13 Badass Taraji P. Henson Quotes From 'Person Of Interest' That You Need In Your Life

Before she played Cookie Lyon, Taraji P. Henson played Detective Joss Carter on Person of Interest. Not only was she a homicide detective for the NYPD, but she was a veteran too, and some of Henson's best Person of Interest quotes deserve to be put on a mood board for inspiring you to stand up for yourself.

Even though Det. Carter had some of the boldest, inspiring, and straight-up hilarious lines in the show, the character had a shortened run, as she was shockingly killed in the middle of the third season. Carter's death, which aired in 2013, left Person of Interest fans dumbfounded. As executive producer Jonathan Nolan told The Hollywood Reporter, "Carter was the heart of the show," which to them meant that they needed to kill her off to, as Nolan said, "Do as much damage to the audience as possible."

It sounds like the writers gained some inspiration from Game of Thrones, which premiered in 2011, the same year that Person of Interest did. Even though the show continued on to air another two and a half seasons after Carter's death, wrapping in 2016, the series was never the same without the detective. Henson's character was so fearless and bold that it's worth remembering some of the amazing lines that shot out of her mouth as if they were weapons themselves.

"My friends call me Lionel. You got a first name?" "Sure, Detective."

Henson deserved an Emmy just for the moment when she told Detective Lionel Fuscothat her first name is "Detective."

"I'm a cop. My life's always in danger."

Carter never felt intimidated by her risky job, which is what made her one of the most badass characters of all time.

"Man as angry and bitter as you are, I got a feeling it ain't that big, Eddie."

The person who Carter said this to had just told her, "I got a pretty big gun." Check and mate.

"Now we may be partners, and we might even be friends, but I'm still a cop. "

In the same scene, Carter told her partner, "If those mistakes you made come back to haunt you, you will not expect me to cover for you." What a boss.


Carter was an expert, and she felt comfortable bemoaning newer cops' lack of experience compared to hers.

"I know better than to show up unprepared."

Carter was exceptional at her job and never downplayed that fact. That is some major inspiration right there.

"I spent enough time with you to know you're afraid of me... Now I was gonna wait and arrest you two with everyone else. But if this is how you wanna play it, little man, guess I'll have to take you down right now."

Carter said this to Officer Laskey after discovering his secret mission to follow a corrupt police officer. Carter already knew everything that was going on though, of course, because nothing got past her.

"Sooner or later, I lock you up. Or find you bleeding out somewhere."

If you thought that the way Carter spoke to her fellow officers was intimidating, you can only imagine the threats she had for criminals, like this one.

"Yeah, well, you're right about one thing. You'll get out of here... When I take you to your arraignment."

Again, Carter always made sure to tell the criminals she faced where they would end up while on her watch.

"Are you guys this sloppy when you're tracking Al Qaeda?"

As a veteran, Carter knew everything about combat and she never missed an opportunity to critique people's forms.

"You're gonna have to tell me something. Like who the hell are you, and what exactly is going on here?"

Her frankness is aspirational, and she never let people waste her time.

"Whenever you show up, trouble's just around the corner."

Carter had a complicated relationship with John Reese, and with this quote she nails the feelings that come with forbidden — or at least complex — love.

"It all comes down to a matter of trust, the foundation of any healthy relationship. I just need to know where this is headed."

If clear communication helps build trust, then Carter could have held a workshop on this subject. She always spoke her mind and told people how she was feeling — what a concept.

Henson's Detective Joss Carter can and should serve as an example for all women in how to own your power and speak your mind.