The BAU follows the mental decline of a con artist whose schemes have become so complicated that he begins to eliminate the people involved in them.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Agent Russell Goldman
Brooke Sanchez
Lorraine Horton
JD Hodges
John Idakitis ...
Frank McKelson
Dina McKelson


Agent Russell Goldman with the FBI's White Collar Division in San Diego brings a case to the BAU. A con man who he has been following for five years is suspected to have killed Carla Marshall in Miami, Florida. Carla had been in contact with Goldman about the con man, hence the supposed connection to him as her murderer. If the con man is indeed the unsub, Carla is the first known person he would have killed of those involved in his cons. His past cons generally involved using his charm and good looks to gain the trust of women. As the BAU review Goldman's files on the unsub, they find a change in his general lifestyle pattern from his early cons to the most recent. In reviewing the victim's background as well as the unsub's home life, the BAU believe they have a way to track him down. They have to work fast as they also believe that his mental state is devolving where he is becoming increasingly violent and murderous the closer anyone gets to discovering his fraudulent behavior, and ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis





Release Date:

3 February 2010 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs



Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


William Hodges, played by Victor Webster, gave the name of Hunter as one of his aliases. Webster played Hunter Clarrington in the show Harper's Island. See more »


At the end the EMT is placing gauze on Bills wound but the gauze already has blood on it. See more »


Derek Morgan: You're not enjoying this, are you?
Dr. Spencer Reid: I like a good paper-trail. I find it meditative.
Derek Morgan: Is it really that hard for you to be normal just one time?
See more »


References White Collar (2009) See more »


Luck Be A Lady
Performed by: Frank Sinatra
Played during the first scenes when the unsub enters the restaurant
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User Reviews

Okay, if rather bland and average
4 July 2016 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Generally Season 5 to me is one of the stronger seasons of 'Criminal Minds', though there are a few lesser episodes. "Parasite" is one such episode and also one of the show's overall weaker episodes.

"Parasite" is not a bad episode, there are worse 'Criminal Minds' episodes definitely and a fair few wasted potential episodes, Season 9's "200" and to a lesser extent Season 11's "Derek" being notable examples. At least "Parasite" actually feels like 'Criminal Minds', and doesn't waste the team and make them dumbed down or out of character, and at least it doesn't have as many unresolved questions or insults the intelligence.

At the same time though, it doesn't ever really rise above okay, rather an average episode and for 'Criminal Minds' it's pretty bland. There are good things certainly, even when this reviewer doesn't care or intensely dislikes something she still looks out for the good. 'Criminal Minds' has always been well made, and while this reviewer prefers the darker and grittier production values "Parasite" is still made with plenty of class and style. The music as ever is suitably haunting and hypnotic. The script is tight and has the right balance of lightness and grit with very little unnecessary fluff, apart from the overly close banter between Morgan and Penelope that can on the show in general border on cheesy, over-used and annoying.

Still love the chemistry between the team, the thought-provoking book-end quotations, what was done with Prentiss here and the entertaining and intriguing procedural and crime-solving aspects. The acting is mostly good, with the leads on top form. There are exceptions, Victor Webster fails to bring menace or distinction to the unsub Bill Hodges, who is one of the show's blandest and most forgettable in general, and Bryce Robinson's acting as JD is barely existent, one of the weakest child performances on the show without a doubt.

What stops "Parasite" from being any better is that much of the story is not always very interesting apart from moments of spark with the team, the atmosphere is bland, pacing can be dull and the storytelling is pretty formulaic fare with not much tension. Not much stands out, including as said one of the show's most forgettable unsubs, and it doesn't really come to life apart from when the unsub becomes more deranged at the end and agreed about the refreshing darkly humorous touch (though it may be ridiculous for others). All the supporting characters are dull.

All in all, an okay episode but rather bland and never rises above formulaic story-wise and average as an episode of 'Criminal Minds'. 5/10 Bethany Cox

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