With the 11th season of Criminal Minds quickly approaching, some people might want to do a little re-watch in preparation. The thing is, 10 seasons is A LOT of episodes to go through, 233 to be exact. Criminal Minds has been building its audience since 2005 and has been known to do amazing (and often explosive) finales that tend to steal the spotlight when “best episode” lists are brought out.
This is a little different. These are episodes you typically wouldn’t find on those lists. These are episodes that have been fan favorites for years; these have made this grim show so special and close to people’s hearts. So whether you’re looking to revamp your excitement for season 11, or just looking for a little entertainment, Here’s 10 episodes (one from each season) that aren’t talked about enough. And don’t forget to catch Season 11 of Criminal Minds on September 30th, on CBS at 9pm!
‘Riding the Lightning’ (Season 1, Episode 14)
After interviewing a murders in Alachua married couple sitting on death row for serial, Florida, including the murder of their son, Gideon suspects the woman is actually innocent and that her son may actually be alive. Since she’s set to be executed in two days, it’s a race against time to prove it.
‘North Mammon’ (Season 2, Episode 7)
The BAU takes on a case when a mother and family acquaintance of JJ’s travels to Quantico, Virginia to ask for their help in a town near Bellefonte, Pennsylvania where her daughter was kidnapped with two other girls by someone who may be a part of their community. The kidnapper is keeping the girls locked in a cellar and tells them that two will be allowed to leave alive and that one will be killed.
‘Seven Seconds’ (Season 3, Episode 5)
The BAU and local authorities race against time to locate a young girl, six-year-old Katie Jacobs, who has disappeared from the Potomac Mills shopping mall in Woodbridge, Virginia and may have been kidnapped by a serial killer. However, as the time passes, suspicion falls on the girl’s family.
‘Omnivore’ (Season 4, Episode 18)
The BAU travels to Boston when the Boston Reaper, one of Agent Hotchner’s first cases, which involved one of the most notorious murderers in the history of New England, returns after 10 years. The team interviews the only victim that survived to find clues about the killer. Loosely inspired by the Zodiac Killer.
‘Risky Business’ (Season 5, Episode 13)
The BAU travels to Evanston, Wyoming when four teenagers commit suicide within a two-week period, despite none of the victims showing any prior evidence of being suicidal. The investigation leads them to an online “choking game” that encourages students to participate as part of a contest. They focus on a teenage boy as the main suspect in the case, but as they dig deeper, the team finds an unusual condition within the boy’s family that could be the trigger to the crimes.
‘JJ’ (Season 6, Episode 2)
While contemplating a major job promotion that she cannot ignore, JJ assists the team in aiding a couple whose daughter mysteriously vanished. The case becomes further complicated when the only two suspects in the case are able to pass a polygraph test, despite being last seen with the victim and having a viable motive to take her. Based on the disappearance of Natalee Holloway.
‘Profiling 101’ (Season 7, Episode 22)
Rossi and the team present one of the longest-tenured serial killer cases to college students in Seattle, and they take the class through a nearly 20 year chase for the murderer.
‘All that Remains’ (Season 8, Episode 14)
When the daughters of Bruce Morrison, a writer whose wife mysteriously vanished a year ago, go missing on the anniversary of their mother’s disappearance, the BAU is brought in Salisbury, Maryland, to study Morrison as a possible suspect.
‘Rabid’ (Season 9, Episode 18)
When the BAU finds bodies with both animal and human bite marks near Milwaukee, they have some difficult questions to answer. Meanwhile, Garcia and Reid must prepare for a fitness test, but try to hide the whole thing from Morgan, as he has a reputation of being a difficult personal trainer.
‘Mr.Scratch’ (Season 10, Episode 21)
When three people, who have been implicated as suspects in murders, claim that a “clawed shadow monster” attacked them and is somehow responsible for these crimes, the BAU begins to believe they are searching for an unsub who is controlling these people’s minds. The case, however, becomes much more complex when the hunt for this unsub puts one of the team’s lives in jeopardy.