The team tries to identify a serial arsonist who has escalated to murder.



(created by), | 1 more credit »

Watch Now

From $1.99 (SD) on Amazon Video



1 video »


Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Evan Abby
Lt. Ricardo Vega
Vincent Stiles
Charlotte Cutler
Paul Cutler
Dennis Cutler
Det. Leah Castro (as Mercedes Colón)
Tom Dunleivy


An arsonist has been at work in San Francisco, setting so far two house fires in three weeks. The two sets of residents - both families - all perished, except for one person. Unlike the work of most serial arsonists, these fires were meant to kill their inhabitants. Before she dies, the sole survivor of the those two initial fires tells Hotch and Prentiss of irregularities from that evening before and during the fire: that someone had turned off the water, that the smoke alarms did not work during the fire, that someone had locked the front door in such a way that they could not escape, and that she noticed a fireman inside the house just before she passed out. That fireman they know to be the unsub. Beyond general characteristics, Garcia finds one connection between the two families: the father figures both worked for different companies accused of LUST (leaking underground storage tanks) by an environmental activist/eco-terrorist (depending on one's viewpoint) group called the Earth... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis






Release Date:

21 March 2007 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Earth Defense Front (EDF) in this episode has a similar name to the real-life group Earth Liberation Front (ELF). The ELF are radical environmentalists who have been involved in arson and other property damage. The FBI considers them to be "eco-terrorists." See more »


The chime on the Unsub's Ford sounds more like that of a Chevy/GM car when the door is open. See more »


Aaron 'Hotch' Hotchner: The unsub we're looking for is a highly intelligent, underachieving, 35 to 45 year old white male with a severe narcissistic character disorder.
Jason Gideon: Nothing in his life works for long. If he was married, he's now divorced. If employed, it won't last.
Derek Morgan: What he wants is admiration, but he's got no respect for others. Not their feelings, and most certainly not their safety.
Jason Gideon: He feels entitled. He's like a petulant adolescent. He both resents and he absolutely expects others to take care of him.
Aaron 'Hotch' Hotchner: And ...
See more »


Criminal Minds (TV Show Intro / Main Song Theme)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

creepy enya tune used before
30 May 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Actually that Enya tune ("Boadecia") was used some years ago in a creepy, campy thriller about shape-shifting, incestuous cat-people called "Sleepwalkers." Another Steven King movie adaptation gone horribly wrong.

This episode of "Criminal Minds" was quite effective and well written. Interesting to see the "unsub" portrayed so positively and to have Agent Hotchner sympathize with him.

The movie "Sleepwalkers" starred Alice Krige who went on to play the Borg queen in "Star Trek: First Contact." It also had cameos by King, Clive Barker, John Landis, Joe Dante, and Tobe Hooper. Mädchen Amick turns in a decent performance, well above the quality of the rest of the flick. Nice to look at, too.

But the haunting Enya tune is creepily effective. That movie also ended with a house on fire. (Sorry for the digression; just trying to satisfy the silly "ten lines" requirement for comments here.

3 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
I am sorry but I have to defend Thomas Gibson... Josabeli
If the ratings drop enough is there a chance they'd bring Gibson back? Cursedchild13
Who should they get for unsubs/victims? kzaatar
Prentiss + new guy johanna-81800
Does anyone know about the 75th army thing? shealaghbright
Quality dropping remarkable. Josabeli
Discuss Ashes and Dust (2007) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: