive) to ignore.”

With a budding relationship and possible romance between Detective Page and Detective Wes Nolan, portrayed by Daniel DiTomasso, one can only wonder, how does Cami balance her home life and work life?

“As far as her home/work balance – Cami could definitely do better at this. Her siblings are all either in or through college so Cami doesn’t have to worry about them so much anymore. She is committed to her work so I think she probably hasn’t had a romantic relationship in a while. Her thoughts on the necessities of balance and relationships will come into question later in the season.”

Her home life revolves or at least revolved around her five siblings, raising them, and making sure they had good heads on their shoulders. Cami is able to balance her home life well. When it comes to work she is able to balance that well. But when it becomes potentially merged?

“As far as her home/work balance – Cami could definitely do better at this. Her siblings are all either in or through college so Cami doesn’t have to worry about them so much anymore. She is committed to her work so I think she probably hasn’t had a romantic relationship in a while. Her thoughts on the necessities of balance and relationships will come into question later in the season.”

The first arc, in which we meet Camila Paige, she is brought in to deal with missing boys, who were last seen leaving a field strip. With her background in Missing Persons, while working the ‘Sanctuary City’ case it is evident that Cami has sympathy for a child’s struggles. Having raised her five siblings, her approach to children is done in a more intimate way.

“Cami is able to relate and interrogate young people in a specialized way that is unique to her background,” Meraz commented on her character’s background. “She gets to the truth while protecting the child’s feelings and best interest. “

The themes of the season, per the show creator James Duff, have been Faith and Reason. Upcoming is Risk.

The Risk that the team has to take is in dealing with alleged serial killer, Phillip Stroh played by Billy Burke, who fans saw at the end of the last episode of the four-episode arc entitled, ‘Conspiracy Theory’. With the heartbreak that revolved around the loss of a major character, his presence was suspect and he looked slightly gleeful about the impending doom of said character.

The arc, “By Any Means” comes after the loss of a dominant player in the hunt for Stroh.

Being new to the show, as a member of the crew, this would be Cami’s first time dealing with the serial killer. We asked Jessica what it was like to be part of the Phillip Stroh story line and what could she tease about the next four episodes, in which he appears.

“I will say that while reading a scene with Stroh, the hairs on the back of my neck stood up.” Jessica commented. “He’s such a scary character and he comes back in full force. The fans will not be disappointed. The suspense in palpable.”

There was a possibility that the show would end after this season. It was officially announced in October of 2017, that the 6th season would be it’s last. The announcement came before the show premiered, just as the cast and crew were sitting down for their final table read.

“I am just so thrilled to get to work with these story tellers,” Meraz commented on what it was like approaching the possible last season of the show. “Of course I wish this could go on forever, but I’ll take what I can get. You get an opportunity and you make the most of it. I put my heart and soul into every second of this season.”

Being the new kid on the block can be intimidating. With her first day being cancelled, due to a swarm of bees, the rest of her experience was, “the most fulfilling six months of my life so far.”

“Every day was a new adventure,” Meraz added. “I made some of the best friends of my life and learned all sorts of new things about myself.”

The final four episodes of Major Crimes can be seen on TNT, Tuesday nights at 9/8c.