Criminal Minds Review: An Unhappy Birthday

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Zzzzzzzzz. Zzzzzzzzz. Oh, I'm sorry, someone wake me when it's over - this week's Criminal Minds episode was nothing short of filler. I know that the writers only had two hours left this season, but that's no excuse for just tossing one away.

This week on "Profiling 101" the team headed to a college to give a lecture about profiling serial killers. And what did the students learn? That the agents' lives are bombarded with tragedy and death day in and day out. Awesome. Raise your hand if you're shocked by this at all.

Rossi Stresses

I don't mean to sound unsympathetic, because I really do think that the lives that BAU agents lead must be incredibly hard from a personal stand point. It's like psychiatrists and grief counselors, they have to find a way to siphon off that heaviness or else it consumes them. But just because it was interesting to hear more about what they do and to see the toll it took on Rossi doesn't mean I want them devoting the second-to-last episode of the season to what essentially amounts to a Q &A.

Also, a lot of the dialogue read like a PSA about what we should know about profiling. It was robotic and forced, albeit cleverly packaged.

But speaking of Rossi: how twisted and cruel is it of Tommy to reveal his victims on his birthday? On his birthday dude? Really?!? That's just cold, there's no other way to describe it.

I think it speaks to how good a person Rossi is that, in his desire to bring closure to the victims' families, he's willing to drag out Tommy's inhuman demands over time. It must be impossibly difficult for someone who's trained not to play into the whims of criminals to allow someone else to call the shots just to have a means to an end. I liked how the team played off of each others' strengths (the Garcia/Reid simultaneous "thank you" was gold), but I don't think that an entire episode should've been dedicated to this case. They could've managed to put something else in there, too.

Now at least we have a glimpse into how they're going to kill off Prentiss (or at least I'm assuming that they'll have her die in an explosion). Next week's season finale looks good, but I'm not sure if a standoff that ends in pyrotechnics was what Paget Brewster had in mind when she asked to be written off of the show. Any way you cut it, I'll be sad to see her go (but I know many of you don't share that sentiment).

I'll just be happy to have a regular episode back, with no more of this BS filler and wasted time. What did you all think of this week's show? Am I the only one who was underwhelmed? Here's hoping next week isn't a disappointment, too.


Editor Rating: 3.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.2 / 5.0 (123 Votes)

That wasnt boring at all!! It was really sad and creepy. How many women did this freak kill? and the way he did it? And then he makes Rossi to come and see HIM on his birthday every year!! omg thats just horrible Loved this episode


I'm surprised by this review. This was the stand out episode of the season for me: intelligent, emotional, focused. It's puzzling that anyone would find it boring or lacking in suspense. The suspense was not in the anticipation of future events but rather in the emotional significance and in the witholding of an expected result -- the desire to see the methods work and close in around the unsub. The families waiting to find out what had happened to their missing daughters will have felt it for sure, and the profilers too (both in the prolonged investigation and then in the yearly deal) and we as the audience are being given that quality of time to imagine. Joe Mantegna did a great job with this one, showing Rossi's struggle between that confident public figure and his inward feeling. Will he cope? Yeah, he's Rossi. Will the fathers and mothers survive the loss of their daughters? Yeah, some will, perhaps most. But it changes them. I like that we were given this professional class in profiling methods alongside the emotional toll. Good writing.


Wow i really loved this episode. They dug deep into the world of profiling. I think the people who did not like this episode has very little patience. You really had to think about this episode to like of my favorite episodes from season 7


Wow, Now Emily Prentiss you came back from the dead just to leave again!!!!! You are the bomb girl you will be missed so do what you got to do and then come back to Criminal Minds which is by far the best series I have watch since Mob Squad, Hill Street Blues now you all know I am old lol.


Though this episode was unusual and not the usual Criminal Mind hour, it was interesting in it's own way. That being said, lets move on down the road and get back to the usual Criminal Mind episodes. Still love this show.


I agree with you about this episode. I usually love all of them but this one was a little boring. I kept waiting for them to be called away for some reason. I liked how they had the team explaining things and answering questions but not for an entire episode. As for Paget, she is my favorite! I am going to miss her so much, but I, too, thought she was leaving on a happy note. I didn't think they were going to kill her off. That would be ridiculous! I read somewhere that there could always be a chance for her to return again even if it was just for a guest appearance. Wishful thinking!


Still beats season 5


Idid not like the episode on May. In fact I haven't liked any of the episodes this year. I think they are running out of good quality episodes. The one I did like and it was the ending when Hotch was racing in the marathon. Now that was enjoyable. I know the show isn't to be light, but it certainly has been too dark this hear.


OK, not the best of the lot but still very enjoyable, and I like the fact that all the team participated. The simultaneous "thank you" response from Garcia and Reid was a really cute touch. I likely the different format this time, actually thought it creative and not at all boring. Intelligent stuff. This really was a tribute to Rossi I felt - his wisdom and personal strength showed well. My only negative was seeing Kevin Lynch in next week's promo. I'd hoped that he had drifted of the scene completely and if he ends up wedding Garcia - tragic for all us G/M fans.


I too enjoyed this episode. I thought it was nice that they brought Garcia along and acknowledged her contribution to the team in such a setting.

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Criminal Minds Season 7 Episode 22 Quotes

Agent Prentiss: There's a lot about Rachel that tells us about the UnSub. She was young, so most likely he was, too.
Student: What makes you think that?
JJ: Well she lived in a shelter and had a part-time job, so she was a street kid, but not necessarily the reckless type. She wouldn't just go off with anyone.

Agent Rossi: Now these two girls couldn't be more different. But the one thing they both have in common is that they both crossed paths with the most prolific killer the BAU has ever seen.
Dr. Reid: What you need to understand is that no two killers are the same. They each occupy their own spot in the behavioral spectrum. Genetics, brain chemistry, psychology, they're all factors.
Agent Hotchner: But we believe this particular killer grew up in an environment so adverse he never had a chance.