‘Criminal Minds: Evolution’ Cast on Rossi’s wife, Garcia and Alvez

WARNING: This story contains spoilers from the first two episodes of “Criminal Minds: Evolution,” now streaming on Paramount+.

It’s been nearly three years since “Criminal Minds” ended, but a lot has changed within the BAU. As the new show begins, Garcia (Kirsten Vangsness) is no longer on the unit and living her best life. She thrived on her own throughout the pandemic and enjoys an easier, less murder-filled existence. It’s short-lived, of course, when Alvez (Adam Rodriguez) comes knocking on her door in the premiere.

In a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment, she refers to them going on a date — he finally asked her out during the 2020 finale — but it was simply “a dinner three years ago” and they’re “getting along actually” as girlfriends.”

Still, the flirtation will continue, confirms Vangsness.

“I think that the roller coaster of being satisfied and dissatisfied is a lot satisfying,” she says. “I’ve spent a lot of time with Adam. You get to see our evolution from our deep disdain for each other grow to a deeper disdain. During the pandemic, we got closer as people — we ended up double-dating with our partners!”

She adds that this season, which features more Garcia than ever before, it’s clear the pair’s connection is effortless. “We trust each other so much,” says Vangsness.

“Criminal Minds: Evolution”
Michael Yarish/ Paramount +

However, not everyone at BAU is in such a positive area. David Rossi (Joe Mantegna) is in a dark place when the show begins, and it’s quickly revealed that his wife, Krystall, died about a year ago.

“I was quite shocked at first when I read it,” admits Mantegna. “I’m very amused by this cartoon. It’s a two-frame, and it’s a caveman looking up and saying, ‘Oh God, why are you doing this to me?’ and God says, ‘Why not?’ To me, that’s what life is all about. You can’t orchestrate what happens to you in life and you get knocked down – what are you going to do? Are you going to lie there or are you going to get up? So that’s where we finds Rossi. He’s got a decision to make here. Things happen to good people and bad people. There’s no accounting for it.”

While saying that when audiences see Rossi again, he has “let himself go.” “It scared me when I saw the first episode!” Mantegna says with a laugh.

But he knows the character will be able to pull through. “I’m betting on Dave. It’s going to take some time. It’s part of the evolution.”

The first two episodes of “Criminal Minds: Evolution” are now streaming on Paramount+.

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