For years, Criminal Minds has given audiences some of TV's most disturbing killers and madmen, as well as one of TV"s best crime-fighting ensembles. Even though this year's ratings took a tumble due to the all behind-the-scenes drama that went on before Season 12 premiered, the Joe Mantegna-led drama still brings in hordes of viewers, which made it all the more curious that CBS hadn't announced any renewal news. Thankfully, that curiosity ended today, as the network officially renewed Criminal Minds for lucky Season 13.
As one might have imagined, not a lot of information about Criminal Minds Season 13 is to be gleaned from CBS' big announcement, which comes quite a bit after the network went crazy renewing just about everything else on the schedule. What we do know is that it's being lined up for the 2017-2018 season, though that was a gimme. Of course, the reason why Criminal Minds' future can't be discussed with much fruition is because we're still in the final stretch for Season 12, and the show's embrace of a serialized storyline makes it more difficult to guess where everything will end up.
While the BAU is obviously still handling its usual weekly cases, complete with bloodthirsty unsubs, Criminal Minds made the striking decision this season to give Agent Reid a difficult storyline in which he was arrested in Mexico for a murder he didn't commit. Reid's experiences with this storyline, which mostly spawned from difficulties with his mother (played by Jane Lynch), have been anything but pleasant, and while audiences likely expect him to return to the team by the season's end without any trouble, I wouldn't be surprised if showrunner Erica Messer and her team figured out a way to take Reid's drama into a new season.
Though Criminal Minds's renewal was always expected to happen, since CBS has renewed less successful shows, the drama has taken the same kind of ratings hits that most other TV shows have. No longer drawing double-digits in viewership, Criminal Minds is currently keeping a little over 7 million viewers locked into its live airings, and its demo rating was mostly recently a 1.3, which is right around what it's been averaging. If we continue to see this kind of decline -- one that can be partly attributed to fans of actor Thomas Gibson boycotting the show following his public ousting -- then Season 14 might seem a lot less likely by this point next year.
With just three episodes left in Season 12, Criminal Minds will return to CBS on Wednesday, April 26, at 9:00 p.m. ET. And yes, you can get ready to see actor Shemar Moore returning to reprise the role of Derek Morgan for the finale and maybe beyond. To get a better idea of what new and returning shows will hit the small screen soon, head to our midseason premiere schedule and our summer TV guide.