Criminal Minds: Evolution just got an exciting release update as the Paramount+ series prepares for Season 17.
Following an impressive 15-season run on CBS, Criminal Minds was rebranded with the Evolution subtitle for a 16th season as a Paramount+ exclusive, bringing back much of the original cast.
Behind Joe Mantegna’s David Rossi and the team of Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU) agents at the FBI, Season 16 dove into a search for a network of serial killers that arose during the COVID-19 pandemic.
January 2023 saw the series renewed for Season 17, with it now going into even darker cases and storylines than the initial show did between 2005 and 2020.
Criminal Minds: Evolution Gets Development Update
Deadline shared that the writers’ room for Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 17 officially opened during the week of October 2.
Now, the question that remains is when exactly the series will make its return to Paramount+, which depends on when the SAG-AFTRA strike comes to an end.
Season 16 began filming (per star Joe Mantegna) in August 2022 and started airing on Paramount+ in November, marking a three-and-a-half-month turnaround from production to release.
Should the actors’ strike conclude before the end of the year, this would likely indicate that Season 17 will look to premiere in Spring 2024 if filming starts in either late 2023 or early 2024.
With Criminal Minds: Evolution now running as a streaming series instead of a network TV program, it isn’t beholden to a September/October release timeframe. For reference, its first 14 seasons all started at that time except for Season 15 in 2020 due to delays incited by the pandemic.
What’s Different About Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 17?
Criminal Minds: Evolution takes some major swings with the show’s revival by diving into the leading character’s personal lives much more than its predecessor did on CBS.
Bringing fewer episodes than the normal network TV season, the story is much more focused on diving into the leading characters’ lives and experiences while also centering more heavily on one overarching threat.
The governing body ruling over broadcast television, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), was also less involved with Season 16, which allowed for more adult language and even darker plot points.
It’s expected that Season 17 will continue with that trend, setting the stage for another terrifying set of episodes as the BAU continues its run.
The first 16 seasons of Criminal Minds: Evolution are now streaming on Paramount+.