Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Criminal Minds spoiler thread for "Brothers in Arms" written by Holly Harold and directed by Glenn Kershaw. - A BAU case hits close to home for Morgan, who was a cop before joining the team, when a serial killer specifically focuses on members of the police force in Phoenix, Ariz.

**Beware of the spoilers in the comments**

***Criminal Minds writer Holly Harold will be in the chat room on Wed at 10pm est to discuss the episode***

****Quotes and song info will be posted after the episode airs****


Anonymous said...

Can't wait till tomorrow!

Anonymous said...

OMG, do I need a CM fix! Two weeks is a l-o-n-g time and the old A&E repeats just don't do it anymore...
after the Gube and the girls being showcased the past few epis, now it's Morgan's turn...whoo-hoo!

Deirdre said...

I can hardly wait. It seems like forever since we've had a new episode! I'm curious to see how they handle the Morgan backstory!

Unknown said...

I'm counting the moments...literally!!

Anonymous said...

i have 2 hours 10min to waite,

Anonymous said...

Awesome episode! Holly rocked!

Ztivokreb said...

This was such an awesome ep, the team keeping strong, keeping their authority, while not forgetting that their fellow LEO's are in danger and being picked off by a psycho.

Great job.

Kirsten said...

Loved the epi, great job Holly, and beauty twist at the end! A perfect birthday gift for some friends and a fab way to end my 2-wk CM withdrawl.

kelltrek said...

Watching Hotch being followed was TOO much! I jumped and scared the cat off my lap. So intense and the music really makes it spooky. Great episode.

Anonymous said...

ehh.... gonna have to watch this one again.... the unsub / case was horrible (ie killing cops), but I don't know how I feel about the epi yet. *shrug*

Ann said...

Awesome episode!! I loved the fight club twist that lead to the unsub. Didn't see that one coming at all. And my heart stopped for a couple beats while Hotch was being followed by the unsub!! Great stuff!!

Anonymous said...

Very good episode. Loved the beginning with the cops.

Anonymous said...

Hotch being used as bait was a new twist. Had me going there for a minute. Can't have our Hotch hurt.

Morgan's story was interesting.

Anonymous said...

I was sitting on the edge of my seat from the beginning of this episode. I've always respected and appreciated the risks our police officers take everyday to keep the public safe. With this script and the idea that someone would intentionally target the special individuals that take the responsibility to ensure out safety just made me want to cry. Lt. Evan rubbed me the wrong way, way too cocky. It was nice to finally see him looking outside the box. Fight Club seem to be pretty dominant lately in the crime shows. I really respected how Hotchner put the bull's eye on his back. I like how, as always, the two departments come together to catch the bad guy. Ultimately, I don't know if justice was served. The final scene with Derek and Sam was heartwarming.

Anonymous said...

I asked Holly in chat: In the spoiler cast, they had Morgan's dad, and a young Morgan - but that wasn't shown. Did you cut it or never shoot it?

Holly answered: That was what we call a "widow" from an earlier version of the story -- we never actually shot that scene. stop

Me: I think it is interesting to see what makes the cut. Awesome episode!

Laura_G said...

Great episode Holly. Very charged, very real, very CM! I can't believe this is your first CM certainly didn't feel like it. You did an awesome job!!!

Thank you so much for coming to chat with us tonight. You are such a great addition to the writing team.

Anonymous said...

thank you for coming to chat with us Holly and sharing part of how you make your decisions as a writer.
Nice to see Morgan playing a key role - and using his experience in the case. Not nice having a target on Hotch's back - nail biting time !
the ending with Morgan at the funeral was very moving. Seeing interactions between the BAU and local police forces is always interesting..
Looking forward to your next eps !

Anonymous said...

Excellent episode!

From the first few moments my pulse started racing and didn't stop for the entire show.

Holly really had a fresh take on a lot of things...cops being the victims, the unsub's motivation being a self-esteem issue, Morgan being the soft and soothing one...I loved that the episode was tough - and that a woman wrote it!

I thought the team's insistance that the local leos didn't have the right suspect was very well done - strong, but not overbearing.

And Holly, thank you for the chat!
It was great to talk with you the way, your writing "process" sounds an awful lot like mine!

I am looking forward to your next episode!

Kirsten said...

Thanks for coming to chat with us, Holly! And as a hotch gal, i LOVED the fact that he stepped up to be the bait... now that i know he's fine! lol! Thanks again.

Anonymous said...

Holly, thank you so much for joining us in the chat tonight. It is always so interesting to learn about the creative process and ideas you have while writing the episode. And what an episode!

I was totally enthralled the whole time! From the very beginning with the sergeant teaching the rookie to be aware of where he is and his surroundings to the very end when they tricked the unsub. WONDERFUL.

This episode was very moving, with police officers the target of a serial killer. It is a scary thought to have police officers afraid to serve and protect because someone is hunting them.

This was very nicely rounded, team-wise, everyone contributed. We got a little Morgan backstory, we learned his father was a cop who was killed doing his job, and it was reiterated that Morgan had been a cop once upon a time. His scene with Sam at the end was very touching, and so like Morgan to try to give comfort to the little boy who lost his father.

Hotch is so smart, having Garcia look up similar crimes, not targeting police, and finding the stressor, or the start of the spree and leading back to the fight club to find the unsub. Very nicely done.

And then the public announcement with Hotch making himself the target. Scary! The scene with the slo-motion was very cool, turning out to be a false alarm, and then back at the station seeing Hotch get out of his car and the unsub in the background following him. YIKES. It was totally cool, the unsub turning the corner, and no Hotch, only to turn around and having Hotch there with a gun leveled at him! And then Morgan coming up on the other side. BUSTED!

Having the gangbanger, Playboy, pushing his way through the crowd and shooting the unsub reminded me of Jack Ruby killing Lee Harvey Oswald after Oswald killed Jack Kennedy. Very nice touch.

Holly, you did a great job, and we are so glad you are writing for CM.

Thanks for a GREAT episode.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on an outstanding first episode, Holly!

I was completely absorbed in it - the hour flew by. You have really got the CM groove.

jackie said...

I have to say congratulations
and a job well done Holly on
your first episode of Criminial
Minds! You definately knocked
this one out of the ball park.
I had to watch this when i
got home from work, but the waite
to see it was well worth it.
I loved how they used Hotch as
bait, and at the end, my
blood was really pumping when
the unsub started to follow
Hotch. I really thought
something was going to happen to him. When Hotch stepped behind the van, and the unsub thought he had lost him and then he turned
around, and bam, there was
Hotch staring him in the face with his gun, i jumped out of my skin, that is how scared i was.
You did an excellent job of
letting every one know just what
an officer goes through day
in and day out to protect
the citizens in their city. They really don't know when they go out for their shift, if they are going to come back safe and sound. So, it was a well rounded episode, and i truly loved it from beginning to end. There was not a single thing that i didn't like.
Great job Holly on your first episode, and you are a great addition to the Criminal Minds family. You really Rock, and i can't waite to see your next episode and what you have in store for our awesome/incredible team.

A Criminal Minds fan said...

Holly, great first episode!

So much that I love about the episode, action, lots of it, the pace was fast, interesting unsub who went after the toughest guys in town, cops! The music was great, it did highlight the action scenes.

Great scene between Morgan and the gangbanger. Morgan did talk the guy language, tough guy, telling him how things are and getting into the guy head.

Interesting unsub, the guy is a loser but he keeps taking on bigger, tougher targets. Of course after going after the cops, who are the top guys in town? the FBI! So, after seeing Hotch on the tv, clearly making himself the unsub next target, the unsub couldn't resist to try and get the biggest target, one of the BAU unit chief!

Interesting take on the cops vs FBI mentality. Very close knitted those cops even if the FBI was there to help them.

Random scenes that I liked: the fight club scenes, the scene with Morgan and Hotch going to the unsub house and Hotch with that big shutgun, look very menacing!
The opening scene with the older cops explaining to the younger cop how he should always be aware where he is at all time.

a few things I notice, not much of Todd or Rossi. Reid had a small part in it but lots of Morgan Hotch and Prentiss in many scenes.

All and all a great episode without any dull moment, the hour went so fast! With an episode that good, I can wait for your next one Holly!

Anonymous said...

Really liked the camera work in this episode. Great work.

The episode was rivoting. Hotch will a shotgun was a new thing to add to his resume.

The unsub was total drek.

Cops rule and unsubs drool.

Anonymous said...

Great job by our new writer. Intense episode. Next week's promo for AW's episode looks fantastic!!

LoraLee said...

First, thank you, Holly, both for writing such a terrific episode and for coming to chat with us tonight.

I loved this episode, there was a lot going on, and I think we were in a little bit of danger of testosterone poisoning, but there’s worse things in life.

Right from the teaser, I could feel the excitement building, I love the interplay between the first two cops, the veteran officer teaching the rookie the object lesson of “always know where you are.” It really made me connect with them instantly, which of course, made what happened all that much worse. (I always like an emotional connection.)

The level of resistance when they arrived in Phoenix was stronger than we’ve seen before, I really liked the way Hotch and Morgan (the two tough guys) coaxed the locals into cooperating with them and letting them in. And the way the LEOs were so certain they knew who the killer was (back to that testosterone poisoning) strangely emotional to me. They hurt so much that the first answer must be the right one, because then it will be over.

I enjoyed the head fake with the out-of-profile, daytime, blitz attack on the two cops. It makes you think how many real-world criminals get off for exactly that. One sneaks his crime into another’s pattern, and they both wind up with alibis for some of the crimes? Scary.

I was a little worried that Reid was going to get shot when the lieutenant was saying that being a gangbanger automatically shortens your life expectancy, and Reid comes back with “so does being a cop.” Good thing the lieutenant was the “calm” cop.

Hotch sure knows how to work under pressure. “Give us 24 hours.” “You’ve got four.” “Okay. Where’s my bull’s-eye flak jacket?” When he gave that press conference my first thought was poor guy must miss JJ right now, he has to do his own. Then he started talking - or should I say taunting? Very well-written call out to the unsub. No way was he going to pass on that one.

I think that’s the first time Hotch has played bait; am I right? I liked it.

I love Garcia and her babies tonight. She put on a good show, histories and satellite images, both current and for the last twelve hours. She really showed why she’s been designated to the team. She can anticipate their needs so well, and knows just what questions to ask to fine-tune her searches.

And that red dress tonight was the bomb. I sit here looking down at my t-shirt and comfy pants and with I had a quarter of her style.

The red herring call was great. Hotch looked great carrying the rifle as they entered the apartment. No sign that they already knew it was a decoy, “we’re going in like it’s the real thing - ‘cause it just might be.” Then so calmly telling the - was he a chief? - the head LEO that they expected a few false leads. (I’m a Reid lover and frequently join in the complaints when he gets left behind, but I was glad this time when we knew the unsub was gunning for the team - hey, quit with the tomatoes, Gubelettes).

When Hotch stopped to talk on his phone I felt the unsub coming, but I didn’t know whether it was a close call coming, or whether it was a trap for the unsub. That was a very dangerous move. I was biting my nails waiting to see what was going to happen. Boy was I glad to see Morgan.

And the (first) ending - one word: WOW. I never saw that coming. I saw Playboy leaving, and I figured he was going to yell or get into it with the cops - I never expected him to shoot the unsub. Especially where he was guaranteed to get caught.

The second ending was so perfectly Morgan. Staying for the cop’s funeral, talking to the little boy. Sometimes kids get left out in those situations, and Morgan would know exactly how that feels, it was just “right” for Morgan to do that.

I’m really looking forward to more from our new writer, Holly Harold. She has a great grasp on the characters we all love. I can already tell she’s going to fit in perfectly.

Anonymous said...

Great episode. Loved the ending. Seeing him go to the funeral was a very nice touch.

Deirdre said...

It was a good solid episode but wouldn't be one of my favourites. I really enjoyed it, there was a good case, lots of tension and real emotion in it. I liked how Morgan was portrayed as calm, thinking and not the hot headed, physical Morgan that sometimes appears.

Anonymous said...

Many thanks to Holly Harold for joining us in chat last night. There were lots of diverse questions-just goes to show the audience enjoys the show for a lot of different reasons. Holly you did a great job with the questions!

The editing of this episode was excellent, even though there was a lot of action with fight club scenes and police responses. If I have to have a lot of action, I like it to be seamless, and it definitely was put together well.

Nice job Shemar and Thomas! There was definitely a lot of fast paced and emotional dialogue in this one.

Technically this one was pretty accurate. Officer shootings are chaotic and emotional for police and for the community they serve. People like a quick resolution, and demand it. The more pressure to resolve a case the greater chances are something will be missed. Emotions tend to rule, unfortunately for the criminal case that is not a good thing. This epi definitely had emotion.

I liked it.

Anonymous said...

Wow! This was such a fantastic episode. Very intense, very disturbing. The Criminal Minds team did a great job, especially Holly Harold. Congrats on another great week!

Anonymous said...

That was really intense. I loved it. Plus, did you notice that Hotch carried the shotgun as a lefty? Normally, he shoots right. Very Cool!!!

Anonymous said...

I was a little disappointed that the scene with Morgan's father was not there. The episode was good, but I think I like hot head Morgan better. Or maybe mix up the the calm vision with the hot head vision some. The scene with the "Playboy" was very good however.

Anonymous said...

The case itself was very interesting and I think there was a broader theme to this episode than usual and I liked that. I think it was a shout out to fallen policemen and the difficult jobs they do everyday walking into harms way to keep us safe. Derek's line about cops never knowing what they are walking into was especially true. I was happy to have the show back. I hate when we miss a week.

Anonymous said...

Interesting episode. Lots to like. Surprisingly great episode for a new writer. She hit all the characters perfectly. No flaws. The unsub left me cold. I wanted to slap him down.

Anonymous said...

Loved this episode. Thank you so much.
I really loved how the team dealt with the resistance of the police. How Morgan kept his cool (he usually is a bit impulsive) and loved Hotch giving the press release and being followed by the usub (that was scary).
Thanks Holly!

kelltrek said...

Criminal Minds RULES in the Wednesday night overnight ratings. Way to go, Holly!

Anonymous said...

Wow, I think it's sooo cool that Holly wrote such a riveting,testosterone-filled story full of violent imagery but balanced with the pathos of fallen comrades. At first I thought I had happened on to a Guy Ritchie filmfest!!!!! Nice start and the characters'voices rang true,too.
Hotch was coolly giving out orders. Prentiss, you go with the big boys to kick down some doors with Morgan and Rossi. Reid, you stay here and watch over the coffee pot. With the unsub being so accurate in shooting the head and neck area, a beautiful mind would be a terrible thing to waste.
Nice tribute to the families who suffer when cops fall in the line of duty.

Bb88 said...

It was a an okay episode, not as chilling as previous eps of the same sort. Still I felt for the officers being gunned down like that. I was glad we finally got confirmation that Morgan's dad was a cop. It makes what happened to him in Profiler/Profiled somewhat baffling. Usually cops protect other cops kids as they grow up yet those guys had no loyalty towards Derek and his family. I wonder if it was because he was black or because his father could have been corrupt?

What I really missed was JJ's presence. Never have I missed her diplomacy skills and sunny confidence than here. I feel she really would have helped the situation between the cops and the reporters and controlled that much better. She instantly would have smoothed the problems over between the chief and his detectives etc instead of it escalating like that. Really what was Todd even there for, other than introducing the case she was non existent this episode. Heck she doesn't even intro the team like JJ does. She should have been handling the press, running interfere with the detectives and cops and keeping the team informed on what the cops were planning. I think JJ would have picked up on the plan to catch Playboy and try to pin the crime on him and warned the others. Why Todd even came with them is odd. Of course it was all made that way to create the ending but still if JJ had still been present would they have written the episode the same way? It would have made her look completely useless and incompetent.

I guessed the ending the moment they didn't find the unsub at that place. I must say that shot of Hotch walking back to the station while the unsub was stalking him was creepy. The others must have hid behind one of the vehicles and waited. Hotch was so on this ep. Frustrated but on. Again he had more work thanks to JJ's absence and it's clear while he is a great profiler he's not the best communicator,lol.Prentiss was good as well, though there was something in the beginning between her and Todd. When she asked why this still couldn't be a gang problem she gave Todd a really odd confused look as if Todd was being standoffish with her or something. The shot was just really weird.

I'm getting kinda bored with some of the unsubs this season. This one was really boring, all we got was a supposed profile of what may have happened to the guy, told to all people fight club members. It didn't come off as dramatic or interesting as previous unsubs. I yearn for a Henkel or a Frank, unsubs that were interesting before you even met them. They gave you the chills with their crime scenes. This one was a bore, a non dis script male who didn't even get any lines I think. And they are repeating the same crime only with regular people next ep. A little redundant for the show.

Anonymous said...

I liked this episode. Saying that first, because I also feel it wasn't the best episode (and somehow phrasing it like that always looks to me like code for "it was a step above horrible" which isn't what I mean at all). Probably the most accurate description was reliable, with some very good moments sprinkled out. From the spoilers, particularly the one with the non filmed flashback, I thought this would be more character based than case based (and I prefer the character episodes). But, it was a good, interesting case based episode, with enough of Morgan to satisfy me. Not so much about learning more about him, but getting to see him work his experience and insights, which I appreciated. And, getting to see him not be action man. The interrogation of Playboy was excellent - and I usually don't care for Morgan's interrogations. Morgan with the cop who's partner got shot was also a moving scene. I could have done without the funeral, since it didn't seem to add or give us anything new to what we had already seen when he attended another cop's funeral in Fear and Loathing. I also found the back and forth between him and the antagonistic cop interesting to watch. And, as combative as that cop was, I did find his "ya'll are going to jail" line with the fight club men funny, particularly his delivery.

I loved the Hotch stuff. Having to work with commander who just wanted it all to go away, and who was feeling pressure from his bosses and his cops who resented the FBI. It's an angle they haven't really focused on before, so it was interesting to see. And, it was completely fitting that in this situation, Hotch did the press conference, and not Jordan. Or JJ, if she had been there. It wasn't a matter of skill, but of who the unsub would take the bait from. And, I don't get surprised that easily, but I actually did think Hotch might be in some danger (not of dying - no news of cast change) but of getting non fatally shot.

So, not spectacular, but a good showing. Reliable.

respectanimals said...

Great episode! One of my favorites for this season so far. Very well written.

I had to try really hard not to cry at the funeral and I actually cheered the gang member on when he shot the unsub after they caught him. I loved that Hotch ended up putting the bullseye on himself, therefore protecting the police. I also liked how they weaved the Fight Club into the case. I also liked the opening scene between with the rookie cop being taught by the experienced cop. I also liked Morgan's interrogation scene. Basically I liked just about everything in this episode. And all of the cast was wonderful, as usual, but I especially loved Hotch and Morgan in this one.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Thank you for an awesome episode Holly! As a Morgan girl I really was looking forward to this one and you did not dissapoint. I loved the ending reminded me a bit of the end of Profiler Profiled which was a nice continuity thing. Frankly I cannot believe it was Holly's first CM episode it was so well done!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for an awesome episode Holly! As a Morgan girl I really was looking forward to this one and you did not dissapoint. I loved the ending reminded me a bit of the end of Profiler Profiled which was a nice continuity thing. Frankly I cannot believe it was Holly's first CM episode it was so well done!

Anonymous said...

I also liked the opening scene between with the rookie cop being taught by the experienced cop.

Yes, I forgot that. I liked it, too. And, the experienced cop telling the other that he's not a sir, he's his partner. Which made them more real when they were killed.

Anonymous said...

This was more of a plot driven episode rather than a character driven one. Myself, I prefer stories that have rich character development, so I was disappointed and felt that the Morgan story line was not developed enough, and the unsub remained an unsub--that is, I knew very little about him except for the bare bones.

I noticed that the credits had Morgan's dad and young Morgan, so was disappointed to see neither. I guess someone decided to cut that bit. Too bad.

Anonymous said...

Great ep. I really liked how the Team had to be so diplomatic with the local police, who felt they knew what was going on. I'll bet that really happens quite a bit. The whole team did a great job, esp. Hotch and Morgan, and the police detective was a good character, as well.

lisamaesc said...

We (husband, son and I) watched the show for the first time last night. It was really good.

I have a question. The police chief or the head guy in the police station played on a sitcom a few years ago. I can't figure out who he is for the life of me. Can anyone help with that?

Anonymous said...

Lisamaesc: Joe R. was on Murphy Brown with Candace Bergen-played a great character!

As far as last nite's epi, for the first few minutes, I thought I had it on the wrong channel, like maybe I was watching "The Shield" or was different in other ways too.

I did not like the cocky guy playing the cop that was so anti-Feds-he was really full of himself. He gives cops a bad name.

I don't think Jordan should have given the press conference - Hotch needed to do that himself to dangle himself at the unsub. It worked - almost too well. I was scared too, watching him walk in that dark parking lot with the unsub tailing him. The Playboy taking the unsub down was a surprise to me, I didn't see it coming, but I thought of the Jack Ruby thing, too!

Hotch usually shoots right? Don't remember that..he is a lefty otherwise, I think, writing and all.

Morgan was WONDERFUL in talking to the gangbanger, Playboy. He was also great at interacting with the cops and relating his story to show empathy and get close to them.

But the end with him hanging around for the funeral - that seemed a bit contrived to me, didn't feel natural altho' I think he is also great with kids, from Profiler, Profiled.

If this was Holly's first effort, I think she did a great job letting everybody do what they do best. The entire epi kept my attention, but it was different and I think maybe not hearing or seeing much of the unsub until the end may have had something to do with it. But it seemed very realistic to me.

I'm happy - it was good to see all our faves again!I love them all!

Anonymous said...

i like last night criminal minds. it was so different . morgan was great. and hotch was very he set the shooter up

Anonymous said...

While it made the epi drag out kind of long, I think they had to show Morgan at the funeral with the kid..... he wouldn't be Morgan if he didn't go. He is way too much the self appointed guardian of the helpless... he could never walk away

Walburga Benker said...

A great, very real ep, thanks so much Holly.
A spooky moment when Hotch being followed, i bite on my nails. Love the end with Morgan and the Kid. Yeah, that´s him.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Holly, on a great first episode!

That was good, solid CM - no experiments, no wrongs, some nice twists, good profiling work and a lot of interesting angles to think about. All fitted very well into what we’re used to from the show.

What I especially liked about this episode was that though it was Morgan centered, it didn’t focus too obviously on him. We learned a lot about Morgan, but it fitted well into the case and the character part didn’t dominate the story. Morgan really had a difficult childhood and it’s amazing how much he seemed to be at peace with what had happened to him as a child and how he can use his experiences both to get his job done and to empathize with his fellow human beings. I enjoyed it that we got to see more than Action-Morgan. Especially the scenes with the survivor cop and with the little boy were touching.

While the unsub remained a bit pallid the gangbanger was an impressive personality and the fight club leader totally gave me the creeps. So we had two strong dubious characters which on my part made up more than enough for the weaker portrayal of the unsub.

I also liked Hotch being the bait and drawing the unsub’s attention away from the police to himself. The scene at the parking lot was really suspenseful. And I loved the Shakespeare quote!

Good job, Holly, looking forward to your next episode!

Anonymous said...

What a great hour of television. This episode kept me on the edge the entire time.
And how clever is this team? More clever than any unsub, that's for sure. (I wonder if we are ever getting one that beats this team.)
Now, putting Hotch in peril? I don't know if my poor heart can't take that.
And fight club? Ha! Well, we all know those things exist. But let's not talk about them.

Holly, I'm sorry I missed the chat, I heard nothing but wonders about it. Again, great episode!

And congrats on the ratings. As always, very well deserved.

Anonymous said...

Good first episode Holly !
Welcome to the team!

Unknown said...

Great episode but since I was born and rasied in Phoenix, Arizona I did'nt like the fact that every outdoor scene resembled nothing in my city. Overall it is one of my favorite episodes.

Unknown said...

Great episode but since I was born and rasied in Phoenix, Arizona I did'nt like the fact that every outdoor scene resembled nothing in my city. Overall it is one of my favorite episodes.