Criminal Minds Review: Derek
Director: Thomas Gibson
Writer: Breen Frazier
Starring: Joe Mantegna, Shemar Moore, Matthew Gray Gubler, A.J. Cook, Kristen Vangsness, Thomas Gibson, Danny Glover, Rochelle Aytes, Charles Mesure, Jonathan Cake
Synopsis: The BAU works against time to find Morgan after he is kidnapped.
Review: Buckle up kids, this ride is bumpy, specially for all the Derek Morgan fans out there. Things kick off where the previous episode left off, Derek being kidnapped by unknown assailants. After being dropped off, they are now in some place that looks like it could be a nice couples living room, except we have Derek strapped to some sort of metal cross with his kidnappers standing around him. Before the real torture can begin we are introduced to what is going to be Derek’s coping mechanism, though we do not know the importance of it right away. The torture gets uncomfortable pretty quickly, the amount of pain that is caused by white phosphorus is unimaginable. The fact that the phosphorus is able to not only hurt him in reality but also in his alternate reality speaks volumes of the amount of pain that he is going through at that moment, nasty stuff for sure.
As Derek struggles to deal with the pain he is guided by his father, Hank Morgan, played by Danny Glover to try to figure out what is going on, where he is at and who is doing this. While some sappy stuff comes up to help deal with things from Derek’s past, Hank sort of becomes a narrator to help guild Derek so he can figure out a way to escape and notify his team of his whereabouts. One of the best scenes in the whole episode is when the assailants unstrap Morgan and he falls to his knees, you can hear Hanks voice telling him to wait until the right moment to strike. Pure television gold I say!
Once Derek strikes though, none of them are safe. After taking most of the assailants out he catches one using a satellite phone to contact the clean up crew. If you couldn't tell before, at this point you can see just how bad Derek is, Hank starts to show in reality rather than in the alternate reality that Derek had been retreating too. While Derek has to do some pretty inhumane stuff to get the phone to work, Hank is the one that convinces him not to give up. Thanks to Derek using that phone, Baby Girl was able to send the Calvary to save the day. Almost like a perfect bow to wrap up an amazing episode, Derek wakes up to his favorite two ladies. Both Garcia and Savannah are there waiting for him.
Final Thoughts: It needs to be stated, this is probably one of the best episodes of Criminal Minds and may possibly be my new favorite episode of the series. Every aspect of this episode was on point from the acting to the directing to the script. I have liked every episode that Thomas Gibson has directed, but this one by far is his best. Also I believe Shemar Moore needs a round of applause, his acting in this episode was award worthy, the emotion and strength that needed to be displayed in this episode was phenomenal. Now that I have complemented the faces we all know, it is time to give acknowledgement to a face we don’t get to see, Breen Frazier. You sir, wrote one hell of a script. Every moment flowed so beautifully in this episode, from the parts with the men torturing Morgan, to Morgan having to deal with his past with his father who wasn’t there to guild him through it when he was younger. Kudos sir, for job well done, more of this please! Well not torturing Morgan, but more episodes of this quality.
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