Saturday, April 18, 2015

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1020. A Place at the Table - Review

When I know it's my week to do the Criminal Minds Round Table episode review, I don't comment on the episode in the after episode venue. (Did any of your profilers pick up on that? :D ) However, I still read all of the comments that were left after the episode. They're always great and I pick up on something I've originally missed and need to re-watch. But Crime Fan 12 summarized my review, in a nutshell, without knowing it.

Yet making the big bucks us reviewers do here at Criminal Minds Round Table *laughing hysterically while looking over my shoulder for an admin coming at me*, short, sweet and succinct doesn't pay the bills. hehehehehehehehehe


There's so much. But it starts with the awesome team episode that we Criminal Minds fans got to enjoy. All of the characters were, well, very much the characters that I and the rest of us Criminal Minds fans have come to know.

Morgan was the tactician, reviewing the case details and working the profile like the senior profiler he now is. Kate, no longer a newbie, chipped in as well while obviously now being on the "mom-to-be BAU bench". May I add that's very realistic and I like it.

JJ was the ever growing JJ character that I really like. Yes, I know I'm in the vast minority with that opinion. I respect those that don't share that point of view; I just ask the same back. Anyway, it was a kick in pants moment for me to see JJ do an interview solo with her mentor Rossi watching at the window. The master watched as she did a great solo interview; with a little Rossi sass for good measure. And for once, JJ and Morgan's tag team was great in the second interview of Dylan. I'll agree with many of you on those two taking down the Unsubs all the time.

This episode's duo du jour was Reid and Garcia. I totally loved their scene together about the croissant; with Reid then morphing into being… well… Reid. That was a great touch. And I highly expected Mhattew Gray Gubler, with his directing stint coming up next, to be a no show. So it was a plus to see more screen time of him.

And then there's Reid and Rossi's take-down of Cora Gilliam that was wonderful as well. The two most non-athletic field BAU members got it done; and in FBI textbook style I might add. That was a total win in my book.

My kudos go most to how Bruce wrote Rossi. He brought out the true David Rossi; his gut not working like with three ex-wives; to tossing his black notebook down on the table to start his interview with Ezra. The Rossi total bad-ass snark machine was in high gear. I loved it! That's my Rossi! Atta boy Bruce.

The second thing I really liked was Bruce Zimmerman finally got the memo. The Unsub does not have to be in the opening scenes of a Criminal Minds episode. The team slowly worked through the clues, using the "old school" BAU tactics of profiling and interviewing to narrow down a suspect. Add in that Garcia was in total character during the episode, doing her job; but it was using what the team had developed from their profile instead of her coming up with the great answer on her own. Hotch gave her the final clue, surmising that May 3 was the birth-date of the illegitimate child. Hotch also figured out the no sex angle with Mark being a half-brother. Gideon is smiling from his afterlife.


It all starts with the super hyped guest star in the presence of one Ed Asner. I remember Ed long before his breakout role as "Lou Grant" on the MTM comedy and then his dramatic turn with the same character. "Rich Man, Poor Man" was a huge mini-series my senior year in high school and I loved it. His success after that is no surprise to me.

So in my mind, it was only Ed Asner that could bring the outwardly curmudgeon Roy Brooks to life. The deities bless Bruce for giving Ed the opening salvo at the end of Act 1 to Hotch that was Roy's first scripted line. "Shuddup." I almost pee'd my pants laughing so hard. It was total Ed. He was the only person that could get away with telling Aaron Hotchner that. Period. And yet Bruce wrote the same Roy that lamented to Aaron, looking at Haley's picture later: "I won't know who she is," reflecting on his life soon to come. My heart broke with that line.

All of us Criminal Minds fans complain, loudly, about the lack of love the TV Academy gives to our beloved show. Yet, I’m willing to bet, much like Ed's guest role on "CSI:NY" a few years back, this one might possibly garner him a nomination for best guest appearance. It will be well deserved. Too bad the TV Academy voters, so set against crime procedurals won't see the light and won't give Ed the love again. (Ed got robbed on his role in that "CSI:NY" episode)

And then there's Molly Baker, the wonderful portrayer of Jessica Brooks. Bruce Z. gets kudos amundos for finally giving this wonderful actress a chance to shine instead of her usual 30 seconds of screen time and out. And Molly didn't miss the pitch. She nailed a homerun. The opening scene with her and Thomas and then showing a crack in her armor? Just thinking back on that again: d*mn where's my tissue box again.

Which, of course, leads me to my man; the man of the episode. While there was so much team goodness, and all the right buttons with the Unsub, let's be real: Bruce Zimmerman wrote Thomas Gibson an episode to run with; which my boy Thomas did.

Someone said the eyes are the key to the soul; or something like that. Thomas Gibson has perfected the art of acting through this eyes. The near tears at Roy not letting Aaron off the hook for Haley's death was so amazing and riveting. I could see the old demons that Aaron has tried to put behind him rearing their ugly head once again at the tears he refused to let fall.

And sorry my fellow Criminal Minds fans; if Thomas didn't get nominated for "100", don't even think about it happening for this one. I know; that totally sucks.

So this all brings me to Bruce Zimmerman. Like my friend severeCMaddict, I believe this is the best script Bruce has ever penned. First off, to work in the B plotline through the episode was fantastic as many have pointed out. No bookends here; it worked throughout and blended in well. He also gave some of the cast a chance to shine; yes Thomas being the most. And his no Unsub until the episode was three-fourths finished now gets Bruce into my Virgil Williams' Big Dog Club. It was wonderful from start to finish.

Plus there's Laura Belsey. For her second time directing a Criminal Minds episode, she obviously did her homework. And it shined in the little, little touches. The picture of the Viking ship, obviously colored by Jack over the sink as Hotch came out of the kitchen with Roy's sandwich. Plus the picture of Aaron, Haley, baby Jack, Roy and Mrs. Brooks that Hotch focused on was just a little two second piece of film that I immediately noticed. I asked Harry Bring about it on Twitter. He tweeted back that it was done specifically for the episode. So Meredith Monroe was around as well. That's sorta neat in my world. Laura did a fantastic job with this episode. But h*ll: Bruce gave her plenty to work with.


Guess again: y'all know me better than that. But it's only one.

In the opening scene, Hotch said Jack was in 5th grade. That does not compute in the Rockie continuity book. Jack was born in season 1; so he's now 9 years old; that means 4th grade. I immediately picked up on that live chatting with some friends on Twitter. One said, "maybe they're catching up on how much Cade had grown?" Another said, "Jack is smart enough to move up a grade."

As many of you know, continuity is a huge complaint of mine when it comes to Criminal Minds. And I blistered Bruce's butt over his major continuity gaff in my review of his episode in season 9 with the "Day of the Dead" party at Garcia's and the "Tet Offensive" in Vietnam.

That said, I can almost look past this goof. Because yes, Cade Owens (Jack) has grown up way too much before our eyes. And that alone is why I may let this slide.

In addition, I have to give major kudos to the Criminal Minds PTB for keeping this wonderful young man around for seven seasons. And I will not pile on the bus, criticizing Cade's line delivery or acting abilities. This is where I draw a big-time-line-in-the-sand: he's a damn kid. Back down. And I really don't care if that upsets anyone. I've got a nephew his age. I say again; he's a kid. And for the naysayers about Cade; in my world the kid was outstanding with the great Ed Asner. He's got game in my world. And then some. Sit down and leave the kid alone.

Bruce may have missed that continuity point; but the Criminal Minds bigwigs have not missed the bigger continuity picture keeping Cade around all these years. I’m a happy family Hotchner camper.


Gee, it's not rocket science. It started with a great script from Bruce Zimmerman. The much unheralded behind the scenes crew of Criminal Minds was at its best again with all the little stuff that Laura Belsey just nailed. And Laura guided them and let her cast bring their "A" game.

So Rockie's grade is easy: A+

~~~~rockhotch31 (Guest reviewer)

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1023. The Hunt - Promo Photos

Friday, April 17, 2015

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1023. The Hunt - EW's Spoiler Room Scoop!


Q: Anything on the Criminal Minds finale? — Katrina  

A: The storyline about the guy who’s been kidnapping and auctioning people off online will come to a head very soon, with unfortunate consequences for...

To Read More:

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1021. Mr. Scratch - Promo Video

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1020. A Place at the Table - Comments Thread

This thread is open for you all to post comments and talk about tonight's new CRIMINAL MINDS episode, titled 'A Place at the Table', and written by Bruce Zimmerman.

Hope you've enjoyed today's episode, and remember that next week we'll have a new brand one!

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1023. The Hunt - Zap2It: EP promises 'creepy,' 'heavy' ending to Season 10 [SPOILER]

by Sarah Huggins

"Criminal Minds" Season 10 has been quite a wild ride, and it's not done yet. As the season nears its end, there are still lots of surprises in store for fans. Zap2it caught up with showrunner Erica Messer who teased just what people can expect before the Season 10 finale...

To Read More:

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1020. A Place at the Table - Sneak Peeks

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1020. A Place at the Table - TVGuide Exlusive: Ed Asner Faces Off with Hotch

It's anything but a happy reunion when Ed Asner drops by on Wednesday's Criminal Minds.

After Hotch's father-in-law Roy (Asner) breaks into his old store, Hotch (Thomas Gibson) has to come to the rescue and decides to put Roy, who has Alzheimer's, in a nursing home. "I've been to these places before. They take you there to shrivel up and die!" Roy says in the exclusive sneak peek above, before hitting Hotch where it really hurts. (Hint: Haley's death.)...

To Read More:

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1022. Protection - Press Release


Joe Adler (“The Mentalist”) Guest Stars as Danny Lee Watson

“Protection” – When shooting victims are found in the Los Angeles area with possible links to criminal activity, the BAU searches for a vigilante UnSub, on CRIMINAL MINDS, Wednesday, April 29 (9:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network. Joe Adler (“The Mentalist”) guest stars as Danny Lee Watson.

CHEAT TWEET: Is an UnSub in LA out for vigilante justice? The BAU investigates on @CrimMinds_CBS 4/29 9pm

Joe Mantegna (David Rossi)
Thomas Gibson (Aaron Hotchner)
Shemar Moore (Derek Morgan)
Matthew Gray Gubler (Dr. Spencer Reid)
A.J. Cook (Jennifer “JJ” Jareau)
Kirsten Vangsness (Penelope Garcia)
Jennifer Love Hewitt (Kate Callahan)

Hailey Sole (Meg Callahan)

Joe Adler (Danny Lee Stokes)
Christina Vlahakes (Milena Valdez)
Melissa Pino (Patricia Valdez)
Todd Williams (Detective Spreewell)
Marcello Thedford (Eddie “Sweetness” Parrish)
Shoniqua Shandai (Working Girl #3)
Elena Tovar (Lizette Castro)
George Caleodis (Gary Fisher)
Sandy Gimpel (Utility Stunt (Clara Miller))
Eric Watson (Utility Stunt (Lamar Taylor))
John Hundrieser (Club Dude)
Katrina Norman (Lindsey Cooper)
Josh Thrower (Christopher DeLuca)
Norman Howell (Utility Stunt (Mailman))
Brian Majestic (Nate Cochran)
Shy Vaughn (Tasha Brooks)
Taylor Mosby (Markayla Davis)
Melora Walters (Paige)

WRITTEN BY: Virgil Williams
DIRECTED BY: Tawnia McKiernan

Monday, April 13, 2015

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1021. Mr. Scratch - Promo Photos

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - 1019. Beyond Borders - Review

December 2014, news alert about Criminal Minds:

"CBS is taking another stab at expanding its popular Criminal Minds franchise. The network is developing a new spin-off series that will first air as an episode of Criminal Minds in February." -

Strong sense of foreboding + deep shudder running down my spine = Déjà vu anyone?

More tidbits about the hopeful-series started tricking in fast: the new team would deal with Americans that land themselves in trouble abroad, most of the cases wouldn't involve serial killers, the cast was announced actor by actor as they get on board... Those, for me, were all good news: the premise made sense and the cast was full of proven names on TV and made for a likable group as a whole.

But wasn't until after I started seeing behind-the-scenes photos of OUR cast with the new gang that I let out my first sigh of relief: OUR cast looked happy and carefree working with them, and that lead me to think OUR show wouldn't be hurt this time around - which, of course, is the only thing that mattered to me then, and still does now.


A family annihilator isn't new in Criminal Minds, but Tidwell's story was well thought of and developed to make sense per se and to excuse the need of these two teams to work together. It made for a good case-of-the-week, nothing stellar but the case wasn't the priority either, so perfect... on paper.

Allow me to repeat myself... again: too much unsub, his face on my screen too soon, too much learned from the unsub point of view, too many flashbacks, too much violence on my screen that added NOTHING to the story! What a way to waste time on an episode where time was, more than ever, overpriced real estate... #Argh!

As a result of the above, we got good profiling from our team but not nearly half enough, and the chance for the new team to prove their skills and specialties was mostly lost.

And then, they gave us the detail that baffled me in first viewing, and pissed me off in the subsequent ones: out of all those boats and ships remaining after discarding size and shipping lines, there was only one blue and white left? Tidwell was a fan of blue and orange so, if his boat had that unusual color combo, I could have bought the search-by-color giving them his location, but blue and white? Errr... nope! That felt like a cheap way to rush the resolution toward the cool take down they've planned, and a direct result of wasting so much screentime in unneeded scenes with the unsub.


Thoughtfully mixed, the established pairings worked mostly well, but still not everybody shone equally. In order of "creation":

  • Apparently if Beyond Borders is picked up to series, the FBI International Team will be too under Mateo Cruz's command. This is a good idea, because on top of the fact that using common sense is always a good idea, it links the two teams beyond the title, expands and helps explain the job of a Section Chief, and gives them a solid starting point if they want to make a crossover in the future.

  • Garcia & Montgomery: no-brainer if there was one, and the one that worked worst because of how they were written. Garcia being friends with Monty was very believable, but her deferring to him in everything they did was not. Garcia is bossy, - no matter how well she disguises that trait under her sweet talk, her colorful ways and her trinkets... when it suits her,- and Garcia understands better than most how the families left behind feel while waiting for news on their beloved ones. Letting them in charge of talking with the grandparents was a huge error, period; there were other profilers left behind much better equipped for the job, so Monty's "help" wasn't needed this time around, thank you very much. Monty is headed to Gary-Sue territory at lightning speed.
  • Callahan & Reid: they have paired well since the start of the season, and leaving Kate behind due to her advanced pregnancy (more in real life than in the show) made sense; leaving Reid behind not that much. When the reason to join these two teams together is the jurisdictional crossing (from International to Stateside then back to International), the expert in geographical profiling should have been where that skill was needed, and was needed most. He still managed to join several dots and prove how good a profiler he is (the case wasn't complicated enough to bring out his genius side). Kate could have profiled the family home, and work victimology, just as well paired with Morgan, or even better, JJ. Why better JJ? Because this pair should have been the one interviewing the victims' family, and that is JJ's true specialty.
  • Jareau, Morgan & Simmons: was another no-brainer sub-team given how the previous two had been established, the subordinate agents doing their elders bidding. They worked together well, but for the little they had to do, three was one too many (something else that would have been solved leaving JJ behind). Simmons left in me the impression of being a well thought of, well rounded character, able in his job but still with the potential for some personal drama and/or comedy; his "4 kids under 3" with a job that forces him to travel even more than the BAU does, and probably for longer periods of time, alone offers multiple possibilities if the writers feel mischievous enough!
  • Hotchner & Lambert: the winning pair of the lot, great chemistry between both characters without detracting anything from the other. They transmitted trust in their capabilities, showed their particular skills, and fell flawlessly and easily into a good working relationship in spite of the fact that they were clearly unaccustomed to do so. They were solid, unassuming and yet powerful, thus they stole the show as a whole, and certainly every scene they were in.
  • Garrett & Rossi: they hadn't sleep well that night, or at least one of them hadn't and rubbed his sleepiness off on the other. Garrett in boss mode was good, but not great. Rossi in profiler mode was good, but not great. Their personal interactions lacked more than half the energy they demanded. Garrett sounded emotionally stunted when talking about his family, too detached, instead of madly in love with his wife as his words lead to believe, and that mix of worried/pissed/amused-by-the-irony the situation created by his son joining the FBI Academy warranted. Rossi's sass wasn't as sassy as his usual; the words and quips were well placed, but the smartass that comes along with his by now infamous one-liners was nowhere to be found. Why they didn't reach greatness if it wasn't for lack of sleep? That's my explanation about what went down with them and I'm sticking with it. 


Overall, it made for an enjoyable 42 minutes for several reasons, the most important being that this time they respected the skills, intelligence and experience of the BAU team.

Others that come to mind are the pace - they were in a hurry and showed; not bringing Lambert and Rossi to the final take down - none are the physical type unless there is no one else available; using Hotch and Simmons as the snipers they are - great way to showcase their origins; and finally the mix of action and brainstorming was balanced, as was balanced the use of all eleven characters (a chore in itself, because ELEVEN!)

Still there was too much wasted time by the already mentioned, but looks like always worth repeating, over-exposition of the unsub (a few of those scenes were needed, but got lost in the overabundance, go figures!), by Lambert with the three hopeful new agents for the unit (??? - not even sure what they were, but the scene didn't belong here), and... can anyone explain to me why on earth we see the family reunion TWICE? The scene in the boat made perfect sense, was timely and rightfully emotional. The scene in the BAU HQ couldn't have been more cheesy, unnecessary and plain idiotic if they had tried, and worse, took away the opportunity for both teams to interact and learn more about each of the agents, new and old alike.
Glenn Kershaw's directing deserves to be highlighted. He not only gave us some great shots of each of the main characters, but gifted us with two magnificent scenes: Hotch's chase through the market felt scarily real and the search for the kid at night in open waters produced some of the most compelling images I have seen in this show.


Because of its premise and because of the cast, I do believe it has potential as a solid, enjoyable CBS procedural, even long lasting if enough viewers agree with me. It has too the potential of pissing off the world at large once it hits the overseas markets.

Being in a foreign environment puts you in a vulnerable place, as you rarely are as knowledgeable as needed in the culture, religion, customs and/or laws of the country, so screws up came easy. Most times is a faux pas solved after an embarrassing and/or fun interchange. A few times, a legal mess is born. Americans can and get in legal messes with the best of them; at times as victims, at times as innocents wrongly accused, and at times they are as guilty as charged.

Very much doubt there is a law enforcement agency anywhere in the globe that takes kindly to a foreign one stomping on their turf and trying to take over, and none are staffed with dumb people. What differentiates them is funding, resources and training; every combination is available out there, and most get excellent results with what they have.

Lambert stating plainly that her brother went abroad thinking his American passport made him invincible gives me hope they are on the correct mind track and intend to keep their storytelling as close to reality as possible. If they keep this up, I plan to give this one a try.

~~~~Sir Elyan the White

Sunday, April 12, 2015

CRIMINAL MINDS Season 10 - Season Wrap Up Party - Cast & Crew's Photos!!!

CM wrap party - Photo by Kim Harrison
Me and the boss. Espresso. Party. #CriminalMinds #season10 - Photo by Dylan Hay-Chapman
Season 10 WrapParty Picture. Fun times. - Photo by Harry Bring
Bruh. - Photo by Kim Harrison
The bae. #CriminalMinds - Photo by Kim Harrison
Criminal minds wrap party season 10! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
The ladies of cm! Wrap party season 10! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Cam wrap party season 10! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Criminal minds wrap party season 10! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Come on! The man! CM wrap party season #10! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
CM wrap party season 10! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Wrap party! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Season 10 is a wrap!  @JimClemente - Photo by Emily Vacher
CM 10! - Photo by Emily Vacher
Chillin' season 10 wrap party! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
@shemarmoore - Photo by Kim Harrison
Me and the man who keep it all flowing! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Me & Erica at season 10 CM wrap party! #rocking it #girl power #leaders #game changers #respect
- Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Business. - Photo by Kim Harrison
I made a great photo by PhotoCollage! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Some of the ladies of CM! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
CM wrap party 2015!! Hangin' with @Jim Clemente - Photo by Sharon Lee Watson
#criminalminds - Photo by Kim Harrison
Business. - Photo by Kim Harrison
The gang! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
More CM wrap party fun with @VirgilWilliams and @PamLeonte
- Photo by Sharon Lee Watson
Ok that's it! Best party ever! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Ok we be done! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Ok a few more! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
I made a great photo by PhotoCollage! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
My girl! Cm wrap party! Carla is the most important person on the! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Peace out! #cm wrap party #season 10! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
The future! I hope they all hire me! Rock stars! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
The family! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Here's one without my normal salute. With Erica Messer and Pam Leonte. - Photo by Harry Bring
Me, Breen & Ann Caroll photobomb by Scott! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Me & the Bruce Zimmerman! Love him! #writers #producers #cm season 10
- Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
The gangs all here! Where were u? #cmseason 10 wrap party! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Yours truly & Our casting guru Scott #cm season 10 wrap party #rocking it! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
My girls! Amazing writers, friends... Sisters in the struggle! We laugh,we cry, we dream big. We love Shonda, Mara, Ava, Oprah...Kerry,Viola, Taraji u name it! We sit on Kim's couch and cheer everyone on! To my right is Ticona Joy. She was our researcher and now a staff writer and loves hugs! Lol! And to my left is Kim Harrison-- writer/producer/pop culture lover! When I was a writer on Third Watch they were PAs on Friends! Hustling, grinding but more importantly writing! Love them. They will have shows. They will get their voices out! They are part of the new guard... Taking no prisoners & conquering the TV world one script at a time! - Photo by Janine Sherman Barrois
Criminal Minds Season 10 Wrap Party - Photo by Ian Woolf
Photo by Unknown
Had fun at the Criminal Minds Season 10 Wrap Party with @THEIG & @dottieevans14! #CriminalMinds #not3mustaches - Photo by Chris Martens