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Season Twelve

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Season Twelve. On May 6th, 2016 CBS announced the renewal of Criminal Minds for the 2016-2017 TV season, with a standard initial order of 22 episodes. The season will premiere on September 28, 2016.


No ratings information is available at this time.



Image Title Airdate Writer Director Season Episode Series Episode
1201 THE CRIMSON KING "The Crimson King" September 28, 2016 Breen Frazier Glenn Kershaw 1 256
Agent Luke Alvez joins the BAU team as they are tasked with capturing a serial killer in Tempe, Arizona, who escaped from prison with twelve other convicts.
1202 SICK DAY "Sick Day" October 5, 2016 Virgil Williams Larry Teng 2 257
Arriving home following a child abduction case in Los Angeles, painful memories resurface for a shaken JJ, who breaks down and recounts the story to her husband.
1203 TABOO "Taboo" October 12, 2016 Karen Maser Alec Smight 3 258
With Emily Prentiss having rejoined the team, the BAU investigate the discoveries of two dead women in Florida and realize they are looking for a killer with a peculiar disposal method.
1204 KEEPER "Keeper" October 26, 2016 Bruce Zimmerman Sharat Raju 4 259
The BAU travels to the Appalachian Trail in rural Virginia in search of a serial killer who is operating along that route. Meanwhile, Reid is faced with a dilemma regarding his mother.
1205 THE ANTI-TERRORISM SQUAD "The Anti-Terrorism Squad" November 9, 2016 Stephanie SenGupta Tawnia McKiernan 5 260
The BAU is called to investigate the murders of two families in Minnesota, with one person being left alive for both attacks. As the team delves further into the investigation, they discover a startling link between both survivors, which could provide a motive for the killings.
1206 ELLIOTT'S POND "Elliott's Pond" November 16, 2016 Erica Messer Matthew Gray Gubler 6 261
The BAU is called to investigate the strange disappearance of three Delaware children who were out riding their bicycles, and suspect it might be connected to an unsolved disappearance that occurred over thirty years ago. Meanwhile, the team receives a startling update on Hotch's absence, and Prentiss is faced with a stunning decision.
1207 MIRROR IMAGE "Mirror Image" November 30, 2016 Breen Frazier Joe Mantegna 7 262
When a man claiming to be Lewis' brother reveals that he knows secrets about the family, the BAU investigate the whereabouts of her actual brother, who Lewis had lost contact with.
1208 SCARECROW "Scarecrow" December 7, 2016 Karen Maser Christoph Schrewe 8 263
When the remains of twelve people are found lying on the bed of a creek, the BAU travel to Yakima, Washington, to find the killer. Also, experienced profiler Stephen Walker from the Behavior Analysis Program joins the BAU.
Screenshot "Profiling 202" January 4, 2017 Virgil Williams Rob Bailey 9 264
Screenshot "Seek and Destroy" January 11, 2017 Erik Stiller Diana Valentine 10 265
Screenshot "Surface Tension" February 1, 2017 Bruce Zimmerman Oz Scott 11 266
Screenshot "A Good Husband" February 8, 2017 Jim Clemente Laura Belsey 12 267
Screenshot "Spencer" February 15, 2017 Erica Messer and Kirsten Vangsness Glenn Kershaw 13 268
Screenshot "Collision Course" February 22, 2017 Stephanie SenGupta Alec Smight 14 269
Screenshot "Alpha Male" March 1, 2017 Karen Maser Rob Bailey 15 270
Screenshot "---" --- Virgil Williams --- 16 271
Screenshot "---" --- --- --- 17 272
Screenshot "---" --- --- Simon Mirren 18 273
Screenshot "---" --- --- --- 19 274
Screenshot "---" --- --- --- 20 275
Screenshot "---" --- --- --- 21 276
Screenshot "---" --- --- --- 22 277


The season will predominantly focus on the BAU tracking down and recapturing thirteen serial killers, who all escaped from prisons across the U.S. during the events of last season's finale The Storm. The team will particularly focus their efforts on serial killer by proxy Peter Lewis.

Two new agents will be introduced in this season as main characters. One will replace Derek Morgan, who was written out of the show last season, due to Shemar Moore's decision to leave. Showrunner Erica Messer clarified that the team will continue to cope with Morgan's departure and that this will initially affect their relationship with the new agent. The character, Agent Luke Alvez, is portrayed by Adam Rodriguez, introduced in the premiere episode, and was previously a member of the FBI Fugitive Task Force. The second agent is Stephen Walker, who is portrayed by Damon Gupton and was previously a member of the Behavioral Analysis Program, the FBI's counterintelligence division; he will be introduced in the eighth episode.

Paget Brewster will reprise her role as Emily Prentiss as a series regular. In addition, it was confirmed that Aisha Tyler would be reprising her role as Doctor Tara Lewis, filling another series regular role. Lewis was a recurring character introduced in the previous season.

Aaron Hotchner will no longer appear in the series after Thomas Gibson was dismissed due to an altercation between him and an episode writer. His absence will be written into the season, but he will still appear in the season's first two episodes. Hotch's role as BAU team leader will be filled up by Prentiss.

Jane Lynch will reprise her role as Reid's mother Diana for the season's eleventh and twelfth episodes, both slated to air in early 2017 for what Erica Messer described as "a fun, Reid-heavy story-arc".

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