It’s only been two years since “Criminal Minds” ended, but the long-running procedural is already heading back to the small screen. “Criminal Minds: Evolution,” the Paramount+ sequel series to the FBI drama, will receive a special broadcast airing of its premiere on CBS, where the original show ran for 15 seasons, on November 24. That’s Thanksgiving Day, should your family want to watch serial killers after eating the turkey.
The news includes a trailer for the series, which can be watched below.
Created by Jeff Davis — also known for the MTV series “Teen Wolf” — the original “Criminal Minds” premiered in 2005 and focused on the FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit, which uses criminal profiling techniques to track down unknown perpetrators of various crimes. Although Mandy Patinkin initially led the series as senior special agent Jason Gideon, the actor left after three seasons. The series became more ensemble-focused, with the BAU team changing members several times over its run. Most of the final season’s cast — except Matthew Gray Gubler and Daniel Henney — return to lead the sequel, including A.J. Cook, Joe Mantegna, Kirsten Vangsness, Aisha Tyler, Adam Rodriguez, and Paget Brewster.
The revival alters the show’s procedural formula by introducing a larger, serialized plot arc in addition to the case-of-the-week stories. Each episode focuses on the team as they hunt down an individual killer in a larger network of allied killers built during the COVID-19 pandemic in the hopes of eventually finding the mastermind behind it all. Based on the trailer, said mastermind is played by “Friday Night Lights” and “Midnight Mass” star Zach Gilford, who will appear in the season as a recurring guest star.
Erica Messer, who worked as a writer on the original series and eventually became its showrunner in 2009, returns to lead the writing team. Breen Frazier and Chris Barbour write and executive produce, Glenn Kershaw directs and executive produces, and Mark Gordon serves as an additional executive producer. The series is a production of ABC Signature and CBS Studios.
“Evolution” will premiere its first two episodes on Paramount+ on Thanksgiving Day. The first episode will air on CBS at 10 p.m. ET/PT. New episodes will drop weekly Thursdays following the premiere, exclusively on the streamer. After a mid-season finale on December 15, the show will return on January 12, with the 10-episode season concluding on February 9.