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Will ‘Criminal Minds’ fans even miss Thomas Gibson’s Hotch?


“Criminal Minds” is about to get some new blood on the team, which comes just in time considering Shemar Moore’s exit last season, and Thomas Gibson’s recent dismissal.

TV Line debuted the first look at Season 12’s new addition, FBI Fugitive Task Force leader Luke Alvez (Adam Rodriguez) on Monday (Aug. 15).

RELATED: Will Shemar Moore return to ‘Criminal Minds’ now that Thomas Gibson is out?

According to showrunner Erica Messer, Alvez will hang up his fugitive-chasing credentials to reluctantly join the BAU before he hits the ground running with his new team. “By the end of the first episode he’s like, ‘All right, I’m in!’” Messer says.

Seeing as he’s probably a little green in the field of behavioral analysis, we doubt he’ll be taking over Hotch’s position as team leader of the BAU. Still, with such a promising new character joining the show, we starting to wonder if we’ll even have time to miss Supervisory Special Agent Hotchner once he’s gone?

Alvez sounds like a natural leader, who’s a nice mix of Morgan’s studly muscles and field experience and Hotch’s take-charge attitude and dedication.

RELATED: Thomas Gibson fired from ‘Criminal Minds’; Who will lead the team?

On top of this new addition, everyone’s favorite Interpol agent Emily Prentiss (Paget Brewster) will be back for a series of episodes in Season 12, and Aisha Tyler (Dr. Tara Lewis) has been promoted to a series regular on the show.

Obviously losing Hotch will be a horrible blow to the “Criminal Minds” family, but the more we learn about the new Agent Alvez (and the more we speculate about how long we’ll get Emily back for), the more we wonder if this casting shuffle might be the best thing to happen to the show in years.

“Criminal Minds” returns Sept. 28 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on CBS

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