Criminal Minds – Recap and Review – Hit/Run

photo: cbs

Criminal Minds

Original Air Date: May 16, 2012

Heather M – TwoCents Reviewer

Here is the episode we have all been waiting for! The season 7 finale promised us action, emotions, an agent saying good bye and a wedding. Boy, did it ever deliver in one of the most action packed-emotion filled episodes of the series.

This week’s opening gave us a rare glimpse of the BAU team’s private lives. JJ and Will are a normal couple playing with Henry (who is definitely a tv kid, as he grew up REALLY fast!) before leaving for work. Hotch and Jack are building forts out of blankets, and Jack invites Beth to spend the night. Reid and Garcia are dressed in costumes and are attending a science fiction conference where she sees Kevin with another woman. They meet Rossi outside who was going to a cigar party, yet as he leaves they read between the lines as Erin Strauss exits the hotel looking fairly disheveled. Morgan and Prentiss are looking at a house for Prentiss to buy, but she is clearly finding reasons NOT to buy.

The case begins as a group of bank robbers hit a DC bank. A trio known as the “Face Cards” due to the masks they wear, they are responsible for a group of heists up and down the rural areas surrounding DC. Will and his partner are called to the scene, and the Face Cards shoot Will’s partner. Will returns fire and shoots one of the UNSUBs.

Opening Quote: “Fear is met and destroyed with courage”- James F. Bell

Erin Strauss is officially back. In her first case, post-rehab, she is assigned to overseeing the op at the bank. Rossi seems worried for her stress levels, but she insists she is fine. Garcia quickly is able to identify the “Jack” and “King” UNSUBs, brothers Oliver (Jack) and Chris (King) Stratton. They have done time for bank robbery in the past, but no one can identify the “Queen”. Oliver is not doing well, as the gunshot wound is a bad one. Chris demands a doctor, and they send in an agent with medical training. When he is unable to save Oliver, Chris shoots and kills the Agent.

Meanwhile, Prentiss gets and emergency call from her past. Clyde Easter- her former boss at Interpol, who we haven’t seen since the Doyle disaster, has a lead on the “Queen”. She has been committing bank robberies for years overseas, including on while Prentiss was in Paris. He also mentions he has been promoted, and that he wants Prentiss to come work for him running the London Interpol office.
The team figures out that there is a fourth UNSUB that only the Queen knows about. An international feed is going out through the bank’s security cameras. Garcia tracks the alarm call from the bank, and it turns out it was a text message from the Queen herself. She wanted to be trapped inside.

Chris, the King, is starting to crack over his brother’s death. He demands that the cop that shot his brother (Will) come into the bank or he will kill a hostage every 60 seconds. He shoots one, then almost shoots a second one. As soon as Will walks in against JJ’s wishes, he says his name, then is shot twice. A hostage goes over to Will to try to save him, and puts pressure on the wound. He states he’s a former Marine, and Will asks him to give JJ a message. “Tell her I’m sorry.” He assures the Marine that she already knows he loves her. Awwww….

Will tries to convince Chris that The Queen has an accomplice. He doesn’t believe him and they go downstairs to confront her, where she is exiting a room and…BOOM the entire building explodes. Normally, this would be the season ender, but not this year.
As the second hour begins, JJ is frantic to find Will. Chris, the Queen and Will are all getting into a black government SUV as the team begins searching the rubble. They quickly trace them and JJ finds Will’s wallet in an alley outside where they got into the get away SUV.

As the bombing shows a new facet of the Queen’s personality, Prentiss contacts Clyde again to find out more info. He reminds her of a similar incident at Scotland Yard in which there was a bombing and then a stolen government vehicle. The woman responsible was termed “Lady X”. The team quickly decides that the Queen and “Lady X” are the same person as this woman always goes for a gutshot, not the kill shot.

The Queen and Chris stop at an ambulance and force an EMT to patch up Will so that he can help them. The Queen then shoots the EMT for his troubles. The Queen then tells Chris to drive. When he refuses and wants more answers, she shoots him, and makes Will pull him out of the SUV and start driving. However, before he does, a new passenger gets in- The Marine from the bank!
By looking at the tapes and realizing his behavior was off, the team finds out the Marine is dishonorably discharged Marine Matthew Downs. Downs is the 4th UNSUB.

Downs and the Queen force Will to drive to his house, and leave Henry with the Queen, who calls herself “Izzy”. Will emotionally says “I love you” to Henry before leaving again with Downs. (I admit, I was crying by this point.)
JJ makes the connection that the UNSUBs know where she and Will live, as his license is not in his wallet. Her and Rossi begin speeding towards her house where Izzy is singing a SUPER creepy version of “Ring Around the Rosie” to Henry and begins telling him about her grandfather Henry who was also blond, but was a very scary man.

JJ and Rossi devise a plan to distract Izzy. Rossi makes noise outside with the neighbor, causing Izzy to leave Henry for a moment to look out the window. When she turns back, Henry is gone. She goes looking for him where she meets a seriously ticked off JJ. JJ proceeds to fight like Morgan normally would- and basically kicks the crap out of Izzy until she is down and Rossi is there to arrest her. GO JJ!!!

Meanwhile, Matthew has taken Will to the train station to set off another set of bombs, just as he and Izzy had done 4 years before on the same date in Chad. Morgan finds the UNSUB and chases after him, while Prentiss finds Will strapped to a huge bomb. She enters in two wrong codes. On the third try Will tells her that the Queen’s name is Izzy. The password works, but sets off a second 30 second timer. Prentiss has to decide which wire to cut. Morgan is having a tough time as he gets choked by Matthew, but Hotch shoots him, then they both go to help Prentiss, who doesn’t need it and decides to cut the yellow wire, shutting off the bomb.

JJ and Will are reunited in the hospital, and JJ tells Will to ask her again. He asks her to marry him and she agrees. She wants to do it immediately, but he refuses, saying she is the one that will be wearing the gown. Rossi overhears and makes plans of his own.
Strauss pulls Morgan aside and says thank you for forcing her to go to rehab. He makes a polite excuse and says he’s glad to have her back. She gets the quote of the night with “No, you’re not”.

Rossi has the whole team at his house the following night. All of them are dressed up. Morgan talks to Prentiss who states that she hasn’t decided about the Interpol job, saying that she hasn’t felt right since she came back to the BAU. You can tell from her mannerisms that she is going to take it, but doesn’t want to say it.

JJ and Will show up, and Rossi gives JJ a special “gift”- her mother is there, with her wedding dress. They are getting married tonight at Rossi’s mansion. A beautiful wedding montage begins, then as the reception starts a song called “When I’m Gone” begins, as Prentiss dances with each of the team members, lingering on Reid and Morgan.

End Quote: “I’ve always heard every ending is also a beginning. I’d like to believe that’s true”- Emily Prentiss
I LOVED this episode. It was by far my favorite season finale so far. There were so many details that just made this episode about the TEAM not the UNSUBS. From Reid’s magic tricks with Henry at the wedding, to Strauss’ thank you to Morgan, it was just filled with small moments of intimacy and greatness. There was plenty of action- and best of all none of the team is in peril!

What do you think? Was this finale one of the best? Or did it fall flat?

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8 Responses to Criminal Minds – Recap and Review – Hit/Run

  1. shopangela says:

    Actually, Henry’s been played by the same child since season 5. He’s AJ Cook’s real son.

    I liked the finale a lot. It was nice to see everyone together, celebrating. But, I wish they could have written a longer goodbye between Prentiss and JJ and Garcia. The three way hug was nice, but so brief compared to the dances she got with the men, and those talks she had with Morgan and Hotch individually on top of it.

    • Heather says:

      Thanks for the info on Henry! I really thought he looked older than 3, but I guess I was wrong. Either way, he’s a REALLY cute little boy!

      I agree that there would have been more female interactions at the goodbye. We’ve seen a bunch of little moments hinting throughout the seasons as to their closeness, it would have been nice if we’d gotten a little more of an in-depth goodbye for Prentiss, especially since she didn’t get to say good-bye when she “died” last season.

    • TLD says:

      I DVR’d the episode and only just finished watching it. How great was it to watch JJ kick Izzy’s a–?? I hadn’t thought about the female/female goodbyes until I read these comments, but I agree. Considering that there were extended slow-dancing scenes between Emily and each of the men on the team, and that it’s not considered inappropriate at all for close women friends to slow-dance with one another at such occasions, it would have been wonderful to see Prentiss dance with Garcia and JJ, as well. If only WE were on the writing team . . .

  2. LaineyT says:

    I thought this was a great episode too. I loved the frantic pace of the plot. It was a nice change of pace to see the team so challenged and dealing with a different kind of Unsub, in a different kind of scenario. More than ever they were pressed for time.

    Not only did the writers show us a totally fresh storyline, but they also made Strauss a much more human. Whereas in the past she was a bit of a one note character, this week I actually found her to be likable. She was able to laugh at herself and took the advice of her team to go against the director. (Although I don’t know that I’m buying the whole Rossi booty call bit.)

    I also liked Will a lot more too in this episode. He is usually so mopey so it was nice to see him and JJ be happy as a family for a change. I am glad to see they have dropped the idea of him being overly anxious of JJ’s role within the team. And the wedding was great except for the fact that I am so sad to see Emily go.

    Speaking of the wedding, does anyone know who sang the song during the wedding scene?

    • Heather says:

      After some research, I have found that the song is actually called “As It Seems” by Lily Kershaw.

      I also loved the “new” Erin Strauss. I have had it in the back of my mind for quite awhile that there was more than a strictly business relationship between Erin & Dave. However, I had always thought it was something that happened in the past. Who knows? It might make for an interesting storyline next season!

  3. K says:

    How awesome was Reid and Garcia’s Doctor Who costume? That was some really detailed cosplay! And Reid knits! Why do i find that not surprising! I’m loving Garcia and Kevin all the more for being 11th fan!

  4. Stephanie says:

    This episode is my favourite season finale. The emotion between JJ and Will was great. The action was fast paced. I loved how cocky Izzy was. Overall, this season finale was AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!

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