'Criminal Minds: Evolution' kicks off Thanksgiving Day on Paramount+

On Thanksgiving Day, Paramount+ drops the first two episodes of the next chapter in the long-running crime drama series Criminal Minds with Criminal Minds: Evolution.

The 10-episode series has the added freedom of being on a streaming platform. Joe Mantegna reprises as FBI profiler David Rossi, who joins other returning cast members, including Kirsten Vangsness, Aisha Tyler, A.J. Cook and Paget Brewster.

Mantegna tells ABC Audio the new title is fitting. "It looks a little different. It sounds a little different. There are moments that people are going to say, 'Wait, did Rossi say that?'" he laughs.

Mantegna says it's heartening to see how beloved the original show is. "I mean, I get fan mail from all over the world. ... And it makes you appreciate the fact that ... you're doing something that's translating in a way that people are responding, not just locally ... but all across the world."

Vangsness tells ABC Audio her longevity on the show always surprises her. "You book a gig as a costar with two lines, and you're just going to be there and gone. And then they keep bringing you back, and you're like, 'This is nice!'"

The series gets the show's resident tech expert and fan favorite Penelope Garcia up and out from behind a desk. "Before, I did so much exposition on the show ... A lot of the time just being like, 'OK, pretend talk to that person, pretend talk to that person.' And now, you know, I walk with feet and have scenes, and you realize that walking with feet and scenes with other people are much more satisfying than being in a room alone and just hearing imaginary voices in your head with a fake earbud!"

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