While I hyperventilate some more.. WOW.. just WOW.... Loved every second... Cast all SPOT ON.... Loved the scene with Spencer and the kids.... Best damn finale since Lofi/Mayhem.
OMG this was an awesome season finale, my favorite since LoFi/Mayhem and To hell and back!There is not one seconds of it I didn't like. Will have a much more detailed review soon but for now I will say this was great from 9pm to 10pm!We had it all, mind games, action, profiling ( how about that profile that was read back at Hotch?!), team LOTS of team! Hotch needed his team to get him out of this and they sure didn't let him down!Have to say, I did like Hayden in this episode, she makes a fine couple with Rossi!Great writing by writers Erica Messer and Breen Frazier! How I wish all episodes were that good! So happy CM ended its 11 season on such a high note! I give this one a 10/10! Bravo cast and crew! See you all for season 12!
Did you all catch the subliminal inference 12 Serial Killers for Season 12!
I did catch that and that was the only thing I caught. That episode left me so confused. I have no idea what happened, how we got from Hotch's arrest to prison breaks and I watched it intently from start to finish.
Hotch was set up by a subversive Homegrown Terrorist who he did profile on. IT was a distraction so that this guy who was in prison because of Hotch could mount not only the prison break but also a bombing with his 'commrades'...
Okaaay. It still doesn't make sense to me. If you wanted the prison breaks to be and the bombings to be successful, you keep it low key and don't draw attention to what you are planning especially having the head of the BAU arrested. The team would have gone about their business none the wiser and would have been caught with their pants down when it all hit the fan. It didn't seen logical to me. Oh well.
Blown... away... This was incredible and flawlessly executed. I was on the edge of my seat when I wasn't STANDING IN FRONT OF THE SCREEN!!! For some reason, my expectations weren't that high, I thought there was no way they could pull off a finale with a reasonable explanation for Hotch being apprehended by SWAT, and Antonia Slade, and Peter Lewis aka Mr. Scratch being involved but oh my god did they ever pull it off!!! And then some! The profiling was spot on, the action was amazing, (Reid and Rossi together with a SWAT team, oh baby...) Hotch in the field, earpiece and Kevlar on, thwarting a prison break/terrorist plot... It doesn't get much better than this. Breen and Erica need to collaborate more often!! By the way, this was flawlessly directed by the great Glenn Kershaw, ending with probably the best Lily Kershaw song since 824. The Replicator, and BY FAR the best season finale/cliffhanger since Seasons 3 and 4. PLEEEEEASE give us a Season 12! These guys are on a roll! With the small hicupp that was 1120. Inner Beauty (someone who shouldn't have written a CM episode in the first place) this season has been triumphant, and even if it wasn't to others, this is what we the fans like to call ending it with a bang!I wanted to punch that DOJ guy between the eyes who was grilling Hotch near the beginning, and the scenes with Reid and the kids were incredible. As was mentioned earlier, there was not a single second of this episode wasted. I loved Hotch's electronic gun lock in his house, too; he's such a good dad and such a sweetheart, but mess with his family and he will waste you! Loved the prison scenes, that was Kershaw at his absolute finest! This episode was Criminal Minds at its finest! Give me more! It's gonna be a long hiatus (not as long as the wait to find out if it's officially renewed, but holy crap that was INCREDIBLE! Kudos to Breen Frazier, Erica Messer, and the great Glenn Kershaw! Well done, guys! Way to give the fans what they want!Can't wait to watch this episode again; can't wait for season 12; and most importantly, LONG LIVE CRIMINAL MINDS!!!!!!!
Awesome and amazing episode! I figured Hotch would see through the DOJ guy. What a smack down Hotch laid on him. "Or I can sit here and think about my testimony before a subcommittee." BOOM! And I just knew that Hotch would show up in time to help Tara. But really SWAT Captain?? You leave a woman in serial killer cell block by herself?? Quibble #1When I started to hyperventilate was when Jack was so stand-offish to Hotch. Is Hotch going to leave?? Thank goodness that didn't happen.The shoot-out scene outside the "Ivory Tower" was great (and after Hotch did a spot on profile of figuring which of the three sites they needed to go to). Quibble #2. If a helicopter just got blown up above me, I wouldn't stand around and watch it fall. I'd run the heck away.That all said, I agree this was an excellent finale. However, I am one that enjoyed many more than Lo-Fi or To Hell and Back. Were some of them on that level? No; but I enjoyed them. But this one goes into my Top 5.Rockie's grade: The quibbles earns it an "A".
Hmmm...I am of two minds about this finale.The good:1. I considered this finale to be the best since season five (thus proving once and for all that Erica should never write a season finale alone). However, considering the finales since season five have all sucked to varying degrees, that is sort of damning with faint praise.2. I did like the callbacks to previous seasons, such as Elle's and Rossi's shootings. It was something that actually came up in fan discussions after Nelson's Sparrow and how Hotch basically looked the other way on Rossi. At least we had people assuming Hotch had changed since Foyet, and certainly we have seen the team go rogue more often since then (though in reality, that is because the new writers seem to thinking the BAU going rogue is a cool thing to do and write it frequently).3. Good Hotch in his scenes and dealing with the DOJ prick and completely dismantling their case. We never saw just how Hotch's driver's license was used in the chemical purchase. 4. Good Reid when he was interacting with Antonia's son. He recognized he had autism and was able to react accordingly and not escalate the situation and actually get useful information from him. 5. Good teamwork profiling at the beginning before it descended into an action movie shootout in the prison.
The bad:1. I never really got a good handle on how all of this was supposed to fit together. I mean, I understand the basics. Antonia Slade's son was the one who did the swatting on Hotch and Eric Rawdon was the planner and Peter Lewis got involved providing doubt about Hotch. But just how the hell did they all connect? Why did Eric seek out Antonia's son? How did Peter get connected to all of these people? Maybe I am missing something, but while this story sounds good in its fragments, I fear that they didn't stitch it together plausibly, or at least explain it properly. 2. The endless family scenes. I hate it when the show shoves schmaltz down our throats, and this one was no different. 3. I know some will disagree with me, but Reid's behavior when interacting with the kids seemed more like Matthew's and not Reid's. 4. Too much gunfire and action. 5. Minor quibble: Reid said his mom had no problem with flying, while we know for a fact that flying is one of her biggest fears, and I can't see her having somehow overcome that fear while she was at Bennington. But we are supposed to believe she would be all right flying to Paris?6. And if season 12 is about them methodically tracking down escaped serial killers...all I can say is that those killers better be back in action actually killing and this doesn't just turn into a continuous manhunt. That could easily get boring. 7. Also minor point: in reality Rossi wouldn't have to choose between the job and Hayden, because he would have been forcibly retired years ago. 8. Also something weird: are Hotch and JJ carpooling to work?
Well that was pretty good - lots of excitement and suspense. I'm not sure they explained very well how everyone involved in the plot connected together nor what the point of getting Hotch arrested was as it just drew attention to the plot - but hey, I know there is a prison grapevine and things get easily smuggled into prisons so I'll just take that and I guess the Hotch thing was just revenge.What really spoiled it for me was another dose of the Rossi soap opera - please can they just stop with that now! And of course we had to have another backyard party with the twinkly lights just in case it doesn;t get renewed but I like that they set it up for a Season 12 with the ending. As finales go this was the best for years - if only they had laid down how the plot was set up better, made more of Hotch being arrested as he got out of it in time to save the day pretty easily and ditched all the bad soap opera it would have been awesome. As it is, it was pretty good.
This episode was better than awesome it was awesome awesome. Anyone that votes fail is really not a fan of this show. And there was lots of hotch SO I LOVED IT !!
Also some of the comments above are the reason why I never read the comments in this column lol stop being negative
I think there is a difference between just being negative and being honestly and constructively critical. I only see intelligent evaluation on this site for the most part. There are other places on the internet that are really negative and also there are places full of rah rah fans. This comment thread usually reflects all views and opinions well and respectfully.
no, this episode can't be compared to lofi/maythem these ones much are better
I think you misunderstood.. I said this finale was the best SINCE lofi/Mayhem. Actually I'll say this is the best finale since To Hell and Back ... Now THAT was a real cliffhanger.
and ok episode
* So many good parts, starting with Hotch swinging around from the gun safe, pointing at SWAT.* Can live without Hayden.* Can live without the kids.* Probably in the Will minority, but liked seeing Josh Stewart.* Too much of a leap for DOJ not to realize it was spoof and splice setup, but the writers made up for it.* Liked the way Aaron lawyered up his own self and interrogated right back at the DOJ clown. * Good writing and acting among Tara, JJ and Reid in nailing Antonia and her son.* Wonderful Reid and acting from Asher.* Even if the DOJ profile fit Aaron, which it doesn't, and that's because no one really knows Aaron, Aaron would have enough self-knowledge to control those traits, thereby canceling out the profile. * Scenes with multiple cells unlocking were very effective.* Rossi wants Hayden to stay, I want to buy Hayden a one-way plane ticket.* Aaron saying he doesn't want the job to take anything more away from Jack sounds very reminiscent of Morgan. * One more time: can live without Hayden and the kids. * Pitter patter for TG/Aaron.* TG is one fine actor.
Spot-on, jgrey! Agree with all your points. TG was superb from start to finish.
Random thoughts:I was glad for the long-suffering Hotch fans, whose favorite character finally got some focus.The conspiracy plot, and the DOJ’s reaction to it, contained too many improbabilities to create much tension. Nonetheless, I thought TG sold it well.Because of that, I tried to buy into the plot anyway, and found myself very sorely missing the element of righteous anger that I think would have been Morgan’s response to the arrest of his unit chief. That part of the team’s personality has disappeared with him, sadly. The rest are far too controlled emotionally. We get an occasional spark from Rossi or Reid, but it’s not enough. We need someone on screen who reacts the way we do, serving as the audience’s representative to whatever is happening. I hadn’t realized it until he was gone, but I think Morgan was the ‘Everyman’ in this ensemble, and it’s lesser without him.I thought Cade did very well expressing Jack’s trauma at being invaded by a group of armed agents, and seeing his father arrested, and again at the end, when Jack went somewhere inside himself, keeping his father at arm’s length. Hotch’s reaction to that, both in the conference room, and at Rossi’s, were my favorite Hotch scenes of the episode.Henry was cute, but poor Michael was mostly edited out. Maybe he was teething.I think it would have been absolutely fascinating to see Tara and at least one other BAU member stuck in a prison ward with some of the serial killers they’ve studied and/or put away, and have to outwit them in order to escape. That kind of plot could easily have filled a whole episode. But to have Tara realize where she was, and watch the prison doors open, only to be rescued 15 seconds later----just a waste of opportunity. So was the prisoners’ exchange of clothing with the wardens, and then the SWAT team---Interesting, but resolved in under a minute. I would have liked to see an episode where the BAU has to figure out who is who through their wits alone. If there is to be a plot point about team members in danger, the danger needs to be sustained for long enough to make us worry. Speaking of the prison scenes---- did anyone else find it odd that our Kevlar-vested team wasn’t offered helmets and/or other body armor, when they accompanied SWAT? Especially when a team member (Hotch) put himself at the front of the group? On the other hand, they really should all just have stayed outside with Rossi. It’s not like they were profiling in there. Speaking of dangerous things----our team watched helicopter full of fuel and explosives fall from the sky, on fire………and then they all walked toward it. BOOM!Not interested in the Rossi/Hayden thing at all. Way too manufactured. I liked JJ’s barely controlled anger with Antonia, and was surprised not to see some of that same reaction at the time of Hotch’s arrest.Yes, they screwed up on Diana’s fear of flying. Which was sadly amusing, since it seemed obvious they were trying to delve into the show’s history, and prove they were capable of continuity.Reid was great with Asher. From his description of autism/Asperger’s, and his demeanor when providing it, I sensed a distancing of the notion that Reid has either. Put another way, I think MGG would have played Reid differently in that scene, if he thought Reid was describing traits that he himself possessed. Since that aligns with my impression of Reid (having neither autism nor Asperger’s), I say, YAY!, and let’s put that notion to bed, permanently.There have been better season finales, and there have been worse. Since it might also have served as a series finale, I guess the final implication, that the work will continue, is a good one. I just wish the writers didn’t equate ‘finale’ with ‘blow the budget on helicopters and explosions’. Nothing good has ever come of a CM episode featuring helicopters, running around in the dark, or explosions. They mostly just substitute for plot, and detract from the intellectual enterprise at hand. I would so much have preferred an intriguing battle of wits.
Overall I liked the episode - I was watching the clock waiting for all of the commercials to finally be over...hate that!"I want my phone call" - oh I cringed at that one - poor Hotch!Hotch said lawyers would "come and help me" - I don't think I ever heard Hotch ask for help in that way. When they mentioned the Rossi shooting after Gideon's death, you could see Hotch become upset, swallow, blink, etc - first time I ever remember him reacting in that way (being affected/showing some emotion like that)When Hotch said to the DOJ agent - "haul you in", I wish he had said "haul your ass in" - I would have loved that! ;)Hayden - TERRIBLE accent. Where's Joy?? Last time, this time, again - where's Joy? And I don't think Hayden and Rossi fit (the actors themselves don't seem to be able to show a connection on screen - should have picked a different Hayden)Great that Hotch was concerned with Jack (on a side note - have we ever heard anything about Hotch's parents in the past?). Henry - cuter than cute; don't like the style of glasses at all, they take away from his face - needs a different style - just my opinion. JJ vs. Antonia - JJ could have looked much "tougher" (look on her face). And where was Frances?? I was really disappointed there was not more of her in this episode - she is so great.I thought the prison guard who discovered the cells were starting to open would make it; I was rooting for him, but then blam - poor guy! ;)Why did the team even go into the prison at all? Why wasn't SWAT the ones to clear out the prison, get it under control?And come on - the prison guards never saw a grate and a tunnel when they did a routine cell toss? Totally unbelievable.I wish Tara had just stood in the middle of the serial killers, kept turning and blasted them all in a circle, like a video game! ;)JJ, Reid and one SWAT agent walking down the hall, fake SWAT agents shooting right at them, and only the real SWAT agent is hit? Totally unbelievable.I thought the take down was boring - a lot of shooting, helicopter explosion, graphic was awful - I'm sure the show can afford to do better than that.I think they should have Tara show a little cleavage next time...WOW, they were out there...Where's Will??! I love Will - he gets about 60 seconds of air time and even less dialogue? Disappointed in that one. He looks so forlorn, sitting at the table when the BAU goes off to their secret pow-wow at the end of the show - he deserves more.I was really missing Derek at the end scene around the table; thought that was sad. Catching 12 sk's , Mr. Scratch - it doesn't mean they are all from prior episodes and put away by this BAU team. Should be interesting if there is a Season 12 - if some are the same sk's they did in fact put away, I see a lot of possible revenge against the BAU members in the future and sk's who learned from their "mistakes" in getting caught.
This was better for me than the finales from past 6 seasons, but I wouldn't go so far as to say "awesome." Still, it held my interest, even though as is the case fairly often now, I felt there were things that weren't explained or were not clear. Good balance of screen time for the cast. I really don't miss Morgan at all, and I hope they don't try to replace him. At least that way, the others will get more to do...unless the writers give too much time to the unsubs. Reid was adorable with the kids, and strong on the case. I expected that JJ and Tara would be given more to do with Morgan gone and Hotch under arrest, but it wasn't over the top. I, too, do not buy or like the Rossi personal story. I really don't care for the actress playing Hayden. I don't like her stilted line delivery, the odd way she speaks, and I find no chemistry between her and Rossi, although I do like the Joy character and actress. I do like that the end gave us something to look forward to and that we're actually getting a season 12. I hope the writing is a priority for the last season, but I'm not going to hold my breath. Overall, I liked it.
This episode should be two parts.
Respectful opinions, and constructive disagreement is welcomed, but insulting/foul-mouthed, malicious, or just plain disrespectful comments towards anyone are not, and will be removed.