Criminal Minds – Episode 5-4 Review

This episode began differently than many of the other episodes. We found out within the first minute who the killers were. Figuring out exactly why they were killing took a little bit longer. I’m sure we’ve all experienced that moment where we become so engrossed in a sporting event or a program on tv that we neglect everything else around us. This is how these three men were with murder; for them, it was like watching a wrestling match. They sat down in front of the tv and although they knew the outcome, they were completely enthralled by what they were seeing. Only this wasn’t a wrestling match, or any sports event for that matter. This was the footage of a murder they had just committed.

“There is no lasting hope in violence, only temporary relief in hoplessness” -Kingman Brewster, Jr.

The only good thing about this case is that the team doesn’t have to fly. These murders are taking place in Southeast D.C. When they arrive at the most recent crime scene (the one our killers were watching), they find four murdered and realize this is not a home invasion or burglary gone wrong – especially since nothing has been taken. Rossi takes notice that there is too much precision and control for this to be the workings of teenagers, and based on the placement of all four bodies they know they are dealing with at least 3 unsubs. The team learns that the neighborhood has fallen victim to vandalism within the past month or two (which they say may or may not be related). The level of brutality seems too advanced for it to be a first-time thing, but there isn’t much to support that other vandalisms in the area are related.

At this point, we learn that all 3 of our men work in construction and rennovation. How appropriate right? Demolition is the perfect opportunity for them to practice their trade and build up strength for more brutal beatings. After a confrontation with the boss upsets one of them, they leave and drive around until they see a young and innocent girl who appears to be leaving work. The only other car in the lot is her boyfriend, who is there to pick her up. They approach the boy in his car and break the windshield with a baseball bat. They then go on to murder him and his girlfriend. When the cops arrive, they find the wallet of a boy but can’t be sure that the victim is the same person. His face had been beaten and bashed so badly that there was nothing recognizable about him – not even to those who knew him best. Meanwhile, the girl is identified by the manager at the diner she worked at. The fact that the beatings have gotten even more gruesome and have escalated to public places leads the team to believe that whoever it is they are looking for equates violence with a source of power and respect. The head detective, Detective Andrews, becomes emotionally involved and vows to get revenge. Hotch urges him not to do so and explains that the last thing they need is for someones judgement to become clouded because they “made it personal.”

Back at headquarters, Garcia receives a tip through her searching of networking sites about riots in Dupont Circle. When the team arrives to the scene, it has become extremely violent, resulting in the death of many – including two police officers. Hotch informs Det. Andrews that they do not believe the men they are looking for are responsible for the riots, but says that they need to confiscate the cell phones of anyone who is there to try to determine the origin of the original text message informing people about the riots. Det. Andrews becomes angered with Hotch once again because they now have dozens of teenagers in the precinct who have nothing to do with the murders. So annoyed, Andrews tells the team he doesn’t need them anymore and orders them to leave.

The team does agree to leave, but afraid that Andrews’ extreme emotional attachment to the case may become a hindrance, they stay in the loop about happenings and leads they may come across. Meanwhile, the sister of one of the victims comes to see Morgan demanding information about her brother’s case. Morgan informs her that they are doing everything they can. She becomes extremely emotional so Morgan takes her home. Garcia sees the “connection” between the two and warns Derek that he cannot get involved with her. While Morgan denies any relationship, Garcia reminds him that she councils family members of victims. And although Morgan may not see anything wrong with it, she assures him that Ms. Barnes is feeling something much stronger.

Meanwhile, our killers see the front page article on the riots the previous night and become angered because someone has stolen their thunder. Completely disgruntled, they leave the job site they are at and head to a local bar.  The bartender tells one to take the nail gun he is carrying back out to the car because it is a liability issue. This seems to push a button because the next thing we know, the team is at the bar investigating the murder of the bartender and the one other customer who was in the bar. At the bar, Morgan realizes that this is not the beginning for our suspects. Instead, he begins to think that this is the escalation and places that were vandalized recently may have been the starting point. There was obviously an event that triggered the escalation from burglary and vandalism to murder. The team then heads back to the only house that was completely vandalized to the point of total rennovation and discovers that the contractor who was hired to do the rennovation mysteriously disappeared half way into the job. After some investigation, the team decides to tear out a wall in one of the rooms and they discover the body of the missing contractor.

The team then heads to the suspects’ house and arrest one of the men. As they break down the door, the other two men drive away. When they are arresting him, they notcie the man was watching more footage of the murders they had committed. When asked why they did all the man could say was “because it’s fun man.” Meanwhile, the other two men staked out an empty house in the hopes of committing suicide by cop, an act where someone purposefully does something so horrid that it forces the cops to open fire and kill them. At this point, Hotch says that their job is done and the team can leave. This irritates Morgan who says, “just when I thought he was getting back to normal.” Seems to me like Morgan is still having issues with the fact that Hotch came back so soon after the deal with Foyet. Maybe it’s that he honestly doesn’t think he’s ready, or maybe he still feels a sense of guilt because Foyet used the credentials he stole from Morgan to gain access to Hotch.

The episode ends with Morgan ignoring what Garcia had said about Ms. Barnes and heads to her house to inform her that they had caught the men who had killed her brother. This leads me to ask…what do you guys think? Did Morgan cross the line b becoming too close to a victim? Is this completely innocent or do you think he is falling for her?

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