Thursday, March 26, 2009


Criminal Minds spoiler thread for "House on Fire" written by Holly Harold and directed by Felix Alcala. Starring Joe Mantegna, Thomas Gibson, Paget Brewster, Shemar Moore, A.J. Cook, Matthew Gray Gubler and Kirsten Vangsness.

** Beware! The comments on this thread will contain spoilers. **

** The quote info for this episode will post as soon as the episode airs on the east coast. **

** Reminder: There is a chat with Holly Harold at 10pm est. **


Judy said...

After last week's episode I am punped. I am hoping for another great one. One more night.

HardKOrr said...

Holly Harold's first Criminal Minds episode was great. Can't wait for House On Fire and a chance to chat with Holly again.

Laura_G said...

After meeting Holly in LA, I am really looking forward to seeing her new episode. She was so kind to hang out with us like she did! Is it Wednesday yet???

Kirsten said...

Yay, its almost Wednesday... CM Day!
Need i say more??!!

morticia_addams said...

can't wait to see this ep!

Blümchen said...

Meeting Holly in person was so great, i´m so excited about the new episode and the chance to chat with her.
I can´t wat!!!!!

cmwinner said...

Can't wait! Looks like a really good one!

BlueCurl said...

Can't wait until I can see this episode! :) Almost time to see it :)

kirstenmoore said...

I hope to see some Morgan/Garcia interaction. I really miss that

slashgirl said...

Just a note for Canadians--according to the CTV schedule, CM is not airing tonight because of AI. They DID air an ep yesterday but it was a re-run of Minimal Loss. (When I checked the sched I was upset that I'd missed it, but when I clicked on the link, it took me to a page saying the ep was Minimal Loss with an airdate of 24 March). So, I hope you have cable or satellite and can get it on CBS....

Anonymous said...

Yay! Its WEDNESDAY! *dances* only seven hours and forty-three more minutes until the episode xD



Deirdre said...

I can't wait for this episode. I hope it lives up to the last few amazing episodes

Lori said...

Holly is a lovely person and I can't wait for her episode tonight. 4 hours and 41 minutes til episode time!

Helen said...

Really excited (always am for Criminal Minds), I'm wondering what the Garcia angle is on this one?

Whichever way it goes, gotta be awesome. :D

alexis said...

Garcia was great the way she was figuring it out and when she let down her hair I knew she had figured it out. Great job Kirsten.

ivyhamster said...


You're so right. Garcia has never been as passionate as she was going one on one against the sheriff and she made sure everyone knew that Tommy was the way he was because of the town. Even Hotch couldn't get her to stop.

Great so far.

meaghan said...

Hotch called Garcia, Penelope and when he started thanking her for her work on the case and tellling her how important she is to the team, I almost cried.

Great Garcia episode.

Anonymous said...

Hotch seemed like his old self in this epi. Great Garcia centric epi.

Anonymous said...

I thought the episode was okay. Garcia was great and it was her episode to shine.

But as the ultimate Reid fan, I must admit I do miss him terribly. There's no excitement when I sit down to watch an episode anymore because I know he's always going to just be left at the police station to make an odd comment here and there. It's not even like he's part of the team anymore.

I liked Hotch's comment at the end. He does appreciate his team.

Phoenix said...

Not one of my favorite eps, but okay. I thought it moved a little slow and a little predictable. I prefer the episodes with a litte twist at the end. I found the only thing that wasn't predictable was that he gave up rather than light himself on fire....which is fine as I can live without that visual.

On the positive side, it was nice to see Garcia have a more significant role. KV does such an excellent job as Garcia, it was good to see more of it, even if it pushed her outside her comfort zone--which is sometimes when she is at her best.

Judy said...

The opening was hard to watch and for some reason there was a camera glitch or a something. It wasn't just my tv. At least I don't think so. It seemed like the camera jumped or something.

The episode was good. Kirsten is fantastic. I love when Garcia is taken out of her comfort zone and I appreciated Hotch being mom and talking with her at the end. She vented and he listened. Nice scene.

laurel said...

Talk about a witchhunt. People were very quick to point the finger of blame on someone else. They really created a monster. I felt sorry for him.

cachew lover said...

No fault to this episode but because it dealt with arson I kept thinking about Ashes & Dust.

This was Garcia's episode. I soooo agree with everyone. And she wasn't shot which made it cool. Kirsten is so under used on the show. Such a shame. She's a damn great actress. Garcia is the best character on the show.

jazz said...

Was it incest or were Tina and Tomm just close? I am not sure.

Maura Newman said...

I think it was incest but I'm not sure. The teaser was one of the most terrifying ones ever! I was actually scared. It was way more scary than any other we've ever had. It was a good grab scene.

Garcia equals love.

The guest stars were great and the makeup people deserve major kudos!

sasha said...

"ability to giggle"

That goes into the best line book.

cmwinner said...

Awesome eppy! Loved Garcia in this one. She did such a great job. The ending scene with Hotch and Garcia has to be the sweetest moment between them ever!

The burn victim from the bar, looked so bad and so realistic!

ztivokreb said...

This episode touched me deeply. Garcia's angst over delving into peoples secrets and privacy made me want to reach out and hug her. I love that Hotch knew he had to speak to her about it at the end. Garcia really is a burst of sunshine in that office :-)

The small town persecution really got to me. That people can stray so far from their normal morality into almost a mob mentality scares the crap out of me. Tina turned out perfectly fine, yet with all the stuff Tommy had to endure he of course ended up completely unstable.

well done Holly. it was lovely meeting you in LA.

I will never say no to more Garcia time :-) KV did an outstanding job tonight, as well as the rest of the CM cast.

rock on

Dark Justice Girl said...

Awesome episode Holly! I totally loved Garcia in this episode! And the case itself was very creepy!


kelltrek said...

This episode was OK. The subject matter was disturbing, as was the treatment of the people in the small town. Too often people in small towns are portrayed as small minded and prejudiced, and unfortunately that showed up again in this episode. Some people in small towns may act that way, just as some people in larger cities react in the same way.

Did enjoy Garcia in this episode. I love her persistence in holding to her belief in the good in people.

Blümchen said...

Thanks Holly for taking the time to chat with us. It was great.
I´m really looking forward to see your ep. I can´t wait!!

Debbie said...

Excellent episode tonight! I loved that it took a different approach. It was great to see Garcia doing some profiling. Interesting to see how her mind works and she figures things out.

Holly, thanks so much for coming to chat with us. It was a delightful evening!

Anonymous said...

First of all...Kirsten are amazing!!! Definitely under utilized and definitely over abundant in talent.

Second.....Penelope in pants!!! It's a first I think!

Thirdly....Morgan and Garcia interaction for the first time in AGES!!! I love these two and we Fanatics need more of it.

Fourth...I love Aaron Hotchner!

Great episode!!


Laura_G said...


Thank you so much for taking the time to join the Fanatics in the chat room tonight. It is always a pleasure to have you there!

As I stated in the chat, you do such a great job with the characters and you really "get" them! Thanks for a great episode. Can't wait to watch it again and see what I missed!

alicew said...

Holly - Thank you so much for chatting with us! I only managed to see the first half of your episode before being interrupted, and it was terrific! Now I can't wait to see the rest of it.

Lee Allport said...

This episode was well written and well played. What a horrific beginning, the situation not the writing LOL! I hope we see more from Holly in the future!

Lee :)

Kirsten said...

Recap: House on Fire
Opening scene: Royal, Indiana (small town)
People of varying ages are getting tickets to see “The Blob”. There is the typical pre-movie buying of popcorn in a small lobby and selection of seats. Eventually the movie starts. The ticket booth goes dark. Viewers see the back of the unsub as he pours gas from a container all over the lobby and popcorn machine, as well as the entranceway (including the ticket booth).
Back to the movie and a young kissing couple notice smoke and yell ‘fire’. There is a mad rush to the lobby but it is too full of smoke and flames, so the crowd head back into through the theatre to get to the back doors. The hallway at this back end is very narrow and the doors will not open. A large cloud of noxious gas and fire is seen overhead.
Quantico, Midnight, 5hrs post fire:
JJ shows the tired-looking team (Hotch isn’t wearing a tie, must be early) a news-clip from the fire. There had been a delay in contacting the BAU because until this second fire, links had not been made to a Rec Centre blaze (killed 11or12) and 2 other fires that had been set after-hours at a convenience store and a restaurant. The Fire Chief thought he was dealing with an arsonist, not a murderer. The team realize that the arsonist is escalating, going from 0 victims to 31 in two fires. The agents also know that although not all arsonists are killers, they DO all share one thing: “once they start, they can’t stop.”

On the plane, the team begin to try to narrow their search field, discussing potential occupations and not ruling out first responders. They think that the unsub is local but has practiced somewhere else. Being in a small town, they realize they will need to profile the victims as well as the other members of the community. Garcia is called to be the “witch hunter”, asked to dig for secrets and connections between the 31 victims.
Arriving in town, Hotch and JJ go to a make-shift morgue and meet the town doctor. It is emphasized that everyone knows everyone; the doctor delivered 11 of the victims himself and inherited his practice from his father. Relatives from the victims have gathered, but Hotch gets the doctor to send them home, saying that large gatherings of townsfolk are not a good idea.
We then catch another glimpse of the unsub. He is pacing in a room, and our attention is drawn to a pair of glasses sitting on a table in the foreground.
Morgan and Prentiss visit the theatre, where they are told that the majority of the victims died of smoke inhalation although a couple were trampled. There were two points of origin to the fire: a fast-burning fire (more gas used) in the lobby and a slower burn in the back. Wooden matches were used and it was hypothesized that the slower fire was set first to ensure no one escaped. A main water line was also shut off. It was all designed so that even if the fire department responded quickly, they would not have been able to save the victims.
Rossi interviews the two EMTs, a young female and older man. The conversation emphasizes the smallness of the town, as Rossi says that the team will have to find answers to questions that people do not necessarily want to answer.
Garcia has completed her first round of searches and found too many connections between the victims in that there are plenty of third cousins and religious affiliations. There is also a pattern of small fires in a town called Franklin, 300 miles away. This isn’t narrow enough for the team, so Hotch tells Garcia to dig specifically for deeper secrets and enemies. Garcia tells him that she doesn’t want to profile people; that it isn’t in her job description but Hotch is adamant and adds that they don’t have much time.
In the next scene, the team and the town are in a church at a memorial service for the fire victims. They suspect the unsub will come to “watch the grief that he created” but instead, we hear the sound of fire engines and discover that there has been another fire. ‘Pop’s Place’ bar has burnt down. This doesn’t make sense to the profilers; they realize that someone at the bar was more important to the unsub than the witnessing of grief. The fire began in the kitchen at the back, and a cocktail was also thrown through a front window. Witnesses heard a large explosion. There is a brief flashback to the unsub watching. This fire represented a key turning point, as the unsub had changed. There were only 5 victims and chains were used to really make sure nobody got out the back of the bar. These victims become the real focus for Garcia, who uncharacteristically is not up to bantering with Morgan. She is finding all-too much dirt on the victims and simply wants to “go back to cyberspace.”
We see a quick flash of the unsub sitting on a couch, rocking.
The team deliver the profile. Reid talks about the unsub as a “revenge arsonist”. They suspect the fire-setter is a local who feels like an outsider and wishes to exert power over the community. He has gone from targeting the town as a whole to aiming at specific individuals.
At the hospital, Hotch and Rossi visit the only survivor of the bar fire, the bartender, Nancy. It is obvious that she will not live for long but she is able to tell them that she knew all the customers in the bar except for one man, who kept changing seats and seemed angry. She had seen nothing unusual; the owner Jason had come in to collect the money as per usual and left again. The interview is ended by the doctor when Nancy becomes very distressed.
Garcia continues her digging and profiling. She has found that people in the town take out lots of ads to communicate. Through discussion with Reid, Morgan et al, they realize that the unsub, whilst familiar with the theatre layout, didn’t know the bar very well and hence the frequent changing of seats. Garcia finds that the theatre is quite old, whereas the bar was built only a few years ago. The unsub may have left town for a period of time.
Again, a quick flash to the unsub. This time he is writing on a pad of paper: “all I asked for is one dance.”
Back to Garcia, who has discovered that the female EMT (Tina) had married Jason (bar owner); we get to see their wedding announcement ad. It turns out that Tina’s parents had died in a fire when she was 5yrs old. She and her brother Tommy were sent to live with grandparents out of town. The brother seems to have disappeared so Penelope continues her research. She finds that Jason may have been the target with the bar fire, due to his marriage to Tina. Tina essentially raised Tommy after their parents died and would have been the major contributor to his “love map”. Reid explains this map is created by the time a child hits 6years of age; it is a map of how to give and receive love. Tina had become Tommy’s mother, sister, best friend and by age 8, they even had their own language and were inseparable. People in the town began to talk that the siblings were too close. A phone call to Tommy’s old school uncovered the fact he was beaten by adults (almost to death) because of these rumours; he was sent away, out of town and no contact with his sister.
The pieces have fallen into place, so the agents go to Tina’s house only to find it empty and her cell phone still there; she didn’t report to work either. They realize that she is with Tommy, who will hurt her if she rejects him.
Garcia is STILL digging. While at boarding school, Tommy had less than stellar psych evals. Aged 16-21 is a big mystery, but he reappears at 21yrs old in Franklin, where he buys a large quantity of gasoline...
The town is locked down and the team is searching Tina’s house for clues as to where the siblings could have gone. Outwardly, there is no memory of Tommy, no photos, etc. However, Rossi finds a box in Tina’s room... old photos of her with her brother. Also in the box is a flyer for a town dance. Reid observes that the dance occurred shortly before Tommy’s beating.
The team, clad in Kevlar, head to the building that had hosted the dance. Tommy was there with Tina, telling her that he wants them to be together. Tina keeps repeating that it isn’t right. Tommy pictures other dancing couples, even when the FBI arrive. He kicks over a container of gas and lights a match, threatening to drop it. Hotch tells him that if Tommy really loves Tina, he should let her go. The match burns out and Tommy is taken into custody.
The closing scene has Garcia informing Hotch that she did not enjoy her profiling experience, did not choose it and it was severely limiting her ability to giggle. Her anger is deflated when Hotch says he only wanted to thank her very much for her contribution and that her work was an integral part of the team’s successes.


Helen said...

Basically what I have to say: Holy geez, massive, MASSIVE love for Garcia and massive, MASSIVE, MASSIVER love for Hotch! ;D (Is this coming as much of a surprise? :P).

What an awesome episode! I [i]love[/i] this episode, it had Garcia awesomeness, Hotch awesomeness, it had a case that I found so interesting and a fascinating new unsub. I felt sorry for him. Little squicked out, incest and/or thoughts of incest tend to do that, but things could have gone so differently if he was treated differently than that.

At the same time, I felt so bad for the victims and their families, because that is a horrible thing to happen to anyone. The first part was so hard for me, with those people in the movie theatre, and then seeing them laid out on the floor under those sheets. I really wanted to cry. So, very hard hitting episode as well.

Awesome job Holly Harold, you rock! And even though I couldn't attend the chat, thanks for doing it, because you know all the Criminal Minds Fanatics appreciate it!

Lanna said...

I liked this episode. I liked the fact that we got to see more of Garcia. Brilliant job KV. I also liked the fact that it put her in the position of dealing more with the profiling stuff, and it showed us how strong you need to be to do that job. And the amount of respect these people deserve, as it's not for everybody. So thanks a lot for reminding us that.

I loved the small town angle also. Just to show how things can get too much very easily when the others gang up on one. The incest twist was unexpected and original.

It was a cool episode. Thanks a lot Holly, KV and the whole team for a great epi :o)

BlueCurl said...

Amen! What an episode!

sherlockette said...

Thanks to Holly Harold for joining us in the chat last night and for writing such a great episode!

House on Fire demonstrated the dynamics of keeping secrets in a small town, and the effects that persecution and mistreatment can have on individuals and families. While everyone has secrets, in a small town there is no place for someone with the secret to go except for away. To be sent away is the ultimate rejection in a small, closed society.

Of course out team responded to the case with their usual professionalism. Garcia’s role was crucial, but I kind of wonder how did she find out all those secrets? Kudos to Kirsten, it was great seeing her again show Garcia’s frustration in having to look at the dark side. Nice Hotch response to her concerns.

Overall nice job

Lola said...

Great episode! The beginning was very touching! Also loved all the Garcia moments. But where was Reid...?

Anonymous said...

I haven't seen the entire episode yet. I usually don't get to it for a few. I start with the first few minutes, then get back to it. So here's how they went...

Opening...TG without a suit...kudos to whoever is listening to the ladies that asked for that, more TG w/o a suit, check. Businesslike, yet casual, those ladies must be thrilled. Is that yummy JM way in the background, on the desk, like a knickknack?? Yep...okay, Us girls with daddy fixations will wait, maybe it's not a JM week. Patience...patience...
Opening credits roll.
Airplane scene. TG, again (wow, those TG fans are having a great week, still trying to be happy for them). The camera is so close, you can see every line of concern as he speaks. Is that a new pore on his face? Wow, what a close shot! Looks good on him, that new pore. He's aging well, rugged. Looking good in his 40's, as men do. Much handsomer now then he was on Dharma and Greg. Great for those fans that are into those older men....
wait, that's me!!!!
Where's JM???
Yeah, for me, they pan over from what I can only imagine was an uncomfortably close position for the camera person and TG. Who do we find, right there, no knickknack position on a desk, at a shot so close, it made my night, oh, yes it is......JM!
HMM, HMM, Good! Seriously, so hot, I can't stand it. Freeze the DVR. Those eyes, those lips...lucky wife he has. The man is, well, YU-MEEE!
I had to stop there. But let's be real, even if I didn't HAVE to, I prob wouldn't have gotten past that scene. Thankyou Mr or Mrs/Miss Camera Person!!!!
He finally looks well again. He actually looked ill in "Demonology". In the scene outside when PB told him of her pregnancy. He looked thin and pale. Last week, he looked a little better. This week, back to dreamily handsome...oh, I mean, healthy :) Of course, healthy is what I meant to say! He looks (*sigh*......lucky wife indeed) healthy.
Finally, since it appears that the writers, (or whoever decides how the actors will look in the episode...costumes, make up) are listening to those fans that requested a few "suit free" TG scenes (a few weeks in a row I believe...uh, still...yay, TG fans..lucky, lucky fans!) I am renewing my request that JM go gray. (or whatever he is naturally) I caught a "Starter Wife" preview/commercial he was in. His hair was salt and pepper.
OMG!!!!! "nuff said!
Great show. Seriously. I've loved it since the beginning. Gotten better with time. More graphic now then it was in the beginning. Sometimes, shockingly so. Best show on television. This time I mean the writing. (Though I could still watch JM microwave popcorn!)

petra said...

I enjoyed JJ's comments about the small town mentality. She obviously dealt with similar situations when she was growing up. It was implied incest but it is reasonable to assume that since they grew up raised by their grandparents that they were just emotionally clinging to each other and that this bond was misinterpreted by the town. Feared what they couldn't understand.

Aimee said...

I agree that it wasn't really incest because they didn't physically act on it but I think to him it was incest. I think in his mind she was the only female figure he had and he loved her 'that way'. Tina didn't feel that way. The show is really pushing the envelope this season. Topics that they have not touched before now. I wonder if the writers feel the need to be bolder or if they think we have just become 'used to' the same old death and carnage. The arson storyline was a good one in this episode but I could have lived without the incest. I don't know how they could have explained his mental illness without it but I do wish they had tried. I thought about "A&D" throughout the whole episode. This episode had a more shocking opening teaser but as a whole it did not live up to "A&D" imho. No fault to the writer or the cast. They were great. Kirsten V. proved once again that she is aces.

Vali said...

Thank you for a great episode, Holly. I like it when we don't know right away who the perpetrator is. Very touching scenes, the dead bodies lined up in a big room, the burn victim in the ICU ...
The chat with you last night was great. Thank you so much for patiently answering our questions. Hugs to you!!!

AngelLeah said...

Thanks so much for joining the chat. I'm sorry I couldn't be there (Cub Scout duties called).
What a wonderfully written episode. Keep up the great work.


Anonymous said...

Great job Holly! Sorry I missed the chat but the episode was touching and is always a scary thought for me. The actors were great... small towns can be tough...poor kid...they had no one else. The bodies lined up... visually difficult.

Great job, can't wait to see what Holly has for us next!


cmwinner said...

Thanks to Holly for joining us in the chat room! It was a lot of fun to have you there with us!

babruin said...

It was a very touching episode with great acting by Kirsten being affected by her job. Keep on downloading those baby panda pictures,sweetie and you can wonk on!!!!! I enjoyed the nice talk by Hotch at the end to let her know she is soooo essential to the team.
Not much Reid again but at least he was extremely decorative when he's not as functional.
Sorry to miss the chat as I was out of town but a huge thank you to Holly for taking the time to talk about the episode!!! It's always great to get the inside scoop!!!

Liska said...

Nice episode, I was touched by involving Garcia in such unusual way in the investigation...
And a great THANK YOU to Holly Harold for coming to chat yesterday!

Anonymous said...

I loved all the Morgan/Garcia interaction. I almost started to cry at the beginning with all the bodies it was a really emotional episode through and through, the outrage at the small town people for their contribution to the unsubs mental state and many others, I loved this episode. Thanks to Holly for chatting with us last nite.

Ann said...

Holly your episode was fantastic! The visual effects were outstanding. It was awesome to see Garcia in the role of a profiler, but she definately needs to stick to cyberspace & do what she does best. It really hit me when Garcia was going on about how she had done the same thing the townspeople had done & made her judgements based on the rumor.

Great, great episode!

lorriegirl said...

Great episode, Holly! And thanks for chatting with us, it was great to hear about your experience writing the show.

elle said...

First of all, thank you so much for chatting with us Holly! Your first CM episode was amazing and so was this one!
Honestly this did bring Ashes and Dust back to my mind in a few moments but i liked that fact. It was the burn victim in the icu and the serial arsonist that did it. But they also are two very distinct episodes. This one explored the idea of family more with the brother and sister. It was an interesting contrast to see the sister who was able to move past her grief and live a normal life versus the brother who couldn't get past it and became the unsub. The fires were more about revenge than a message as in A&D. Okay I'll stop before I write a whole essay on the similarities and differences.
I also loved the bringing back of the Morgan/Garcia banter which was missing for a few episodes. Also loved the Hotch/Garcia scene at the end: "I know you see the good in people Penelope and I would never want you to change." So true. It was interesting to see her doing more profiling and how hard it was for her stressing once again the thoughness of the job.
Great episode Holly and I look forward to your next one!

Anonymous said...

Lola asked: But where's Reid...?

Apparently he's back at the police station manning the coffee pot. It's all the writers seem to find for him to do these days.

Anonymous said...

Reid Centric episodes:
The Big Game
Elephants Memory
The Instincts (and the other part of that 2 parter)

Huge chunks of Jones, Fear and Loathing.

I understand you miss him, but after 4 seasons, let the Hotch etc fans get a turn!!!! ;)

Good epi... creepy stuff.... KV is awesome.... TG is fabulously handsome, special treat again no suit.

atircuit said...

The beginning was the most freakish horrific thing I've seen on the show. Well written, but horrible to watch.

As far as Reid, he contributed two very important aspects to the case -right at the start he caught that there was a connection between the nuisance fires and the unsub (only 7% use wooden matches, so that was something to keep in mind) and he picked up on Tommy knowing the layout of some places but not others and figured out that he might have grown up there but moved away so some places might be new to him. And, then the call back to Elephant's Memory, although he's learned to be much calmer about it. So, while he didn't have a lot of screen time, the time he did have was not just being decorative. It was useful. And, JJ showing her feelings of growing up in a small town. And, Morgan with Prentiss at the start and figuring out the unsub's methods and then explaining to the firefighter the difference in how profilers look at something like a lock. I thought they all either contributed something or had a nice character scene that fit them and their background or history.

But, this was really Garcia's episode and I loved her. And, I think she was pitch perfect in reactions and dialogue, from saying she was all out of witty and banter and struggling with love, and being upset that having to dig into people's lives affected her ability to giggle. Honestly, Garcia should have gotten one or both quotes in this episode. I've always loved how things effect Garcia, she doesn't have any protective walls, she doesn't want to have the walls, and even so, she's extremely strong. This showed it.

And, I loved the scene at the end with her and Hotch. Perfectly in character for both of them, and I love the respect it shows from him to take the time to check on her and thank her, and how comfortable she is with him that she's not afraid to let him know just how hard it was for her to do all that. But, my favorite thing is still her being upset that she lost her ability to giggle, if only for a time.

sindee said...

Wow, so different comments...

Can't wait to see the episode finally.

CU sindee

gbraeme71 said...

Well, I just watched, House on Fire, and though it was interesting to see another Garcia's face, more serious, I have to admit not to have enjoyed this episode! -> Hotchner could congratule and thanks her as seeing as she made staff's work almost alone, closed i her little room full of screens and pictures and files. I wondered what's happened with others members of the team, they looked like a bit lost even absent in this episode. Ok I know that it was focused on Peneloppe Garcia but come one, she is not a profiler but "only" a computer analyst so why this will to change that. Did she really need to live and feel what her colleagues had to assume (violence, blood, depth, suffering morally and physically) everydays in thir job?! -> we like this character because she is the only one to know smiling, laughing, teasing her friends, flirting, supporting people etc... and there, nothing. They were all too serious, sad like their bosses!
And worst, she was alone (where were JJ and Derek? -> only Hotchner came and talked to her at the end...
And for the story, a poor guy, being in love with a young girl but rejected by the rest of people, who became disturbed at the point to be a "monster" in using fire like a air of "déjà vu"! :-(
No, really, I didn't like this episode but again, a good point to Garcia and her performer...but I mss her smile/giggle during the whole episode!

Lori said...

Holly, thank you so much for joining us in chat last night. You have given us two wonderful episodes this season.

I really liked the similarities between the small town in the episode and the small town in The Blob - if you haven't seen the original movie, you should see it. There are lots of correlations between the two.

Garcia was fabulous. We never see her frazzled, except in FK1&2 when her system was hacked, so this was especially insightful, seeing her away from her computer, pacing, acting like a profiler. I loved her little hotchalanche to Hotch when she said doing that affected her ability to giggle and made her brain wonky, and I love that he told her how valuable she is to the team.

Thanks again, Holly for a great episode. We love having you as a member of the CM family.

RMF said...

A good, solid effort without being a knockout like last week. The opening scene in the theater was reminiscent of some horrifying real-life news stories about people who were trapped in rinky-dink movie theaters when a fire broke out because the owner had blocked the emergency exits. Hotch still had a prominent role this week and was used effectively, and Garcia got an uncharacteristically large amount of screen time. Due to the time constraints in catching the arsonist and the wealth of information to process, Garcia has to try her hand at profiling and ends up with more than she bargained for. Prying into people's lives is creepy for your average person, and discovering that practically everyone had an unwholesome secret is even more so. The fact that everyone in the small town was connected in some way made the task even more complex, as she had to sort out which connections were actually significant. The pathos of the unsub's situation was stark, and really gave a believable reason for him to lash out at the town in a vicious way. I liked Hotch's acknowledgment that they were on a witch hunt but had to prevent the townspeople from realizing it. The irony of it was that the whole tragedy had its roots in a prior witch hunt.

And Kirsten Vangsness, bless her heart, never looks like she's acting. She's gifted that way.


Good episode. The firsrt scene chilled me.
Really really really creepy.
I get easilly empatic and I can't think "it's only fiction", so I was totally HORRIFIED and stuck on my chair.
Lack of Reid to console me also chilled me. *sigh* He seems to be slowly desappearing from the show...

Nate said...

I just saw the episode yesterday, and I was like "Wow, what an episode." You did a wonderful work Holly! Can't wait for more episodes from you!
I loved Hotch in casual clothes at the beginning of the episode. :) The case was really really tough. All the dead bodies in the hall. They really got me. And the woman from the bar. OMG, poor poor her.
The end was wonderful, too. What a great Hotch/Garcia moment.
Thank you again for chatting with us Holly. Hope you'll come back soon.

jackie said...

I haven't had a chance to view
this episode in its entirety
due to my work schedule going up
and down like a yo-yo, and
being all over the board, but
from what i have seen so far,
i have loved it. Holly, you
have done an awesome job once
again! I loved how Hotch made
Garcia a profiler even though
she didn't want to be one,
because that was not what she
signed up for. Hotch got tough
and stern with her, and in the
end, i loved how he came and
in not so many words, apologized
for doing that to her.
He even told her how much he
appreciated the work she did
for the team, and understood
that it isn't easy for her to
have to look at some of the
stuff they do(profilers)but she
did in this instance because
he needed some one that could
look into backgrounds without
being seen or the people knowing
that some one(Garcia)was looking
into their backgrounds.
I thought every one did a great
job on this episode from what
i have seen so far.
I will be back to post again,
after i have seen the episode
from start to finish.
Great job Criminal Minds!
I can't waite for the next
new episode in two weeks.

Photo Tim said...

Can someone please tell me the quote about love/madness that was at the end, and who said it?

Shadow said...

This was a very cruel episode. Did we ever have that many victims on a case? 36 dead and one burn victim on the verge of dying? The scene in the makeshift morgue really got to me.

The opening sequence had the look and feel of a 70s disaster movie, and another Steve McQueen film came to my mind, if only for the fire aspect - The Towering Inferno. Especially the scene in the cinema where the flames crept along the ceiling was pretty impressive, kudos to the special effects department.

Lots of Hotch and Garcia in this episode, but enough of the rest of the team as well. Glad I’m not the only one who saw parallels to ‘Elephant’s Memory’ in addition to A&D, and of course ‘Compulsion’ came to mind, too. The sheer amount of victims and the special situation in that small town made it necessary to recruit Garcia for tasks she doesn’t have to take on usually. She was great in this episode and it was natural that this new duty took a toll on her. I liked the Hotch Garcia scene in the end - it reminded me of ‘What fresh hell?’ where Hotch sent Garcia flowers on Gideon’s behalf and reminded Gideon that it’s necessary to show appreciation to the people working with him. Hotch really sticks true to his standards.

I wonder what happened to JJ in that small town she grew up in? Was she the victim of some unjustified rumors as well? I sense some stuff for a future episode on JJ, I really want to find out why she despises small town life that much.

The scene with the burn victim was hard to watch, but very touching. I liked it that she was shown as a human being and treated with respect despite the fact that she was burnt beyond recognition. I also appreciate it that in A&D as well as in ‘House on Fire’ the senior agents took on the demanding task of talking to the severely maimed victim.

Thanks to Holly for coming to chat with the fans, even if I couldn’t make it to the chat this time. I really appreciate how much dedication the whole CM crew shows to us fans. You all rock!

Mnemosphere said...

Coming late, but nonetheless thrilled by the episode, it was just brilliant and clever and made you feel for both unsub and victims... it conveyed sadness and fear perfectly. The characters were brilliant, actors flawless, really a great achievement!

Of course, special mention for Kirsten Vangness who was so moving, and the lovely scene between Hotch and Garcia at the end...

Anonymous said...

Finally got to see Fire. I am sorry to say this is the first CM I really hated. It was way off it seemed to me. A small town full of mean hateful people?? Come on.
Garcia was the only good thing and her part didn't seem right either. Hope we don't get more like this one. Sorry.

Jasmine* said...

This was an amazing episode..seeing more of Penelope, her interaction with Morgan :D and Hotch taking care of his team !! I just love this group so much.
In the beginning watching the fire was sooo sad and that women who was burned in the bar was just extremely sad.

Blümchen said...

I´m late. sorry It was a great ep. Creepy at the beginning but brilliant filmed with the panic people in the theatre and the panic at the movie screen.
The scene with the burn victim was hard to watch, and very touching.
Love the end when Hotch called Garcia Penelope. She is always the sun in the team. Fantastic acting Kirsten!!
The makeup people did also a great job.
Holly, thanks for this ep!!

gubegirl said...

Another great, unusual episode, very well done with constant reminders of how much crime and "illness" there is out there in the world today.

I loved seeing Garcia in this juicy part and Hotch was fabulous in the parenting role - how sad he has to do this for work and doesn't get to do much in his personal life (on the show, I mean) -they were both great.

The burn victim was unbelievably real and I shudder to have to know what she must have experienced.

As far as Reid not being HUGE in this epi - I've said it before and I'll say it again: we all have our favorites (and Reid is def mine) but there is no way that they can be showcased equally all the time to suit everyone. And why should they? This is an ensemble cast, working together as a team and we have gotten to see TONS of Reid in every season, more of Prentiss than we have ever seen, lots of Hotch and Rossi this season and now more of Garcia since the last time when she was shot - very dif now - and a fair amount of Morgan and JJ now that she's back, as well.

It probably comes out even at the end of each season but it cannot come even at the end of every show. Does that make sense?

As much as I adore watching MGG, the entire cast and show is so good, I am content to wait to see more of him next time...or the time after that.

Be patient! He'll be back! and he'll be be as gorgeous and endearing as ever!