The season finale of Criminal Minds ended on a humdinger of a cliffhanger when not one, but TWO SVUs carrying several BAU team members got caught in a deadly trap involving an 18-wheeler smashing into the cars before the episode cut to black, leaving the fate of several characters in limbo.
Actors Joe Mantegna and Matthew Gray Gubler have signed deals to return for Season 13, meaning we’ll be seeing Rossi (Mantegna) crawl from the wreckage to take down more bad guys and Reid (Gubler), who was not in either car, hopefully reinstated to the BAU after his prison stint. But A.J. Cook, who plays Jennifer “JJ” Jareau, has not yet signed a deal, meaning JJ could be a casualty of Scratch’s nefarious plans.
Cook and Kirsten Vangsness, who plays tech wiz Penelope Garcia (who was not in one of the SUVs), are holding out on signing new deals and requesting equal pay with their male counterparts, Mantegna and Gubler, according to Deadline. If this sounds like a repeat from 2013, it’s because Cook and Vangsness took a similar stand when trying to renegotiate deals back then. But Deadline says the two actresses are more than willing to walk away this time if they aren’t given parity with their co-stars.
The season closer ended with Reid figuring out who the mole inside the FBI from a serial killer cult was and holding her at gun point. Unfortunately, he couldn’t take her out because at the last second she revealed that the group had Garcia (Kirsten Vangsness) held hostage. She offered Reid an ultimatum to come with her and join the cult, or Garcia would be next on their victim list. It seems that Kirsten could hold out and not return for the following season.