Tonight’s installment of Criminal Minds, “The Apprenticeship”, opens with our unsub killing his first human victim in Miami, Florida. Right away we know that tonight’s episode is going to be an “unsub” episode, where we know who the bad guy is from the very beginning. These are usually my favorite types of Criminal Minds episodes, but it’s all up to how good of an actor you get to play your unsub.
Thankfully, the young Harrison Thomas was up to the task as tonight’s unsub Toby Whitewood. He did a great job as the titular apprentice, but the even more interesting casting was that of his mentor: Matthew Lillard. In case you didn’t recognize Lillard with his creepy goatee and receding hairline, this is the same guy who played Shaggy in the Scooby Doo movies, as well as his parts in Without a Paddle and She’s All That. It was great seeing him playing a different type of character from his usual comedic fare, although I guess he did play a bad guy in Scream. Sorry if that’s a spoiler for you, but the movie is 16 years old. There’s a statue of limitations on this stuff.
Anyway, I was surprised it took the team as long as it did to guess that the unsub was a younger man. His DNA wasn’t in any system (which usually tips them off that it would be their first offense), he didn’t have access to a car, and he had small hands. All of that didn’t give it away, but the big clue was that all of the puppies were killed in a park. That’s it? Because young people hang out at parks? What teenagers hang out in parks anymore?
I was surprised that they ended up killing off both unsubs, but we do end up with a bit of a cliffhanger regarding an older unsub. The Silencer, from episode one, seems to still be at large. I was surprised that they’re already recycling old unsubs only five episodes after the last one aired, but they also brought back another big cliffhanger from episode one. The creep! Yes, the mysterious person taking pictures of the team was snapping photos at the softball game, and this definitely seems to be an overarching story line that is not going forgotten. I can’t wait to see what happens here, and I wonder if we’ll get more info on this mysterious figure before the season finale.
- It honestly took me a while to convince myself that it was Matthew Lillard playing the older unsub. He wasn’t on IMDb, either.
- Is there anybody in show business that has a sweeter gig than Kirsten Vangsness? She just sits at her computer and talks quickly into her headset. Awesome.
- Reid’s running was appropriately geeky, and I honestly can’t remember ever seeing Spencer run that fast before.