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Thought-provoking at best, unintentionally funny at worst
Criminal Minds is one of the hottest crime shows on the block, and not without reason. At times, the acting can be quite excellent and the plots suspenseful. But other times it can fall short. It has some well-developed characters like Hotch and Reid, and then some blatant stereotypes/unoriginal characters like Morgan and Garcia. There's some quality acting (Gibson, Gubler, Mantegna, Patinkin) and then some mediocre to stiff performances (Moore, Cook, Brewster, Vangsness). Sometimes the episodes can really make you think; other times the point of a certain episode is so unbelievably clunky and riddled with cliches that you want to laugh - I'm thinking of the Tobias Henkel arc here.

Overall, I'd have to say major points for cast chemistry: you really wanna watch this for the team members' relationships between each other, even more than the thrill of trying to figure out whodunit or why they did it. Points off for the occasionally ridiculous amounts of gorn, poorly written storylines, and a good dose of awkward acting.
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Criminal Minds - scary, disturbing and it keeps getting better...
Criminal minds. Well, what can you say about it? It's a police procedural show about fucking serial killers! It breaks down criminal psychology into its respective components and then it shows you what hell they can reap on an individual's mind.

Although definitely not the first to tackle this aspect of criminology, this show does it the best out of all procedural cop shows, literally dissecting the human mind, trying to isolate and predict patterns of human behaviour and to outmaster The Chessmaster. Arguably every single one of the main characters (FBI agents part of the infamous Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU)) vie for Manipulative Bastard status when dealing with their targets or "Unsubs" (short for "Unknown Subject"), as their entire job consists of breaking psychotic or psychopathic serial killers down into manageable bits and pieces so they can catch them. And not only that, the main characters get individual personalities and character development (I know, weird, right?) as the audience gets to see how these cases affect them. Known for its unique ability to show the inner workings of a killer's mind, this show continuously questions the nature of humanity, morality, and ethical determination, constantly calling on the characters to make hard judgement calls while retaining their professional and personal integrity.

One of the great things about this show though is that it allows the audience to make up their own mind without enforcing a pre-determined position upon them. Each of the main characters are widely different in both past experience and outlook (although with the dark pasts most of them have, hello Dysfunction Junction), and there will always be someone to voice a different opinion, but the show also shows things from the killer's perspective as well. If a person is psychotic or has a severe mental illness, this show gives space to explore the reasons behind their murders and will allow room for sympathetic concern, even if their actions are unforgivable. And if a person is a psychopathic Complete Monster this show will slowly and carefully explain to you why, leaving you feeling as if you've just watched a terrifyingly detailed horror movie.

It may make you want to keep the light on at night, but this is a great show, and, although depressing at times, well worth watching.

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