Criminal Minds is ending, CBS announced yesterday — revealing that the show will be concluding after the 15th season.
The final season will consist of 10 episodes and air over the 2019/2020 television season.
The cast and crew are currently shooting Season 14, which consists of 15 episodes, with this year’s finale set to air on CBS on Wednesday, February 6.
15 seasons is a long time for any drama, with only Gunsmoke, Law & Order, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, NCIS and Grey’s Anatomy having run for more, according to Deadline.
CBS’ EVP of current programs, Amy Reisenbach, said of Criminal Minds: “It is the quintessential CBS hit. We are so proud to have aired it. It speaks to everything we do best, which is air quality television. It’s been successful not only on air but online, in syndication, internationally for ABC [Studios].”
Criminal Minds has had a long run but many had suspected that the show would soon come to an end, especially given that it had seen a rating drop. This was something we covered on Monsters & Critics earlier this year.
The show follows a group of agents working for the Behavioral Analysis Unit — or the BAU — at the FBI. However, some personal storylines tend to be woven into the individual cases featured on each episode.
It’s likely that these personal storylines will play major roles in the final season. We already know that a wedding features on the Season 14 finale.
Meanwhile, Season 15 will feature a “major confession” and a BAU member ending up in jeopardy, with the biggest storyline centering around “a very worth adversary” for the team — and ending with a showdown with that person.
Despite a changing cast throughout the show’s 14 seasons, fans have come to fall in love with the characters. And some of those characters from the past could well appear again as the show draws to a close, according to executive producer/showrunner Erica Messer told Deadline.
Criminal Minds is co-produced by ABC Studios and CBS TV Studios. “It’s really bittersweet, but I’m so, so grateful to CBS for giving us this heads-up,” showrunner Erica Messer told TVLine after learning that CBS would be scrapping the show after 15 seasons.
“I think one of my biggest fears was always, ‘Oh man, what if we don’t know’ and then they just don’t bring back the show? But they respect this series and the cast and the crew and the fans enough to end this properly.”
Criminal Minds returns Wednesday, January 26 at 10/9c on CBS.