Criminal Minds Review: One Twisted Momma

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As ghoulish as this week's Criminal Minds episode may have been, it managed to capitalize on its procedural element, feeding the audience with clues and guesses all the way through.

"The Good Earth" featured the lovely Anne Dudek as the hypochondriac UnSub Emma Kerrigan. You may remember her as Annie's sister on Covert Affairs or a certain cutthroat bitch on House.

Here, she abducted four men, and it took the team a while to figure out what she was doing with them and why. Eventually we learned she was providing them with sustenance - through their noses - in order to make them ready as human fertilizer for her garden.

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I keep wondering each week if the show's writers have a contest to see how much they can get their viewers to squirm.  First, it was the food through the nose thing. Then we got to watch as Emma kidnapped a pregnant woman and began doing a wide-awake Caesarian section on her:

Pregnant victim: What are you doing?
UnSub [exasperated sigh]: Hold still. | permalink

Then we find out that she didn't want the woman's baby (thankfully both mother and baby were fine) but that she wanted the placenta.  And then we find out she wanted it so that she could feed it to her daughter. Along the way, we see her washing the blood off of a wood chipper and axe, and our suspicions are aroused. That can't be good.

What a relief when Alex Blake found a way to slip inside her psychosis and talk her down from killing the last man. Blake earned some cool points with Morgan on that one.

With such intense drama, it's a relief to see some of the team interactions. There was another example of the Derek Morgan-Penelope Garcia flirty talk (toned down this time):

Morgan: You're talking to the room, PG.
Garcia: If by "PG" you mean parental guidance strongly advised, I say PA. Prudent advice. | permalink

And we had a funny exchange between J.J. and Reid:

Reid: I don't like the beach.
JJ: Why's that?
Reid: Sandy food, pink skin, limited and unengaging topography. But mostly the drug resistant bacteria spread by seagull feces.
JJ: Sorry I asked. | permalink

And I laughed out loud when Rossi caught Reid mumbling to himself:

Rossi [to Reid]: I can hear the high pitch from your IQ all the way over here. | permalink

(There are more quotes on our Criminal Minds quote page)

The best part was seeing Henry come around and finally land on a Halloween costume he liked when he decided to go out as his favorite profiler: Reid.

What did you think of the episode? Would you like to see more of J.J.'s home life? Has Alex Blake grown on you?


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0 (80 Votes)

Douglas Wolfe is a staff writer for TV Fanatic Follow him on Twitter



A other great Showing for Criminal Minds these might be their perfect season I love it so far


She is a brilliant actress. (Dudeck). Love her to pieces. She never fails to sell the role.


Anne Dudek really has versatility in acting, it's funny as she generally only plays guest and rarely supporting roles. She sold this one easily. I especially liked how they didn't reveal the unsub immediately and when they did you still had to guess what the heck was going on. Sidenote: Like some certain CM episodes you probably don't want to eat a large meal while watching this, LOL!

Sue ann

I agree with Margaret. That child is a living doll. And he is not over-exposed, as he's not a regularly-working actor, and when he's there, his mom is with him. Excellent! I loved Rossi's remark to Reid about the high pitch of his IQ. I remember this actress from a Castle she did, playing the ex-wife of an amnesiac. She was eerily nuts here. I guess I have gotten callous over the decades. Nothing they have done on this show has ever bothered me as much as the scene in Dirty Harry where he tortured Andrew Robinson's character, and Robinson squealed like a pig. But this was crazy nasty. She didn't do it to get off; she was nuts. Nuts unnerves me more. (It was ten years before I could watch Andrew Robinson again, and seeing him still gives me pause.)


i love that they have AJ Cook's real life son playing Henry, he's adorable!!

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Criminal Minds Season 8 Episode 5 Quotes

Reid: I don't like the beach.
JJ: Why's that?
Reid: Sandy food, pink skin, limited and unengaging topography. But mostly the drug resistant bacteria spread by seagull feces.
JJ: Sorry I asked.

I became insane, with long intervals of horrible sanity - Edgar Allan Poe