Criminal Minds (2005– )
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The Edge of Winter 

As the BAU wraps up an investigation into unusual stabbings in upstate New York, Morgan's visit with a survivor could uncover more questions left for the team to answer.

Director:

Hanelle M. Culpepper (as Hanelle Culpepper)

Writers:

Jeff Davis (created by), Janine Sherman Barrois
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From $1.99 (SD) on Prime Video

1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Joe Mantegna ... David Rossi
Shemar Moore ... Derek Morgan
Matthew Gray Gubler ... Dr. Spencer Reid
A.J. Cook ... Jennifer Jareau
Kirsten Vangsness ... Penelope Garcia
Jeanne Tripplehorn ... Alex Blake
Thomas Gibson ... Aaron Hotchner
Aasha Davis ... Daria Samsen
Emayatzy Corinealdi ... Ellen Samsen
Taymour Ghazi ... Joe Bachner
Anthony Nuccio ... Coby Peters
Mandi Kreisher Mandi Kreisher ... Carrie
Lisa Kaminir ... Dr. Carol Roberts
Guy Nardulli ... Detective Walker
Scott Speiser ... Dr. Claude Pinault
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Storyline

Morgan is helping Daria Samsen prepare for a trial in a case where she was held captive for close to a year outside Hamilton, New York, before she was able to escape. It has been a year since that escape, the intervening time being spent first at the hospital, where she was recovering from her several physical injuries, then at a mental institution, where she has been recovering from her emotional trauma. Morgan and JJ initially questioned her a year ago when the BAU was working on the case, and he is now following up on the statements she made at that time. Many of Daria's fellow captives were tortured, continually beaten and eventually killed, with precise puncture wounds to the body made by an ice pick. Unlike the initial victims who were dumped, the latter victims were "displayed", hung like scarecrows. Daria's lead captor was a man named Joe Bachner, but based on the nature of his being and Daria's statement, the BAU knew that Joe was working with a partner, someone with OCD who ... Written by Huggo

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Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 March 2014 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Aaron Hotchner: Garcia, have you found any connection at all between the victims?
Penelope Garcia: They have as much in common as dinosaurs and goldfish: the cracker kind!
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Connections

References The Wizard of Oz (1939) See more »

Soundtracks

Theme from Criminal Minds
Composed by Marc Fantini and Steffan Fantini
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User Reviews

 
A great twist and ending elevate "The Edge of Winter" from an average episode to a decent one
30 September 2016 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

There are better episodes in Season 9, namely "Gabby". There are also much worse, with "200" and "The Black Queen" being two of the worst 'Criminal Minds' episodes around. "The Edge of Winter" is not a classic, nor is it a low-point.

Instead it was one of the decent episodes, although some of the episode was pretty average. What made the episode better in particular were the shocking twist involving the unsub's partner, after the episode did well in making us think that they were another victim, and the ending which was tense to say the least. The acting also can't faulted, with great performances not just from all the regulars but also Aasha Davis and Taymour Ghazi.

Production values as always are high, with the photography having style and class, the editing is tight and the scenery very pleasant on the eye. The music score is not exactly action-enhancing but never does it distract, it is suitably moody in places while also inducing pathos in more emotional moments. The writing is quite good with good pathology, profiling and psychology (unlike "200" for example it at least feels like a 'Criminal Minds' episode), and really appreciated for once the lack of families/friends scenes that can veer on the fluffy and sappy side of things and also a more mature Garcia at a point in the show's history where she had become like a pale and annoying caricature.

However, while the team all did something relevant some of the team members (with Hotch for example barely existing) feel underused in favour of Morgan and JJ doing scenes that would have been more suited to Hotch or Rossi. There are more compelling characters in 'Criminal Minds' than Morgan, but at least the episode plays to his personality strengths. JJ however has been overused and out of character in the latter seasons, and it is the same here. The two characters' chemistry together doesn't really gel due to two different personalities, and some of Morgan's scenes go on for too long and there are too many.

Story was mixed. Things pick up significantly in the second half, which really picks up the pace and feels more tense and suspenseful. Some of "The Edge of Winter", particularly towards the start, is rather slowly paced and predictable, and while Ghazi does do a great job there are more interesting and better-developed unsubs.

All in all, decent episode elevated by picking up significantly with a great twist and ending. More of the team and their work together and less of focus on less interesting characters would have helped things. 6/10 Bethany Cox


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