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March 2017



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criminal minds garcia plan b

"suicide contagion."

Criminal Minds 05x13, 'Risky Business." written by Jim Clemente, directed by Rob Spera

Well, that was elegant.

When Mr. Clemente finishes up at the FBI, I am pretty sure he's not going to have to go begging for a second career. One thing I kind of love about CM is the verisimilitude in how people talk--very often, the cops sound like cops, the EMTs sound like EMTs. When Clemente is writing for them, the FBI agents sound like FBI agents. (Garcia almost never sounds like a real hacker, but she's so geeky and gorgeous, who cares? And she's not any worse than any other fictional geek.)

Also, it is a truth universally acknowledged that JJ-and-Garcia episodes are made of win, puppies, and rainbows. And I think this is only the second one ("Penelope" beng the other.)

Ominous cold open--and again, the everyday becomes tragic. And a very nice purloined letter of the UNSUB's hands in blue nitrile there.

Jaje is wearing Emily's clothes again. And still no wedding ring; just the mother's ring. Good for her for sticking to her guns.

And the team comes to Mom with their troubles. And Mom doesn't even need to talk. He just looks. And the kids explain. (JJ blinking back tears as she's explaining is wonderful. And those big gamine eyes of AJ Cook's only get more expressive.)

Hotch, nobody can resist the JJ puppydog look.

So I wonder what situation was so bad her sister couldn't see a way out. And I wonder if anybody remembers the thing about JJ having no apparent parents (just an aunt, right?) back in "North Mammon." JJ's start and snarl at Morgan when he says "There has to be some underlying issue," tends to indicate maybe.

"This plane seldom makes pleasure trips."

Rossi will be Sir Not Appearing In This Episode.

"There's a multitude of indicators." And Reid gives JJ the opening she needs to present her information, and the whole team suddenly understands. Reid looks out the window, Morgan makes a face, Hotch just registers.

I'm sort of sad the reporter never showed up again.

I love the sheriff. And drink!

"Fret not. I got my own command center. I just need your juice."

Dad sees Reid and Morgan limping up to his door. That's a great shot through the window.

"Not we. Me. I did that." Aww, dad. And mom trying to protect him, and then fastening on JJ's slip of the tongue. And Hotch tries to cover for her. (AJ also has a great aw shit face.)

"He wouldn't do that to us."
And Reid with the nonaswer. Also, his shirt, sportcoat, tie, and cardigan all match. And not in any kind of idiosyncratic "Orange and blue are tertiary complements!" kind of way, either. I'm pretty sure he's dating somebody with a less iconoclastic dress sense.

"I hope we haven't made it worse for them."
"Could we?"

CM, as always, rocking the victim interviews.

"Until--when we met her parents at the hospital. Friday." These guys are so good at this.

If the computer is only in the family room, how does the webcam file get uploaded? Obviously the UNSUB is using his Hollywood Trojan to end the uplink when he wipes the files. Maybe the kid had a wireless webcam in his room, but that's awful risky.

"I did not say empty. I said appears to be blank."
Garcia's hair is as awesome as everything else about her. But her red heart necklace may be even more awesome.

Of course, Garcia and Reid are the ones who know about the choking game. (I wrote a story about it some years ago.)

Ooo, we're in the Matrix now.

Hahahahaha. Garcia FTW. She has learned when to tell the SAIC that shutting the site down would be a bad idea. (Gideon's not getting any more agents semi-killed on her watch.)

Hee. Using Reid's social awkwardness, and his pedantic adrenaline response, as a tool. <3

(And greenscreen! double <3, which is <6)

"I don't want you to win the contest, because I don't want you to play the game."

I guess Shemar's out of that walking cast....

"Open a book, open a mind." and the kid is tackled by the library cart! (What is it about Morgan and libraries?)

Perceptive Reid is perceptive. And Morgan makes an assumption. Ooops. Reid's not ready to commit yet, though. "He's a pretty likely candidate."

"I'm not that type of doctor."

"Your son, Christopher, has been choking himself." Assumptions flying all around!

Morgan and Reid, failing to connect. And Hotch and Prentiss still barking up the wrong trees.

"Sir I have never done that before." Ooo, Hotch is Sir when Garcia still donwanna.

"I look like a cop to you?"

"You have no idea how I feel."
"I dunno. I think I have a pretty good idea."

Heh. Garcia. Once a goth, always a goth. Where's goff!Emily in all this?

"We should bring her out all the time."
Well yes, you should!

And Prentiss and Rossi are on the tail now. "Manual and ligature strangulation." Yup. You can't manually strangle yourself.
Meanwhile Reid and Garcia are using their wondergeek twins. Oh, I need a Redheaded!Garcia icon.

"And pop culture icons." (How about "Cullen," Spencer?)

And the Sheriff realizes the awful troof! Drink!

That's Munchausen's by proxy hybridized with hero homicide, really. And child sexual abuse. That's icky.

"Stay on that site, Garcia." Don't teach your grandmother to suck eggs, Hotch.

"For Christopher, a cemetary would be a place of refuge. But for the father--"
"He's revisiting the body disposal site."

"I decide when you die." Well, you ARE a creepy abusive bastard, aren't you? And the way he looks away and won't meet Christopher's eyes when Christopher is trying to get his attention is awful.

I wonder what those EMTs are thinking as they load their coworker's kid.

"We're an asset for all levels of law enforcement. It's what we do." PSA! Drink!

Garcia knitting and rolling her eyes. Win.

"Play poker with him sometime." ...okay, they're trying to get us drunk.

Aww. Good, brave JJ. And Hotch lets her help. No, she doesn't have to.

I love my show. In fact, I loved this episode so much that icons happened.

Feel free to grab any you like:



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You're welcome! I'm sure Rossi will be back shortly. *g*
The kid with no computer in his room had an X-Box--you see him putting the controller down right before he goes to choke himself. A lot of consoles have internet browsing capabilities these days and a quick Google reveals that one can get a webcam for the X-Box--I don't know what the upload capability would be like and can't really check, I'm at work and 99.9% of gaming sites are blocked.

I really liked this episode. Garcia definitely needs to get out of the office more often.
Aha! I was thinking that was in the living room and he walked away from it. Now all is clear.
I was a tad bit meh on this episode until about half-way through. The parent-actors did very well, and AJ was selling it like crazy. But when Christopher showed up, and we went down from the societal to the personal, it shifted into another gear, and I started to love it. They veered from "Ooh, evil Goth kid" to "No, not evil, now we save Christopher."

But I never had a chance, really. This episode had my two favorite Platonic OTPs: Hotch/Garcia and Hotch/JJ. I didn't notice that Garcia "sir"ed him. But I like the implicit callback to "House On Fire"; Hotch will never throw her into something he thinks she can't handle, but he has faith in her, that she can "handle" a great deal.

And how much did I love that last bit (in the apparently soundproof minibar). Two people, leaking stuffing on their own behalf (thank you for that phrase), trying to shore up the other. He tells she doesn't have to; she remembers that he might know a little bit about how she feels/has felt. I think AJ and Thomas complement each other beautifully.
Garcia can handle almost anything, and Hotch knows it. But he only pushes her boundaries when he has to. Because he respects them.

Uncle Dave is finally learning to respect boundaries too. Hotch really CAN serve as a good example.

Grabbing this icon, thanks! :)
Everybody needs a garcia icon.
Hee. Yeah. Only Illya and Napoleon do it better.

Which one did you take?
I love it that Garcia knits, among all her other talents and interests. (Gloming the obvious icon, thank you) I was working on a sock when that flashed across the screen.

The scene of her bonding with the Goth boy seemed a little too easy, a little to fast, until you find out what's really going on, and how desperate he must have been to reach out for help.

I totally dropped the plot ball on Dad being an EMT until the end.

I loved Reid's earnestness with the kids. He really did want to break through to them. And yeah, what's with all the clothes matching? I bet his socks didn't.

Star puzzle moment: I thought the rest of the team was really rotten to Reid in that exchange, to the point of being cruel. Not just the words but the facial expressions, even Garcia. Sour note.

Overall, great episode, though.

Cross posting this to my LJ
Oh, I dunno. The Reid-kicks-everyone's-ass-at-games thing has been going on for five seasons now, and the games are always full of trash talk. (JJ: "I'm beating a genius!") (Reid: "At least I'm not functionally retarded.") It's part of the family dynamic.

Also, JJ and Reid cheat at cards, and everybody knows it. There's a first-season episode ("Riding the Lightning") where a portion of the plot revolves around Hotch using JJ to cheat at poker, though it's all in the subtext.
I am SO glad they went from "evil Goth kid" to "save the Gothling!" Although I am Very Concerned about what's going to happen to him now. Foster care? I'd like to see him go to Simon's Rock, really.

Also, I really loved Garcia's hair floofies.
His helplessness to save himself was heart wrenching.
Nicking 'the love is still there' icon (because it seems so fitting *g*).

Thank you!
Fair enough, and I have no idea what normal childhoods are like. But one generally expects some sort of precipitating event or biochemical issue. Especially when they're making a point of these being atypical suicides.
Well, I guess this puts the nail in the coffin of our old Emily theory. Probably.

I'm pretty sure JJ does have a mother hidden away somewhere. (There's a fourth season episode, I think, where she mentions her in passing while showing around Henry's baby pictures.)

I loved how much the JJ in this episode fits into the tiny little glimpses we've seen of her story before. Small-town soccer star JJ was definitely present. (Especially when she slipped up and said "if." Screwing up is something other people do.)

And needless to say, I loved each and every thing Garcia did with every ounce of my soul.
Which old Emily theory? There are so many. (and which nail?)

I was happy with Garcia's character continuity, even if her brothers have been eated by a grue.

Edited at 2010-01-21 05:10 pm (UTC)
I love Garcia as a redhead. I squee'ed aloud when it was revealed that Garcia knits. Of course she knits. Ah, show, you never stop giving me reasons to love you.
She is also made of win and puppies.
There's much hate for this episode over at TWOP. I admit I didn't much care for it myself, although Interview!Garcia was awesome and the continuing presence of Grownup, Capable Reid is always awesome. The plot didn't make any sense and was full of holes, the whole thing felt like a PSA and I was so irritated by the star puzzle scene it soured me on everything

I HATE it when they give Reid the Bones/Data treatment. But it would burn up in the atmosphere! Eyeroll. It is totally in character for him to point out that fables have morals, therefore this story is not a fable, but it is NOT in character for him to be so android-like about the story like he's incapable of comprehending the point. If MGG had played it teasingly it would have worked. Although Emily's line of "There's a lot to hate about you, Dr. Reid" almost saved it because that's so clearly something you say to someone you love but find sometimes exasperating. And of course the punchline of him solving the puzzle instantaneously couldn't have been more obvious from the moment the scene began.

They did this to him in Performer too with the ignorance of pop culture, which is totally out of character for a man who goes to Comic-Con and quotes Yoda. It's the standard TV trope of the nerd/genius and one of the things I love about CM is that they don't treat him like that. Usually they don't, anyway.
TWOP bores. *g* I haven't had any use for it since 2007 or so.

I didn't think this was clueless!Reid at all*, but rather pedantic!Reid offended by the silliness of the story. But you're entitled to your spin, of course. And yeah, I think Emily's comment was totally in friendship and affection.

*Especially given that he and Garcia are the ones hip to teen culture.

Edited at 2010-01-21 05:34 pm (UTC)
Interesting choice of backstory, given that A.J. Cook was also one of the five Lisbon sisters in The Virgin Suicides.

Yay Morgan got to tackle something this week!
Hee. I didn't know that.

Oh, show.
I was really concerned about how this story would be handled, because there was a community in Wales that had a serious rash of teenage suicides last year that generated a lot of media attention. But I thought it was nicely underplayed and not at all sensationalised. In fact, to a certain extent, it wasn't really even about the suicides at all.

I thought hero homicide more than Munchausen's by proxy at the end, though, with the revelation that the dad was an EMT.

Garcia was totally made of awesome and I loved Hotch saying they should bring her all the time.

I liked that Hotch didn't call J.J. on her issues and even told her she didn't have to tell him, but I think by that point she needed to tell someone - and it let her help Hotch a little bit as well.

The puzzle star thing was cute, even if it was obvious that Reid would solve it *g*

I did miss Uncle Dave, though :-(
Yeah, to all of this.

Like so much this show did, it was about the impact on those left behind.

I mean really, that's the basic thematic argument they've been working on since Episode 1.

"It's not surprising that some grow up to kill people.... some grow up to catch them."
I'm glad I'm not the only one who thought 'hero homicide' when they began to put the pieces together about 'dear old dad'. He's lucky he didn't get shot for 'resisting arrest' when they finally cornered him.

The opening screamed "JJ backstory" and they didn't disappoint..though it would have helped maybe to have the reveal a little sooner. Then Mom wouldn't have had to be so watchful for so long. He knew something was up..JJ never 'misspeaks'..she's always on point, but this one was way too personal and her defenses were down. Very nice scene at the end in the galley. (When did they start flying on the jet with the high seatbacks? )

And Garcia just rocks the whole time..hesitant at first, she sitting so stiffly in her seat at the beginning. By the end, all relaxed and knitting while keeping an eye on her 'charges'.

Thanx for the icons..I'm taking 'Plan B'
Mom knew she could handle it. I suspect he also already had figured out the backstory. He was just... keeping a weather eye out.

Maybe they got new chairs for Christmas?
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