Criminal Minds
How will Hotch be written off on “Criminal Minds” Season 12? Eddy Chen/CBS

“Criminal Minds” may have had a lot of cast shakeups this year, but it’s rolling full steam ahead. After Shemar Moore exited last season, Thomas Gibson got fired over an on-set altercation in Season 12 and Paget Brewster returned as a series regular, the CBS show has now released a fresh batch of photos and the synopsis of the premiere.

The Season 12 premiere of “Criminal Minds” is titled “The Crimson King” and kicks off with the FBI’s Fugitive Task Force leader Luke Alvez joining the BAU (Behavioral Analysis Unit). According to the synopsis (via SpoilerTV), Luke and the team have to capture one of the 13 serial killers who escaped prison at the end of last season.

Criminal Minds
Luke Alvez (Adam Rodriguez) joins the BAU in “Criminal Minds” Season 12, episode 1. Eddy Chen/CBS

The cast list of episode 1 includes Joe Mantegna as David Rossi, Thomas Gibson as Aaron “Hotch” Hotchner, Matthew Gray Gubler as Dr. Spencer Reid, A.J. Cook as Jennifer “J.J.” Jareau, Aisha Tyler as Dr. Tara Lewis, Kirsten Vangsness as tech genius Penelope Garcia and Adam Rodriguez as Alvez.

Gibson will appear in episodes 1 and 2 of “Criminal Minds” season 12. Given that the actor has been fired from the CBS series, it remains to be seen how the creative team will write off his character.

Criminal Minds
“Criminal Minds” Season 12 will see the addition of a new BAU member. Eddy Chen/CBS

The guest cast list includes Peter Lewis. He plays the infamous mind controlling serial killer called Mr. Scratch/Bodhi Elfman. Although Alvez has caught eight of the 13 escaped convicts, he still has to capture Mr. Scratch. Moreover, this serial killer is one of the main villains of the upcoming season.

Criminal Minds
The “Criminal Minds” Season 12 premiere seems like an intense, action-packed episode. Eddy Chen/CBS

Additionally, fans are anxious to know who will replace Hotch as the leader of the BAU. One might hazard a guess that Emily Prentiss (Brewster) may step into Gibson’s shoes and fill the vacancy.

“Criminal Minds” Season 12 premieres on Wednesday, Sept. 28 at 9 p.m. EDT on CBS.