Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 3 – Confirmation & Everything We Know


The procedural series Criminal Minds: Evolution resurrected the original show after a short stint off the air, and now it is set to return for season 3. Continuing the success of Criminal Minds which ran from 2005 until 2020, Evolution follows the familiar FBI Behavioral Analysis Unit team as they try to crack the touch case of the Gold Star killer. Unlike the original series, which was a pure procedural and featured an episodic format, Evolution shifted toward a serialized narrative involving one long ongoing storyline that has carried over between its two seasons thus far.

Welcomed back by fans with open arms, Criminal Minds: Evolution was an unsurprising hit and was swiftly green-lit for a second season on Paramount+. In Evolution’s second season, the team continues to hunt for the elusive Gold Star, while being forced to get help from another notorious criminal who has vexed them for years. The serialized nature of the newest seasons has been a refreshing change of pace, and helps set Criminal Minds: Evolution apart from the plethora of other procedurals in TV history. All this sets the stage for an explosive season 3, and Paramount+ has already renewed.

Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 3 Latest News

A Major Cast Member Confirms Their Season 3 Return

Just days after the show was picked up for a third season, the latest news sees a major cast member confirm their return in Criminal Minds: Evolution season 3. In a post made on his official Instagram account, actor Ryan James Hatanaka, who plays the controversial role of Tyler Green, accidentally confirmed he’d be back for season 3. While celebrating the third season’s renewal, Hatanaka added the caption “S3 here we come” suggesting that he’d be part of the ensemble. While the post could be merely a celebration of the show’s success, Hatanaka already knows the events of season 2 and would have an idea if Tyler Green would be involved in season 3.

Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 3 Is Confirmed

Paramount+ Swiftly Renewed The Series

With filming starting back up at a later date in 2024, it signals that Paramount+ wants the show on a yearly schedule.

With the news breaking a day before the second season was set to begin airing, Paramount+ has renewed Criminal Minds: Evolution for a third season. The decision is anything but surprising, and the recognizable procedural has continued to be popular despite the passage of time and the original show’s cancelation in 2020. No details about the new season are known yet, but it will go into production later in 2024.

The decision to rush the show back into production is a prudent one, and Evolution was one of many shows that were delayed due to the 2023 Hollywood strikes. Fortunately, the success of the franchise all but guarantees that the second season will be a hit, even if fans had to wait longer for new episodes. With filming starting back up at a later date in 2024, it signals that Paramount+ wants the show on a yearly schedule.


Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 3 Cast

Which BAU Team Members Will Return?

As the ending of Criminal Minds: Evolution season 1 proved, the new serialized version of the procedural is not afraid to kill off characters and make bold story moves. With that in mind, the cast of season 3 is anything but certain, and any number of BAU team members could meet their doom, or simply walk away from the harrowing profession. It’s also unclear if the season 2 storyline will be wrapped up, and if it is, several key characters won’t be needed going forward. Zach Gilford’s villainous Elias Voit is one such example, and he may not be back depending on season 3’s story direction.

However, its certain that some if not all of the classic heroes will be on hand to reprise their roles including Joe Mantegna as the stalwart team leader, David Rossi. Furthermore, veterans like Paget Brewster and Kirsten Vangsness should also be expected back as Prentiss and Garcia, respectively, and it’s unlikely that the series would make such a bold move as killing one of them off.

Will Reid & Morgan Return In Season 3?

The Original Series Stars Were Not In Seasons 1 & 2

Perhaps the most discussed aspect of Criminal Minds: Evolution has been the absence of original series actors Matthew Gray Gubler as Spencer Reid and Shemar Moore as Derek Morgan. Gubler starred in all 15 seasons of the original series, while Moore departed in season 11. Both has been sorely missed in the rebooted series thus far, but their returns have potentially left open. Gubler’s Reid is still employed by the FBI in the show’s universe, and he is simply away on another assignment.
Morgan’s return is a bit less open, and when he departed the series, his character also departed the FBI entirely. However, with Moore’s other series, S.W.A.T., returning for its final season in the near future, he could return somehow. With all that said, neither Gubler’s nor Moore’s returns have been confirmed, and it would likely be big news is one or both opted to reprise their roles.

Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 3 Story Details

Will The Team Catch Gold Star?

The series will likely want to maintain the serialized structure of seasons 1 and 2, but it might also have to start a new ongoing story to keep things fresh.

The plot of Criminal Minds: Evolution season 3 will be impossible to guess until the conclusion of season 2, and it isn’t even clear if the Gold Star storyline will carry over. The series will likely want to maintain the serialized structure of seasons 1 and 2, but it might also have to start a new ongoing story to keep things fresh. However, the Gold Star story could take a new turn during season 2, opening the door for Criminal Minds: Evolution season 3 to keep that thread going even longer.