A greatly sadistic serial killer who disembowels women and forces them to clean it up before killing them proves difficult to catch thanks to his social charm and simple, yet clever, disguises.

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Jennifer Jareau (credit only)
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Robert Parker
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Ashley Holden
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Vanessa Holden
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Austin
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Mrs. Holden
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Melissa Foster
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Storyline

A killer is disemboweling women, keeping them alive for a few hours, making them clean up after their injury, then killing them. The original victims were prostitutes, but the latest victim, Vanessa Holden, was from a wealthy and prominent family, hence her murder being a different victimology. And this latest murder took place one year after the previous, Vanessa picked up at a nightclub. With a different victimology, the BAU determined that the unsub also had changed over the previous year. Finding who would have helped him "change" would assist in finding the killer's pattern and new motivations, namely why he moved from prostitutes to women just out for a good time. Prentiss and Todd may have uncovered a key piece of of puzzle when they track who they suspect of being the killer's teacher. This case also tests the new working relationship between Todd and Hotch. Written by Huggo

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26 November 2008 (USA)  »

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1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Thomas Gibson worked with Cari Shayne in the TV movie The Inheritence based on the novel by Louisa May Alcott in which they starred opposite each other as unlikely lovers. See more »

Quotes

David Rossi: [to Hotch who's staring at a map] Is this the one that if you stare at it long enough you'll see an image of a swan?
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Soundtracks

Criminal Minds Titelmusik
(uncredited)
Written by Mark Mancina
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User Reviews

 
The case of the murdering pick-up artist
19 February 2017 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Season 4 is a very strong contender for the best season of 'Criminal Minds'. A season with so many classics (like "The Big Wheel", "Zoe's Reprise", "Minimal Loss", "Memoriam", "The Instincts" and "Conflicted" to name a few), some of the best of the whole show, and one where even weaker episodes such as "Demonology" and "Catching Out" are still watchable and much better than the worst episodes of Seasons 6, 9 and 11.

"52 Pickup" is neither among the season's best or worst. Instead it is a solid episode and somewhere around top middle in ranking. It's also one of those episodes that does very little wrong and where all the good things are numerous, the things that people see 'Criminal Minds' for being present and correct, but just missing the extra spark to make it special and one of the best.

One of the very few criticisms of "52 Pickup", other than the numerous good things being done even better in other episodes, for me is that the character of Todd has never really done much for me. There are certainly far worse female team characters, particularly Tara Lewis and Ashley Seaver, both characters having far worse things than just being a bit dull and lack of gelling chemistry. "52 Pickup" deserves credit for trying to give Todd more development, but her personality just isn't engaging me and it is only really with Prentiss where she gels properly.

The only other fault is that there are episodes with more memorable climaxes, the climactic moments are a little lacking in tension and suspense and resolved somewhat too conveniently.

However, visually the production values are without complaint. It's very well shot and lit and is overall stylish, gritty, classy and atmospheric. The music is moody in the haunting and melancholic sense and fits well, without either enhancing or distracting from it. The direction keeps the momentum going but lets the case breathe, and most of the pacing is breathe especially in the latter parts when the tension builds.

It's a mostly well-written episode too, thoughtful, solid in flow and well balanced between case and team dynamic. In terms of concept, the story is pretty fascinating with a unique case for the fourth season and one of the better-developed unsubs of the season. Tension and suspense is mostly there, love how darkly twisted the unsub is and the balance of fresh genuinely funny humour (which agreed was needed and didn't jar) and adorable emotional moments. Reid and Prentiss really shine here and Garcia, despite her screen time not being much, is charming and amusing.

Acting is very good all round. Overall, not always remarkable but interesting and well done episode. 8/10 Bethany Cox


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