Criminal Minds' First Look At Final Season Is Touchy For JJ And Reid

criminal minds reid cbs season 14 finale
(Image credit: CBS)

Criminal Minds wrapped Season 14 on a bombshell reveal from JJ that she's loved Reid for years, and it was a doozy of a character cliffhanger heading into the fifteenth and final season of the series. Since Criminal Minds was bumped from its usual fall premiere slot and held until midseason for the debut of its shortened last season, fans have been waiting the better part of a year since the February 2019 finale to find out what happens next for the longtime friends, coworkers, and potential love interests.

Well, the long-awaited first look at Criminal Minds Season 15 premiere has finally hit the web, and it reveals that JJ and Reid will be touchy in the big episode. Take a look!

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That's not exactly a passionate embrace, but they certainly seem to have a pretty good grip on each other. Is this because they're finally having a conversation that was months in the making, to address JJ's bombshell reveal in explicit terms? Or are they still dancing around each other? Or did JJ just take a bad step on a slope and Reid grabbed her to steady her? Or will it be some combination of twists?

Fans will likely have to wait until the January 8 premiere to find out exactly what leads up to this touchy moment between JJ and Reid, but it at least indicates that Criminal Minds isn't going to just drop the JJ/Reid plot. Given that Criminal Minds is very much a procedural, it was possible that JJ's feelings for Reid and his feelings about those feelings wouldn't be addressed in-depth; all signs point toward Criminal Minds more or less picking up where it left off with JJ and Reid.

It is worth noting that JJ is still wearing her wedding ring, and she went years without her feelings for Reid getting in the way of her life as a wife and mom, so it might take Reid wanting to explore a relationship for JJ to be willing to upend her life. Considering Reid is reportedly going to have a love interest in at least a couple episodes of Season 15, fans probably don't want to count on a JJ/Reid happily-ever-after too early, if at all.

Criminal Minds showrunner Erica Messer weighed in on what's in store for JJ and Reid, including JJ's story with her husband, in a chat with TVLine:

We deal with that in the first two hours of the final 10 [episodes], because that needs some explanation and some tender care really to have her be fair to everyone. I think 100 percent that Reid loves her, too, so that’s where it’s hard.

Really, nobody is in a great position now that the truth is out, although Reid arguably has the fewest strings attached. JJ seemingly never intended to share her feelings, so life would undoubtedly be easier for her if she hadn't been forced to drop her big secret on Reid. Poor Will presumably doesn't know his wife has carried a torch for her coworker for years, so if JJ does decide to do something about it and try to move forward with Reid, Will could be in for a shock.

Criminal Minds: Why Each Of The Major Cast Members Left

See what happens next for JJ and Reid when Criminal Minds returns for its ten-episode final season with a special two-hour premiere on Wednesday, January 8 at 9 p.m. ET in the winter TV premiere schedule.

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel and can cite multiple TV shows to explain why. She does, however, want to believe that she can sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation (and author bios).