Criminal Minds Review: All in the Family

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I don't know about you, but I'd say butterflies have never seemed creepier than they were on this week's episode of Criminal Minds. And a total cliche, and computer-generated, but mostly... creepy.

Okay, those of you who have been complaining that there wasn't enough profiling this season should be happier now. You could practically hear the wheels turning in the heads of the BAU team as they pieced together the twisted kidnapping story. Little by little, they figured out that the victim wasn't just abducted, she was abducted to try and reproduce another child like her own kidnapped daughter. What. The. Eff.

Even though "Hope" was rife with cliches, I still thought it was a decent episode, though there have been better this season. First of all, Garcia upped the ante on her involvement when she told Morgan he'd have to "forcibly remove her from the SUV" because she was riding along to find her friend no matter what. Aw, you tell 'em, Garcia!

Photo of Garcia

Then, she went all hostage negotiator on us and tried to talk the UnSub (who by then was a very KnownSub) out of killing Monica. Who knew that excessive blue eyeshadow complimented an FBI bullet proof vest so nicely?

Also doing some standout work on the team this week - again - was Reid. Though he wasn't as funny as usual, he still kept us on our toes with his rapid fire thinking. And Rossi pretty much nailed it, too, when he figured out the UnSub's real kidnapping motive. I can only say I would've liked to have seen some more Hotch. He barely said anything this week, but maybe they're saving all of his dialogue for the episode when he gets a love interest. Hotch is a man of few words anyway.

When Monica grabbed the gun at the end, did she actually shoot our UnSub Bill? I mean, they made it look like she killed him (or at least shot him), right? But then at the end she was with Garcia at the butterfly-releasing memorial, and I'm assuming if you shoot someone they wouldn't just let you walk around free like that. Was anyone else momentarily confused? (Insert "how could you be so stupid?" reader comments here, no doubt. Kidding!)

I liked how Prentiss and JJ confronted Hope's friend, Heather, and got through to her, despite her hesitation. They're always tossed into the touchy feely sensitive roles for the team, but it seems to be because they're genuinely good at dealing with people. Well, it took Prentiss a minute to get there, though. Maybe coming back to life has softened her up a bit.

Did anyone else notice that it seemed like Morgan was going to say something to Garcia when she was freaking out right before JJ interrupted them to say it was time to deliver the profile? They showed his face and it was almost like he was going to have a more personal moment with her, but I guess we'll never know. Or maybe we're all just so starved to see Morgan get a personal storyline that I'm putting him with anyone these days.

Throw the man a little plot action, please!

As for the actual criminal case, it was an interesting twist to have the UnSub kidnap his victim's mother after having sat behind her in a support group all that time. Makes you wonder how susceptible people are to being taken advantage of while they're grieving. I could've done without the decaying corpse, but it is a crime show after all, so no biggie. It also made me realize what Garcia carries around with her all the time about her own loss and how much she wants to help people after what she sees every day. If her character were ever gone, they'd have virtually no way of replacing her. Garcia is one of a kind.

I'm curious to hear what observations the Criminal Minds faithful came up with after this week. Since you all do your homework, there's sure to be some strong feelings about whether the writers got it right or missed the mark. I just hope that Morgan and Reid get a little more development soon, just as long as the writers don't skimp on the profiling as a result.

Hope Review

Editor Rating: 3.5 / 5.0
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Criminal Minds Season 7 Episode 8 Quotes

Reid: So this letter Monica allegedly received from her daughter contains no indication of female authorship. It lacks expression of emotional attachment.
Hotch: The UnSub wrote it?
Reid: I believe so. The language used is inconsistent with that of a 15-year-old held in captivity the past seven years.

Agent Morgan: There was no sign of struggle at the scene.
Agent Prentiss: What if she went willingly? He could've approached her and had Hope with him.
Agent Rossi: That would certainly get her attention.
Dr. Reid: Still it's pretty high risk to abduct in such a high traffic area. The parking lot was right next to a strip mall.
Rossi: Any witnesses?
Garcia: I was the last person that saw her.