EW's exclusive first look at episode 1 reveals the gory origins of the network.

A dormant network of serial killers becomes active once again in EW's exclusive sneak peek at the forthcoming Criminal Minds revival.

Set in a COVID-19 world, Criminal Minds: Evolution reunites original stars Joe MantegnaPaget BrewsterAisha TylerKirsten VangsnessA.J. Cook, and Adam Rodriguez as they go up against their biggest threat yet: an unsub who used the pandemic to build said network of killers. As the world opens back up, the network goes operational — and it's up to the team to hunt them down.

EW's first look reveals the origins of the network traces back decades before the pandemic. In Washington State circa 2005, an unsub kidnaps a young teen and murders him inside of a storage container. A time jump takes viewers to Maryland. It's now 2022, and another unsub breaks into a home, kills the parents, and targets their daughter.

"We start asking and looking at things a little bit differently than we would in a normal Criminal Minds," showrunner Erica Messer previously told EW of the series' new big bad. "What's great about telling this over 10 episodes is what the audience is used to, which is like, 'Well, why are they the way they are?' We're going to be showing you that over stretches of episodes."

"Why they do what they do is always going to be the heart of Criminal Minds, but you are going to be trying to understand — because you get to know him better — this guy's ability to compartmentalize his life," she teased. "Does he have anything normal in his world? One of his little rules is: No body, no crime. So why is he doing that?"

Along with the sneak peek, EW has a first look at new key art.

Criminal Minds: Evolution streaming on Paramount+
'Criminal Minds: Evolution' key art
| Credit: Courtesy Paramount+

The first two episodes of Criminal Minds: Evolution debut Nov. 24 on Paramount+. New episodes will drop weekly on Thursdays.

Sign up for Entertainment Weekly's free daily newsletter to get breaking TV news, exclusive first looks, recaps, reviews, interviews with your favorite stars, and more.

Related content:

Criminal Minds
  • TV Show
  • 14