Criminal Minds (2005– )
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Devil's Night 

The BAU go to Detroit to catch a man who burns his victims alive during the pre-Halloween celebration Devil's Night.


Charles Haid (as Charlie Haid)


Jeff Davis (created by), Randy Huggins | 1 more credit »

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Joe Mantegna ... David Rossi
Paget Brewster ... Emily Prentiss
Shemar Moore ... Derek Morgan
Matthew Gray Gubler ... Dr. Spencer Reid
Kirsten Vangsness ... Penelope Garcia
Thomas Gibson ... Aaron Hotchner
Leonard Roberts ... Kaman Scott
Ernie Hudson ... Lt. Al Garner
Carl Lumbly ... James 'Jay-Mo' Morris
Michael Warren ... Tom Anderson
Beverly Todd ... Susan Anderson
Jocko Sims ... Tony Torrell
Stacy Highsmith ... Kierston Torrell
Ken Olandt ... Chris Edwards
Danièle Watts ... Tracy Anderson (as Daniele Watts)


The BAU travel to Detroit, Michigan, where the fire department has noticed a three year trend of the three days leading up to Halloween where a victim each day has been burned alive in an abandoned building located somewhere in the Rivertown district of town. The unsub used gasoline as an accelerant. The victims are seemingly unconnected. The BAU believe the first victim may provide some clues as to why the unsub is committing these violent murders. Using the visual memory technique, Rossi, in interviewing Kierston Torrell, the wife of the latest victim, discovers some clues as to the unsub's identity. Cross checking those that volunteer for a community organization called Detroit's Finest, which has been monitoring arsons in relation to the historic pre-Halloween fire rituals, with those that work with fire of sort sort comes up with the unsub's identity and the fact that his victims were not chosen at random. They also determine that he has an ultimate target whose identity they ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-14 | See all certifications »






Release Date:

27 October 2010 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Ernie Hudson plays the Detroit fire chief in this episode. Hudson played a police officer in The Crow, a movie featuring crimes taking place in Detroit around Devil's Night. See more »


When the killer is fumbling through the closet to find the canister of ketone, the front of the can is facing the camera. Then the front of the can is suddenly facing the wall until the killer grabs it and turns it around, so that the front of the can is facing the camera again. See more »


Dr. Spencer Reid: Phantasmagorias are these amazing pre-cinema projected ghost shows invented in France, where the showman attempted to spook the audience using science magic. And it just so happens that I have an extra ticket.
Penelope Garcia: Tempting.
See more »


References Trouble Man (1972) See more »


Criminal Minds Theme
Composed by Mark Mancina
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User Reviews

Celebrating Halloween with 'Criminal Minds'
8 November 2016 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

There are far better episodes of 'Criminal Minds' than "Devil's Night", but also far worse. Warts and all, to me "Devil's Night" was one of the better episodes of a very hit-and-miss season.

It starts off absolutely brilliantly, with a truly chilling and disturbing opening murder, the second murder featured in the episode not quite as much but still very close. The Hotch and Jack scenes were really sweet and touching. "Devil's Night" has the right creepy Halloween atmosphere.

An unrecognisable Leonard Roberts does a wonderful job as the heavily disfigured/burnt unsub, sending chills up the spine but at the same time while never condoning his actions there is a touch of sympathy for his situation and how he came to be that way. The makeup department similarly did wonders. The acting throughout is very good indeed, some of the team are underused though. Prentiss and Reid could have had more to do, while Morgan is basically background, registering only when he questions Hotch entering the building alone (although that didn't make sense for him to do that considering that Hotch has gone alone before and so has Morgan).

However, the actors cannot in any way be knocked. The production values as always are very high in quality, and the haunting music is never too intrusive or over the top. The writing is a vast majority of the time thought-provoking, there is enough to make the episode feel like a 'Criminal Minds' episode and have enough of what makes the show so great in the first place and the story is engrossing enough with good atmosphere.

On the other hand, "Devil's Night" is let down by a couple of unbelievable scenes. The main one being the outcome of Rossi's scene with the first victim's wife, it was very difficult to believe that she remembered that level of detail when there were several good reasons as to why they would not have registered or stood out. The other is the climax, that should have been intense and harrowing but felt like a very forced attempt at empathy and just went overboard on the absurdity factor.

Also did not buy the unsub's motivation for what made him start killing in such a brutal fashion and how he crumbled so much when told news that he should have been told much sooner. Lastly, do enjoy Ernie Hudson as an actor but this is an all too predictable role for him here and there is not much spark here.

In conclusion, a solid episode but a couple of unbelievable scenes mar it from being a great one. 7/10 Bethany Cox

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