Criminal Minds (2005– )
6.7/10
1,507
1 user 1 critic

Protection 

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The team heads to Los Angeles, California where three people have been murdered in two separate incidents over three days, each victim shot thirteen times while sitting in a car or next to ... See full summary »

Director:

Tawnia McKiernan

Writers:

Jeff Davis (created by), Virgil Williams
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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
Jennifer Love Hewitt ... Kate Callahan
Thomas Gibson ... Aaron Hotchner
Joe Adler ... Danny Lee Stokes
Melora Walters ... Paige
Todd Williams ... Detective Spreewell
Melissa Pino ... Patricia Valdez
Marcello Thedford ... Eddie Parrish
Elena Tovar ... Lizette Castro
Christina Vlahakes ... Milena Valdez
Hailey Sole ... Meg Callahan
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Storyline

The team heads to Los Angeles, California where three people have been murdered in two separate incidents over three days, each victim shot thirteen times while sitting in a car or next to a car located in the same crime ridden neighborhood. The ballistics show the same .45 caliber gun was used in both instances. The first victim, Gary Fisher, was known to have frequented prostitutes and was found in area where he was probably meeting with one. Nate Cochran and Tasha Brooks, the second and third victims in the same car, were a john and a hooker. When a fourth and fifth victim are discovered together, they an elderly woman, Clara Miller, and who seems to be a mugger, Lamar Taylor, the team believes the unsub is a vigilante - a moral enforcer - who is looking to clean up the streets of what he sees as immoral behavior. Because of the overkill, they know the reasons for the murders are personal. Information they learn about Clara and Lamar, and the discovery of subsequent victims leads ... Written by Huggo

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Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 April 2015 (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?

Trivia

[All trivia items for this title are spoilers.] See more »

Goofs

Unsub fires 4 bullets at the mail carrier killing him. The gun is in battery (slide forward) the camera angles change and you can clearly see the gun is now out of battery with a piece of brass stuck in the chamber (stove piped). The camera changes angles again and the gun is back in battery without the unsub clearing the gun. See more »

Quotes

Derek Morgan: [Phone rings] Hey Baby Girl, what's good?
Penelope Garcia: Hooray, happy breathing! I wasn't invited! What's the occasion?
Derek Morgan: I was just having a run with JJ
Penelope Garcia: Uh, that's boring. See, couldn't you just make something up so satiate my fabulous filthy imagination?
Derek Morgan: Cut it out
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Soundtracks

Loom
Performed by Wedding Dress
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User Reviews

 
Such a let down after "Mr Scratch"
15 January 2017 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Such a disappointment. After being blown away by the previous episode "Mr Scratch", a brilliant, terrifying episode and along with "Nelson's Sparrow" one of the show's best in quite some time, expectations were high, only for them to crash down with a loud-sized thud.

Not a completely terrible episode, and it is marginally better than "Breath Play" and "If the Shoe Fits", but along with "Hashtag", "The Boys of Sudworth Place" and "Scream" it is a lesser episode of Season 10, bottom 5 of the season to me actually situated at either number 3 or 4.

There are good things here. The production values are still stylish and atmospheric, while the music is haunting and melancholic and a lot of the acting is good, from almost all the regulars with Joe Mantegna's sassiness and JJ's compassion in the interrogations standing out.

"Protection's" interrogations were the episode's highlights, while one has to love Rossi's sassiness even better was when one of the female characters opens up to JJ in a very moving scene that sees a side to JJ closer to what she was pre-AJ Cook firing. The opening was also pretty creepy.

Not to say that there are exceptions. Jennifer Love Hewitt is a dull presence and out of place and Joe Adler tries too hard as the unsub (the writing is a large part of the problem this said). Thomas Gibson has nothing to do, and as a result phones it in which is very unlike Gibson.

One of the biggest problems in fact was, like "Scream", how unbalanced it was. The team dynamic doesn't work and anybody looking for little character moments or adorable chemistry will be disappointed. There is too much of JJ and Morgan in a pretty irrelevant and superficial subplot that adds nothing, a huge problem considering it's hardly a small subplot, while Reid and Rossi are underused (what was even more of a waste was that, considering his family background, the episode had ample opportunity to have Reid solve the case and doesn't do it) and Hotch is reduced to practically invisible background and generic one liners that could be given to anybody. Garcia once again shows unprofessionalism, and while her banter with Morgan was funny once upon a time it became stale and overkill long before "Protection" so felt annoying and out of place here.

With the story, that was also very unbalanced which makes the episode feel disjointed. Profiling is little, and what there is of it gives the impression that it was written as an afterthought, hence things feeling under-explained and random. The role of BAU should have had more prominence, one is also frustrated at how long it takes for them to solve a case that was very easy to figure out too early, and the LAPD are made to look useless and stupid. As is the case with a number of latter season episode, there is far too much unsub who is also shown too early. And unlike other vigilante/schizophrenic unsubs (such as the one in "Normal", a far superior episode) he was not one to be scared of or root for, being far too manically portrayed and written, having too confused motives and the outcome of the episode being far too obvious from the get go for either to be successful. Not to mention the gratuitous violence. The victims are too sketchily developed to make one feel sorry for them.

The ending with Meg and her friend makes a waste of an okay enough story arc (though with such a heavy and serious subject matter involved, it did feel under-emphasised in general this season), showing sloppy and poorly researched writing and considering Kate's job and the lengths she went for protection it shouldn't have happened in the first place. Tension and suspense is little to none, and the whole episode feels both frenetic and dull due to a severe lack of what makes 'Criminal Minds' so great when it is on form. The writing is disappointingly and in general unusually sloppy.

On the whole, disappointing despite some good elements and such a let down after "Mr Scratch". That episode saw a step in the right direction and made one think "classic 'Criminal Minds' is back", but after "Protection" the show has taken several steps backward. 4/10 Bethany Cox


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