it's a great life, if you don't weaken (matociquala) wrote,
it's a great life, if you don't weaken

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when there's nothing left to burn, you have to set yourself on fire.

Yay, a Hotch episode!

Well, if you have to burn to death to something, I guess early Enya's as good a choice as any. Man, I love the music in this show. My fandom is somewhat incongruous.

Emily, stop hitting your brother. Emily, I said, stop hitting your brother. EMILY!

I'm going to have to watch the beginning of The Tribe again. I have it in my head that Sean said his dad died of a heart attack there. But then, that's not entirely inconsistent with lung cancer.

Reid's back to being statistics-boy. Pity, there goes my shiny brain damage theory. And it was such a nice theory.

So now I wonder if Hotch's abuser was his mom, or a stepdad. Or another adult.

Hotch takes the bullet for Gideon at the beginning, and Gideon takes the bullet for Hotch at the end.

Also, Hotch tucking the picture of mom and baby into the folder at the beginning was something else again. Fabulous moment.

And again, Hotch makes time for other people's families. And maybe not having time for his own. Interesting to see him spending so much time with Prentiss.

Hi, I'm Jason Gideon, and I hyperventilate at fire scenes.

Reid, how can you be so deft and so clumsy all at once?

Hi, my name is Spencer Reid, and I have a little problem with *projecting.* At least there are actual traces of his sense of humor regenerating.

I'm still not sure what they're doing with the drug plotline. I mean, I know what they're telegraphing. Whether what they are telegraphing and what they are doing is the same thing, I'm not sure. I hope the writers/producers/etc are as smart as I think them to be (and want them to be).

Otherwise, I may have to send them screencaps of all those shots of Reid with his sleeves rolled up.

And Gideon's little nod at Prentiss after she argues her case is nice. She's right, too.

And we lose another one. Again through no fault of our own. This? Can only end in tears.

Did anybody pick up a refrain in this one? I didn't catch a repeated line, but I had a house full of people.


They are really doing a good job of balancing the ensemble. And the ongoing thematic thing where nothing is ever fixed. It's just... whacked back a little bit.

Heh. And Damien Rice on the way out. See, Chelsea?

Criminal Minds and Damien Rice are two great tastes that angst great together....

And in the morning.... (to the tune of Janis Ian's "In the Winter," of course)

Look! It's Backdraft!Only a hell of a lot less stupid. And without the obnoxious sex atop moving firetrucks. Ron Howard, you have a LOT to answer for. (What do you like to do to little girls and their kewpie dolls, Frankie?)

Why do I say it's less stupid than Backdraft? 1) No sex on fire trucks. 2) The firefighter knows he's the prime suspect and so does everybody else. 3)The script writers know how you fight a benzine fire. 4-12) No effing sex on fire trucks. 13) No sex on fire trucks, either.

God, I hate that movie.

Ahem. Moving on now.

Oh, like the house burning down would wake up your average teenager?

The unsub will be easy to spot. He's the one with the second-degree burns on his head.

I like the contrast of Gideon's rather chilling later line, "He wanted to watch them burn," with the initial ignition point being the family photos. He wants to watch them burn, and we are going to.

The wedged door is just *evil.* That herding of the victims also means they'll be right inside the front door for the response team to find.

I see they have completely abandoned any pretense this show is a mystery. As they *show* you the unsub's face in the first scene. And then the red herrings look nothing like him. And Abby's car is the kicker.

Oh look! It's finally winter in BAU-land. Their seasons are not like our seasons.

...I actually like Gideon's shirt. Hotch's first tie is spotty. Later, however, he is not wearing a Presidential Power Tie. What's up with that?

Reid is wearing one of his horrid blue and white print numbers, though, so I know I'm tuned into the right show.

And Prentiss is back in the suit. I know, I'm the only one, but I like her better in the suit. She looks clean and in control.

The cut from the photo to the burn damage is very nice.

First Red Herring (the one who knows he's a red herring) is really well done. "Hi! I'm the red herring. Here's all the reasons you should suspect me! And here's my personnel file! And here's an ambiguous reaction shot to make me look suspicious! But I'm Ambiguously Ethnic, and the unsub is white!" (We're backout of NCIS land and into BAUland. The Cop Of The Week (and in this case, the firefighter of the week) is nonwhite and/or female and/or both again.)

Mom, lying is bad. Even when it might be kinder, it's unethical.
Emily, go to your room. And clean it while you're up there.

Prentiss does *not* like lying to people.
Hotch lies to the material witness, and Prentiss shuts up and lets him do it, even though it's killing her. Poor Hotch. Mom gets all the crappy jobs.
Really nice job by Thomas Gibson, there. Parents really get to Hotch.

Yes, I am amused that they all have their trigger issues and their defense mechanisms.

At least her arm looks something like actual burn damage, though they must have had to go light on her facial makeup. But we don't want people tossing their TV dinners. And we're in here without masks anyway, and dying-girl not on a ventilator, because yo, hard to act through. But then, Desdemona gets a nice soliloquy after suffocating, too, and the main cast never wears helmets on a commando raid anyway.

Prentiss is pretty freaked out by the idea of somebody disabling the smoke alarms.

Cop of the week, not impressed by profilers. Or Reid. Or JJ.
Firefighter of the week, impressed by profilers. And Gideon.
Aww, JJ defending Reid. Of course, she was bragging him up behind his back, apparently. After sending him to fetch coffee.

If there was an espresso machine in the BAU kitchen, you would *never* get Reid out of there. He's moving to San Francisco, man.
Reid is wearing his watch over his shirt cuff again.

Second red herring has a moustache and the unsub does not. *twirls moustache*

Oh, the crunchy Hotchy goodness. So what if your backstory doesn't make any sense, Supervisory Special Agent Hotchner? It may be self-contradictory, but it's full of angst and woe!

Maybe he has a time turner.

Maybe he loaned it to Morgan. (Morgan is: two years younger than I am (or) five years younger than I am. Pick two.)

I like that Gideon tries to step up, and Hotch deflects him. And later, Gideon says "Next time I'll go," and you know Hotch won't let him.
Hotch protects Gideon.
Gideon protects Hotch.
I refer back to: "It's your wife." They are indeed an old married couple. Or a couple of walking wounded, holding each other on their feet.

...there's a thing where the phone rings and it's Gideon and he gets called something else. Elle's "boyfriend," Hotch's "wife." Huh. It's all about family.

I would suck as an FBI agent. I hate phones.

JJ is looking more like herself, though.

Spencer Reid Realizes He's Said Too Much. (Sometimes, I cannot resist the comic book captions.)
Reid's been listening to Iggy Pop again. Of course I've had it in the ear before.
Random drug testing is not your friend, Spence. And avoiding eye contact with Gideon is only going to get you busted.

Garcia may only get one and a half scenes in this one, but they are good scenes.

And now, we do the little public education riff on what "eco-terrorist" groups do and do not do.

Nice job sabotaging the car.... little close to that explosion, aren't we, bad guy?

"Remind me never to play poker with you guys." Heh. No, really. You really really don't want to do that.

Prentiss cracks the case! And Hotch barely notices. I kind of like the way they seriously underplay who it is who gets the cascading revelation in each episode. And sometimes (often), it's two people at once by different routes. Which serves the dual purpose of nicely delineating the characters in the different ways they figure stuff out, and of supporting the ensemble feel of the show.

And Hotch is already onto what he thinks is going on with Abby, isn't he? That's why *he* takes that side of the investigation.

Gideon is rather wince-free this episode. And Mandy is getting to act.

"How did Evan deal with that?"
"He drank. It got bad."
"How bad?"
"I thought he might hurt himself. I didn't think he could live with it."
la la la

Man, the cargo capacity on the airplane stretches to carry a Chevy Blazer or two. That's pretty cool. Maybe it's a TARDIS they have, not a time turner.

Hotch gets extra husband points for saying "I love you to," in front of the coworker instead of doing the embarrassed "you too," thing. (And obviously, Haley said "I love you," first.)

And Prentiss made two jokes this episode! Two!
...and Hotch just made a joke too.
What am I watching again?

Hey, they got 44 minutes this episode. *g*

Prentiss wears a cross. Huh.

Hmm. This entire episode is only two days of elapsed time.

New, giant-sized cupholders perfect for big gulps and molotov cocktails. And it just goes to prove, no matter how many times you go over that stop drop and roll thing, it's hard to remember when your feet are on fire and your assets are catching.

Look! Mandy's acting again. I love it when he does that. And Hotch isn't here to apologize for Gideon's lack of social skills.
And Thomas gets to act too! Wow, how often do you get all that?

And you are such a brave little toaster, Hotch. Of course *you* had to find out what dad was really up to.
"He's visiting his oncologist" for the ow.

Maybe his father was a heavy smoker, had a stress-and-smoking-related heart attack, and then died of lung cancer. Maybe he burned down, fell over, and THEN sank into the swamp. Maybe Hotch is lying like a rug to the suspect. They do that, you know. Lie to people. Hotch, you malignant narcissist, you. Er, Mr. Wheeler, your backstory isn't on quite straight.

Nobody on this show who has cancer ever tells their family, you notice? It's a Thing.
Criminal Minds drinking game: Potential suspect is concealing a fatal illness: drink!

Dear Prentiss: you are wearing a red hot pink shirt on a commando raid.
On the other hand, you're on the commando raid! Good for you!
Even if it is a huge anticlimax.

The aging blue Volvo station wagon is the perfect car.

See, Hotch? See what happens when you tell somebody to do the right thing?
Oh, this Hotch and Gideon scene is good.

And Prentiss *gets it.* Ping. She is so damned smart.

"There's something missing from this scenario, isn't there?"

"You're dead right."

Dude, you are the stupidest arsonist evar.


Criminal Minds drinking game: team arrives at a scene five minutes too late to stop a poignant/senseless/noble/tragic death, drink twice.

I guess this arsonist won't be one of the 16% percent who got caught.

Oh, Hotch. If Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.
I didn't know Aaron Hotchner owned a pair of blue jeans. Now, if we see Reid out of corduroys or slacks, I will be *truly* shocked.

Man, Thomas Gibson is good at his job. Really, all these guys are. I could just sit here and watch the acting and the post-production work and be happy, most of the time, but fortunately there is all that other cool as well.

JJ is Sir Not Appearing In This Episode. And Garcia and Morgan and Reid really only show up long enough to do their trademark schticks (Garcia: *ludecommentsluciteandexposition* Morgan:*obsessionalcrimesexpositionandtackling* Reid: *statisticslookingbereftcoffeeandexposition.*)

Exposition, like preventing forest fires, is everybody's job.

Morgan does get the greenscreen, though. And a nice green screen it is. Of course, he had to have that particular greenscreen, because he is Understanding Through Projection and Empathizing Guy.

"I'm the unsub."

Well, really, Derek, so aren't you all. Except you're not. That's part of what makes your show so much fun.

The brief character development summary:

Gideon, still not doing well with fire/explosions.
Hotch, still not doing well with dead kids.
Gideon AND Hotch, still not doing well with family members dying of incurable illnesses.
Reid, still not doing well.

Also, Reid, maybe shouldn't compare anything to drug addiction in public where people can see him.
Prentiss, hoof still firmly in mouth. Still smarter than a smart thing, though. And Gideon gave her a little nod, which is, you know, nearly confetti and hosannas, from Gideon.
Garcia, still unable to resist an off-color comment.
Morgan, aware of all these problems. Bur he's FINE.
Reid, still FINE. FINE. Mmm. espresso. I'm FINE.
JJ, still FINE. (Where's your comb, Jaje?)
Hotch, still FINE. FINE. FINE! (Except in front of Gideon.) And so is his marriage. FINE. Kid? FINE. Wife? FINE, dammit. FINE.
Prentiss, still wondering who all these batfucking crazy people she's working with might be.
JJ, making an attempt to go back to teasing Reid.
Reid? Actually making a joke. Possibly two jokes. Hard to tell.

Why must Firefox update every single freaking day?
Why? Why?

NO, really. I'm FINE.

Tags: geeks with guns

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