Wednesday, April 14, 2010


Criminal Minds spoiler thread for "A rite of passage" written by Victor De Jesus and starring Joe Mantegna, Thomas Gibson, Paget Brewster, Shemar Moore, A.J. Cook, Matthew Gray Gubler and Kirsten Vangsness.

** Beware of spoilers in the comments **

** Quote and song info will be posted once the episode has aired on the east coast **


Sofie said...

An episode dealing with an important issue... Hoping that there is no one really going after illegal immigrants...

Our favorite team his back in an action pack episode and it will surely keep us on edge. Another awesome CM Wednesday night!

Jenny G said...

Ah...looking forward to a new episode...especially one with our team back in action ;)

Loren said...

Looking forward to it! And I'm definitely hoping for a little more of Reid actually interacting with the team more!

Anonymous said...


Loved the begging when Reid said he would quit if they got rid of the coffee and then Rossi said that would save $50 a week! Also love his reaction when they bring out the big guns!

Was very surprised at who the unsub was! Though I figured it was Boyd as soon as he took the Sherrif to the barn and started acting weird.

Hotch was really great in this eppy.

Loved Prentiss when she was in the unsub's home and how she was reacting to the smell!

That crime scene is so big. I hope they get all the help they can with processing it, as they are down to two people left in the office.

Anonymous said...

Not the greatest episode but so much better than the previous one. I'm so happy that for once in a long time we are not shown who the unsub is right away. I'm so glad about that. A bit of a mystery for once this season. There was a mention early on about budget cuts. I hope they are not going to tease us with the possibility that a member of the team will be cut. I hope all the actors have been signed on for season 6.

gubegirl said...

Woo-hoo! Can't resist the spoilers and cmwinner says we get to see Reid - oh, yeah, we are WAY overdue for a Reid fix! And maybe a bit of funny, to boot, it doesn't get any better than that!

Will you pls tell Reid I will make him coffee anyday? and that I always have plenty since I am a coffee freak?!

Can hardly wait - I will be racing home from yoga and hoping not to miss the first few minutes and having to replay them later - that always stinks.

Can hardly wait to ready some nice, POSITIVE comments from HAPPY CM Fanatics tomorrow!


BB said...

Good episode! Loved all the team interactions. =D

Debbie said...

Enjoyed the episode. The unsub surprised me.

i liked the bits of humorous dialogue to lighten up the episode.

We saw a couple of glimmers of the old Reid tonight. Always enjoy those.

it was nice to have a new ep...i'm dreading the long dry spell of summer.

Brigitte said...

Finally the CM I love.

Good case but not too much time spend on the unsub. An unsub that we were kept guessing about. A good red herring with the local bad guys. The local Sherrif was an interesting character. We had lots of team work, some profiling, good one liners and some action and a new way for Morgan to tackle an unsub!

I like that we saw alot of all the characters. Hotch was great, was back at being the leader we all love.

I like the scene at the trailler home of the unsubb. Reid was pretty cool there but what an ewwwww place!

Aw poor Emily, not a good idea from Morgan to shoot from inside the truck!

I must say that TG look very good in that episode. Can't never go wrong with Hotch in kevlar and sunglasses :) I know shallow moment :)

Excellent first episode from Victor De Jesus. I hope he will write more.


Dawn said...

CM is back! glad to see 'The Fight' was just an anomally!

Loved the episode. Good tean interaction. Never thought the unsub was the depute. Gruesome way for the sherrif to die. reid was the good old Reid I love. Very curious at the ME's office.

Those heads did creep me up, especially the one on the poll in front the sherrif house.

Good funny moment, I laugh at Rossi making a joke at Reid and his coffee consumption!

After seeing the promo, I was afraid that CM was going all action heroes but that gun battle scene was well done and nothing from it look like the dreaded NCIS:LA.

Someone mention that Hotch look great, gotta agree, he also did good work.

How cool that dave got to shot at the unsub with taht machine gun, go Dave!

I am so happy that this episode was so much better than last week. Now hoping the rest of the season will be good too!


Anonymous said...

omg i am waiting for the episode to load so ic an watch it it's going to be so awesome

Anonymous said...

Is next week another rerun?? :-(

Sofie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
HardKOrr said...

Welcome back "A" Team! So many things to truly like about this episode. Well-balanced between all members of the unit, lots of funny one-liners, and plenty of action.

I guessed the unsub right away but I think I just had the profile in my head from the get-go. I thought the ending was very sudden, like they ran out of time. It seemed rushed. Case was okay, reminded me a bit of Legacy, Open Season, and Brothers in Arms all rolled into one.

But all in all, a very good first episode from Victor De Jesus. I hope that he will be asked to write for CM again. I'd like to see what he gives us the second time around.

Nice to have you back were missed last week.

Dawn said...

To Rebecca:

Watch again, it was explain why the unsub did what he did.

Jen said...

Thoroughly enjoyed the episode. I was happy to see the team back in play. I think this was the lightest episode we've had since The Performer. I think I even laughed once.

I was a little wary of the subject at first, but the plot was engaging. I'd pegged the unsub early on, but that's never really bothered me. I don't really watch for the suspense element.

The big guns were bothersome. It's bad enough that they carry (and sometimes use) the little ones, but I really don't want to think of the BAU toting around machine guns.

And what's with the budget meeting? It seemed really random, and that's not really a CM trait... No one's leaving, are they?

Lori said...

"Anonymous" yes... no new episodes until May 5 ... which is the part of this season that REALLY stinks... how broken up and split apart it is. BOO

Anonymous said...

Liked this episode alot, Was glad to see a little more of Reid. He has been missed this year.
I was thinking there was going to be some sort of denouement moment on the plane at the end. Those small moments between the team members are what some of us fans really love.
I too was a little puzzled by Hotch being at a budget meeting, I thought either the actor couldn't be there for that scene or something is up and somebody a the BAU has to go to save money. It better not be Reid or any of them for that matter.

I really hate the way the episodes hve been shown this year with two shown and ten a couple of weeks til the next one .It is frustrating.

All in all, There was a lot of good moments tonight.

Anonymous said...

Um...I don't know where else to ask this so I'm putting it here. My question is: In Brothers in Arms, Animal is played by whom?

I have the DVDs and I do not see his name anywhere. If anyone can answer this...please do!
This episode was amazing. Prentiss was absolutely hilarious in the end. Gotta love her. I did not expect the Unsub to be that police officer, but I ould definitely see why he did it (even though that doesn't make it right).

Anonymous said...

ahhha i just saw this episode. I like the look that jj had, keep it up

Anonymous said...

I loved this episode. I enjoyed the interaction between the team – I’ve missed the banter! The UNSUB intrigued me as did the plot. I was upset about the sheriff – I really liked her character.

This felt like pre-strike series 3 CM… back when I fell in love with the show! Yay! My show is back!!!!

On a shallow note… everyone is sooooo pretty. Kevlar & sunglasses! *swoon*

Anonymous said...

Great episode. I will write more after I rewatch it tonight.

Anonymous said...

Great stuff guys!

SOOOOO much BETA than last week.....

TG/Hotch: U ROCK!!!

Anonymous said...

Loved it! Hotch is back! The team is back! More please!

Vali said...

Worked late yesterday so haven't had a chance to watch the latest episode. At least I can get a little taste here on the blog :) Happy to read your comments. Sounds like a great episode. I love Reid's humor and hope we'll see more of it. I can definitely relate to his need of coffee. I can't make it without tea or coffee either ;) Hotch's humor is so the opposite and I hope we'll hear more of it soon. The show takes on very dark topics and humor is a human coping mechanism. I think including more humor and lighter moments would benefit the show.
Very much am looking forward to seeing this episode this weekend.
Have a great day!

Jenny G said...

Loved this episode. It felt like and I'm sorry for last week episode! I love the characters and the funny moments. Its what I watch for...well I watch for Reid but minor details. I really loved all the little moments. Reid was back to acting like a genius! THANK GOD. Morgan got to shoot something new. Prentiss was funny as hell. And Hotch has grown on my so much that I loved every moment with him. Rossi, JJ, and Pen were all great!! Loved the moments but hating that I have to wait til the 5th...the night before my PHARM final.

Amanda said...

I loved the episode, it is wonderful to have the original team back! Nice to see Prentiss and Morgan's little fight, her speaking Spanish again, Reid's sense of humor and everything. I totally can't wait for the next episode! Is the season really ending at 21st episode? Why not more three? :(

sdwally said...

I loved this episode!! The pacing was great, the storytelling was consistent, the direction on point. Hotch looked incredible, and I was pleased that he was shown as the true leader. Don’t cut his hair any shorter, it’s now the perfect length. The team interaction was balanced and first-rate. My only complaint there was no Hotch/Prentiss moments.

Victor De Jesus wrote a very good script that came to life on screen. You’ve finally found a writer who maybe of the caliber of what CM fans have come to expect. This is the best episode since Slave of Duty.

Now on a trivial note: JJ’s hair looked really good. I still prefer Prentiss’s hair the way it was in Nameless, Faceless (no bangs). Garcia’s purple lipstick was a bit too much, but she still looked good. BTW, did I say, Hotch looked great!!!

K said...

Yeah, that's what I'm talking about! Maybe not great or really good epi, but good and refreshing after last one. More i interaction between every member of a team, still missing Reid - no idea what he had done to the writters, but say sorry, smile pretty as only you can and get back on the screen for longer!

This wonderfull filling of excite after watching CM and already waiting for next week is back. Woohoo!

Anonymous said...

I liked the episode until the conclusion. It seemed to sort of just end, rather than come to a conclusion.

Sour Cherry said...

Please, writers, if you are reading this, it'd be really awesome if you thought of writing a lot more screen time for Reid for the future episodes. He's barely been present the whole season but he's my favorite character and I really do miss him. I'm not necessarily asking for a whole episode centered on him, just for more scenes balanced in all the upcoming episodes. So please, more Reid!

Kirsten said...

Overall, a pretty good episode. The team was back to their banter and mostly in character, which after last week's debacle was a welcome relief. Welcome back CM! :)

Of course, there can never be enough Hotch (he's been so in the background since January) and I'm STILL awaiting either some back-story or at least some sign of how he's coping w/ the events of the first half of the season, but at least he was very much back in charge. And geez, the man looks incredible as action G-man! Next time give HIM the big toys!

Rossi was full of one-liners and they were great! Also loved Prentiss giving Morgan a piece of her mind; you go girl! And could it be that Garcia is becoming less squeamish? She handled the head photos really well!

The case was interesting and although the unsub was predictable, it wasn't bad for a first effort.

Now we get more re-runs??! What is up with that???! Writers: some continuity please.

Anonymous said...

Wow!! I really enjoyed this episode!! The unsub surprised me too. I knew the sheriff was doomed but she went out fighting!! I felt horrible for her. Out whole team was great this episode, it was definitely needed after last week. The plane seen in the beginning was great. Morgan tackling the guy was cool. I loved Prentis and Morgan in the car/shooting scene at the end. She was funny! She tried to give him a piece of her mind, but he gave it right back to her and I'm glad. The unsub was shooting at them from and ATV with a machine gun. Morgan shot back and nailed him!! They're alive, her ear will heal.

Anonymous said...

I LOVED THAT EPISODE!!! It was great!! The unsub surprised me, and I am really sorry the sheriff had to die. Especially the way she was killed. UGH!!! Rossi and Hotch looked really, really, good in their kevlar and Rossi with his big gun. But Morgan looked GREAT!!! He NEVER gets enough love here so I will give him some!!! I'm sorry poor Emily hear hurts, but she needs to get over it. They were in a shoot-out with an unsub on his turf, shooting from an ATV thing, and he had a big gun too! Morgan did what he had to do. Her fussing was pointless, he was not real sympathetic and neither was I. Just my opinion.

PS - I wish the unsub got his head chopped off instead of getting shot!!

Anonymous said...

I definitely enjoyed this episode. When the sheriff went with Boyd, I was like ' oh no, it's him isn't it?? oh no...' I loved the funny tidbits we got from the team, i.e., Reid's reactions, Prentiss complaining to Morgan about her ear. The case seemed almost impossible to solve without they're profile. But yeah, definitely loved this episode. Can't wait for next week!

Anonymous said...

Bit too much of ragging on Reid, but I loved Prentiss' hardcore boots (just a glimpse of them).

I understand Emily's ear pain, but why wasn't Morgan suffering too? Pretty funny if in future eps he can't hear either.

OK ep. I'm more disturbed by yet another 3-week hiatus!

gubegirl said...

What a great show! Loved it! Well written; our team looked beautiful and acted super! Love that Reid has had a decent haircut and that he seems to be back to his genius self. It tickles me to hear those little funnies that give us personal insight into the characters we adore.

I need to recommend the brand "Kicking Horse" coffee to Reid that I bring back ea. year from British Columbia; my fave kind is "KickAss." It is the best! Appears the BAU could save some money if Reid could drink something good and strong.

Loved Prentiss' Spanish - she sounds so authentic; Morgan was wise to take the "big guns" altho' I hope this is an isolated case as I hate to see the show go in that direction. If they were illegal, why did they have them right there in the office? Everyone had great lines and was in character and the guest actors were superb, esp the sheriff. Loved her. Sorry to see what happened to her - very sick un-sub, as usu.

I also agree that the ending seemed a tad abrupt...when we have seen them hang around for dif reasons after solving a case, it sounded funny to hear Hotch say "Let's go home."

Maybe they were all strung out - all those heads would def get to most of us, huh?

Short season? Aren't there usu 24 shows? I know last yr there were more. Anyone know?

Shadow said...

This episode was pure love! We haven’t had a serial killer who escalated into a spree for a while, so bonus points for that one. The best part was the generous attention our team got this week, though. Things to love:

* Reid, Reid, Reid: Coffee joke, gun apprehension, ordered to safely stay back twice, generally being cute and adorable
* Prentiss in charge and combat boots but with sensitive nose and taste buds
* reference to Hotch’s damaged ear from Mayhem
* Morgan with toys - though after last week I’m still a bit sensitive about them - please don’t turn Morgan into anything resembling that annoying sniper guy
* Garcia’s sleeveless top and the sheriff asking for a gift like her
* plane scene
* most scenes during daylight with bright lighting
* well carved out character of the sheriff

The last picture at the crime scene with all the taped graves somehow reminded me of the pig farm in last season’s finale. The team’s reaction was very appropriate.

I hope the budget meeting doesn’t foreshadow any troubles in the upcoming season finale. I wonder if an SUV with bullet holes hurts the budget more than a broken automatic rifle. ;)

Welcome back CM, now you only need to arrest the suspects for last week’s disaster. :P

Unknown said...

Yay, can I say great? A very interesting angle for this cas, really! Our great team on the job, Hotch was so great with that poor sheriff...
Nice case, not a complicated plot but with just enough shifts and small twists to make it pleasant...I kind of like the 'we have our finger on it but can't avoid the rampage before we do bring the case to home' feeling about it.

Gotta love CM! Really nice job cast and crew THANKS!

Erin said...

Hotch back in charge like he should be AND lookin' so dapper! Yay!

babruin said...

I liked the nice blend of action, social commentary, and character interactions in this episode. I'm feeling more of other writers' input into this one since the joking among the team members reflects continuity from past episodes which is a real plus for a first time writer. YAY, finally!!!
So yeah, loved the humor about the huge coffee habit of Reid and his discomfort with big guns. Since it looks like he closes his eyes when he shoots, yeah, keep those big boys away from him. No telling who or what he'll hit with that monstrosity. :)
All in all, not a deep episode but enjoyable all the same with the chance to play guess-the-unsub.

Anonymous said...

That was a really nice episode! We got back our wonderful team. The case was interesting, and I liked the sheriff so much. I really enjoyed this one, cuz there were a lot of profiling, and a lot of great interaction between the team members. And to top of it Hotch was in charge completely! That's what I really really like!

Great job, everybody! Makes me hardly can wait for the next episode in May!

Thomas Gibson did a great work, as always! :)))

best wishes
from Gabriella

RMF said...

Why are barns so evil on this show?

Well, I guess that question highlights one of the things I liked about this episode from a new writer: he did his homework. It was classic CM, with a good mystery, good ensemble work, and memorable character moments. He also successfully meshed a serious social problem with the show's structure without the one overshadowing the other, probably because he played it as the grim context in which such crimes can arise and prosper. The drug trade has trashed the social structure of the community, with a few alienated deputies at the mercy of a sociopathic scumbag drug lord with a small army of his own, and no civilian is willing to stick his neck out for anyone. Even the FBI is doing triage here. I could take a couple of points off for pinning it on the easy target of the angry white guy, but on the other hand, if it had been the drug cartel, what would half a dozen BAU agents with two automatic weapons between them have done about it?

The portrayal of the local LEO ranks among the series' strongest. Sheriff Ruiz's plight is affecting. She imagines coasting along to retirement in a sleepy border town and finds she's alit in a special corner of hell. I liked her rapport with Hotch, another soul who won't give up on his responsibilities despite the odds. Morales is another character who comes across strongly, smirking, insolent, completely without conscience. His confrontation with Hotch provides another sign that deJesus has been paying attention. Although it's evident Hotch despises Morales with every fiber of his being, he is characteristically unimpressed with his act, having been subjected before to provocation attempts by a whole catalog of psychos. There is consistency in Rossi, too, with his acerbic wit and Marine weapons training, and in Prentiss, who at last finds a use for her language skills. I'm kind of tired of the constant pairing of Morgan and Prentiss, though, which doesn't really distinguish itself, although there is an amusing contrast here with Hotch and Rossi's near psychic communication.

Reid: how can anyone be enthusiastic over work coffee? Anyway, if Rossi's right, that would pay for about 1400 gallons of jet fuel per year. I'm just saying.

Silvinha said...

I really loved this episode and I'm glad that CM is back!!

Loved Prentiss speaking Spanish..she hasn't spoken any foreign language during this season and I'm kind of missed that.

I understand Prentiss' pain, I think Morgan could have opened the window just like Rossi would do if he had to shoot. I know it wasn't supposed to be funny because she was in pain but I couldn't help but laugh when she and Morgan had that little fight. I love when she's mad!

Loved the funny moments with Reid, love Garcia and her purple lipstick, and I'm a huge fan of Rossi and Reid interaction. I'm very glad to see Hotch being a leader again and I feel sorry for the sheriff Ruiz. She was great!

I think one of the moments that I most liked was to see everyone with sunglasses! Wow!! What a beautiful cast!

Awesome job everyone - cast and crew - you're the best!

Anonymous said...

Question, was Derek really suppose to think 'Maybe I should roll down the window so Emily's ears won't hurt in case I have to shoot back at a dangerous unsub'??? LMAO!!! The car I'm sure had power windows, couldn't she roll them down herself? LOL!! I'm just saying! I can feel her pain, and I didn't want to laugh either but I did. However, it just don't make since to me that she should be mad at him, she should be mad at the unsub and happy they survived 'shoot'em up' with the unsub. Gun shot hurts a lot more than a blown out ear!!

Mahële said...

I really enjoyed this episode.

The case was really interesting and I'm relieved to see there wasn't too much action scenes. I was worried about that aspect after seeing the promo for this episode.

I enjoyed seeing the team putting the clues together and how they understood Boyd was the real culprit - good use of JJ's character here.

Rossi's sense of humor is always a bonus. Grin

The scenes between Morgan and Prentiss were also well done. They weren't exactly in tune when chasing Boyd.

Hotch was great, as usual. I especially liked the interrogation scene with Omar Morales.

The little scenes with Reid made my day.

I really, really miss Reid. He has had so little to do this whole season.
I was glad to see a little more of him. Hopefully it'll get better and he'll be more involved in the other episodes.
Please, dear writers, I really hope you have something planed for his character.
A lot of fans miss him you know !

I liked Sheriff Ruiz from the start, she was a really great character. I'm glad that the team mentioned her at the end and that the last quote was a reference to her character.

So, all in all, great team interactions and great case.

About the budget meeting, I'm wondering myself if it'll have anything to do with the cliffhanger ....

Unknown said...

Great stuff, loved this episode, the entire CM team was amazing, as serious and intense as the storyline was, I enjoyed the one liners and lighter moments throughout the episode, which had me laughing at points .. loved Morgan & Hotch’s reaction on the plane with Reid and the gun comment, the coffee comment in the round table room, Rossi on Garcia at the station ..some really great team moments in with heavy subject matter.

Hotch is back and in great form I might add, he was amazing, he looked great and was great to see him on top of his game and you don’t mess with Hotch on a mission, actually all the team were excellent, team interaction was very well done. Everyone did an amazing job on this episode.

Liked the character portrayal, everything and everyone fit really well, I too was sorry about the Sheriff, I liked her and what she stood for. I must say the unsub had me guessing until Boyd took the sheriff out to the Barn.

Great episode, well paced and most of all loved that our team was back, good stuff thanks everyone  … one happy CM fan!! .. and I can’t wait to watch this one again!!

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Helen said...

5x19 Recap Part 1

The episode opens on a man running across the desert in the middle of the night, stumbling as he tries to escape someone on an ATV who is obviously chasing him. Finally, the man lurches to the ground and crouches gasping. The UnSub, on the ATV, drives past him and circles him. The man on the ground begs him to stop, to wait. The UnSub gets off the ATV and walks towards the man on the ground, pulling what appears to be a sword from a scabbard that rests across his back. The man screams for him to stop, but the blade flashes down.
In a small town, three boys ride their bicycles quickly down the sidewalk. One tries to squeeze between a park bench and some foam packing crates. He misjudges and falls, knocking over the packing crates and finding, to his horror, that they contained the heads of three murdered individuals.
Back at the BAU, Hotch is at a budget meeting while the rest of the team goes over the case. Morgan wants a raise; Rossi reminds him they’re cutting, not raising, and that as long as they don’t take the coffee everything will be fine. Reid says that if they cut the coffee, he’d quit, to which Rossi replies, “yeah, that’ll save ‘em like, fifty bucks a week.”
The heads of the three victims were found outside the sheriff’s office in Terlingua, Texas; judging by the rates of decomposition, they were not all killed at the same time. The sand and dirt in their mouths and ears tells the team they were buried and then subsequently dug up. However, the edges of the wounds which resulted in their decapitation suggests all were decapitated only recently. Garcia informs them that in 2009 ten heads were found in coolers in Mexico as part of a drug war; DEA is not taking this more recent case because the differing rates of decomposition mean it is possible the deaths are not drug-related. The victims are all Hispanic and unidentified; Terlingua has a large illegal population which will make identifying victims and catching the killer difficult. Prentiss describes them as “an endless supply of anonymous victims”. Rossi, however, does not believe the deaths are a political statement against illegal immigrants, as groups like the Minute Men prize law and order above all else, and murder would be bad for their image. The staging of the heads in front of the sheriff’s office suggests a local, who would have knowledge about how to do that without being seen; the placement also suggests aggression.
Back in the desert, the UnSub sets out on another hunting trip.


“A lion’s work hours are only when he’s hungry; once he’s satisfied, the predator and prey live peacefully together.” – Chuck Jones (Emily Prentiss)

On the plane, Reid informs the team that the UnSub is working within 5,000 square miles of desert. Thus, he could have been operating for years without being detected. Something must have happened recently to make him blow his cover by placing the heads outside the sheriff’s office. They learn that Ter Lingua is a stopover town for immigrants; they only stay for 24 hours before moving on elsewhere, but the transitory nature of the town means it is a large drug trafficking hub. Gracia tells them that the Lugo cartel, out of Baja, California, is suspected of bringing in the new, cheaper, highly addictive black tar heroin to the country. The cartel killed two DEA agents in 2009, meaning the BAU needs to watch their backs. Morgan pulls out an MP5 from its case, checking it out: “to cartels feds are fair game, there’s even usually a bounty, so we’re bringing the toys”. Hotch, fresh from a budget meeting, warns them, “be careful with those, I don’t need broken MP5s on our budget.” At this point, Reid breaks in. “Guys, here’s the thing, I don’t think I technically have authorization to carry a weapon like that--” he says, to which Hotch and Morgan reply in unison, “you don’t.”

Helen said...

Part 2

Hotch tells Prentiss and Morgan to make sure to stress to the migrant community that all they want to do is catch a killer, and sends Rossi and Reid to look at the heads at the medical examiner’s office.
At the sheriff’s office, Hotch and JJ come face to face with eight cartel members who are exercising their “first amendment rights to peaceful assembly, in order to protest the unlawful arrest of Omar Morales”. They refuse to move and let Hotch and JJ pass until two deputies come out and push them aside, taking the two agents inside to meet Sheriff Eva Ruiz. On the way, they explain that they arrested Omar Morales, the leader of the cartel, that morning on the way to the airport. He has not made a statement, as Sheriff Ruiz will not let them talk to her.
Ruiz tells Hotch and JJ that the “small army” out front is the least of her worries, and she understands that the heads outside the station were a message to her to “butt out”. Since she semi-retired to Terlingua six months prior, she has counted 20 missing immigrants. There is minimal paperwork and information as no one will make an official report. She believes someone in the county has been killing for a long time, and she has no one she can trust; she expressly told her deputies to leave Omar Morales alone, but they defied her orders. Hotch asks if she is sure it isn’t the cartel. She responds by taking him to speak with Morales.
Meanwhile, Reid entertains Rossi by explaining how difficult is really is to decapitate a person (not that easy, “contrary to popular belief”). “You don’t often hear ‘popular’ and ‘decapitation’ in the same sentence,” Rossi replies musingly. The medical examiner informs them that one victim was almost blind from cataracts, and confirms Reid’s statement that the others were, if not elderly, then at least “older”. She also tells them that each victim had sand in their noses and throats, and the trachea was “torn up”. Thus, Rossi concludes that they were running, and breathed in the sand so violently and heavily that it lacerated their throats.
At the sheriff’s station, Sheriff Ruiz joins Hotch as he interviews Omar Morales. JJ and Deputy Boyd watch from the viewing room. Morales informs Hotch that if he wanted to send a message to a rival, “hypothetically”, he would “gut him from crotch to chin, and leave his intestines open for the animals. After I’d send his left hand to his wife, his eyes to his mother, and his tongue to his kids, with a note saying that their papa died wetting himself, a coward.” He argues that the heads outside the sheriff’s station were not a message, or at least an ineffective one. He tells Hotch that he is looking not for him, but for Santa Muerte, the “saint of death”.
Back in her office, Sheriff Ruiz tells Hotch that she believes there is something going on. She says that working a case in Brooklyn once, the only survivor of a home invasion was a child who said it was done by a “dragon”; in the end, she discovered that during the invasion the man wore a green raincoat with a pointed hood. Thus, the child’s description was accurate in the way the man appeared to the child. Santa Muerte, she argues, is real; the people who are victimized by him just don’t know how to describe him in the flesh. “When hundreds of people are talking about the same monster, it’s a sure bet that something’s goin’ on, they just don’t know what to call it.” Hotch regards her solemnly. “So they call it Santa Muerte.”
In the desert, a group of illegal immigrants reach the next stage of their journey. One falls to the ground and sits, gasping for breath, urging them to go on. He tells them he will catch up later, as he needs to rest. From a hill, Santa Muerte watches through a night vision telescope. He wears a black helmet and goggles, and a bandana over the lower half of his face with a skeletal grin pictured there. Lowering the spyglass, he revs the engine on his ATV.

Helen said...

Part 3

The next morning, Sheriff Ruiz finds the man’s head on the pole of her chain-link fence when she exits her house. While Deputy Boyd argues with the Sheriff that they should have kept Morales locked up, the team notes that the UnSub is becoming more focused on Ruiz. Hotch takes her aside and tells her that it is clearly getting personal; she reacts angrily, saying that it always was personal. Someone is killing people, and she is the only one who gives a damn. Hotch firmly reminds her, “we’re here because we care”. He tells her that whoever the UnSub is, she has touched a nerve, and she has definitely talked to him. Ruiz says, “I’ve talked to everyone who will listen: drug-dealers, immigrants, business owners.” Hotch replies that one of them is Santa Muerte, and when they get back to the station he wants to go over every interview she has ever done. The team is ready with a profile.
The UnSub is a personality type known as a “human predator”, the “hunter”; he takes the weakest prey, the older or the handicapped, and chases them through the desert to weaken them even further. This suggests that he cannot take them in their strongest state despite “age or infirmity”. He is probably handicapped in some way, or at the very least weak, small, or thin. He will not be in a relationship, or if he is, it will be abusive, as he gets off on control and power. The UnSub will be close to the investigation; he is aware that the Sheriff is on to him and may have started decapitating victims as a countermeasure to throw off investigations. This is common in organized offenders, and Reid notes that the “Yosemite killer drove over 50 miles to dump cigarette packs and drivers’ licenses” to throw off the investigation in that case. The team suggests they start their search with those who are “familiar with the immigrant journey.” As a result of this, Ruiz sends Deputy Clyde Gentry with Morgan and Prentiss to talk to an advocate who might be able to help them.
He is angry at first, not wanting the federal agents to scare away his clients. His reaction and the fact that he walks with a limp prompts Morgan to call Garcia and ask her to begin a background check on the man. Gentry is angry as well, scoffing at the use of the word “clients” and arguing that if they want the chance at a better life they “oughta come in the front door” like everybody else. Prentiss silences them both, reminding them why they are here, and asks the advocate to describe the immigrants’ journey to her. “How many places are there to cross?” He tells them there are too many tunnels to know them all, and the runners keep passports and documents in the trunks of their cars. They change all the time. Safe houses are places where they are supposed to be able to find food, water, and rest before continuing. However, they are more like prisons, where immigrants are kept until the families can pay off the coyotes who helped bring them to the United States. When asked where the safe houses are, he scoffs and says they change faster than the tunnels. Prentiss thanks him and they return to the station.

Helen said...

Part 4

Sheriff Ruiz is perusing an old scrapbook of newspaper articles about cases she worked when Hotch joins her in her office, asking for a hand with the geographic profile. “Your team travels all around the country right?” He nods: “That’s right”. She sighs, and tells him that her last year in homicide she worked on 36 murders in a 20-detective unit. When she tells him not to ask how many she solved, he tells her he’s sure she did the best she could. She walks past him, out of the office, noting sadly that there isn’t any place they can go where people aren’t killing each other. Ruiz is just as hopeless about the prospect of finding safe houses, let alone getting anyone to talk to them, but Hotch tells her that the group their most recent victim crossed with might be missing him; Reid notes that if they can find the route that group used to cross, they can find the UnSub’s hunting ground. Ruiz says, “I could pull land deeds; it might take a while”, but Rossi glances at her: “We’ve got something faster.” Hotch calls their resident Wizard and tells her to look for homes close to the border with homeowners or renters with criminal records, short-term leases, and spikes in utilities. She comes up with three houses and sends the addresses to their phones. Ruiz is astounded, and tells them, “If you’re looking for a gift to get me, one of her would be greatly appreciated.” Rossi responds dryly, “We’re pretty sure they broke the mold.”
Prentiss, Morgan and Deputy Gentry (who is chastised by Morgan for arguing with people about immigration, to which he responds, “it used to be different around here”) are dispatched to check out one of the safe houses. Gentry knocks on the door and bellows to open up, it’s the police, while Prentiss and Morgan wait out back. As a man comes running out the back door, Morgan puts out an arm and clotheslines him across the chest. “Nice,” Prentiss says, grinning. Morgan glances up, “I played a little strong safety in college”, to which Prentiss replies, “No idea what that means.” Morgan tells the man they are the FBI and they have a few questions; the man does not understand English, so Prentiss repeats the information in Spanish. He looks utterly disappointed at the news.
In a barn in the back they find the immigrants, two adults and a young boy. He begs them to find his mother; the man took her, and they could hear her crying. They find her in another stall farther down the barn. She was raped by the man, and she tells them not to let her son see her like that. Prentiss assures the woman it will be ok, and she will make sure her son does not see her like that. They take them all back to the police station, and Morgan tells the man he will be facing rape, kidnapping, weapons charges, and numerous charges of conspiracy to harbour illegal aliens. Hotch notes that he doesn’t look worried, and Ruiz notes that he has as much chance of being let go as going to prison, as the system is chaotic and no one will testify. Hotch says he will make some calls and try to pull some strings, to which Ruiz replies, “who’s going to pull the strings when you go home?”
The immigrant woman sits with her son in an interview room, dictating her story to Prentiss while JJ and Deputy Boyd look on. The woman tells how they crossed during the night, and her husband had to stop and rest as he had been sick. They continued on, and did not hear from him again. Prentiss asks her son if he remembers anything, and he says, “el sol”. His mother tries to correct him, telling him he means la luna, the moon, but he insists. He saw el sol.

Sofie said...

Episode is great! It has a good strong case, lots of team moments, some good funny instants between the team and major action. Rite of Passage is a well written story that strengthens what his Criminal Minds, a first-class TV show. An episode like I love them!

Rossi his so awesome all the way in the profiling and the action moments. It is so interesting seeing him with an MP5... The Marine & the agent all blend together! And the sunglasses and Kevlar... Soooo cool!

Hotch was at his top out there! The Unit Chief was fully back! Action man like we appreciate, all ready and great in his profiling and “Kevlar” moment like the Hotch Sisters say.

Good to know that Rossi and Hotch understand each other so well when it comes to car pursuit and shooting at the same time. But not the same for poor Emily and Morgan...
Emily was so COOL! She is an action woman. She is so good at her job. Seeing her drive like that is a rare instant.

JJ, Reid, Garcia and Morgan were at their best too. Each with efficiency has usual. Reid gave us some good funny moments were so appreciated. Morgan

Congrats to all on this episode and Victor De Jesus wrote a very good story. NOTE: Could you keep him has a writer please ;)

Helen said...

Part 5

Outside the station that night, Deputy Boyd returns to speak with Ruiz, telling her that he thinks he knows what the boy was talking about when he said he saw el sol. He takes her out to an abandoned barn about 15 minutes out of town with a mural of the sun on the side. “I don’t think I’ve been out this far”, she says. He tells her he used to ride out this way as a kid on ATVs. “Never been on one of those”, she says. The mural says “Golden Harvest”, and standing next to the sun is a depiction of Santa Muerte. She tells Boyd he did a good job, and he asks her what she thinks of the profile the FBI gave. He thinks anyone who would kill all those people couldn’t be a coward, despite what the FBI might think; he would be a bad-ass. Irritated, Ruiz tells him that where she comes from that makes them a “punk-ass, a coward”, not a bad-ass. “Puttin’ a man’s head outside your house hardly seems like a coward”, Boyd says as he rubs his leg. He tells Ruiz he busted it up pretty bad as a teenager, and he can hardly run anymore. It hurts whenever it’s about to rain. Ruiz, remembering the profile, begins to realize that something is wrong. Boyd says she doesn’t know anything about him, she just came from New York and stuck her nose in places it didn’t belong; “how can someone be missing,” he says, “when they ain’t supposed to be here in the first damn place?” He tells her he’s going to blame it all on Morales, and get rid of both Morales and Ruiz. Ruiz is slowly stepping away, carefully taking the safety off her holster; Boyd tells her she won’t make it. “I gotta try,” she says. Santa Muerte looks on silently as gunshots explode in front of the old barn.
The BAU arrives at the station the next morning to find it nearly deserted. The deputies are not there and nor is the sheriff. The dispatcher tells them the sheriff and her cruiser is missing, and then Deputy Boyd’s strangled voice comes over the radio, begging for help, telling them he’s found her.
At the crime scene, it is obvious the sheriff was killed by someone who was extremely angry. Morgan notes that according to the profile the UnSub takes on the weakest victims, and that Ruiz did not seem weak. “It’s also not random”, Hotch says. It is exactly what Omar Morales said he would do to a victim to send a message. “The evisceration, the hand, the tongue. He told Ruiz and I when we first came into the interrogation room.” Though it makes it look like Omar Morales may have killed Ruiz, as only Hotch, Ruiz and Morales were in the room when Morales made his statement, Hotch does not believe Morales would kill the one person in town who did not believe he had killed the decapitated victims. JJ joins the group and tells them there were no phone calls to the sheriff last night, and Hotch asks them to try and think of who was at the station the other night. Prentiss fills in the confused JJ, telling her that Ruiz was killed in the exact same way the drug dealer said he would. JJ is disgusted, “oh no, all of it? The tongue too?” Hotch is surprised. “You heard that?” She confirms this, saying she was behind the window listening at the speaker. Reid asks the inevitable question: “Who else was there?”
Deputy Gannon tells them that Deputy Boyd has taken Deputy Gentry and gone to arrest Omar Morales.

Helen said...

Part 6

At the junkyard where Morales works, Boyd and Gentry walk up to an angry Hispanic man, each with their weapon’s at the ready. Gentry asks Boyd how he wants to play it, and as if in reply Boyd raises his shotgun and shoots the man in front of him. José, Omar’s deputy and one of the cartel who stood outside the police station protesting, comes out to see what is going on, and Boyd shoots him as well. Gentry is yelling his name at this point, stunned: “Boyd, what the hell are you doing?!” Omar Morales sees them coming, and thinks they are simply coming to arrest him again. He tells Boyd, “this isn’t gonna stick, you know.” Boyd shoots him as he turns to run, once, and then twice. Standing over the body, he lets Gentry come up behind them. “He had a gun. I had to shoot him,” he says. Gentry is shocked: “He didn’t have a gun.” But Boyd says quietly, “He killed two cops.” Gentry is unprepared when Boyd turns and shoots him with a pistol. Carefully, Boyd wipes the pistol down and places it in Omar’s bloody hand. As he stands, Gentry’s phone rings, and he goes and picks it up. Prentiss, thinking she is talking to Gentry, tells him not to react, but to stay calm, because they think Boyd is the killer. Boyd drops the phone and crushes it under his boot heel.
When they arrive at the junkyard, Rossi and Morgan lead the way with MP5s, followed closely by Hotch, Prentiss, and Deputy Gannon. They quickly discover the bodies of all three cartel members and Deputy Gentry. They know instantly the scene is not legit, as Omar has shotgun wounds even though all Gentry has is a pistol. There is also no visible powder residue on Omar’s hands. Prentiss, finding the crushed phone on the floor, realizes she must have been speaking to Boyd, rather than Gentry. Deputy Gannon tells them no one knows Boyd well; he was a loner, and he is unsure where he might have gone. Garcia answers Hotch’s call instantly: “My liege.” He needs her to track Boyd’s police radio. She does so, and tells them he is in the desert heading north. That means he is not going home, as Gannon tells them Boyd lives in a trailer west of town.
Hotch sends Gannon to take Prentiss, Morgan and Reid to the trailer and requisitions Gannon’s radio to try and keep Boyd occupied for a time while they try and figure out where exactly he is going. Boyd tells Hotch “this is my desert; you think you can find me out here, yeah, well come on out.” Rossi shakes his head: “cocky little bastard”. Hotch reminds him Boyd is right.
At Boyd’s trailer, Morgan, Prentiss, Reid and Gannon know they have found the right place because it reeks of blood and death. Reid tells them to “breath through your nose like normal, smell is the weakest sense, in a few more minutes you won’t even notice it.” Prentiss is disbelieving: “What about the taste?” “I think that’s just in your head,” Reid says.
Meanwhile, Hotch is having no luck trying to get Boyd to turn himself in. They don’t think he is suicidal, but that he is going somewhere specific. Back at the trailer, Prentiss finds the room in which he decapitated his victims. There is blood and clothing strewn everywhere, with a machete lying among them. “I’m ready for that smell weakness to kick in anytime, Reid,” Prentiss retorts. Reid ignores her, and instead shows them a wall of newspaper clippings about a murder that took place at Golden Harvest Grain and Feed. The foreman, Fred Boyd, was murdered there: he “is survived by his son, Ronald.” There is a picture showing the side of the barn, depicting the Golden Harvest logo of the sun and Santa Muerte.

Helen said...

Part 7

Hotch and Rossi are already heading north as Morgan, Prentiss, Reid and Gannon exit the trailer and realize that there are many different burial plots in the grass beside the trailer. Morgan and Prentiss head out to join Hotch and Rossi, while Reid stays to keep an eye on the crime scene with Gannon. At the Golden Meadows barn, Hotch tells Rossi to try to avoid shooting “that thing” inside the car. Rossi glances at him from behind his shades: “You mean try not to deafen you?” “Exactly,” Hotch says.
They pull up outside the barn. Its front doors are open, and Hotch tells Rossi to take the side door, while he will take the front. They are not able to get close, however, as Boyd opens fire from somewhere inside the dark depths of the barn. They take cover behind a piece of farm equipment, but neither can see well enough to shoot. Boyd comes shooting past them on his ATV, and Rossi shoots as he drives by, but is unsuccessful; at this point Morgan and Prentiss have arrived and come roaring down the road with Prentiss at the wheel. “Look out,” Morgan says, and Prentiss responds irritably, “I’ve got him, I’ve got him”. A moment later, Morgan opens fire through the SUV’s windshield, and Boyd is slammed off his ATV to the ground. Prentiss pulls to a stop and all four jump out and advance on the prone Boyd, Hotch asking if they’re all right. “Yeah,” Morgan says, but Prentiss responds with an emphatic, “No! Are you out of your mind? You blew out my eardrum!” as she presses a hand to her ear. Morgan snipes back, “What’d you want me to do? He was coming right at us!” Prentiss is unimpressed: “I told you I had him!”
Back at Boyd’s trailer, the team observes the beginning of the excavation of Boyd’s victims. It will be hard to identify the bodies without missing persons reports, Rossi notes, but Prentiss says she contacted the advocate they spoke to earlier, and he is going to try to contact families with missing members and get DNAs, which will help. “It’s a mess”, they note, and Hotch says that it would have been a much bigger mess without Sheriff Ruiz. Garcia is looking into whether or not she had any family, and Hotch says he will contact some people he knows in the Brooklyn Homicide Department; “they’ll honour her shield”. The team stands for a moment in silence, and then Hotch looks at them all. “Let’s go home.”

“Many persons have the wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness; it is not attained through self gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose” – Helen Keller (Aaron Hotchner)

Helen said...

Whew, what a great episode! I loved every minute of this one, every team member played a part and I was so thrilled. Hotch was back on top, doing a wonderful job as boss, taking care of his team and the local sheriff. At the end all I could do was smile when he said “let’s go home,” and led them to the SUVs. Thank you very much. :) I found the case interesting and most of the main players as well.

I really liked the character of Eva Ruiz, and her and Hotch’s bond. She’s not my favourite Detective-of-the-Week by any means (John Blackwolf will forever hold that position), but I found her interesting and I didn’t mind hearing the little stories she told Hotch that gave us a window into her life. I also loved watching her and Hotch walk side-by-side, ‘cause it just reminded me how tall he is. And, of course, showed us how small she was! Yet she’s really tough. :D

The team interaction was by far THE BEST part of this episode. Wow. I loved it all; from Reid saying he’d quit if they lost the coffee to Hotch and Morgan shooting him down: “Guys, the thing is, I’m not sure I’m qualified to carry a weapon like that”; “You’re not.” Perfect! :D And Morgan and Prentiss: “I played a little strong safety in college”; “I have no idea what that means.” And, the end, with Prentiss lambasting Morgan for shooting the gun off in her ear. And Garcia calling Hotch “my liege”! Always awesome! :P
Another great part was when Sheriff Ruiz tells them that if they’re looking for a gift to give her, “one of her would be greatly appreciated”, and Rossi says, “We’re pretty sure they broke the mould.” Yes, they did, damn it! :D

As others have mentioned before, I loved the contrast between Prentiss and Morgan, bickering brother and sister who don’t have the same psychic link as Hotch and Rossi, who have worked together for so long are almost like an old married couple. “Try not to shoot that thing off inside the car”; “you mean don’t deafen you?”; “Exactly”. That was priceless. :D


So congratulations to a new writer for giving us the best team episode in a while! Great job on keeping the balance between UnSub, case, and team.
One flaw that I noticed when writing my recap (though let’s face it, in the grand scheme of things, I’m just happy to have the real Criminal Minds back so it made me laugh but didn’t bother me too much): Morgan is telling the man who owns the “safe” house that he doesn’t care if he doesn’t want to talk to him, he’s facing all of these charges. Um, Morgan, buddy, maybe he’s not talking to you because he can’t understand you?! I thought we established he didn’t speak English a minute ago?! Oh dear.

Hmm, can’t think of much else to say right now. I do think this episode was really good – I really liked it – but I’m also stoked because it feels like a return to the old Criminal Minds. It is especially lovely following what I thought was a horrendous introduction to the spin-off. Thank you so much to Victor De Jesus and our awesome cast and crew! You guys rock! :D

oliverandom said...

oh team banter love. god knows we've long been needing that.

Anonymous said...

This was definitely one of the better episodes of the latter part of the season. I loved the dialogue exchange with my two favorites Hotch and Rossi about the loudness of the rifles. Please let them talk to each other more! They're great!

I knew who the Unsub was fairly early on. It was too predictable. I also thought there could've been more about the death saint Santo Muerto. It would've been really spooky to have shown the townspeople more freaked out about that saint, and thinking that he was real.

I seriously miss the more "traditional" serial killer type of Unsubs that have some really creepy psychological disturbance. We used to get these kind in the previous seasons, and I feel the ones we get now are too one-dimensional. Except for Foyet at the beginning of the season. He was great.

Anonymous said...

Great Episode!
loved that we got to see a good amount of everyone on the team.

Prentiss and Morgan always make my day.

Anonymous said...

for the person who wrong about the unsub not speaking english, the unsub was lying, trying not to communicate with the team. he could speak english.

Anonymous said...

Such a great episode, that's the CM that I LOOOOOVE!!

Sam said...

Glad the Minute Man movement wasn't bashed. I have sympathy to the problems of illegal immigrants but less face it, they are still committing a crime. Not much different than a DUI, weapon's offense, drug offense etc. A crime is a crime and one shouldn't just look the other way. Double standard is not criminal JUSTICE!
Overall solid episode, although the crime scene analyzing and profiling was a bit weak.
Not the best episode but good CM entertainment.

Anonymous said...

not on my favourite list but an enjoyable watch

Walburga Benker said...

This was great stuff, loved it. Our charcters are back, specially Hotch. Well written, great acting, thanks alot.

Pat said...

While not one of my favorite episodes, it was definetly an improvement over last week. It seemed like profiling instead of constant action. I really enjoyed the plane scene and more time between the team. I also feel that Reid is being forgotton and also Garcia to a point. It's going to be hard to wait two weeks to see which way the next show will go.

cadenafaith said...

Fascinating stuff. Squeamish? Bah. I read it while I was eating breakfast. Disgusting and morid..But fascinating.

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