Review: Criminal Minds Season 9 Episode 23, 24 (Season Finale) - "Angels", "Demons"


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*This post contains spoilers. Do not proceed if you hate spoilers :P

Criminal Minds Season 9 has come to an end with the 2-episode season finale. Fans who watched the promo video (link) of the final episode are treated with loads of information - Reid who got shot at the neck survived but got ambushed by someone in the hospital. But the most important information was that someone is leaving the show! More on that later.

Episode 23 was building on the case: prostitutes murdered, the town preacher was framed and of course, the main highlight, Reid and Morgan was shot. It was quite an action in the final scene of the episode and it ended in a cliffhanger of course - we didn't know if Morgan and Reid were seriously wounded. Moving on, fans can quickly smile because Morgan and Reid survive and the rest of episode 24 was pretty intense in hunting down the main Unsub, or Unsubs (since it's actually a group of them). Turns out, the whole case is actually about an entire division of corrupted officers (with deputy sheriff Owen McGreggor being the main Unsub) with Reid being in the most danger because he saw McGreggor seconds before he fainted after he was shot. McGreggor also gave his instructions to his officers to kill Rossi and Blake but of course the FBI agents escaped unharmed (however we didn't get to see how it happeend :P). Final action happened at the junkyard. Focus on Hotch in action, that was pretty cool.

I mentioned earlier that someone was going to leave the show. Fans were threatening on social media that if either Reid or Morgan was going to leave the show, they are going to run some riots and boycott Criminal Minds. Most fans can now breathe a sigh of relief now because it is Alex Blake (Jeanne Tripplehorn) who is leaving the show. Actually many fans would have guessed that it's her. It's a pity because there is so much to expand on Alex's character but let's face it that Alex's character was brought in to replace Emily Prentiss. Paget Brewster as Prentiss was on the show for a good 6 years and I'm still not ready to accept her departure after 2 years. Fans like myself are dying to watch Prentiss on the show again (but this will never happen) and so naturally, Blake was the least popular with most fans. Actually, I was feeling a little sad with the departure of Blake's character from the show (the scene was so emotional, sobs) because I guess I'm starting to accept the character more. Plus point for this because I remember I said the landmark episode (200th episode for Criminal Minds) lacked emotional touch and this episode was pretty emotional. However, I think this is still one of the easiest goodbyes on the show, the easiest was to Seaver of course :P

As I said, episode 24 was really intense with all the drama and action but I was disappointed that the things I love about Criminal Minds were lacking: the profiling was minimum and I wished there was more backstory on the Unsub; afterall this is a season finale episode, it's gotta be huge and serious! Don't get me wrong, I actually think that it was a nice change from the usual one-person Unsub but as a fan of the show I just wished the team made more synthesis and analyze more. Anyway, there were a few things to like in this episode as well: Garcia being herself after she shot someone to save Reid's life, Rossi and Blake having good and meaningful conversation together, Hotch defending JJ when she was intimidated by an officer; this were all good as it's good old Criminal Minds once again.

Overall, I think I kinda like this episode because it was more emotional, intense, and most of them were being themselves (better script) ie Rossi talking about Carolyn, Reid with Blake final goodbyes. Probably because there were little time and things were rushed for the development of the story so there was lack of profiling and deeper engagement/involvement of the BAU team on the case.. Of course, there are loopholes here and there if more thoughts are given but those can be overlooked.

Some final thoughts:
- This season finale will be memorable with Blake's low-key exit from the show. 
- No cliffhanger!!! Well, other than the mysterious sms that Hotch got on the plane.
- The team saved each other: Reid saved Blake's life. Garcia saved Reid's life. JJ saved Morgan's life. 
- The final quote of the season, which is very fitting: We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned so as to ahve the life that is waiting for us. ~ Joseph Campbell


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