Leading out of Criminal Minds‘ 250th episode, CBS this Wednesday invited you to double down on danger, death and dismemberment by sampling a new spinoff — Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders. One episode into the globe-trotting offshoot, would you say it’s worth the trip?
Whereas Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior five years ago dared you to buy into a “rogue” BAU team that worked out of a dojo, Beyond Borders‘ biggest ask is that you believe the FBI has an International Response Unit that is deployed when Americans traveling abroad become the victims of very, very bad people. Having been introduced as a backdoor pilot last April, the official premiere involved the vanishing of college-age farm volunteers in Thailand, “one of the deadliest destinations for tourists,” we are told. And the local police are little help because “it’s not their job to worry about Americans, it’s ours,” says Unit Chief Jack Garrett, played by Gary Sinise (very familiar to the CSI: NY faithful as well as “Lieutenant Dan!” fans).
Rounding out Garrett’s team are Daniel Henney (Hawaii Five-0) as Special Ops Agent/father of four Matt Simmons, Tyler James Williams (The Walking Dead) as States-based tech guru/handholder-for-loved ones Russ “Monty” Montgomery and Annie Funke as former M.E. Mae Jarvis.
The original backdoor pilot costarred Anna Gunn (Breaking Bad) as an international law expert/linguist with a brother wrongly imprisoned in Thailand. In its fully baked form, Beyond Borders subtracted Gunn and added CSI: Miami/Law & Order/Forever alum Alana De La Garza as Clara Seger, a widowed linguists whiz who is enlisted by Jack to pitch on on the aforementioned case and summarily joins the team full-time. (She and Jack share a past, in that her husband had been his best friend.)
After the backdoor pilot aired last spring, 63 percent of TVLine readers said they would “definitely” tune in for the actual series, while 12 percent of ya said “no way.” What say you now? Vote, and comment!