Criminal Minds: Evolution trailer pits the gang against a COVID-spawned 'serial-killing network'

Criminal Minds: Evolution trailer pits the gang against a COVID-spawned 'serial-killing network'

Criminal Minds is back and the cases are darker than usual.

The first Criminal Minds: Evolution trailer previews the sequel series to the CBS original that ran from 2005-2020. The majority of the team is back together, including actors Joe Mantegna, A.J. Cook, Kirsten Vangsness, Aisha Tyler, Adam Rodriguez, and Paget Brewster in their original roles. But the stakes are higher, thanks to COVID-19.

"All my years as a profiler, I studied killers, but I never studied what a pandemic would do to them," says Mantegna's Dave Rossi. "They couldn't move, they couldn't hunt, so they started communicating to become better predators."

"These aren't just connected case, this is a serial-killing network," says Brewster's Emily Prentiss.

The trailer also highlights actor Zach Gilford (Friday Night Lights, Midnight Mass), who's guest-starring as Elias Volt, an operations analyst at a global cybersecurity firm with a dark side and an obsession with death. Elias, it would appear, is one of these killers.

Criminal Minds Evolution
Criminal Minds Evolution

Monty Brinton /Paramount+

"Everybody's in a very different place," showrunner Erica Messer told EW in an interview. "We've got Prentiss, who has now been promoted outside of the BAU unit chief. She has a new position where she oversees dozens of units. Rossi has taken her place as unit chief, but he's going through a big thing. So he's kind of in all five stages of grief when we meet him in the first two episodes. We will learn why by the end of the first hour. Alvez [Rodriguez] has been trying to help out raw scenes, sort of stay local for a while and handle those cases, while JJ [Cook] and Lewis [Tyler] have answered every single consultant call that they've gotten in the last year, which means plenty of nights away from home and living on the road. The word from above, the bureaucrats, is, 'Do more with less.' I think we can all relate to that as well. Our teams have been downsized and everybody's still got the same amount of work to do."

Criminal Minds: Evolution will premiere on Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 24) with two out of the 10 episodes of the season on Paramount+. CBS will also broadcast the first episode on Nov. 24 at 10 p.m. ET.

Watch the trailer above.

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