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Heartwarming / Criminal Minds

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  • Any time the team relaxes together.
  • Almost every Morgan/Garcia scene is guaranteed to be either a CMOF or this.
    • There is a popular internet meme that makes the rounds regularly, reading "Every man should talk to his girl the way Derek Morgan talks to Penelope Garcia."
  • Any moment where Hotch shows concern or affection - or even amused affection - for one of his team. He has some particularly sweet moments with Garcia.
  • Almost any moment when Hotch and Rossi talk to each other about something other than a case, particularly if Rossi manages to make Hotch smile.
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  • Any and every moment that Hotch has with his son.
  • The happy endings. Criminal Minds is an incredibly dark and occasionally horrific show, but many episodes are able to have an ending where the latest victim (or sometimes victims) is saved and reunited with their love ones. Ultimately, there is a consistently optimistic note that good will ultimately be able to triumph over evil.

Season One

  • In "Plain Sight", the team throws a birthday party for Reid, including cake and a goofy birthday hat that Gideon encourages him not to remove. At the end of the episode, Gideon (who Reid notes doesn't give gifts) gives him VIP tickets to a Redskins game and tells him to take JJ.
  • When Reid (who is around 24 at the time) is surprised that he doesn't feel more upset after shooting someone for the first time in his life.
    Gideon: It'll hit later. When it does, I want you to remember three things. One: that you did the right thing. Two: that a lot of people are alive because of what you did.
    Reid: What's the third thing?
    Gideon: That I'm proud of you.
  • It's a small thing, but in "LDSK", when the shots ring out in the park, Gideon's first reaction is to push JJ down and shield her with his own body.
    • A bit of Fridge Brilliance, but for the same episode, Reid and Hotch understand each other so much, that when they're taken hostage, Reid instantly understands Hotch's plan when he moves the civilians out of the line of fire. Reid teasing Hotch about his kicking afterwards was adorable as well.
  • A small moment from "Natural Born Killer": after the UnSub has attacked Hotch and has been apprehended, Gideon takes a moment to ask if he's okay and tease him lightly about wearing a tie. There's something very heartwarming about their body language and Gideon's quiet tone.
    • Later, Hotch is fretting over Gideon going in to talk to the same UnSub, pointing out that his chains have a bit of slack and removing a pen from Gideon's pocket so as not to give him a potential weapon, and Gideon makes a point of reassuring him that he'll be okay. It's another small moment that shows just how much they care about (and worry about) each other.
  • At the end of "Blood Hungry", Hotch encourages Gideon to reach out to his son, whom Gideon says doesn't want to hear from him. It's very sweet hearing how nervous but happy Gideon sounds as he talks to his son, and the episode ends with the two of them talking to each other after making plans to get together.
  • In the middle of "What Fresh Hell?", Garcia asks Gideon if the large number of photos in his office are of his family. He says yeah, sort of. At the end of the episode, he adds a photo of the rescued girl, and the audience suddenly realizes that the photos are of everyone he's saved.
    • It gets even sweeter in an Freeze-Frame Bonus way when you notice that one of the pictures is of the twins from "Broken Mirror", and another looks like it could be of one of the hostages from "Derailed"
  • Near the end of "Riding The Lightning", Gideon gets the warden to take Sarah Jean out of her cell for five minutes so Gideon can search it. The warden doesn't get someone to interview her or anything like that, he takes her outside so she can see the full moon like she asked to.
    • Overlapping with Tear Jerker, but Sarah Jean, fully ready to accept her fate, asks if Gideon's face can be the last thing she sees before they cover her face with the hood. He obliges, and even gives a smile; she had commented before how she thought he had a "lovely smile". She smiles in return.
  • At the end of "The Popular Kids", Gideon tells Reid about the time they rescued a kidnapped girl before any harm came to her. That girl is now grown up with a family, and she writes to the B.A.U every year to let them know how she's doing. It's a powerful reminder that for all the horror the team faces, the people they save make it all worthwhile.
    • In that same episode, one of the subplots centers around Reid and his nightmares. He tells Morgan about them at the beginning of the episode, and out of concern for Reid, he tells Hotch and Gideon. Later on when Reid calls him out for doing that, Morgan tells Reid that he has nightmares of his own due to an early case of his. Reid asks Morgan how he dealt with them, and he says that Gideon was able to tell what was wrong with him (Morgan didn't want anybody knowing) and talked him through them. The conversation ends with Morgan saying that while he still has nightmares, they're not nearly as often. At the end of the episode, Gideon tells Reid that the whole team has nightmares, implying that he's helped them as well.

Season Two

  • Reid reading to his mom on the plane at the end of "The Fisher King."
    • Also, Gideon holding Elle's hand in the hospital after she comes out of surgery. He's spent the entire episode both working the case with the rest of team and staying in the hospital out of worry for her, and he wanted to be there for her when she woke up.
  • In "P911", the mother reuniting with her son for the first time in years. The fact that the boy named his toy soldier who always protects him Jack while not knowing his mother's name was Jackie was simply adorable.
  • It's small, but in "Aftermath", Gideon showing his care and concern for Elle as she goes undercover to catch a serial rapist.
    Hotch: Do you think Elle's ready for it?
    Gideon: We'll be there for her.
    • While she's panicking during the operation, Gideon, who is wired to her, gently tries calming her down:
    Gideon: Easy, baby.
  • When they finally find Reid at the end of "Revelations". Hotch immediately helps him to his feet and pulls him into a huge hug with JJ following soon after.
    Reid: I knew you'd understand.
    • From the same episode:
    Tobias Hankel: Do you think I'll get to see my mother again?
    • Gideon holding Garcia's hand as they're watching the live feed of Reid being tortured.
  • Gideon gently cradling the dying UnSub telling him it's going to be all right in "Open Season". Doubles as a Tear Jerker.
  • Morgan flirting a homeless lady into going into a shelter for safety in "Legacy." He says something along the lines of "the world needs all its beautiful ladies, and that includes you".
    • The ending of the episode qualifies too, from the last minute rescue to the team having fun together watching a Chaplin movie.
  • Morgan and his sisters singing Happy Birthday to their mother in "Profiler, Profiled", as well as their good-natured sibling-y bickering.
  • The detective from episode 22. He went all the way to the FBI just to report about the homeless people in his jurisdiction being missing. It wasn't even official that the people were missing. It was just a theory of his. And he even checked all of the databases before heading to the FBI. He also lied to the FBI when he told them that he hadn't told anyone else (his boss knew.). This could have gotten him out of a job and/or some serious consequences. And his reason for pretty much lying to the FBI was because he thought that they wouldn't have come if they knew his boss had dismissed his theory. and his reason for coming to the FBI team I the first place?
    Detective McGee: It's my job to take care of them (the bums, prostitutes and vagrants).
  • The end of "Profiler, Profiled", where Morgan, his family, and Damien's family all pay their respects to Damien and the other unidentified boys Buford murdered. Even Gordinski and Rodney Harris show up! Though that last one becomes Harsher in Hindsight when Harris reappears as an UnSub in season 7.
  • In "Empty World," when the bomber has placed a bomb under a professor's car. The team is too late to prevent the woman from getting into the car, but Morgan refuses to walk away from the woman inside, even though it puts him in danger. He holds her hand the entire time the bomb is being defused and flatly rejects a direct order from Hotch... all to comfort a woman he has only just met.
  • In "Ashes and Dust", Hotch lies to a victim, who is on the brink of death with severe burns, about the status on her husband and son. He tells the woman that they both survived the fire set by the UnSub and are waiting for her in the waiting room so she can pass on more peacefully.

Season Three

  • Morgan telling Garcia "goon squad or no goon squad", he's staying with her, and that he loves her, in "Penelope".
    • Earlier in the same episode, Hotch declaring that he doesn't care about protocol and that the team will not work another case until they catch the man who shot Garcia.
    • Kevin and Penelope meeting for the first time, which revitalizes her hope that “everything happens for a reason”.
  • From "A Higher Power", after saving the last UnSub's target (who had fallen into depression after her daughter's death), Prentiss talks to her:
    Prentiss: A mother isn't supposed to outlive her children.
    Laurie Ann: Yeah.
    Prentiss: But she's gone. Allie's dead...
    Laurie Ann: Please, I don't care anymore.
    Prentiss: But your son does. Don't leave him as well.
  • In the Flashback episode, "Tabula Rasa" we see Morgan and Garcia's first meeting.
    Morgan: Hey, what's that new tech girl's name?
    Reid: Uh, Gomez, I think.
    Morgan: (To Garcia) Excuse me, Gomez. (Beat) Hey, babygirl.
    Garcia: (turns to faces Morgan) Babygirl?
    Morgan: Forgive me, I just didn't know the real-
    Garcia: I've been called worse. (Smiles) What can I do for you?
  • In "About Face", the team passing out candy to the kids at the end of the episode.
  • Garcia figuring out something was wrong with Rossi in "Damaged", and Morgan, Prentiss, and JJ going to Chicago to track him down and help solve the Galen case. They do so despite his fairly jerkass-y behavior overall towards the team so far (since, at this point, he's still a Jerk with a Heart of Gold who's not used to the newer teamwork structure of the BAU, and hasn't really warmed up to the team yet). When they first join up with Rossi, he tries to push them away and tells them to go home, but they insist on staying to help him. What makes him finally accept their help?
    Rossi: (to all of them) Why do you care?
    (Morgan, Prentiss, and JJ exchange glances)
    Prentiss: Because you do.
  • The team finding the missing girl in "Seven Seconds" The look on her parents' faces just says it all.

Season Four

  • The end scene on the plane in "Minimal Loss", when Prentiss reassures Reid that the beating she took from the cult-leader UnSub was not his fault. "It was my decision, and I'd do it again." The way they smile, a little shyly, at each other (with Reid looking quite touched) is super cute.
  • Also from "Minimum Loss". The entire episode, the team is clearly worried about Prentiss and Reid being held hostage and broke protocols to ensure both of them got out. When the episode ends, we get a shot of Hotch looking at Reid and Prentiss before saying "We got the kids out okay." Considering his interactions with his team bordering on paternal, it's so sweet.
  • At the start of "The Instincts" Reid winds up falling asleep during the briefing & mumbling JJ’s name repeatedly - when he wakes up, it’s clear from everyone’s reactions that the team think he was having a sex dream. The moment he reveals that he dreamt that he found a dead child & for some reason JJ’s baby was at the crime scene, the entire team’s reactions change to concern - with Morgan going out of his way over the course of the episode to try & help Reid figure out what the dream meant.
  • JJ asking Reid to be Henry's godfather at the end of "Memoriam." (The bit about colleges directly following is also a Funny Moment.)
    • Also, Rossi and Morgan stepping up when it becomes clear that Reid is having too much trouble getting the words out to ask for his father. That whole scene, really — both of them setting aside their doubts and playing big, bad, scary FBI enforcers so that Reid can have his moment of Calling the Old Man Out on his own terms. That scene would have played out so differently if Reid hadn't had people on his side.
    • In the same episode, Rossi sitting in with Reid during the hypnosis to make sure everything went okay. When Reid starts panicking, Rossi starts off angrily demanding the hypnotist to wake him up and once Reid does wake up, Rossi immediately starts calming him down and reassuring him that he's okay.
    • Also from that episode, a slightly odd retroactive example: Reid mentions that he remembers his father's favorite writer is Isaac Asimov. In the previous season, he got excited about having the Foundation Trilogy on tape. It's almost sweet that Reid has something in common with his father, without even realizing it.
  • The end of the case in "Normal" is a Downer Ending, though the actual episode ending is a Heartwarming Moment, with JJ showing off her new son.
  • Hotch sitting with the prostitute UnSub from "Pleasure is My Business" after she's overdosed, and holding her hand as she dies painfully, simply because she asked him to.
    • Their whole relationship, really, especially when we figure out that her interest in him isn't romantic. Yes, she's a killer, but it's also clear that she desperately wants a father figure in her life — and who better to do it than the resident Team Dad, who she identifies as "the only man I ever met who didn't let me down."
  • Rossi during much of "Demonology", especially the way he listens to Prentiss talk about her abortion and doesn't pass judgment. Hotch, too, when he and Rossi agree to piss off the Italian consulate on Prentiss's say-so.
    • In the beginning of the episode, Hotch's concern for an in-shock Emily is very sweet. At first, he offers her time off to grieve, and then when she asks for leeway to investigate the killing, he doesn't even hesitate to offer his and the team's help.
  • This exchange from "52 Pickup"
    Garcia: Sir, does this guy stuff actually work on real, breathing girls?
    Hotchner: (confused) Why are you asking me?
    Garcia: I abhor the whole chicks-dig-jerks thing.
    Hotchner: Well, fortunately, Garcia, you are one of the exceptions.
    Garcia: Be still my bespectacled heart. So are you, sir.
    Hotchner: (smiling) Thanks.
  • At the end of "House on Fire" Garcia is depressed from having to dig into the personal lives of people in the town the team is in. Afterward, she confronts Hotch on it:
    Garcia: You guys choose this; turning people over like rocks, and looking at all their creepy-crawly things underneath. And I get it, I do. It's the only way to catch them, but … I want to see the good in people. I choose to see the good in people, and … getting into someone's mind and trying to find the god-awful thing that happened to them that made them do the god-awful thing to somebody else has seriously impaired my ability to giggle, and it makes my brain all wonky and I don't like it.
    Hotch: Garcia.
    Garcia: Yes, sir.
    Hotch: I just wanted to thank you for your excellent work on this case. And I understand that what you did was, for you, very difficult, but your contributions are essential to the success of this team.
    Garcia: Thank you, sir.
    Hotch: I know you see the good in people, Penelope, always. And I would never want you to change that.
  • The Bittersweet Ending of "The Big Wheel". Vincent takes Stanley to the fair to celebrate the boy's birthday. He even takes him on the Ferris Wheel and makes the operator stop when they get to the top. Before he dies, he tells Stanley that he should never wish to be dead because he's a special boy. In his own strange way, he saw Stanley like a son and he wanted to make amends to the boy whose mother he killed.

Season Five

  • "The Eyes Have It", when Morgan is made their temporary unit chief and it turns out that Garcia has put together a new office for him, complete with a "secret fun zone" in a drawer with brightly colored, light up stuff, a robot dog, fuzzy pens, and a picture of her.
  • In "100", Hotch finding Jack safe inside the box he told him to hide in, using their code of "working the case". When Hotch opens the lid, Jack says "I worked the case for you, Daddy".
    • Every single member of the team going to bat for Hotch in the ensuing investigation, each in their own way.
    • Even Erin Strauss, the one heading the investigation, sympathizes with Hotch, being in tears after his testimony, and refusing to pursue the matter any further.
  • Reid giving the UnSub's dolls back in "The Uncanny Valley" — all she really wanted was the dolls her abusive father took away from her.
    • Plus the part where the diabetic victim's husband shows up at her side as the paramedics prepare to load her up. You can tell she's trying very, very hard to smile as the drugs wear off.
  • Two from "Public Enemy" - JJ playing tea party with the young daughter of a victim, and the entire team sending a card and a $500 check to the daughter when she makes her first communion.
    • Also, the end shows the community returning to the various location where the UnSub killed and resuming activities there (attending church, the laundromat is open). The UnSub tried to destroy important parts of the community, and the community healed.
  • Just a teeny tiny thing, but in "A Thousand Words", after Garcia says that she wishes that the case could be over, Rossi responds with, 'We've got a long way to go, kitten.' Garcia's nicknaming rubbing off on the team, perhaps?
  • Garcia bonding with Christopher in "Risky Business". She opens up a little about her past and talks a little about their taste in Gothic fashion. It also doubles as a Tear-Jerker considering that Chris is tortured by his father and his mother died when he was young. His interaction with Garcia was probably the one moment that brightened his dark life.
  • Morgan reassuring Garcia she isn't getting jaded at the end of "Exit Wounds".
  • "Faceless, Nameless": The Foyet scenes are mostly pure creepy, and Hotch says very little. But the one thing that he does say?
    My team...
  • Charlie being reunited with his parents after several years.
  • At the end of "Haunted", the UnSub, the son of a serial killer who suffered a psychotic break after he began remembering his traumatic past, seems to have regained at least some of his sanity after killing his father. The final scene is him comforting the man who he had saved from being a victim of his father 30 years ago, telling him that it was because of him he gained the strength to no longer fear and eventually confront his father.
    • During the episode, the UnSub had been reacting violently to anyone who touched him. At the end, the man who he had saved touched his shoulder and his face and the UnSub just relaxed.
  • "Cradle to Grave" has two despite being a rather nightmare fuel inducing episode. First the woman who had just given birth gets her baby back. Back at headquarters JJ has been trying to see if she can get an older couple(the parents of one of the UnSub's victims)custody of the their granddaughter. The adoptive parents refuse but say they would like for the grandparents to be in the girl's life. They agree to this and then find out that their daughter had given birth once before while in captivity,to a little boy and since they are his next of kin they get custody of him.
    • There's also the fact that the most recent abducted woman (who helped deliver the baby) was desperate to get out when the FBI shows up, but she's also hesitant to leave the woman who gave birth.
  • "Roadkill" has JJ letting the man who believed himself to have caused the UnSub's car accident know that the accident he actually caused resulted in damage to the other car, but there were no injuries.

Season Six

  • The end of "JJ" with the goodbye between Garcia and JJ.
  • The end of "Compromising Positions" between Hotch and Garcia. He tells her that she did a good job of doing both her's and JJ's job, but to stick to her job.
    Hotch: Garcia, when you applied for this job you did so on homemade pink stationary. I realized then that you are ... unique. And I wouldn't want you to change that.
  • Despite the Enfante Terrible situation in "Safe Haven", Ellie being reunited with her loving birth mother in the epilogue.
  • Jack Hotchner's Halloween costume in "Devil's Night":
    Hotch: That doesn't look like Spider-Man.
    Jack: Spider-Man's not a real superhero.
    Hotch: Okay, I give up.
    Jack: (wearing a suit, white shirt, and one of Hotch's ties) I'm you, Daddy.
  • The ending of "Into The Woods". Despite this being one of the creepier episodes,the scene of the both the children reunited with their parents as Rossi looks on and remarks that even though the UnSub got away this is still a happy ending.
  • Garcia's defense for looking into Seaver's "hidden background."
    Garcia: I am not going to let some strange new person travel with my family and not find out who they are!
  • The ending of "25 to Life", where a father is exonerated from killing his wife and daughter after the real culprit is finally caught 25 years later. He's finally reunited with his adult son, who was his driving motivation during his prison life, and the two hug as Derek looks on.
  • From "Coda," Reid and Sammy, the autistic child of the UnSub's victims, playing the piano together after Reid figures out how to communicate with him through music. Just a nice, sweet, quiet little moment amidst the usual urgency of a case.
    • Another from Coda: Sammy's father is dead, but his mother's been rescued and is on her knees crying in front of him. And Sammy, confused little autistic Sammy who doesn't like to be touched and has no idea what's going on, reaches out and starts patting her shoulder because he's picked up somewhere that that's what you do when people are upset, and lets her hug him. A CMOH and Tear Jerker rolled into one.
  • The exchanges between Garcia and Prentiss in "Valhalla" and "Lauren".
  • Hotch and Rossi coaching Jack's kids' league soccer game together at the end of "Out of the Light."
  • In "Sense Memory," Reid calls Prentiss to invite her to see an incredibly long science-fiction movie in Russian, and is happily and innocently chattering away about it while she searches her apartment for intruders, gun drawn, but unwilling to tell her teammates that she is in danger and why. Prentiss turns down the invitation as she concludes that there are no burglars, but the conversation ends with the following exchange:
    Prentiss: Thank you.
    Reid: For what?
    Prentiss: For being you.
    Reid: Aw, thanks. I don't know how to be anyone else.
  • Morgan and Prentiss at the climax of "Lauren," especially since, up to now, Morgan has been nursing a heavy sense of confusion and betrayal about her hidden past.
    Prentiss: Let me go.
    Morgan: No. No, I am not letting you go....Listen to me, I know why you did all of this. I know what you did for Declan. I am so proud of you. Do you understand that? I am proud of you because you are my friend and you are my partner.

Season Seven

  • Prentiss explaining to the Senate Committee, at length, why her team is awesome, thereby saving the entire unit's jobs.
  • Rossi teaching the team how to cook at the end of "Proof", and Reid showing up despite his resentment toward JJ. For extra points, Hotch has a beaming smile through the entire scene, probably his longest during the entire series.
    • There's also Prentiss asking Morgan if he's also mad at her like Reid is.
      Morgan: Come on, now. How can I be? You're here.
      Prentiss: (Relieved sigh) ...Thank you.
  • In "Painless," Hotch asks Prentiss what kept her going when she was hiding from Doyle in Paris. She reveals that she played a lot of online Scrabble with "some girl named 'Cheeto Breath.'" They both look at JJ, who is at the other end of the plane innocuously munching on Cheetos.
  • Little Jack Hotchner is being bullied by a kid in his class. Jack's solution, in Hotch's words, is "to invite him over and be friends with him". Aww, Jack.
    • Also, Jack and Hotch talking to Haley:
    Hotch: Mom, please keep Jack safe.
    Jack: And Dad too.
    Hotch: (Surprised and touched) Oh, of course. Dad too.
  • The third mother and her daughter in "From Childhood's Hour". Despite arguing over the former's boyfriend trying to rape the latter, they refused to say that they hated each other when taking hostage. The mother even tries to get her daughter to hate her to get the unsub to shoot her instead of lash out against the daughter.
  • JJ reading a story to Henry at the end of "There's No Place Like Home." It's sweet enough that she does it over the phone, but the fact that she has memorized his favorite story makes it even better.
  • Reid's birthday party at the end of "True Genius", especially considering how upset he'd been for most of the episode, doubting himself and his life choices.
  • The plane and ending scene of "A Family Affair".
  • Any time Angel Suarez smiles, especially when JJ figures out his name and Morgan teaches him coin tricks.
  • The ending of "Run". So warm I won't need heat this winter.
  • Morgan reuniting his presumed dead cousin, Cindi, with her family after eight years. The scene at the end and Morgan tearing up is the clincher.
  • The ending of "The Company" where Derek rescues his cousin, meets his nephew and unites them with their mother.
    Garcia: There's my hero.
  • In "Hit", one of the UnSubs gets agitated and hits a bank employee. Another employee immediately steps in and tries to take the heat off of her.

Season Eight

  • Garcia professing her love to her BAU "family", even Alex ("It's a new love..."), and their reaction.
  • A few from "The Pact":
    • Rossi, Married to the Job that he is, doesn't like taking vacation days, despite having a whopping 31 days saved up. When Blake suggests that he could give away his days, he immediately agrees, and asks Garcia to give the days to FBI employees who have spouses or relatives serving active military duty oversees.
    • Throughout the episode, the two UnSubs, Ellen and Darlene, have a pretty strained relationship, since the latter is a very Sympathetic Murderer who feels remorse for their vigilante murders while the former is a psychopath who enjoys them. However, at the end, when the FBI has successfully tracked them to Mexico, they only capture Ellen, since Darlene was getting them both drinks at the time (despite Ellen having just dissed her moments before). In spite of the tension between the two women, Ellen lies to Rossi that Darlene is "long gone" rather than give her up. Then, when she's placed in the back of the police car, she sees Darlene getting away on a bus nearby, unnoticed by the police, and gives her a warm, genuine smile, sincerely happy to see her kinder partner escape the law.
  • In "The Wheels on the Bus" when Wendy is chosen to be the next player of the deadly game she breaks down crying because doesn't think she'll be able to do it. When the Un Sub's threaten her with electric schocks she straightens out and is ready to do it, that is when her classmate Billy takes her place instead.
    • In the aftermath of that same episode you can see another classmate, Sean, sitting with Wendy in the ambulance after she was shot.
  • Henry going as his favorite profiler for Halloween, Reid. And Reid's utterly adorable reaction to it. This troper is still smiling at it.
  • When Reid asks the BAU to help him find Maeve, none of them object using their free time to do it.
  • Everything about the team's concern for Reid, and their attempts to help him through his grief, in Magnum Opus. The moment that particularly struck this troper was a conversation between Hotch and Rossi; Rossi, thinking back on his own loss, says that he's thankful he had time to say goodbye to his ex-wife, and can't really imagine what it must be like for Reid. He trails off at a glance from Hotch—a silent reminder that Hotch absolutely can imagine it. The parallel is further drawn later in the episode, when Reid asks Hotch how much time it takes to deal with such loss.

Season Nine

  • The scene where Hotch wakes up after his operation. Garcia gets up to call Jessica and Jack, and plants a kiss on Hotch's forehead before she can stop herself.
    Hotch: Garcia? Thank you for staying.
    Garcia: (choked up) Wild horses, Sir. Just... wild horses.
  • The end of 'Gatekeeper', for so many reasons. Firstly, the shot of Reid handing the baby he delivered to its mother, and his being named Spencer in Reid's honor. Also, the throwaway knowledge that Reid memorized the delivery manuals when JJ was pregnant with Henry, and the final scene of the team singing (very bad) karaoke, while Hotch stands by and records it with the face-splitting, proud grin he only uses for Jack or the team.
  • The near-end of "To Bear Witness." Sam, who has been unable to utter a single word throughout his stay at the hospital, is reunited with Dana. He manages to choke out her name, nearly in tears. What makes this moment is him reaching up and grabbing her hand, and Dana begins to cry.
    Morgan: Hey Dana, I'm Derek. Sam here is very happy to see you.
    Sam: (Struggling) D-...Dana...
  • If the end of "200" doesn't belong here, I don't know what does. The team, reunited, Prentiss included, gathered together, drinking, laughing, and generally just enjoying each others' company as Sarah Darling's cover of "Blackbird" plays in the background.
  • At the end of "Fatal" where Hotch does a career day presentation for Jack's class at the BAU by profiling four kids to find out who had a stapler in their box. It's adorable.

Season Ten

  • "Boxed In" is set at Halloween, which Hotch laments is the last holiday he’s been forced to miss spending with Jack. When he returns home the morning after, he finds Jack sleeping on the couch, still dressed as Darth Vader - he’d tried to stay up so his dad could see him in his costume.
  • The whole ending of "Fate". Rossi finds out that he had a daughter with his second ex-wife and she had spent the whole episode trying to learn about her long-lost father. Rossi drives out to the airport where he has time to reflect on his relationship with his ex-wife. Once he gets to the airport, he gives a heartfelt apology to Joy about not being there and running away from her mother. Just as she's about to get on the plane, she reveals that she's married and has a son. Rossi asks her if it would be alright if he were to fly out to Paris to meet his daughter's family.
  • Overlapping with a touch of Moment Of Funny, from the 11th episode; Reid, the Prince of Statistics, offers up a quick answer to a question from Hotch (how many boats are on Lake Mead), only to have Kate - jokingly - call him out, stating that he can't possibly know that and he's just guessing, Morgan fist bumps her, saying he's been saying that for ten years now, and finally someone has his back. Rossi looks it up, and Reid, of course is exactly right; the heartwarming comes in the form of a fist bump from a grinning Hotch.
  • In “Anonymous”, when Rossi cancels his fishing trip with her once he finds out about the death of Harrison Scott, his daughter Joy decides to fly out and join him in Los Angeles, telling him, “There are times when families are supposed to be together. This seemed like one of those times.” After Rossi tells Joy how Sergeant Scott had straightened him out she observes that, in a roundabout way, Scott made her existence possible (after observing that her mother wouldn’t have given the old David Rossi the time of day). She then stays in Los Angeles with Rossi long enough to attend Harrison Scott’s funeral.
  • While "Nelson's Sparrow" is otherwise a very sad episode due to Gideon's death, we get to see Gideon and Rossi's friendship as they worked together back in the day when the BAU was just being started. When Rossi deduces that Gideon is about to become a father, he asks Rossi for his middle name: Stephen. Back in the first season, we see that Gideon's son is named Stephen, which implies that Gideon named him after Rossi.
  • In “Hunt”, where Reid finds out that JJ is having another baby. The look on his face is just precious.
    Reid: Not you too. Am I getting another godson?
    JJ: ...Possibly. Maybe goddaughter.

Season Eleven

  • JJ’s return to the BAU after her maternity leave - especially when she describes Michael’s giddy reaction to seeing a picture of Spencer, and the team reveal JJ’s desk is now adorned with pictures of her sons.
  • Joy revealing that she’s using the Rossi name on her byline, having missed out on using it growing up.
  • The final scene between Spencer & Derek in the episode "Entropy". "Can I tell you something?" Derek asks before embracing him. "I just, um ... You know?" "I know, I know," Spencer replies and hugs him back. "Good, because I mean it." Man Tears.
  • "The Sandman":
    • When Morgan returns to work after a six-month leave, Savannah organizes a party with his co-workers.
    • Also, before this: it's shown that, after Derek proposed to Savannah at the end of the previous episode, the two of them got married during the Time Skip, as Morgan puts a picture of them from their wedding on his desk.
    • Later in the episode, when Morgan is visibly bothered by something, Reid notices and sits down with him to talk about it. Reid first assures him that they will find whoever tried to kill him, and when he realizes that Morgan is actually bothered by the case (which involves child abductions), he reminds him that their work makes the world a little safer every day, and warmly assures Derek that he and Savannah will be great parents.
  • In "A Beautiful Disaster", Morgan's and Savannah's son is born. Though Morgan does decide to leave the team to devote more time to his new family, he gets a sweet "goodbye" scene with each of the other longtime members of his team:
    • He and Hotch both hold the new baby's hands in the incubator, and bond over the shared experience of being a new father.
    • Rossi brings flowers to Savannah's hospital room, and though he laments that he didn't get to see his own daughter grow up, even his brief time of being a father to her has taught him that it heals wounds. He then has Morgan take him to see the new baby, so the latter can meet his "Uncle Dave".
    • JJ gives Morgan a gift—a framed picture of the whole team together with Savannah and the baby at the hospital—and promises that they're always there if he needs them.
    • Reid's overlaps with a Tear Jerker since goodbyes and change are hard for him, and he notes that their meeting room won't be the same without Morgan, but Morgan assures him that he's just a phone call away. Furthermore, he reveals that his new son's full name is "Hank Spencer Morgan": Hank after Derek's deceased father, and Spencer for "the best little brother anybody could ever ask for." The two exchange a Man Hug and "I love you"s. Heterosexual Life-Partners indeed!
    • Garcia has packed Morgan's office up for him, and tells him about her "magic" for him and his family coming out okay like she hoped he would. She also notes that she's kind of glad it wasn't a baby girl, and Derek assures her that she'll always be his original "baby girl" and tells her that he loves her.
      Derek: Everything you and I do together is magic, since the minute we met.
      Penelope: But it's ending, and I'm scared. You make me feel super brave.
      Derek: You make me feel safe. You know, you're partially to blame for me leaving. You got such a big heart, and I think it rubbed off on me.
    • The closing quote of the episode is Morgan quoting something once said by Prentiss, the one close friend of his who wasn't present for this episode.
      Morgan: As a good friend of mine said, "Every ending is also a beginning. We just don't know it at the time." I'd like to believe she's right.
  • The end of "Tribute" with all the agents, and the visiting Prentiss, going out for a "family dinner" as Garcia put it.

Season Twelve

  • Deeley reuniting with his brother and sister who went missing almost thirty years ago in "Elliot's Pond."
  • In a way that shows they're better than the UnSub, the members of the titular "Anti-Terrorism Squad" actually had sympathy for their tormentor's families being murdered. Despite how they acted to them, they still had a good amount of human compassion in them.
  • Anytime Alvez comes in with his dog, Roxy.
  • Reid getting released from prison.
  • Morgan’s return after Scratch cloned Garcia’s phone provides several - be it Morgan happily telling Garcia that Hank has started walking, his concern over Reid’s arrest, or his asking Garcia if she could be easier on Alvez.

Season Thirteen

  • In "Wheels Up", with Mr. Scratch finally gone, Hotch and Jack can finally resume their normal lives. While Hotch is not coming back as he decides to become a full-time dad for his son, it is finally nice to finally see that Hotch and Jack can finally be a real family without fear of a Unsub attacking them.
  • In “Lucky Strikes” the way the team rallies around Garcia when the case triggers PTSD over her shooting from ten years ago. JJ decides to stay behind at Quantico with Garcia while the rest of the team flies out for the case, and later Morgan pays a visit to lend Garcia additional emotional support. When Garcia tries to apologize to the team at the end of the episode for her behavior Emily makes it clear that she doesn’t have to, because everyone on the team understands what she’s going through, having dealt with their own traumas.
  • In "Last Gasp", the last scene the whole team is cheering about being back together and Barnes being told to keep her hands of the BAU.

Season 14

Season 15


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