Mega-spoilers for Criminal Minds’ latest episode are below.
Holy hell, Criminal Minds, fans. Maybe you saw it coming and maybe you didn’t – and you might have seen in coming in a completely different way from how it happened – but there’s no denying that you were affected by what happened on tonight’s episode, “A Beautiful Disaster.” For tonight, the show bid a most fond farewell to the tackle-ready Special Agent Derek Morgan, who is exiting the show after 11 seasons and just over 250 episodes. Thankfully, we didn’t have to wait long to find out why the character is leaving, as well as why the exit went the way that it did.
The first part is easy to explain, although that doesn’t make it any easier to accept. It turns out actor Shemar Moore just really wanted to move on with his career. Here’s how he put it.
If Morgan had used those words in some kind of a speech on the show, people would have stood up and clapped. Is that why I just stood up and clapped? The two are probably related.
Thankfully, Morgan was one of the seemingly few TV characters in recent history allowed to vacate a show in a manner other than horrifying death. In fact, Criminal Minds managed to turn last week’s horrifying cliffhanger shooting completely around, spinning an actual happy ending out of the whole affair. Though Morgan was taken off the case to find his pregnant wife Savannah’s shooter, he tracked the guy down anyway, and after a scene that legitimately made it appear as if Morgan was heading to those rolling credits in the sky, we watched him find true bliss with the birth of son Hank Spencer. And it was pretty obvious right there that Morgan now had a very good reason to do something other than constantly putting his ass on the line. No more cuts on your head, Morgan!
The plan was apparently never to give the character any kind of a permanent exit, either. Here’s what else Shemar Moore told TV Guide about why Morgan got a pleasant last day.
Criminal Minds, despite its violent tendencies, knows that killing off main characters isn’t always the best idea – well, except for certain cases – and it’s allowed the chance for actors who left to eventually return, either temporarily or for the long haul. Maybe Morgan comes back in Season 13 in a guest star role holding a cute toddler? Just maybe?
Shemar Moore hasn’t starred on any other TV series in over a decade, though he has lent his voice to direct-to-video DC Comics animations like Justice League: War and others as Cyborg. Could there be live-action comic book movies in his future?
Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.
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