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'Criminal Minds' fan recap: The case of the rideshare killer

Season 11 | Episode 12 | “Drive” | Aired Jan 20, 2015

After last week’s jaw dropper, Criminal Minds had a tough task ahead of them: Make episode 12 a real head turner. While it’s not the mind freak of Reid’s brainy battle with Aubrey Plaza, it did inspire five head references in the last two-and-a-half sentences. Gotcha! Guillotines, ridesharing, and confessions reminiscent of the Spanish Inquisition mark this spine-tingling episode.

We open in Boston with a couple walking to the door after what looks like a first date. But, like the beginning of many horror movies, the guy can’t accept her “good night” as a proper way to end the evening. He prefers taking a taser to his lady friend. Classy!

Victim number two awaits the guillotine in season 11, episode 12 of Criminal Minds.

The next day, Tara and Rossi are having a classic car conversation when Hotch calls them in. Two headless bodies have been found in the Boston area. With no evidence of abuse, no theft, and random locations, the team doesn’t have much to go on.

Meanwhile, we find the date-night woman trapped in a guillotine. Her gentleman caller grabs his head-catching bucket, listens to her scream, “I’ll never do it again,” and gives her the chop!

The investigation
As the team gathers intel, a third victim is discovered in Boston Commons. Her name is Amy Givens and, like her fellow victims, was found missing her noggin. When Morgan and Reid arrive at the scene, they find a media frenzy. The only clues are marks from a taser and bruising on her hands.

JJ and Rossi review one of the victims in season 11, espisode 12 of Criminal Minds.

JJ and Rossi’s examination of the second victim’s body reveals much of the same. But Rossi has a different bruised-knuckle theory. The blows look like purposeful punishment. Think the old “ruler against the knuckles” magnified by a thousand.

Garcia uncovers another nugget. All three were chatting on phones that were conveniently turned off before they went missing. After calculating where they were based on last call, the “going home” timetables don’t match up. Then, it hits them: They must have taken a ridesharing service.

Our latest victim gets a ride from the unsub in season 11, episode 12 of Criminal Minds.

Like clockwork, we see our unsub in a car with a “Zimmer” sticker on it. A guy sees the sticker, stops him, and tells the unsub he’ll pay double for a quick ride to Dorchester. The unsub agrees, to which the guy says, “You saved my life.” Foreshadowing!

The ramp-up
Back in the station, the team discovers there’s more to the victims than they realized. They were all involved in shady situations. Furthermore, Reid discovers an important connection. The beheadings weren’t done with swords and axes. An old-school guillotine did the work. This suggests the unsub is trying to send a moral message with his slaying and public displaying. We have motive!

The unsub arrives at his favorite zapping spot in season 11, episode 12 or Criminal Minds.

The unsub also has a new victim. In the car, the unsub overhears his passenger talking about an extramarital fling he was coming home from. Livid, the unsub drives into an alley, parks the car, and gives Cheater a good zap. Inside, I cheered a little.

As the unsub secures his new prey, the team visits the office of Zipper, an Uber-style ridesharing service. Morgan and Tara get after the CEO about safety and driver screening, but he doesn’t budge. The drivers are independent contractors, and if they start stealing the heads from their passengers, none on him. But the team has enough to deliver the profile.

The profile
The unsub is somebody who is or is posing as a rideshare driver. He’s probably picking his victims “off the meter.” He sees somebody waiting for a cab, offers them a ride, and away they go. He’s most likely an “injustice collector,” somebody upset by the unfairness of life and committed to dealing out brutal justice.

Anthony awaits his fate in season 11, episode 12 of Criminal Minds.

As the profile is delivered, we watch our unsub smash Cheater’s knuckles as he asks for confessions. An injustice collector, indeed.

After the profile, a hysterical woman walks into the station, claiming her husband, Anthony, is the next victim. He never returned home the night before and often uses ridesharing. She thinks he was at a client meeting, but a quick Garcia search reveals he was in a hotel with a mystery lady. But he did order a Zimmer ride that he quickly canceled. A new victim!

The closing-in
Meanwhile, the unsub tells Anthony to confess his sins of adultery. He knows Anthony was messing around on his wife with a woman named Tanya. Every time Anthony claims innocence, the unsub smashes his knuckles or gives him a shock. Just as the unsub is about to pull the guillotine’s rope, he has an idea. Give Tanya a call to prove Anthony’s innocence. When the call goes to voicemail, the unsub decides that if she doesn’t call back in 10 minutes, Anthony loses his head.

Reid examines the evdence in season 11, episode 12 of Criminal Minds.

Rossi, realizing they are running out of time, hits on a religious motivation. A search for Boston church scandals (à la the plot to Spotlight) centers on the story of Brendan Burke, a well-known pedophile priest who recently committed suicide. Could be a trigger! A search for former students of his who once drove for a rideshare reveals James O’Neil. Unsub!

Back in the inquisition room, James is about to pull the rope when the phone rings. With flashbacks of abuse popping through his brain, James answers, speaks to Tanya and learns the truth. Anthony was guilty of cheating.

But before he can add Anthony’s head to his refrigerator of sin, Hotch and Morgan bust in and take him down.

Hotch and Morgan close in on the unsub in season 11, episode 12 of Criminal Minds.

The final scene is a touching one between Tara and Rossi. After surprising Rossi with a car part he desperately needed, the two take a drive into the sunset. Could there be sparks a-brewing between Rossi and Tara? My wife says no, but I say maybe.

When all is said and done, the episode after a classic always feels like a letdown, even if it’s solid. This is exactly the case with episode 12. By bringing us back into the familiar feel of violence, creeps, and BAU justice, this week’s edition serves as a strong reintroduction to the Criminal Minds formula we know and love.

Criminal Minds airs Wednesdays at 9/8C on CBS.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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