The team suspects a pair of killers working together after discovering two seemingly unrelated bodies.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Darlene Beckett
Ellen Russel
Jason Nelson
Detective Angela Pratt (as Victoria Platt)
Dr. Ray Mathis
Kyle Wipley
Brenda Wipley
James Dolan


The team is called to southwest California when two murders occur within three hours of each other in San Diego and Los Angeles. Each victim was chained to the back of a vehicle and dragged. The first was dragged post mortem, while the second was still alive when initially dragged, which shows either two unsubs or a quick escalation in the evolution of the single unsub's psyche. The victimology is different, the first a middle class wife and mother, the second an ex-con drug addict. These differences are brought together when a third murder occurs. Garcia determines that a common factor is a connection to the violent death of two specific children, and people associated with those children being brought together through an online support group. They quickly identify the two unsubs and their intended fourth target. However, the nature of that fourth intended victim has an impact on how this final encounter will play out. Written by Huggo

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Release Date:

10 October 2012 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?


When the unsubs are talking to their last victim, at one point, of them draws a revolver on him, and we hear the sound of the gun cocking. However, the gun the unsub is using does not have a hammer and thus cannot be cocked. See more »


Penelope Garcia: [badgering Rossi about his unused vacation days] Everyone likes vacation.
David Rossi: Vacations are overrated.
Dr. Spencer Reid: Didn't you take a vacation two years ago?
David Rossi: Luckily, two days in I was called back.
Penelope Garcia: Yeah, and now he's got thirty-one days.
Alex Blake: A month?
Dr. Spencer Reid: You know, sunshine is an essential source of Vitamin D. You should go to Florida and get some sunshine.
David Rossi: That's for old guys.
Derek Morgan: What about a safari in Africa?
David Rossi: Too hot.
See more »


References Strangers on a Train (1951) See more »

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User Reviews

One very underwhelming pact
24 February 2017 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

With 'Criminal Minds', some seasons are better than others and every season has a mixture of outstanding, great, very good, good, average, mediocre and bad episodes. This said, lesser episodes of Seasons 1-4 (with possible exception of "Machismo") are better than the lesser episodes of Season 6 onward.

Of a very hit-and-miss Season 8 (almost as much as Seasons 6 and 9, though Season 11 is the worst season), my vote for the weakest episode is between "Magnificent Light" and this. "Through the Looking Glass", "The Replicator", "The Wheels on the Bus" and "Magnum Opus" are also mediocre at best (from personal opinion). Season 8 is not all bad, "The Lesson", "Restoration", "All That Remains" and "Broken" were great, and the likes of "The Fallen", "Alchemy", "God Complex" and "The Good Earth" were also very good.

"The Pact" has good things certainly, have yet to see a 'Criminal Minds' episode with no redeeming qualities, even low-point episodes like "200", "The Black Queen" and the worst of Season 11. Visually, the production values in "The Pact" 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 the atmosphere.

Acting from the regulars is good enough, with Joe Mantegna and Matthew Gray Gubler being particularly strong and Kirsten Vangsness is endearing. Generally the script disappoints, but there is a standout moment with Rossi's disgruntled-ness about vacations and making up all kinds of funny excuses for not going to the suggested places. Garcia has the odd mildly amusing line. Of the supporting cast, only Brandon Keener impresses as a particularly despicable character that got his just desserts, his change from meek to evil was too hasty but when he was evil it was truly bone-chilling to see someone with such a lack of remorse and actually be proud of what he did.

However, the story doesn't compel, let down by a lack of tension and suspense, two very overacted unsubs (particularly Kim Wayans) which takes away from the chills and sympathy factor, the unsubs being revealed too early and having too much screen-time and parts that border on the ridiculous (the soil sample part especially).

Regarding the team, they have little to do and are underused in screen-time. Profiling is little, and once again they resort to baseless conclusion jumping and too much reliance on Garcia to provide the answers. Only Rossi shines really. As for newcomer Blake, she is a little more tolerable than in the previous episode the season premiere "The Silencer", but she has a different problem this time in that she barely has a personality. The script is by the numbers and the direction is stylistically striking but dull in momentum.

In summary, very underwhelming. 4/10 Bethany Cox

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