Banking On: $375,000 per episode
Worth the Investment? Yes
Complex Says: Helgenberg has been an undeniable asset to the show from day one. And we mean that literally—she’s one of the only three cast members to be featured in every episode since CSI premiered way back in 2000.
As Catherine Willows, a former showgirl turned crime scene investigator, the actress has been consistent in her delivery of equally sultry and smart performances. Just when you think her collected character seems unphasable, that’s when the writers tend to have shit hit the fan pretty hard on her end. Willows has managed to get roofied and have her child kidnapped in one episode—damn! And unsurprisingly, the former seemed to occur with John Mayer strumming away in the background. Figures.
In the end, Helgenberg never fails to rise to the occasion, reminding us that she, like her character, is a boss. Flawless victory.
8. Marg Helgenberger