Criminal Minds: Evolution is preparing for a Thanksgiving debut for the return of BAU. The upcoming Paramount+ series reunites the team from the original series by giving them a formidable unknown subject to hunt down, played by Zach Gilford and influenced by the pandemic we're just getting through.
"All my years as a profiler, I studied killers. But I never studied what a pandemic would do to them," Joe Mantegna's Rossi says in the new teaser trailer from Paramount+. "They couldn't move, they couldn't hunt. So they started communicating to become better predators."
So the stakes are pretty high for this return, which is what you need for a reboot/revival/sequel series. You have to go bigger and more dangerous. In this case, the killer, Elias Volt, has been connected to 16 deaths and continues to add to the total. But it's the methods that seem to be changed for the team this time around. The connections this time aren't as they seem, and the team is up against a "serial-killing network" crafted by Volt to connect with other killers. And this "unsub" they're hunting is far from "textbook."
The team brings back Kirsten Vangsbess as Garcia, who left the team in the series finale, but she is lured back to her old stomping grounds with the rest of the team, including Paget Brewster as Prentiss and A.J. Cook as JJ.
"This is the biggest case we've ever had," Rossi lays as a warning in the trailer. "He's been setting us up this whole time." Prentiss chimes in that the crew is just getting started in the wake of the finale.
The new series arrives on Thanksgiving, taking up the series' story right after the final episode's storyline and dropping the team in the middle of the pandemic. The team is charged with hunting down this network, setting the stage for the series to follow along as they chip away.
Aisha Tyler and Adam Rodriguez are also returning to their respective roles from the original series. The first two episodes of Criminal Minds: Evolution will premiere on Thanksgiving Day, giving fans an alternative to football after they've stuffed their faces and alienated their families. New episodes will drop every Thursday on Paramount+, with the midseason finale coming on Dec. 15 and the second half kicking off on Jan. 12. The first episode will also air on CBS in a special broadcast on Thanksgiving Day at 10 p.m. ET on CBS.