Criminal Minds' Joe Mantegna Reveals An Inspirational Quote He Got From A Dry Cleaner That Applies To Rossi's Voit Hallucinations

 Rossi talking to Sydney Voit in grocery store in Criminal Minds: Evolution.
Credit: Paramount+

Season 2 of Criminal Minds: Evolution has certainly upped the ante, further proving that the show is one of Paramount+'s best series. I've been particularly engaged when it comes to the subplot involving Rossi and Voit. It’s no secret that Joe Mantegna’s David Rossi went through a lot last season, no thanks to Zach Gilford’s psychotic serial killer character, Elias Voit. Now, for the second season of the revival, as Voit is in the BAU’s custody, Rossi has been having hallucinations of his tormenter. And, apparently, Mantenga found the perfect inspirational quote to describe it all.

Though Voit is locked away, it’s still pretty scary for Rossi to be seeing him and talking to apparitions of him. Though it's not surprising that Rossi would have PTSD from what Voit did and what he lived through, I didn't have full-blown hallucinations on my bingo card. While speaking with TVLine, Joe Mantegna revealed a quote he saw at a dry cleaners that more or less sums up the entire situation:

I saw a quote once, at a dry cleaner out where I live, that basically said, ‘When you have to walk through hell, walk like you own the place.’ And I think that’s David Rossi in this particular situation.

That's definitely an appropriate saying to sum this all up. Rossi has definitely been through hell throughout his time at the BAU and, through every tense situation, he deals with it in stride. It's honestly hard to say when you might find keen wisdom, and I'd never expect to find such a quote at a dry cleaners. But, regardless, I'm glad Joe Mantegna discovered it and applied it to his character.

While it’s clear that he has been affected in just these first few episodes of Evolution Season 2, he’s working through it at his own pace and is still able to help out the team with cases. It’s likely it won’t go away all at once, and these hallucinations could very well be going on for a while, even in the midst of the Gold Star situation.

It seems the BAU team has a lot on their hands this season, and it’s not just with Gold Star and other cases. In addition to Rossi seeing Voit hallucinations, it was also revealed that there’s a website called BAUgate, which pornographic deepfakes of the agents. JJ, in particular has been a target of that, since she was on camera more than anyone, having once worked as the media liaison. When Luke told her about it, and she looked it up herself, it was hard to process. If these early episodes are any indication, this is going to be a rough season with "mind-bending" stakes, and the the fact that all of this drama is happening so early makes me nervous.

Criminal Minds: Evolution Season 2 was a long time coming due to the strikes last year. Filming was quick to start at the beginning of 2024, and the second season's premiere date was confirmed just as filming had wrapped. As anxious as I am about what might happen in future episodes, I'm also excited. And, of course, I'm more than curious to know how everything pans out for Joe Mantegna's Rossi. He deserves some peace, and I hope he's ultimately able to embody the essence of that saying the actor discovered.

Paramount+ subscribers can check out new episodes of Criminal Minds: Evolution, which premiere on Thursdays. You can also check out the 2024 TV schedule, which features a listing of other shows that are either airing right now or will be returning.