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Criminal Minds Analysis: Profile The Show

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This is the place to talk about what you'd love to see CM do even if you don't think they'll ever actually do it! What aspects of the show's plots, tone and characters would you like to see improved? Which unsubs/victims/acquaintances of our team members would you like to see again? What type of storylines and topics would you love to see them tackle? 


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This is the place to gush and snark about the best and worst of Criminal Minds! Favorite and least favorite seasons, episodes, characters, actors, storylines, Unsubs, scenes, moments, etc. 


I know some of us have done this elsewhere, but it might be fun to start by ranking the seasons from best to worst and chatting about why...no ties allowed, of course, because where's the torturous challenge in that?! :) 

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I want to see Nathan Harris get out and seek Reid out because he's still having trouble. I want to see Nathan get framed for murdering prostitutes, and I want either Elle (who's a PI now, specializing in sex crimes) to call the BAU for help or vice versa. I think it would be an awesome episode (actually writing an outline for this very thing). 

And of course (sorry guys), I want to see Spence get his JJ. 

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I do like the idea of Elle being a private investigator. I could also see her as a younger female version of the cold case cowboys. Although, who knows, maybe she is still somewhere in the FBI. Probably not though. It would be great to see what happened to her.

I also like the idea of Nathan Harris being out and not being an actual unsub. Anton Yelchin is a fantastic actor.

No need to apologize on your Reid/JJ shipping. I don't share the ship, but I'm cool with it. They do have more chemistry than JJ has with Will. That relationship always seems so one-sided. Will seems to have a lot of love and affection for her, but I don't really buy any affection for him on her end. But then, JJ has more chemistry with just about any other main character than with Will.

I want to see the team solve a case without Garcia. Sometimes there are snow days and the FBI office shuts down. There are also power outages. And sometimes there are just no computer records-- or the records are inaccurate. Just once I want to see Garcia run into a problem where the records are totally wrong because data was not put in correctly.

I also wonder how it would go if they had a day where they couldn't leave the office because of a sudden snowstorm so they all had to sit around in the BAU and go over old case files or try to solve the case from pictures and talking to officials on the phone. They could talk things out and it could go to the crime scenes for the audience to view it and we could see what they imagine happened as they describe it. Maybe each one could give a different take on what could have happened.

I admit, it would also be funny to see an episode sort of like one of the X-Files episodes where both Mulder and Scully told separate versions of a story involving a vampire (played by one of the Wilson brothers) and there were some overlapping details but each remembered different things. I still loved Mulder claiming the guy had buckteeth and Scully saying that Mulder was singing "Shaft".

Of course, Reid would probably remember more details than the rest of the team.

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But then, JJ has more chemistry with just about any other main character than with Will.

Heh! One of my wishes/crackpot theories is that Will is actually the most prolific serial killer this show has ever known, soon to be profiled as a particularly creepy and odd Unsub in an upcoming episode. Hey, a girl can dream! And, honestly, if it turned out JJ had been an accomplice this whole time, that would make her a whole lot more interesting to me. ;) 


I don't personally see romantic chemistry between JJ and Reid, but I get how other people do, and love that different opinions keep things a million times more interesting around here. And just to prove how wildly subjective chemistry can be, I'm among the few who actually saw it between Prentiss and Hotch. Commence your mocking laughter. 



I admit, it would also be funny to see an episode sort of like one of the X-Files episodes where both Mulder and Scully told separate versions of a story involving a vampire


Oh, yes, I LOVE those types of episodes! And at the risk of being too sci-fi-ish, I'd also love an alt-universe episode where we got glimpses into what the team's lives would be like if they'd never joined the BAU and pursued other paths.




I want to see Nathan Harris get out and seek Reid out because he's still having trouble. I want to see Nathan get framed for murdering prostitutes, and I want either Elle (who's a PI now, specializing in sex crimes) to call the BAU for help or vice versa. I think it would be an awesome episode (actually writing an outline for this very thing).


Yes, THIS! It needs to happen. Please link your fanfic once you've completed it! 




It would be great to see what happened to her [Elle].


Thirded! I always liked Elle and loved the Elle/Reid dynamic, so I'd really enjoy it if she were brought back for an episode or two so that we could see a little more of it and see if she managed to channel her anger in a slightly, er, less murderous direction than when we last saw her ;) I'd also love to see Emily and Elle meet and collaborate on a case together. 

More of the Hotch-Reid relationship is also on my wish list. I feel like their dynamic was so interesting and even oddly sweet in the first few seasons, and now, like most of the intra-team relationships in my opinion, it just feels sort of flat and 'just there'-ish. 

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I want to see the team solve a case without Garcia. Sometimes there are snow days and the FBI office shuts down. There are also power outages. And sometimes there are just no computer records-- or the records are inaccurate. Just once I want to see Garcia run into a problem where the records are totally wrong because data was not put in correctly.

This, oh so much!!! I'm really tired of Garcia harping on her being "a genius too!" If the computers were down, or as you say the data hadn't been entered yet, or had been entered erroneously, she would not be able to help solve the case. It would be down to profiling and nothing but. Blake could weigh in on linguistic specifics, Morgan could shine on obsessional crimes as in days of yore, Rossi could be the voice of experience they have not let him be lately, and Reid would pick up everything else. He would remember case files he'd read from Day One. Obscure references from long ago literature and history. He could figure out the chemistry, mathematical probabilities, religious and cult references, and just about anything that didn't require lab results for proof!

Yes, I am a Reid fan.

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Worse episode ever "200" Worse season ever 7 with honorable mentions going to 9. I know a lot of people give that honor to 8 but I don't happen to be one of them

7 was the introduction of the Mary Sue. It was also very unsub heavy even more so than 6 had been. That meant less time for the team, but of course EM made damn sure that her pets:Garcia,JJ and Morgan still got ample screen time. While Hotch Reid and Rossi pretty much got shafted.

And I just have to give kudos to season 8 simply because after being pretty irrelevant for nearly 3 seasons, Reid was finally getting some focus. I also felt that the screen time for the unsub and the team was more balanced than it was in season 7. I do agree with those how felt the writing left much to be desired in season 8.

And while I was basically okay with them killing off Maeve at first,even though it broke my heart to see what it did to Reid, in some ways I now feel her death was a total waste. 

As far as season 9 I definitely feel it was an improvement over season 8 where the writing was concerned,But the fact that it had been dubbed the season of JJ, and unfortunately lived up to that title, is a huge,huge negative in my book.

Edited by missmycat
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My favorite season is 4, but I have to admit that S1 often threatens to steal that top spot. S1 has got a different feel (due in no small part to the fact that it also has a different team!), so the question of which one I watch more often is pretty mood-dependent for me. S4 has more of my favorite cases and almost no clunkers, feels like a smoother and more polished season, and I do like Rossi and Emily. But S1 just has a certain energy that I really adore---Gideon and Elle gave the team edges and flaws; the team members had better defined niches and specialties back then and seemed more distinct both in their professional roles and their personalities; Hotch was more likable and compelling to me then than in any subsequent season; all the cool facts and psychological insights related to profiling feel so fresh and new. 

S2 comes in third for me. I don't like Reid's drug addiction storyline, and there are definitely some skip-worthy episodes for me here. But I do love the introduction of Prentiss (self-professed geeky, socially awkward and blunt yet bright and competent S2 Prentiss is probably my favorite incarnation of this enjoyable but  very inconsistent character) and it has a couple all-time favorites of mine, like Sex, Birth and Death, which I've watched an obscene number of times! 

Next comes S3. It's a good, consistent season that I enjoy, but it just doesn't happen to contain many of the episodes that I absolutely love. 

There's a big gap between those first four seasons and all the rest for me. S5 and S7 are about equal for me, surprisingly enough. Both have a few episodes that I really like a lot and many that I don't. Then comes S8, S6 and...well, I'll wait until the end before ranking 9, but suffice it to say that it's a lot closer to the very bottom of my list than the top! 

Starting with S1, if I could keep only three episodes... (yes, I insist on torturing myself with these questions!)

Compulsion, Derailed and...hmmm. I'm so torn here, because I really love A Real Rain, Fisher King (though I prefer Part 2 to Part 1), The Popular Kids, Broken Mirror, LDSK, etc., etc., etc. But I think I'll fill that third spot with Extreme Aggressor. It still hooks me all over again every single time.

If I had to get rid of three S1 episodes...:

Natural Born Killer (I've seen this season a million times and still always forget that this episode even exists, which isn't exactly a great sign!), Somebody's Watching (you guys know I love Reid, but this episode just really doesn't work for me) and  What Fresh Hell. 

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I can do three best and three worst per season. Or at least my favorite and least favorite. :)

Season 1 Best:

Extreme Aggressor, LDSK, The Fisher King, part 1

Season 1 Worst:

Secrets and Lies, Machismo, Blood Hungry

Season 2 Best:

Sex, Birth and Death, The Aftermath, The Big Game

Season 2 Worst:

Honor Among Thieves (has anyone ever ran into anyone who has liked this episode?), Ashes to Dust, Fear and Loathing

Season 3 Best:

Lucky, Seven Seconds, Penelope

Season 3 Worst:

The Crossing, A Higher Power, In Heat

Season 4 Best:

Minimal Loss, To Hell...And Back (I'm cheating and combining both episodes into one), Zoe's Reprise

Season 4 Worst:

Brother in Arms, Normal, Demonology

Season 5 Best

The Uncanny Valley, Risky Business, Haunted

Season 5 Worst:

Retaliation, Parasite, The Fight

Season 6 Best:

Compromising Positions, Middle Man, Out of the Light

Season 6 Worst:

Supply and Demand, The Thirteenth Step, 25 to Life

Season 7 Best:

True Genius, Unknown Subject, Heathridge Manor

Season 7 Worst:

The Bittersweet Science, A Thin Line, Snake Eyes

Season 8 Best:

Zugzwang, The Lesson, All that Remains

Season 8 Worst:

The Wheels on the Bus, The Brothers Hotchner, Pay it Forward

Edited by ForeverAlone
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Missmycat, I had pretty much the same delayed anger reaction to the killing of Maeve. I was all right with it at first (though I was NEVER happy about it, even though I thought she would die). But I gave it a pass, because that episode actually made feel something, which isn't easy to do. Plus I figured it would tie very heavily into the Replicator plotline, because Breen initially said that Reid would be featured very strongly in the season finale. So I was hoping her death would serve a larger purpose than just giving Breen fodder to write Reid after he lost. I tend to think that the writers had a different idea for the season finale, but decided to take it in a Blake-centric direction, at which the Replicator storyline fell apart in the psychological profiling. It was only after season eight ended and I had a chance to reflect on it, that I started to feel angry about that storyline. The story wasn't for any greater purpose except to make Reid suffer. And in my opinion, it was the worst trauma this show has inflicted on any of the main characters (yes, I think it was worse than murdering Haley). I mean, Reid is the most socially isolated person on that team, and he is the one person who has never experienced mutual love (that we know of, and since there are no prior relationships mentioned in canon (because I don't think Lila ever called him again, and I wouldn't have wanted her to, since I didn't like the idea of the two of them together), I tend to think he has no experience with love or relationships), and he literally watched his future get her head blown out in front of him while he was impotent to stop it. And ultimately, there was no reason to do so. The writers chose to do that just because, and I would rather they had never introduced Maeve than to end it the way they did. 

Edited by ForeverAlone
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I can do three best and three worst per season. Or at least my favorite and least favorite. :)


Oh, yes, thanks for making this distinction! I have a tendency to get attached to personal favorites that even I can admit aren't objectively the 'best' of the series. (Masterpiece, anyone?!) 



Season 2 Best:

Sex, Birth and Death


Such a fantastic, endlessly rewatchable episode for me. 



Honor Among Thieves (has anyone ever ran into anyone who has liked this episode?)


*sheepishly raises hand* Well, maybe 'like' is too strong a word, but I don't dislike it. I just can't begin to justify why :) 

I'm curious as to what you dislike about Ashes and Dust, ForeverAlone! Or do you just happen to love and connect with it less than most other S2 episodes? By the way, I love that you share my love for Zoe's Reprise. 

My three to keep from S2: Sex, Birth and Death (see above gushing); The Fisher King, Part 2 (I actually prefer it to Part 1) and...hmmm...I'm totally torn between Aftermath for the Elle/Reid scenes and North Mammon for the chillingly resonant case! I'll pick neither and go with Perfect Storm but, sadly, that may have changed by the time you read this :) And, argh, it pains me not to include Ashes and Dust as well! 

Three to ditch from S2: Big Game/Revelations (objectively, they're very well done episodes...I just don't happen to enjoy watching them!), Profiler, Profiled and Jones (JJ meets her creepy, soon-to-be baby daddy and I'm not a fan of Reid's addiction storyline!) 

My three to keep from S3: 

Doubt, In Birth and Death and Elephant's Memory 

My three to ditch from S3: 

The Crossing (I'm totally with you on not really liking this one, Forever Alone! Even that scene with Hotch and Rossi regarding divorce, which I'd normally like, felt really forced and off to me), Lucky/Penelope (I think a recurring pattern of mine is that I don't love many 'team member in peril' episodes, on this show or most others, and especially when we know said team member will ultimately be just fine!) , and...hmmm...I'll go with About Face. 

My three to keep from S4:


Argh, only three?! This is even more painful to narrow down than my S1 favorites! I'll go with Soul Mates, Masterpiece and Shade of Grey. And about 16 others :) And it seriously pains me to omit Zoe's Reprise! 

Three to ditch: Amplification (I get why many adore this one; I'm just not a fan of OMG-a-deadly-virus-that-of-course-they'll-all-survive! episodes in general), Brothers in Arms and...hmmm....maybe Roadkill. 

Edited by mstaken
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With the exception of Compulsion, I am not a fan of any of the arsonist episodes. They just don't do it for me for some reason. It's probably because I don't find the crime of arson to be very fascinating, though the motive for Compulsion was so different that I liked it. 

I agree that there were so many good episodes in season four that it was hard to narrow down just three. Of course generally speaking, I can say that about all of the first four seasons. Those are the seasons I tend to rewatch the most when I am in the mood for a Criminal Minds marathon. There are some episodes in the later seasons I adore and I rewatch compulsively, but there just aren't as many of them as earlier seasons. 

Even though I adore Reid above all other characters, there are a couple of his episodes that don't rank among my favorites. There is a lot I like in Revelations, but it isn't objectively one of my favorites, and I don't rewatch it that often. The same with Memoriam, though I think there is a lot LESS to like in that one. There are a few standout scenes, like Reid with his mother, but for the most part, it's kind of uncomfortable to watch. I also don't hate Amplification by any means, but I don't rewatch that episode as often as I do other season four episodes, probably because the subject matter isn't exceptionally interesting for me on a serial crime drama. But, that episode does have a very touching scene when he is recording his last message to his mother (and also another good example of Penelope quietly supporting him and not making it about herself), and one of my favorite Reid lines of all time (I'm about to get naked, so they can scrub me down. Are you sure that's something you want to see?"). That line ranks up there with "I never have any normal fans." 

I agree about Profiler, Profiled, and I will rewatch that episode only to watch the physics magic scene (helpfully at the beginning of the episode), and then the scene where Reid and Emily are at Morgan's mom's house. I have the same opinion about Catching Out. I despise the actual unsub story, but I like all the other personal scenes in that episode, and those scenes are the only reason I rewatch that episode. 

I love Lucky for many reasons. That was probably one of the few times an episode has genuinely shocked me. I honestly didn't see the revelation coming until right before it happened, and I was shocked the show went there, but it definitely added to the horror of the crimes. And all without a lot of gore, which is why I like the earlier seasons. They insinuated more than they showed, and that is way more disturbing than having your face shoved in it. I also thought that the exchanges between Morgan and Penelope were rather honest, and she actually articulated the same opinion I had about Morgan all along (and still do). I'll be honest and say that the main reason I love the episode Penelope is because of Reid (also the main reason I love Seven Seconds, though the surprise unsub was also a bonus). I know, it's doesn't make much sense, but Reid has some of the best, most empathetic and gentlest facial expressions in this episode. Whether he is reeling from the shock of Penelope getting shot, or seeing her the next morning, or talking through the cognitive interview with her, my eyes are always fixed on him during this episode. Penelope is just the side attraction for me, but the Penelope/Morgan friendship did feel very authentic and real. And Rossi was still new enough on the team he could be a bit of a dick, but it was for the greater good. Also nice, empathetic, understanding Hotch-just the way I like him. And this episode was a great PSA to be instantly suspicious of douchey hot guys who hit on you out of nowhere. No good can come from that. :) :) :) :) :) 

For that same reason as I liked Lucky, I like The Big Game. It also had some genuinely shocking moments (the dogs), the personal scene felt natural and real (the bar scene at the beginning) and while the gore was a little more obvious (not surprising if you are trying to reel in the post Super Bowl audience), it wasn't overwhelming. Add in a genuinely twisted unsub, and a surprise ending (even if that ending lead to Revelations), and that episode gets me all juiced up. It's also why I like No Way Out, though it just barely missed the cut. When you only have three to choose from, some of my favorites are consistently left off the lists. 

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Here's a thread to discuss any Andersons, Ginas, Sams, or Savannahs, along with any one-timers (guest stars OR UnSubs) that stuck with us.

Anderson actually got a first name this season! Hiya, GRANT!

One of my personal favorites was Dr. Kimora from Amplification. I loved her professionalism coupled with the compassion she showed to the anthrax victims, and I really liked the respectful yet friendly way she treated Spencer. I would've liked to have seen more of her.

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Thanks for starting this thread, willowy! 

I'd love to know how some of the more genuinely mentally ill unsubs (as opposed to our conscience-free socioaths!) have fared after receiving treatment. (The Unsubs from Normal, Derailed, True Night, Blood Hungry, Uncanny Valley, Conflicted, etc. all leap to mind,) How have they coped with the guilt over the havoc they wreaked while sick? Have the people in their lives and/or those in their victims' lives found a way to forgive them? 

The child and adolescent Unsubs also really resonated with me, most notably Nathan Harris. How did these kids end up turning out after, er, less than promising beginnings?! (I'm thinking of the Unsubs from Sex, Birth and Death, Popular Kids, The Boogeyman, Shade of Grey, and no doubt a few more that I'm blanking out on) The nature vs nurture themes on this show are always interesting to me. 

Like many, I adored The Tribe's Blackwolf and how well he matched wits with the rest of the team. And I had a weird fondness for Jordin, so I wouldn't mind seeing or at least hearing about her again as well. 

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I would like them to cross paths again with the woman agent from "Limelight" who was willing to do anything to claw her way up - like planting false evidence to get Rossi and the others to investigate. Has she climbed the ladder by continuing to step on anyone in her way?

And is this the place for me to say again how much I hate the character of Beth? So flat and oversweet and so wrong for the complex Hotchner!

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It won't return to its former fabulousness until the focus turns back to profiling, thinking, and being actual FBI agents. Stop kicking down doors, jumping to impossible conclusions, and waving guns around every episode.  Stop the AMAZING DRAMATIC OMG!  Put the agents back in suits and professional wear.  Have them act like professional adults.  Play by the rules.  I don't think Messer has a clue that as agents of the top law enforcement agency in the country, these people are there to enforce laws, not break them.  Right now the team is running around acting like they're a rogue, superhero task force.  This used to be such a great show  =(   So sad to see it fall apart like this.   

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I want to see the team playing Cards Against Humanity. Just because that game is fun.

I also wouldn't mind an episode where they are all stuck somewhere together away from technology-- sort of like the Alaska ep-- but completely cut off and they have to solve a mystery or something. I guess I've been watching too much Murder She Wrote... LOL. I <3 Angela Lansbury.

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My wish list is quite long and will never happen!!

1. Add me into those wanting them to do a case without Garcia and her "genius"

2. Shut JJ in a cupboard somewhere for a good few episodes.

3. Put the PROFILING first!! This is not some action cop movie.

4.Reduce the romance to the occasional mention in the elevator - and lose Beth for good.

5. Show Reid consistently as the grown up BAU agent of over ten years standing that he is - maybe he should get an office for himself and maybe they should show him getting a bit more respect? And if they keep showing infantile nonsense like that fitness story I will fly over to LA and shout at Messer myself!!

6. More Rossi - his one liners are great but give him more than the annual veterans story.

7. Bring back the lovely Hotch/Reid relationship they used to have.

8. Hotch is team leader - please show him as more than the guy who says Wheels up in 30. He's had a really poor season 9 - I cannot even think about the awful Route 66!

I could go on but it's becoming a bit of  rant. Sorry everyone. Oh I forgot - give us a decent Season 9 finale with a cliffhanger and no action/spy/JJ/romance stuff.

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I have to agree about Reid being shown as a grownup. He grew up over the seasons and was doing well and all of a sudden mid-season 5 they regressed him to a state that just wasn't believable for someone with his experiences.

I would love for Reid to get his own office. Morgan already has his own office. Reid should be next in line to get an office. Someone like him would want to have the peace and quiet in his own office away from the coughing, sneezing, and general germ spreading of co-workers. I would love it if he got JJ's old office.

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1) I'll enthusiastically echo the "ditch JJ" wish. 

2) Instead of rushing to replace JJ with yet another bland, generic female they never bother to gift with an actual personality, keep the team slightly smaller and better define the remaining characters and their intra-team relationships. I was recently rewatching my beloved S1, and even though the show used far less screentime on interpersonal interactions and forced "look, see, they ARE FAMILY!!!" scenes than they do in recent seasons, somehow the characters and their different dynamics with one another were so much more distinct and compelling to me than they are now. Now the team members and their relationships with one another all feel dully identical and interchangeable to me. 

3) Bring back Elle and Emily for an episode or two and have them work alongside each other. They were my two favorite CM females (two of my favorite female characters of any crime drama I've ever watched, in fact), and, as discussed elsewhere, I'd love to see how they'd connect. 

4) Fewer repetitive, prolonged torture porn scenes and more intricately plotted mysteries, please. Granted, I'm an Agatha Christie fanatic whose lifelong addiction to whodunits first led me to start watching crime dramas in the first place, so this is obviously just my own personal preference :) I get that the show has always been more about why Unsubs do what they do and how the team eventually identifies and apprehends them than the 'who', but a little twisty suspense in lieu of seeing the Unsub the second the opening credits start rolling adds so much to my enjoyment of the episodes.



6. More Rossi - his one liners are great but give him more than the annual veterans story.

7. Bring back the lovely Hotch/Reid relationship they used to have.

8. Hotch is team leader - please show him as more than the guy who says Wheels up in 30.


Edited by mstaken
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I was just thinking back to an episode of Dharma and Greg where there were little puppets that looked like them and they were used to scare Greg.

So for some reason I wanted to see Hotch moving around in the dark with a flashlight, gun drawn, looking for someone and he bumps something so a wooden unpainted marionette drops down from the rafters and swings and hits him and startles him. You know Rossi would want to rib him about it later. I don't know why, but we hardly ever get to see Hotch freak out, so I think it would be interesting. 

I also wish they would mention his past interest in coin collections. It was nice that they hinted that he used to have a hobby and was "a bit of a nerd".

Am I the only one that thinks it would be nice for a change if another character was going on about something that interested them a lot but the rest of the team just was not interested (like they are with Reid)? And I would like to see some turnabout with Reid really not being interested in something and it could give a bit of insight into his mind as someone is speaking to him and his mind is wandering and thinking about something entirely unrelated. Although in some ways I would like to see Reid tell someone to shut it (but in a polite way).

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I would love to see Emily again. And yeah, it'd be nice if she replaced Cruz that way she will onlybe in a few episodes.

And yeah no more Agent Salt or or wannabe Tomb Raider or yeah Sidney Bristow in Erica Messer's world also known as Jennifer Jerreau. This is not a spy show!!!

And please, please less of the cartoonish Garcia.

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So what are some episodes you know aren't objectively all that good (and/or that most fellow fans seem to loathe!) that you can't help but have a weird affection for? A few that leap to mind for me include Blood Hungry (I love the scenes between Hotch and the matriarch and tend to be interested in episodes where the Unsub is genuinely mentally ill), Machismo, Honor Among Thieves (stop laughing at me! I have no idea why I have a soft spot for this one...the team's profile on me would be terrifying!), Open Season, Doubt,  Masterpiece (whether or not the campy over-the-top-ness of Kentucky Fried Unsub was deliberate, I love it to a ridiculous degree!), House on Fire, Sense Memory  and Heathridge Manor. 

And how about episodes which you know objectively are 'good' and/or which most fans seem to love, but just don't personally enjoy much or feel that attached to?! Mine include Fisher King Pt 1 (I just like Part 2 much, much more), Revelations, Seven Seconds (I like it, just not nearly as much as most seem to!), Lucky/Penelope and---wait for it---the widely beloved 100, which I can acknowledge is a good episode and WANT to love but just don't enjoy. It doesn't help that I never cared even the tiniest bit about Hailey or bought any sort of true bond between her and Hotch. Or maybe i'm just a soulless human being ;) 

Edited by mstaken
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I'd love to see Morgan out of commission for an episode, and Reid having to head up at least a half of the team, if not field the supervision for a whole case where the 2 halves of the team get separated, and Reid is senior. Say, Reid and Blake are out and about and can't communicate with Garcia or Hotch or Morgan, and they have to profile/solve the case alone! Kind of like Reid and JJ in Revelations, but with mature Reid being in command and winning...

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More and more I see this type of suggestion. Like put the team in an awkward or dangerous situation where they don't have any access to their usual tech, including Garcia, to figure it out and catch the UnSub. Have to say I'm all for it. Incredibly interesting to see how our excellent team would perform with most of their tools removed. Cool idea.

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. Like put the team in an awkward or dangerous situation where they don't have any access to their usual tech, including Garcia, to figure it out and catch the UnSub. Have to say I'm all for it.


I love this as well! And can they be cut off because they're in an isolated, suitably creepy, palatial home in the rural British countryside where they have to solve a "locked room mystery" to figure out who among the guests is a murderer? Yeah, I know, my obsession with Agatha Christie-ish whodunits is showing yet again, but I think it would be a tremendous amount of fun.  And, because this is my never-going-to-happen-anyway CM wish, we get a break from JJ, Morgan and Garcia in this particular episode. But we may get to see Elle...I've been missing her lately! 

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..Does anyone want to throw out some of their favorite seasons from each season, starting with S1? It doesn't have to be a systematic episode-by-episode thing; just throw out whichever scenes leap to mind as being among your favorites! I just rewatched Extreme Aggressor and am feeling sentimental tonight :) 

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Favorite season 1 episodes:

Extreme Aggressor, Plain Sight, LDSK, Derailed, The Popular Kids, The Fisher King part one

Favorite season 1 scenes:

Elle describing the social isolation of the arsonist to Reid in "Compulsion"

Penelope's groan of disappointment at the prospect of a night of passionate love making with Reid in "Compulsion" (her loss)

Reid questioning the ex husband in "The Fox."

Reid wondering if he really would end up as someone's prison bitch in "The Fox". 

Reid and Elle's conversation at the police station in "Plain Sight"

Hotch mentoring Reid at the gun range in "LDSK"

Hotch and Reid being held hostage in "LDSK" (Reid's look of sadness and vulnerability as he heard what Hotch was saying (even if he was just winding up the unsub) was heartbreaking)

Morgan tackling Reid to protect him from the LSDK.

Reid and Elle's final scene in "Derailed"

Reid held hostage by Cory in "The Popular Kids" and Morgan tackling them to save him.

Reid making out with Lila in the pool in "Somebody's Watching" (there are so few opportunities to watch Matthew kiss)

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Favorite season 1 episodes:

Extreme Aggressor, Plain Sight, LDSK, Derailed, The Popular Kids, The Fisher King part one

Heh---your list of S1 favorites is remarkably similar to mine, though I love Broken Mirror even more than Plain Sight and am annoyingly obsessed with Compulsion :)  

Reid and Elle's final scene in "Derailed"

This is one of my all-time favorite scenes of the series! 

Honestly, you did such a fantastic job of identifying so many of my favorite S1 that I have sadly few to add!

I love Jason hanging up repeatedly on the increasingly angry Unsub in Broken Mirror; it's such a tense, well-executed and fascinating scene.

I love Hotch suggesting that Reid be the one to speak to the college kids in Compulsion since he's closer to their age and the amusingly awkward results.

I love Jason knowing that Hotch had to report back on his stability and conveying it's okay.

I love pretty much anytime we get to see Gideon and Reid playing chess, which I think is at least 2-3 times this season...?! 

I like the sparring and grudging respect we get between Hotch and Blackwolf in the Tribe.

I like when Jason overhears Morgan (who I actually really don't like in Extreme Aggressor) referring to Jason as being on the verge of a nervous breakdown, and Reid rather irrelevantly pointing out that they're no longer called nervous breakdowns.

I love Reid initially denying he's a genius and then revealing by his IQ, eidetic memory and the fact that he can read 20,000 words a minute that, yeah, he's totally a genius. 

I love Elle trying so hard to figure out why the footpath killer stuttered. 

I love Reid bonding with Cory in Popular Kids about the book he was reading despite Cory turning out to be, like, a homicidal maniac ;) 

I love the scene where Morgan initially denies claiming Reid knows everything, only to have Hotch and Elle confirm that he's forever claiming Reid knows everything. 

I love Hotch knowing exactly why Gideon introduces Reid as "doctor."

I love the team eating Chinese food in New York during A Real Rain and Reid totally being as incompetent with chopsticks as I am :) 

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What do I love about Criminal Minds?

1. First and foremost: REID!!!! I started watching the show, because I am deeply fascinated by criminal profiling and the minds of serial criminals. But what made me fall in love with the show was Reid. There aren't many characters on TV I identify with, but I identify with Reid.

2. I like the cool, serious intelligence from earlier seasons. The team approached their jobs with an adult seriousness that underscored the gravitas of their jobs. They all felt like competent professionals.

3. I liked the character interplay of the earlier seasons, and I didn't really start disliking any of them until the past couple seasons.

4. I like the personal moments when they are done right. There weren't as many in the earlier seasons, but they were like tasty morsels that fed us some windows into the characters. I don't have a problem with the quantity of the personal moments. It's the quality I have a problem with. The earlier seasons' personal moments felt authentic and like between real people. The more recent personal moments tend to take me out of the show and they don't really feel real or mesh well with the overall stories.

5. I like it when the show can present some scary, creepy and disturbing crimes and ideas without being overly graphic about it. They don't need to show the up close and personal details of the crimes. They could relay it to the audience that allows us to use our imagination, which is infinitely more disturbing. 

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I'll forever love the show for giving us Spencer Reid and introducing me to MGG, who I'd never heard of before CM. 

I love the carefully planted, subtle early hints at the team's characterization---deliciously intriguing and endlessly fun to speculate over. 

I love the rich psychological insights and geeky facts and stats...yes, I really am THAT much of a nerd :) 

I love that despite the dark and grim subject matter, there's often the quietly uplifting message that intelligence, persistence and bravery CAN often prevail, or at least save one or two souls along the way. 

I absolutely love the quotes that begin and end the episodes. I'm a lifelong quote collector, so the show's fondness for them helped solidify from the outset that this was 'my' show :) 

I love how some of the cases still resonate with me emotionally and provide us with tons of thought-provoking ethical questions no matter how frequently I've seen them.

I love how so many of the episodes explore the eternal 'nature' vs 'nurture' debate. 

I loved getting to see Paget Brewster, one of my biggest 'girl crushes', on my screen for so many seasons.

I loved the sneakily sweet Elle/Reid dynamic, not to mention Reid/Hotch Hotch/Gideon and, in many ways still the most fascinating and touching for me, Gideon/Reid. 

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Reid was the reason I started watching, too. <3

I don't know when it happened, but Hotch snuck in there too. I don't have files and folders on him or TG (well, maybe one) like I do Reid and Matthew, but I just adore Hotch.

Ever since Buffy ended, I'd been looking for my new Scoobies. I've really liked many shows, but for some reason this group of people, their dynamic, clicked with me, and they became my television never-miss. As much as I THRILL when it's a great episode, I couldn't care less about the UnSub of the week. When it comes to great villains, though, they become part of the 'family' too. Foyet, Frank, and the creepiest of them all - Floyd... transcend the usual sickos and become woven into the history of the show.

Now Matthew is a whole 'nother thing. I find him endlessly fascinating and entertaining. I never really even gave skinny men a second look until I noticed him, and now that's all that captures my attention. He's beautiful, he's unique, and he's kind of a weirdo, which is ALL to the good in my book. Still, if I ever was in the enviable position of having to choose between Matthew and Reid? Pretty sure I'd pick Spencer. Which would you choose?

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This is to discuss and compare Criminal Minds to other shows that is currently and no longer on the air.

I have always liked crime drama and Criminal Minds isn't the first that I have watched. I loved CSI, the original series. The science that went into it was fascinating at that time. Compared to Criminal Minds, in my opinion, it was a better show. Criminal Minds was about profiling and not about the science. Law & Order was great because it was about the investigation and the judicial process. This show did a better job at the investigating and judicial process than Criminal Minds.

Is The X Files considered crime dram or procedural? If so then this show for me tops because it's about the science, profiling and investigation. And yes, they do contact and work with local police first.

I watch so many crime shows, its crazy.

I love "The Fall" because it's so different from our shows here in America. The whole profiling and process of catching a serial killer is just brilliant. And how there is a process. They just don't go in and hack into databases.

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I love "The Fall" because it's so different from our shows here in America. The whole profiling and process of catching a serial killer is just brilliant. And how there is a process. They just don't go in and hack into databases.

I've never even heard of this one! Given that I'm a pathetically raging TV addict, that doesn't happen too often. I'll have to look out for that, since (and this won't be surprising to most people here) I really am fascinated by psychological profiling. How does the overall tone and feel of it differ from CM?

Law and Order (Original Recipe) was my first true crime show love. It didn't elicit the emotional attachment that CM did, probably in large part because there were no characters who resonated with me like Reid, old school Hotch and maybe even Gideon and Elle---though I do love the endearing snark machine that is Lenny Briscoe.  It also lacks the psychological richness that CM's profiling (sometimes!) lends to the show. When it comes to plotting and pacing, though, I think CM's writers could learn a thing or two from L&O's.  Law and Order's mysteries reign supreme for me. Even when CM tries to make the Unsub's identity a mystery (and I love it when they do!), they tend to lack the more intricately plotted, twisty suspense of most of L&o's episodes. However, CM is more watchable for me; once I know 'whodunnit' in most of L&O's episodes, I don't feel compelled to tune again, while with the first four seasons of CM there were always enough insights, geeky stats, inspiring quotes and little character moments to warrant frequent rewatches long after I'd memorized the plot. Both show do, however, bring up some interesting and thought-provoking ethical, sociopolitical issues at times that make me wish procedurals got more credit for being of higher quality than most of my TV snob friends would ever acknowledge!  

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Great thread.  As with others, I was hooked by the character of Spencer Reid.  He fascinated me, and still does, and is the main reason I continue to watch the show..  And I think that is entirely due to the way he has been portrayed by MGG. 

Recent years have given us  quite a few shows with 'genius characters', nearly all written as flat, and robotic.  In truth, some of Reid's dialogue could easily be delivered that way as well.  But, instead, MGG takes the same words and infuses them with Reid's excitement about knowledge, and the sharing of it.  And then he follows it quickly with a silent look of confusion, or hurt, when his overture isn't appreciated.  And that's when he's not playing something particularly emotional. 

I do think MGG is an under-recognized master of the subtle look, or movement, or shift of the eyes.  He speaks volumes when he is silent, and I love that about the character.  I even like it better than his overtly emotional scenes.  For me, he's made Pinocchio into a real boy.

At the beginning, one of the things I liked about the show was that I enjoyed each character (and, thus, each episode) , and embraced their flaws and weaknesses right along with their heroism.  I liked their interactions, both positive and negative, as they fought the good fight together.   Like many others, I am suffering from some character fatigue by now.....but that's another thread.

Some of the relationships have stood out for me more than others.  Reid and....pretty much everyone, at one time or another.  Hotch and Rossi.  Morgan and Emily.  JJ and Garcia.  Hotch and JJ.  Hotch and Emily.  I was always afraid for Reid in his relationship with Gideon, but it was entirely fascinating.

I loved that this show was intelligent.  For me, it was up there with ER and West Wing (I know there is overlap with the writing staff with ER) in demanding my attention and delivering rapid-pace, sensible dialogue and ideas.  Any show that can grab my attention and maintain it for the full hour (and there are woefully few) earns my respect, and CM definitely did so.  As to whether that's still the case....well, again, another thread.

I like that there's never a completely happy ending (even when they get a save), and that often enough we're left with an ambiguity  rather than a convenient wrap-up. I love when there's a subtle message to the story, much better than I like those with overt themes. 

And I love that we get another season of it.  (As long as we also get MGG, of course.)


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Reid's portrayal, and therefore the reason I love and identify with this character so much, is entirely due to Matthew's acting. The original conception of the character was more flat, unemotional and robotic-the stereotypical, borderline autistic genius. But the producers liked the warmth and emotion Matthew brought to the character so much, they eventually hired him and shaped Reid around Matthew's interpretation. That was one of the wisest casting decisions in my opinion.

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You already know who the killer but you see how he goes about killing his victims.

The one chasing him is Superintendent from the Metroplitan Police in England, is called in to review and she made the determination that there is a serial killer.

What I love about the show is how well the female lead character is writter. She is very flawed. She is sexual, confident and isn't afraid to say so. But she is respected because she is very good at her job.

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Before I started watching Law & Order, I was more into scifi/fantasy. I watched Xena: Warrior Princess, X-Files, Forever Knight, War of the World the Series, and stuff like that. I adored Jerry Orbach (Lenny Briscoe) on L&O. 

I also started watching shows like The Pretender and The Profiler. I admit that The Profiler had some pretty bad acting (mainly from the lead actress) and the characters were sort of dumbed down. Sometimes I wanted to choke the lead actress because she would take a loud breath before speaking-- almost every damn time. It annoyed the hell out of me.

I loved X-Files- even though my father assured me that there are no offices in the basement of the J. Edgar Hoover building (but they apparently have a fantastic gym in the basement).

Now that I think back, I liked Twin Peaks. It was based on solving a mystery but was just so bizarre.

The Profiler had a long-running villain and I hated that storyline. It was one of the reasons I hate when CM tries to do villain arcs.

I think one of the Law & Order shows-- I think SVU-- did an episode that had a supposed BAU intern or agent or something who turned out to be a killer (she killed a longtime serial killer).

I also liked "In Plain Sight" because the main character really cracked me up. I liked the supporting cast as well. I didn't like the UST between Mary and Marshal though.

There are other shows like Bones where I don't like the lead character. I can't stand Dr. Brennan, but I like some of the supporting characters (pretty much everyone except Angela).

I tried watching NCIS but I don't like Gibbs (which is sad because I like the actor). 

When I compared those others to CM, the latter seemed somewhat more grounded in realism. I wish that were still the case.

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I tried watching NCIS but I don't like Gibbs (which is sad because I like the actor).

Yeah, in theory I love my procedurals/mysteries with the humor and energy that NCIS brings, but I fell in insta-hate with Tony, Abby and Gibbs. The good thing about CM being more serious is not only that that's more realistic than the procedurals where everyone's constantly quipping at the speed of light, but that the moments of humor and brightness we DO get feel more special and memorable. (Or at least used to, before they started awkwardly shoehorning in the sap and look-see-they're-FAMILY! moments these past few seasons!) 

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