Criminal Minds series finale: Who is leaving the BAU?

Tonight, the Criminal Minds series finale tested all of the BAU — but, in a way, it also brought them closer together. These are two episodes that reminded us of the tight-knit nature of the BAU family, how much we love them, and how sad it’s going to be with the show over.

The series finale was absolutely a big trip down memory lane, as we saw flashback sequences to familiar faces like Derek Morgan, Hotch, Gideon, and others. Spencer Reid found himself in a life-threatening situation where he saw some faces from his past again (Maeve!), but in the end, he’s doing okay now and is on the mend. Rossi also found himself hurt, but much to the surprise of everyone, he did not retire.

For more Criminal Minds video insight, be sure to watch our take on the final episode below! After watching, be sure to subscribe to CarterMatt on YouTube.

In general, one of the larger surprises of the finale is that the BAU is not exactly splitting up and most of them could still have a role moving forward. The Everett Lynch case seems to have sidelined for now some of Prentiss’ ability to be FBI Director, but that may not be permanent. JJ could be an eventual successor. (She is planning to get a place in Colorado, so we imagine a lot of traveling is in her future.) Everyone else is still on board, with the one person not in their old post being Penelope Garcia. She decided to take a new gig at a nearby non-profit, one where she would still have a chance to be around her friends.

Oh, and shall we mention that Penelope and Luke are now going to dinner together? Once Penelope announced her exit, Alvez took advantage of the opportunity to ask her out.

While we’re sure that there are all sorts of endings that Criminal Minds could have come up with, this one felt rather great — it keeps the door open for more, while also taking down the Chameleon and taking a look back at the overall run. You could make the argument that it leaned too heavy on early-season flashbacks or didn’t give enough for Tara to do, but it did capture the feel of what this show was. (One other quibble — why wasn’t Maxine present given her new relationship with Reid?)

Overall, though, we do think that the perfect way for Criminal Minds to end is just as it did — with these characters still being heroes and working to fight their way forward against UnSubs. It feels the most in line for what this show is.

What did you think about the Criminal Minds series finale?

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