Showrunner Talks Morgan's Return in Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 2 – Is It Happening?

Showrunner Talks Morgan's Return in Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 2 – Is It Happening?
Image credit: CBS, Paramount+

The BAU is back on our small screens. But will Derek return?


  • The Criminal Minds showrunner has revealed whether we can expect Derec Morgan in Season 2.
  • Shemar Moore is currently busy working on S.W.A.T.
  • Morgan isn't the only character fans are eager to see return.

The new season of Criminal Minds is finally here, and we can once again delve into the challenging work lives of the members of the Behavioral Analysis Unit.

Subtitled Evolution, the soft reboot/sequel to the cult series brings us the shenanigans of Elias Voit (Zach Gilford) for the second season in a row, and the BAU itself has been joined by a new temporary member, Tyler Green (Ryan-James Hatanaka). Otherwise, most of the show's old favorites return, including Joe Mantegna, Kirsten Vangsness, AJ Cook, Paget Brewster, Aisha Tyler and Adam Rodriguez.

Prior to the release of Season 2, however, many media and social platforms speculated about the possibility of other key characters from the original series returning, most notably Shemar Moore, played by Derek Morgan for eleven seasons. But with five more episodes to go, how likely is his return?

Will Shemar Moore Return to Criminal Minds?

Shemar Moore undoubtedly gained widespread fame thanks to Criminal Minds for his role as the charismatic agent Derek Morgan. However, the actor left the project after Season 11 to pursue new career opportunities.

And now, while Criminal Minds has moved from CBS to Paramount+, Moore is still appearing on linear television. His current starring role is Hondo Harrelson, the protagonist of the police procedural action-drama S.W.A.T., which debuted in 2017.

Showrunner Talks Morgan's Return in Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 2 – Is It Happening? - image 1

As for Moore's potential return to the role of Morgan, that question was addressed by showrunner Erica Messer herself in a conversation with TV Line. Brace yourselves, folks, as this isn't the most comforting answer:

'We didn't have any [opportunity] this season; he was, he thought, finishing his run on S.W.A.T., and now they have a renewal.'

Speaking of S.W.A.T., as with another CBS procedural, Blue Bloods, it was initially decided not to renew the series, but in April 2024 it was announced that it had been renewed for an eighth season. Of course, that doesn't rule out the possibility of Moore returning, at least as a guest star, but the actor seems to have a busy schedule at the moment.

Fans Hope for Return of Morgan and Others

Of course, this is not an absolute guarantee that the beloved actor will not return to the project at all. But count on it, at least this season is not worth it, as Messer herself hinted. Well, unless she's a genius at hiding details from the media.

By the way, Moore isn't the only one whose return in Season 2 fans were incredibly hoping for. Of course, many were counting on Dr. Spencer Reid, and Matthew Gray Gubler even openly expressed his desire to return to the role.

It's quite possible that he'll be saved for last. But let's not raise our expectations too high, so we won't be disappointed when the season two finale comes out!

Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 2 Release Schedule

While the original series is available on Hulu and other on-demand platforms, Evolution is available exclusively on Paramount+. After the first two episodes landed on the service on June 6, the second season arrives on Thursdays. Like the previous one, Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 2 consists of only 10 episodes. The full schedule of upcoming episodes can be found below:

  • S2E6, Message in a Bottle — July 4, 2024
  • S2E7, Piranha — July 11, 2024
  • S2E8, North Star — July 18, 2024
  • S2E9, Stars & Stripes — July 25, 2024
  • S2E10, Save the Children — August 1, 2024

Source: TV Line.

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