By Tom Gliatto Chris Willard Lisa Ingrassia Lesley Messer
December 01, 2008 12:00 PM

For the actress, 36, costarring in CBS’s breakout fall hit has its perks—like teasing Simon Baker.

HOW DID IT FEEL TO SEE YOUR RATINGS? I was up at 6 o’clock [the morning after the premiere] looking at them, texting [costar] Simon Baker. There was a lot of jumping around. Now he expects me to deliver the news every Wednesday. It’s a ritual.

YOU’RE FRIENDS? He’s awesome. I knew him before we started. He teases me and I’ll tease him. I make fun of him that he’s sort of a sex symbol. I call him “The Heat.” And when I wear a certain coat, he calls me “The Fonz.”

BESIDES WORKING WITH SIMON, WHAT’S THE BIGGEST PERK OF BEING ON A HIT? I got air conditioning [and] my bathrooms are gonna get retiled. My house was built in 1958, and my sinks and countertops are from 1958. I’m excited—a little home improvement!