Criminal Minds

Riding the Lightning

Season 1, Ep 14, Aired 1/25/06
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  • Episode Description
  • After interviewing a married couple sitting on death row at Florida State Penitentiary for serial murder, Gideon suspects the woman is actually innocent. Since she's set to be executed in two days; however, it's a race against time to prove it.

  • Cast & Crew
  • A.J. Cook

    SSA Jennifer "JJ" Jareau

  • Lola Glaudini

    SSA Elle Greenaway

  • Mandy Patinkin

    Senior SSA Jason Gideon

  • Matthew Gray Gubler

    SSA Dr. Spencer Reid

  • Shemar Moore

    SSA Derek Morgan

  • Fan Reviews (45)
  • The tale of a Mothers' love

    By alexiatang9, Jun 21, 2014

  • Fred and rose?!

    By Garciasgirl, Jun 10, 2014

  • Inspired by...

    By MacKenzieHaye, Dec 04, 2012

  • RIDE THE LIGHTNING

    By cbaldock, Mar 11, 2012

  • Why do I feel so satisfied when the BAU is ultimately unsuccessful with both Jacob and Sarah Jean Dawes?

    By Finnegan77, Apr 15, 2007

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (12)

    • Hotchner: How many others are there?
      Jacob Dawes: I only have a few hours left and, though I like you – and I do like you – I'd like to be alone now. (offering his hand for a shake) Good meeting you, Hotch.
      Hotchner: (ignoring his hand) I'm not done yet.
      Jacob Dawes: Oh, me neither.

    • Hotchner: Are there more bodies?
      Jacob Dawes: If I told you that, what would I have left for myself?
      Hotchner: You could help these families get closure before you die.
      Jacob Dawes: Oh. Pass.

    • Gideon: I think you're innocent.
      Sarah Jean Dawes: We're all guilty of something.

    • Warden: Any last words?
      Jacob Dawes: Bring it on.

    • Sarah Jean Dawes: I used to tell Riley that no matter where we were, the Man in the Moon would be looking down on both of us.

    Show More Quotes

    Notes (2)

    • With this episode, Kirsten Vangsness receives an "Also Starring" credit rather than the "Guest Starring" credit in previous episodes.

    • The music playing during the first and last scenes was "Cello Suite No. 1, Prelude" composed by J.S. Bach.

    Trivia (2)

    • Jacob has a tattoo on his right arm – a heart with Sarah Jean’s name. Beneath it are the words: "Til Death Do Us Part."

    • This episode reveals that Gideon's son, Steven, is 25.

    Allusions (3)

    • Hotchner: Aces and eights. Two pair. (lays down his cards)
      Jacob Dawes: Dead Man's Hand.

      The current accepted Dead Man's Hand consists of two black aces, two black eights, and the jack of diamonds or spades. It is called such because Wild Bill Hickok was purportedly holding those cards when he was shot in the back of the head during a poker game, although there are several "official" versions of the hand. The shooting took place at Nuttall & Mann's No. 10 saloon in Deadwood, South Dakota, on August 2, 1876. Hotch's hand, however, appears not to be any of the contested versions of the Dead Man's Hand: eight of diamonds, eight of clubs, ace of hearts, ace of clubs, and the ace of diamonds.

    • Morgan: Well, she doesn't talk now, she's gonna take that story with her to "Old Sparky." The electric chair in this episode is called "Old Sparky." This was the name officially given to the electric chair in at least seven states: Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, New York, Ohio, Texas and West Virginia. Florida's chair was said to have been built from an old gallows; in its latter years it was notorious for setting its victims on fire. "Old Sparky" is sometimes also used to refer to electric chairs in general and not any specific one.

    • The title of this episode "Riding the Lightning" refers to an execution by the electric chair. The condemned would be summarily electrocuted in the chair, hence he or she would "ride" the electric current.

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