The BAU heads to Atlanta, where stabbings of prostitutes lead the team to suspect more than one unsub.The BAU heads to Atlanta, where stabbings of prostitutes lead the team to suspect more than one unsub.The BAU heads to Atlanta, where stabbings of prostitutes lead the team to suspect more than one unsub.
Generally "A Family Affair" is in the better half of Season 7. It is not as good as "True Genius", "The Foundation", "Dorado Falls" and "The Company", but is on par with "Self Fulfilling Prophecy", "From Childhood's Hour", " Epilogue", "Proof" and "Unknown Subject" and much better than "Closing Time", "Divining Rod" (and especially), "I Love You Tommy Brown" and "There's No Place Like Home".
Not much wrong here. Maybe some things could have been revealed later like with the paralysis and the whole thing with the sexual relationships. It did feel like we were a step or two ahead of the BAU too often and that they were catching up and taking a little too long occasionally to do so, and things are so much more fascinating for the viewer when it's the other way around. It was a shame too that we were not treated to Reid babysitting Henry, how cute and funny that would have been. As a matter of fact however, that's pretty much all.
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. Much of the script is thought-provoking, tightly structured and well-balanced.
Despite the early unsub reveal, which is sometimes justified on 'Criminal Minds' but often it causes problems, the balance between the team interaction/work and the unsub and his dysfunctional family was great and both are done well. Loved the warm and loving triathlon subplot with Hotch, Jack is adorable and "A Family Affair" is one of the few times where his relationship with Beth doesn't feel like he's rushing things and written realistically or where one doesn't have a problem with Beth herself, here having more personality (like the scene in the tea place). Just as warm and loving was the chemistry between Hotch and Rossi, who can't help loving that caring side to Rossi. The Ladies night subplot is very funny, as is Reid's comedy gold Belvedere reference.
Regarding the case, it was creepy, tense and suspenseful. The unsub's early reveal felt justified this time, because the family relationship is so interesting and complex with distinct personalities (especially the mother), some real creepiness (like the parents' reactions to Julie's pleading) and parts that have so much impact even when no words are being said, like in the kitchen. Although there could have been a little more, the profiling is good and sees the team working together cohesively with good balance of screen time, really liked some of the theories and observations which didn't feel like conclusion-jumping. Garcia wasn't relied on too much either.
Throughout the acting is very good. All the regulars give great performances, while Kathy Baker in particular has a meaty deranged character and Baker plays her to the hilt.
Overall, very good episode. 8/10 Bethany Cox
- Apr 2, 2017