Criminal Minds: Evolution Finale Recap and Ending, Explained

Image Credit: Michael Yarish/ Paramount+

The Paramount+ series ‘Criminal Minds: Evolution’ is effectively the 16th season of the CBS series ‘Criminal Minds.’ The main narrative revolves around the attempts of the Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU) to catch Sicarius, the head of a serial killer network established during the COVID pandemic. In episode 10, titled ‘Dead End,’ Rossi (Joe Mantegna) hallucinates about his dead wife as captivity takes a toll while his BAU colleagues race against time to rescue him. As the authorities continue to mount pressure, Elias (Zach Gilford) comes dangerously close to killing his family. Here is everything you might want to know about the ending of the ‘Criminal Minds: Evolution’ season 1 finale. SPOILERS AHEAD.

Criminal Minds: Evolution Episode 10 Recap

The season finale begins as Rossi remembers speaking to Krystall about his promotion. The memory seems to re-energize the veteran agent, and he finds enough material stored in his underground confinement to build an explosive. Meanwhile, at the Seattle field office, JJ (AJ Cook) and Luke (Adam Rodriguez) brief the search party about the recent developments in the case. Tara, who is in Washington, tells Garcia (Kirsten Vangsness) to record the feed the next time Elias / Sicarius contacts them.

In her meeting with Prentiss (Paget Brewster) and Bailey (Nicholas D’Agosto), the AG declares that she has no intention of negotiating with a serial killer and instructs Prentiss to put the photos of Voil’s wife and children on the media. In response, a stunned Prentiss warns the AG that if Voit thinks he has nothing to lose, he will kill his family along with Rossi. She believes that they need to make Voit think that they are willing to negotiate.

Image Credit: Michael Yarish/ Paramount+

The next time Voit calls, he demands to speak to Deputy Director Bailey, who has effectively made himself the face of the Sicarius investigation, making Prentiss believe that this is why Voit wants to talk to him. During the call, Voit mentions the phrase “Gold Star” in a context that shouldn’t raise suspicion in ordinary people, but the BAU team members are definitely not ordinary.

Voit, whose real name is Lee Duval, starts to lose himself around his family as the BAU closes in. He destroys the phone of one of his daughters after catching her using it. He threatens his wife until his daughters intervene. He starts to realize that what Rossi said about him was true: he would kill his family when they would prove to be liabilities to him.

Criminal Minds: Evolution Ending: Does Sicarius get caught?

Yes, Sicarius gets caught in the first season finale. After learning that Voit knows about Gold Star, Bailey speaks to the AG. Rebecca is also present in the room. They discuss legal and extra-legal ways to deal with the situation. The AG basically tells Rebecca that she needs her to take the fall for her if they decide to go the extra-legal way and eliminate Voit with extreme prejudice, even if that means the deaths of Rossi and Voit’s family.

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However, in the end, the AG decides to proceed the legal way, and Bailey informs Prentiss that the AG has decided to let Voit and his family go. After the BAU locates Voit and his family, Bailey goes to speak to the serial killer, who shoots him in the head shortly after. While he has been busy speaking to Bailey, Will gets Harlow and Holly out of there. Although he gets shot, his vest protects him. Voit tries to shoot his wife, Sydney, but the gun is empty. Luke subsequently arrives and arrests him.

Does the BAU Find Rossi?

Rossi’s abduction perfectly set up the finale, so it was bound to be resolved in this episode. Rossi tries to blow open the door to the container with the bomb that he creates, but the efforts don’t prove to be a success. As Rossi struggles with the increasing lack of oxygen, he starts hallucinating about Krystall, who tells him to forgive himself. Meanwhile, after his arrest, Voit refuses to speak to anyone except the Attorney General.

Image Credit: Michael Yarish/ Paramount+

Recognizing that Rossi is inching closer to his death, the BAU convinces Sydney to speak to her husband. This is the first time they have interacted since Elias tried to shoot her. Even though she is still trying to process the fact that the man she has been married to for 15 years is a serial killer, she succeeds in convincing him to reveal Rossi’s location, and the veteran agent is rescued afterward.

What Is Gold Star?

As the first season ends, the mystery around Gold Star remains unsolved. It will likely be explored in season 2, which has already been greenlighted. Gold Star seems like something that is highly classified, about which only the top-ranked government officials are aware. When Bailey visits Voit, he reveals that he and the other man are the only two people who know exactly what it is. This prompts Voit to kill Bailey, making the serial killer the only person who knows the truth, increasing his value to the authorities.

Image Credit: Michael Yarish/ Paramount+

One of Voit’s former apprentices was Benjamin Reeves, the son of senator Martha Reeves. Whatever Gold Star is, it probably has some connection with the late senator. It can be a secret project that the senator was involved in. In the US, the phrase Gold Star is often used in a military setting. A Gold Star family is a family that has lost one of its members on active duty. So, it’s equally possible that Gold Star has been used in ‘Criminal Minds: Evolution’ in that context.

Several members of the BAU are now aware of Gold Star. Tara questions Rebecca about it, but the latter seems evasive. In one of the final scenes of the season, Voit is brought to a secret location by the special forces. Just as someone is about to enter the interrogation room where Voit is left alone, the scene cuts to black. Either this person is the AG or one of the past cast members who is now a high-ranking official in the government.

Do Penelope Garcia and Tyler Green Break Up?

Yes, by the end of season 1, Garcia and Tyler end their relationship. Even though ‘Criminal Minds’ is not necessarily a show about romance, relationships have always been part of its narrative. After all, even the BAU agents are people. Following Voit’s arrest, Garcia visits Tyler at the hospital. He has woken up and is doing well. She speaks about a parallel world where they have gotten past his actions and gotten back together before wishing Tyler a happy life and leaving.

Since losing his sister, Tyler had become obsessed with Sicarius and devoted his life to finding the serial killer. He uses the messages Garcia sent to him to put a software bug in Rossi’s phone and track him to Elias’ home. This eventually led to a confrontation between Tyler and Elias, and the latter shot him. Although Garcia understands why Tyler did it, she recognizes that she was taken advantage of and decides to end things between them.

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