Criminal Minds

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Criminal Minds Review: Devouring Miss Daisy

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This episode was a wildly strong entry for the premiere of Criminal Minds Season 9.

The intense interest of the BAU members and their stories often overshadows whatever is going on with the Unsub of the week. In this case, you have to give the nod to the criminal storyline in "Inspiration" - which was delightfully macabre. Clearly, something was eating at our Unsub. So he made everyone else eat too.

Hunting the UnSub

Janine Sherman Barrois - who wrote this episode - did a great job in ratcheting up the tension from the get-go, showing a small bit of the end story first. When we saw the oil tanker barreling down on JJ and Morgan, it seemed certain that someone was going to be in the hospital for a few episodes. Fortunately, it was just a tease, and it wasn't until the end we got to see Morgan do a quick reverse to get them out of the way.

The casting for the Unsub was superb as well. We're used to seeing Fred Koehler playing unassuming, almost geeky sorts of characters. But as Wallace Hines he was eerily creepy and perfect. 

His annoyed female downstairs neighbor somehow avoided being the next on his hit parade as she complained about the noise that his victim was making. Later, I expected him to invite her in. You know, for brunch and stuff. Clearly, her boyfriend was useless from the start. Guys, let that be a lesson: if your better half wants to confront a neighbor, don't let her. You do it yourself. You can handle bullets and knives and being hacked. (Man flu, not so much)

Up until a third of the way through the episode, there wasn't much that was surprising about what seemed to be a another typical Unsub: he needed to be caught because he was raping and killing women. The ick level increased exponentially when the team discovered a tooth in the stomach of one of the victims.  "Oh by the way, guess what? They were eating body parts - specifically parts of a human head - before they were killed" (paraphrasing here).

Yum.

Reid's theory about the Unsub exhibiting a kind of twisted preying mantis scenario was convoluted. You sort of had to bend over backwards to grok it all. No matter: it made sense to the Unsub and that's what counts, right? What's more: the BAU finally caught up to him and read him his rights, which allowed them to fly home, thankful for a job well done.

Except: JJ and Morgan weren't quite sure. Something didn't fit. I wondered then if maybe Mrs. Hines (played by Camryn Manheim of The Practice and The Ghost Whisperer) was the real Unsub. If so, what had we missed?

No, it wasn't her. What they missed was... The Evil Twin. And then it was all "whoops!  Our time is up. Tune in next week for the conclusion."  I wanted to throw my remote control at the TV. 

As for the team, Hotch's struggle over whether to accept Strauss' previous position as Section Chief was summarized well: he didn't want an outsider coming in and questioning the team's every move (hint: like Strauss once used to do).  Yet the opposite side of the coin was summed up in this exchange:

Morgan: You know what they say about desk jobs.
Rossi: That's how you get the ladies?
Morgan: No. Sitting is the new smoking. | permalink

I can't imagine Hotch taking that job. It's not who he is.  (P.S. I agree wholeheartedly with Morgan on that last line.)

The only small weak spot in the episode was one of Garcia's lines:

JJ: Hey Garcia.
Garcia: I was starting to feel like the hottest people I know had left me at the altar, but now you're here to kiss me with crime. What's up? | permalink

"Kiss me with crime"? 

Final notes:

  • If this episode is typical of the quality of writing for the rest of the season, I think they can expect some great ratings.
  • Kudos to the special effects artist who created the "woman walking on walls" illusion. 
  • A.J. Cook mentioned in our recent interview with her that Season 9 was going to be a thank-you card to fans of Criminal Minds. You can read that interview here.
  • One of the strengths of the show is the dialogue and banter between the BAU members, as you'll see in this week's Criminal Minds quotes.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.7 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.2 / 5.0 (119 Votes)

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

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Why does Reid keep getting creepy girlie haircuts. He's a good looking guy, but has had a few of the worst hairstyles I've seen. Give him a good masculine haircut PLEASE and get him a girlfriend. Don't let this show go down the homosexual path the most others are now taking.

Marissa

This episode was really good and really gross. I can't wait to see what happens in the next episode.

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I thought Rossi was looking well and Hotch was looking worn. I already can't watch Bones while eating dinner. I may have to add Criminal Minds to that list as well. Looking at the stomach and it's contents while eating my chicken dinner didn't work so well for me. I did notice that when everyone was showing up at the BAU at the beginning, Morgan and Garcia seemed to show up around the same time and didn't ask what the other had been doing. :)

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Absolutely loved it! And that end twist, holy moley. Great start to the season, and i cant wait to see JJ's storylines!!

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@poppysmom I can't understand a single thing you type you really should read what you type before you submit

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Reid's hair was so bad it was distracting. Strauss's job? The good people SHOULD be in the trenches. The bad ones can push papers. That is not Hotch. On these ensemble shows different characters seem to shine in different episodes. Going to say I do wish they'd begin with 2 hour shows instead of "to be continued." Yes it means we'd skip a week and possibly wait a week longer for another favorite, but waiting another week after waiting all summer is cruel!! And, yes, I do understand this is all fantasy!! Some people need to edit before hitting "submit comment." Just saying b/c I'd like to actually understand all comments.

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@Michael: are you kidding me? That magnificent leather jacket Rossi was wearing at the start wasn't going to show itself off.

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was I the only one who though Rossi really wasn't needed what did he do

Terrie

And oh yeah, I still think Blake is still trying to find her place within the team.........to me at this point she's just not fitting in...........

Terrie

LOL I was wondering the same thing about Reid's hair!!!!! At the end, JJ and Morgan knew something wasn't right about who they arrested. I didn't see the evil twins development coming and being as I watch this show damn near every day -- I should have!! LOL I don't think Hotch will take that position due to the fact we already know someone is coming on the show to play bureau chief.......and that he's going to know JJ very well. I am interested in the retrospect on what Hotch went through after The Reaper..........

Criminal Minds Season 9 Episode 1 Quotes

Hotch: Yes, they did talk to me about the Section Chief job.
Reid: Do you want it?
Hotch: I know what I don't want is an outsider coming in and questioning every move that this team makes. I told them that I'd think about it.

This doesn't taste right.

Woman