The cases of the FBI Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU), an elite group of profilers who analyze the nation's most dangerous serial killers and individual heinous crimes in an effort to anticipate their next moves before they strike again.


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Nominated for 3 Primetime Emmys. Another 19 wins & 25 nominations. See more awards »
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Series cast summary:
 Dr. Spencer Reid (258 episodes, 2005-2016)
 Penelope Garcia (256 episodes, 2005-2016)
 Aaron Hotchner (256 episodes, 2005-2016)
 Derek Morgan (250 episodes, 2005-2016)
 Jennifer Jareau (237 episodes, 2005-2016)
 David Rossi (210 episodes, 2007-2016)
 Emily Prentiss (132 episodes, 2006-2016)


Based in Quantico, Virginia, the Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU) is a subsection of the FBI. Called in by local police departments to assist in solving crimes of a serial and/or extremely violent nature where the perpetrator is unknown (referred to by the Unit as the unknown subject or unsub for short), the BAU uses the controversial scientific art of profiling to track and apprehend the unsub. Profiling entails coming up with basic characteristics of the unsub and the victims (referred to as the victimology), using evidence from the case and matching that information to historic precedents and psychological analyses as a means to solve the case. Because of the nature of the work conducted by the BAU - the work being time consuming and psychologically demanding - its members are fiercely loyal to the Unit and to its other members. Also because of the work's overall demanding nature, not many members of the BAU have been able to maintain a happy or stable family life. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Staying one step ahead of a killer takes a Criminal Mind. See more »


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Release Date:

22 September 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Quantico  »

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Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?


One of the signature images of this show is the brief shot of a business jet flying the team to a crime scene. Often these shots are paired as book-ends at the beginning and end of an episode, with voice-over of a cast member reciting a famous quotation. The jets shown are always Gulfstream products, including models G-IV, G-V, and G-450. Occasionally the shots are reversed left-to-right (e.g., episodes "A Thin Line" and "I Love You, Tommy Brown"). The tail numbers shown are often registered to Gulfstream Corporation, indicating that the shots are taken from Gulfstream publicity materials. See more »


The black SUVs used by the team frequently have US Government "G" plates. However, the plates are usually incorrect for the type of vehicle they are on. Plates with prefixes of G12 and G14 have been seen. G12 is a compact sedan and G14 indicates a large sedan, and would be incorrect for use on an SUV. The correct plate prefixes would either be G41 for a 2 wheel drive or G61 for a 4 wheel drive 1/2 ton vehicle. See more »


Aaron "Hotch" Hotchner: Wheels up in 30.
See more »


Referenced in Saturday Night Live: James Franco/Nicki Minaj (2014) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Criminally entertaining
28 January 2012 | by (Virginia, USA) – See all my reviews

The drama/mystery/thriller "Criminal Minds" is truly an amazing show. I started only watching it couple of months ago, and I can't believe that it took me so long to discover it. This is the show where each episode reminds me of my favorite book on the subject of finding the serial killers by trying to get inside their minds and to think the way they do, and equally terrific adaptation, Red Dragon by Thomas Harris/Manhunter by Michael Mann. Again and again the team of the brilliant profilers, fly from their headquarters in Quantico, VA to different locations all over the country to put their minds together and complete the profile of the mysterious unsub (unknown subject) and to prevent the next strike which would be deadly. This is a very difficult, demanding and exhausting job where the lives of innocent people are at stake and every minute, even second matters. This job takes its toll from every member of the team. Often they have to make very difficult choices and more than once they face the deadly danger not only to themselves but to those who are the closest to them.

Since I started watching the show, I am trying to catch up the seasons that I missed, so I watch the re-runs every time I have a chance getting the "crash course" of Criminal Minds. What amazes me that watching so many episodes in such short period of time only makes me wanting to see more. I don't recall a single mediocre episode. All of them share the intelligent writing, compelling story, inspired acting from the regular members of the cast (an elite team of FBI profilers - BAU analysts) and the guest stars. I like the music score and the choice of songs is very fitting for each occasion. I also like the famous quotes which one of the team members tells in the end of each episode, which sums up the story perfectly. More than once, I was moved deeply by the way the story was going and its resolution. What keeps me entrancing to the screen during each episode is the brain storm, the collective mind of the team putting the evidence, the small details together, analyzing them, searching for the right question to ask their super computer analyst Penelope Garcia; so she would perform her magic and come up with the one name - of the unsub who must be stopped before he attacks deadly again.

I also noticed how masterfully the creators make the references not only to the real life famous cases but to the earlier films and books. I recognized the references to Tom Harris's Dr. Hannibal's books (the horrifying parts of "Hannibal" made one of the darkest and devastating two-hours episode) and films, to "Perfume: The Story of a Murderer", to "Natural Born Killers". One memorable episode paid homage to both "Psycho" and "Sunset Boulevard". Often, the writers find the subjects for the episodes from the latest news. But no matter where they find the topics for the show, each episode comes out as gripping and absorbing from the first moment to the very end. To put it shortly -the must for the fans of the genre.

20 of 29 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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I am sorry but I have to defend Thomas Gibson... Josabeli
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