Criminal Minds

Season 2 Episode 20

Honor Among Thieves

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Apr 11, 2007 on CBS

Episode Fan Reviews (23)

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out of 10
618 votes
  • Never felt like Criminal Minds.

    This episode just never worked in what has been a very good season A kidnapping of a Russian immigrant turns the BAU to investigate when Emily's mother Elizabeth asks for their help but when I was watching the episode I thought what happened to tracking serial killers and profiling them because they are the episodes that work on this show Its the only episode on the show that I have rated low I have compared it to other episodes and its nowhere near the standard of any of them which is very disappointing for a show like Criminal Minds.
  • A Russian immigrant is kidnapped and the BAU team must find him before he ends up dead. Good episode.

    A Russian immigrant is kidnapped and his ring finger is cut off and sent back to his family. This was a slow boring issue. One that had Kate Jackson in it. I have hated her since the early 1970's. Always will, I know Criminal Minds can do a lot better than this episode. Thing is they cut off his left ear halfway through the episode and by some miracle it is still attached at the end of the episode. Those Russians can grow back anything it seems. Like I said boring garbage ready for the Russian trashcan. Here's to hoping the next episode is better.
  • The "expert" profilers that we are expected to believe accurately profiled Elle as a murderer based entirely upon their profiling abilities (no proof) stood around completely clueless while an unsub pulled the wool completely over their gullible eyes.

    I'm trying to get over losing confidence in these people after the "throwing Emily to the dogs" episodes, but I liked that actress. I was used to her. And like someone else said, I'm having a hard time warming to Emily. She is classically pretty with dark, black hair and extremely pale porcelain skin and frankly her "look" reminds me of Morticia on the Adams Family. To me, her "look" better suits an unsub than a profiler. She needs a different hairdo, or a more lifelike personality. Bring in a makeup artist, change her hair and liven her up!
  • Every agent in the BAU is having a very bad day profiling, apparently thrown off by the presence of one of Charlie's Angels. Or is it Mrs. King?

    I adore the writers on Criminal Minds. I truly do. They usually put out some great episodes of a wonderful tv show with an excellent cast. However, I think this script might have missed the editing stage - that's the only scenario I can imagine - a time crunch and a quick once over. I read the reviews yesterday when I was trying to find one piece of info, and I thought "wow, I don't remember it being THAT bad," so I went back and watched it again last night and took notes. It really is that bad. However, it's not "that bad" in ways that I've read in most of the reviews. Yes, the BAU seems to have lost their profiling skills (when someone can recite a fairly long ransom note not too long after receiving it, I don't care what the excuse, that's suspicious... almost like they WROTE it, maybe? I should not be able to figure out the bad guy before the BAU in this show, unless they show me the UNSUB to begin with), but the main problems are with UNSUBS themselves. They are, apparently, lovers who need couples counseling - they don't communicate very well, and they seem to have some severe money issues. The money first. Lyov and Natalya have been kidnapping men for ransom for about a year, correct? The ransom they asked for Natalya's father was originally $100,000. That's a lot of money over the last year, if they have asked the same amount for each man. Yet Natalya still wears knock-off shoes and carries a knock-off purse, according to Morgan. Maybe she doesn't want to attract attention. I could understand that. But the bank account, when the increased ransom of $500,000 is transferred, shows an original balance of zero. What happened to the rest of the money?? They must eat out a LOT. I don't see why they would have a separate account for each kidnapping - they know no one will go to the police, and no one has until now, when for some reason the kidnapper herself let her mother call her uncle's former boss the ambassador and go to the FBI...

    Maybe Natalya had no control over her mother calling Elizabeth Prentiss and going to the FBI. But did she not have time to make a quick phone call to Lyov and say "hey baby, this is what's goin' down, don't freak out when you see the FBI, it'll all be okay"??? Apparently not, because Lyov for some reason flies into a rage when he finds out that the FBI is involved, and he cuts off his girlfriend's father's ear ahead of schedule. Did he not know that the FBI would not influence whether or not his father would pay the ransom? Surely he knew his father would not have called the FBI.

    There's a lot of weird rage in this episode, actually. When we first see Lyov, he is for some reason torturing Natalya's father - with no mask on. #1, why is he torturing him? His unfortunately-fated partner tells him to cool off, "they'll pay, they always do" - it's nowhere near the deadline, and this is his girlfriend's father, for cryin' out loud. #2, why is he not wearing a mask? At the end of the episode he's going to kill Mr. Chernus because there must be no witnesses - he's let everyone else go so far! Is it because this time the FBI was involved? Surely he would have recognized that Mr. Chernus would have been more likely to hide everything now that he knew his daughter was involved than just Lyov? Although, given the stated family dynamic, maybe not... but still. It made no sense.

    More weird rage - Natalya's whole point of letting her father be kidnapped was to get Lyov's father to pay her a ransom, and yet when he showed up at her door offering to help, SHE flew into a rage and pretty much spit in his face, sending him away and costing her father more time (and an ear, since Lyov found out and cut off the ear after that point). Why do that? To look good to the FBI? She could have at least been polite to him, not accuse him of being responsible for the kidnapping. Her reaction made no sense for someone trying to manipulate him into giving her $100,000. But then after she got the ear she suddenly decided to make nice? Why then? Because she realized Lyov had lost it? Did this couple not spend any of that money on cell phones with unlimited minutes?

    And then Natalya, "tough girl," goes all what - abused woman? when she gets back with Lyov, agreeing to let him KILL her FATHER - it was awful. Possibly realistic in context, I'll give it that, but it was still awful. They were just the kind of UNSUBs where, at the end, I was thinking "here, let me help you toss those trash bags off that bridge."

    However, I did still love the interactions between Emily and her mother. Kate Jackson was the perfect choice for Elizabeth Prentiss, and I hope we see more of her next season.

    I didn't give this episode as horrible a score as some other reviewers because any CM episode is still better than the episodes of some other tv shows I can think of, and ANY show is bound to have a clunker every now and then. Law of averages - you just can't put out tens non-stop, partly because people are going to compare them to each other, and partly because it's just not humanly possible.
  • Review

    Criminal Minds always seems to do this. In Season One it was the two times that the team went to Mexico that brought the entire season down from me. If you look at my old ratings for the entire season one and average them out you get a 9.10 for the entire season. If you remove the two episodes I was talking about (7+7) the average jumps all the way up to a 9.31! An average that only the elite shows get for me. This season was averaging a 9.35 up until this episode and the 7.7 is sure to bring that down quite a bit. I buy Criminal Minds through the DVD set so I was hoping by the time I got to this episode I didn't hate it as much as everyone else did, but it was a bad episode. To begin with the entire Russian Mob storyline didn't feel like it had an ending to it. A bunch of people died, guys threw body parts off a bridge, and the man is returned with two missing boyd parts. I didn't really see the point to the episode. Gideon, Reid, and the main man helping with the Russian mob storyline stood around and talked for 10 minutes of the episode. The episode was the most slow paced a Criminal Minds episode has ever been. While I wouldn't rank it as the worst episode of the series, its in the bottom three and its a shame to see the season ranking go down, but theres no way to defend this badly put together episode.
  • The Russian mob guys; a kidnapping; body parts; double crosses - it should have been fabulous. Instead it's just really mediocre.

    I don't really know what went wrong with this episode. It starts out well, but then descends into a really slow show that doesn't go anywhere. The dialogue is not as great as it usually is; the fact that men are being abducted and tortured doesn't seem to bother Reid at all; Morgan completely fails to notice or even check on the story he's been given until it's too late and he sees the garbage.

    There's nothing hugely wrong with it, but there's nothing hugely right either. It just feels out of keeping with the rest of the episodes, which usually have true tension and an ability to disturb and entertain at the same time.

    And what's with Kate Jackson? She was great in Charlie's Angels - at that time she was the only one who could really act. But now she's Emily Prentiss's mother, an ambassador who looks as though she has her face regularly belt-sanded. By a mortician.

    It's just a bizarre episode in the middle of some real corkers and it brings the show down. At the end of it, I didn't feel moved, uplifted, satisfied, sad, happy, upset... I just felt like I'd spent an hour of my life watching a programme I really like that failed to create any real interest. A damp squib basically.

    The school report would read: must do better.
  • Bunch of stereotypes plus no actual behavioral analysis or any other CM thing.

    I can honestly say that this episode was the worst of all CM eps. First of all there was NO Behavioral Analysis except couple of moment not really related to the case. The BAU just came there because Emily's mother asked them to and did nothing. Looked like there would've been no differense, if they hadn't been there - the russians started the problem, the russians edned it. Fin. And why was Reid so calm and astranged in the situation so close for him?
    The biggest minus of this ep for me was the russians themselves. God, do the writers even know russian people? Or did they atleast watch any russian movies before writting this ep? Every russin man in this ep was like walking complex of old stereotypes: ugly faces, rough speech, and ofcaurse - borsch. Why there is always borsch?? And what does KIEV have to do with this? KIev is not even in Russia! And Russian people don't call their friends or partners with full names, like Natalya or Alexander. It's Natasha and Sasha.
    The only plus of the episode was its ending - the victim came back home, kidnapper's dead, the girl's dead, the mob-in-law fixed the problem.
  • Different kind of justice

    This episode was much much weaker than many previous ones. It really stood out of the main storylines, had very little to do profiling and felt weird.

    I do not know what they wanted to tell with it... The only thing what could have been possible was that there is different kind of justice and seen in the end. They did had great score again, but I think you expect it - music to support the ongoing events.

    Natalya char was maybe too predictable, I do not know - just felt little weird.. That maffia boss - too complicat and not explained enough. and the whole reason why BAU was brought in.. I did not get it.
  • Maybe this is not the best episode, but Emily Prentiss deserved an episode to develop her character. Besides it's always great to see Kate Jackson on a TV series.

    Many peple dislike this episode, but I don't. This is not the best but at least it is not boring (some others are), and Emily Prentiss deserved an episode to develop her character. The only thing we knew about her was that she worked for the FBI (obviously) and that her parents were well-known people because of their job.

    Emily wasn't well presented in the series that's why I suppose they did this episode, to know more of her background and I have to say I enjoyed the episode. Besides it is always great to see Kate Jackson on a TV series.
  • Good character development, but the case didn't quite do anything for me.

    Thi s was the first episode of Criminal Minds in a LONG time that was below standard. The case in this episode surroundd a Russian immigrant who has been kidnapped and held for ransom.

    The case seemed very gruesome and gorey at the beginning, but it went downhill for the rest of the episode, as the case gradually lost my interest.

    What I did enjoye about this episode is the development of teh new character of SSA Emily Prentiss, as we are introduced to her Ambassador mother.

    This wass a great aspect of the episode, and compensated for the poor case to some degree.

    All up, I wouldn't recommend this episode. Definitely the worst episode of the season thus far, I would advise watchers to leave this episode aside and watch the rest of the season.
  • Are we sure that this episode wasn't included by mistake? Shouldn't it have been in an awful 1970s B-Grade film instead? Oh, 'Criminal Minds', you can do FAR better than this! The Russian Mob? Hostages and fingers sent to families? Oh, please!

    The only thing I liked about this episode at all was that we got to meet Prentiss's mother. (played brilliantly by the wonderful Kate Jackson) The rest, I don't really want to mention but, as this is a review, I fear I must do so anyway.

    Basically, Russian men are being kidnapped and held for ransom. It transpires that the whole thing is somehow connected to the Russian mob. Ambassador Elizabeth Prentiss, well known to Hotch from his early days at the bureau comes along and asks for the team to assist in finding the missing men as she has been approached by the family of the latest abductee.

    The family are sent body parts, starting with fingers, to prove that whomever is holding the loved ones 'mean business', whatever THAT is supposed to imply in this context!

    From the very beginning it was clearer than crystal that the daughter of the latest victim was heavily involved and so, we had a major yawn fest on our hands until it all mercifully ended. It WAS nice to see Emily's mother and to get a little of her backstory but to choose such a terrible episode to do so was a major mistake. Not only that, Kate Jackson is worthy of much better scripts. Let us hope that this horror is a one-off and that we don't have to endure it again.
  • I just have one comment.

    I feel like a great opportunity was lost here.

    When Reid worked his first case after being kidnapped, Morgan told him that now he would have empathy for the victims. But here they are, working a case where men are being kidnapped and tortured, like Reid was, and no empathy, not even any recognition. I understand that they don't want Reid's recovery to be the focus of every single episode for the rest of the season. But I feel a pretty neat opportunity was lost here.
  • Not a very interesting episode.

    There's not much to say about this episode. The majority of the episode was dialoge, the suspense level was low, and the ending was not hard to figure out. Overall just not an interesting episode. And another thing, didn't Gideon tell Morgan to profile the house? Morgan is an experienced profiler, I find it hard to believe that he would not of noticed the garbage sooner. I love criminal minds, every show has it's weak moments and I'm sure things will start getting better from here.
  • Russian mob storyline? What happened to profiling serial killers? After such a good spring, the show is in a downward sprial if episodes as poor as this are produced again.

    Russian mob storyline? What happened to profiling serial killers? After such a good spring, the show is in a downward sprial if episodes as poor as this are produced again. Annoying and predictable ending within the first 5 minutes of the show. Completely unorginal, which is quite the opposite of the show on a normal wednesday night.
  • Disappointing, given the high expectations I had.

    I was really excited to see this episode, especially seeing as we hadn't had a new episode for a few weeks. The story idea was great, and we could have learned a lot from our characters. Unfortunately, something must have happened, because the whole episode fell through. I think my only favorite part was garcia's banter and a few odd lines here and there. The BAU did nothing, the plot there was was really confusing and the whole thing just seemed a little silly. The only reason I didn't rate this episode lower is because I adore criminal minds and generally think all the episodes are wonderful, but this one just didn't do it for me at all.
  • Who fired the writers?

    This episode has nothing to do with the Criminal Minds I know. The team is just standing by while a couple of Russian immigrants kidnap, extort, cheat, mame and murder each other. Nobody solves anything, they just look like they do but are probably as clueless about what is going on as we are watching this mess get even messier.
    Another one like this and I will stop watching this series.
  • Vene maffi, inimrööv, valetamine, raha...

    Ausalt öeldes ei saa ma aru selle osa eesmärgist! Sellel jutumil polnud mingit pistmist käitumise uurimisega. See oli täiesti tavaline politseitöö, ja mitte midagi ei juhtunud. Garcia lahendas selle juhtumi ise ära ja polnud neil vaja uurida selles osas kordagi inimkäitumist. Ainuke inimene kellele oleks seda teha võinud, nad ei teainud ja said petta. Täiesti igav ja mõtetu osa, kui aus olla. Vene keelt seal ka kõik rääkida ei osanud. Stsenaarium oli ikka ka täiesti nutune. Ei tea mida selle osaga öelda tahetakse, kuid mina sellest igaljuhul aru ei saanud. See polnud nende osakona juhtum, ja täiesti mitte midagi tegid. Derek istus koguaeg majas. See uus naine istus töö juures kogu see aeg, Hotcner samuti. Reed ja Gideon ainult seisid maja ees ja rääkisid juttu. See on kõik, aboluutselt. Tegelikult nad isegi ei lahendanud seda juhtumit, vaid maffia tegi seda ise. Loodan, et enam selliseid osasid ei tule, ja kui tuleb siis see sari saab cancel ka:@
  • Bad plot line, being forced by Prentiss mom put Hotch on the spot and Emily got flustered. I do not care about Emily and cannot warm to her character.

    This was a "filler" episode between more great ones, I hope. The story dragged, the Mobster over-acted, the whole family dynamic thing was over done and I did not believe for a minute that the stone cold killer mob boss would support his secret son's antics. The Baltimore FBI guy was as annoying and wrong as last time. He had a collection of Russian mob stuff, but the victims of the son's crimes were NOT criminals, but ordinary folks and he never bothered to figure that out. Natalia was a sure thing from the minute Gideon said she was a tough girl and she over played the sob story to Morgan. Blah and blah for the Prentiss mother/daughter moment. Reid is trying to come back and add things to his persona, the "man" thing was not it.

    Hoping for better next time.
  • Worst.Episode.Ever. Horrible plot, couldn't have cared less about this episode.

    Don't get me wrong, I love criminal minds, but this was possibly their worst episode. I watched intently, but still could not follow the plot. It was confusing and not explained well at all. Even now, I still don't know what happened and why. Even further, there wasn't even an unsub! There was no profiling, and no arrests! It seemed to me that the entire episode, the BAU stood around talking, but never actually did anything or get a lead. Aside from the terrible plot, it didn't fall in line with the ongoing story. I knew it wasn't going to be a Reid-centric episode, but nothing was mentioned at all leaving me to wonder if its all over now...? I really hope the writers come up with better upcoming episodes.
  • No arrests for BAU, but Emily's mom is an Angel.

    I was giddy as a schoolgirl when I saw Kate Jackson playing Emily's mother. Sabrina of Charlie's Angels! So fun!

    I thought it was intriguing while Mr. Chernis was returned at the end of the episode & relatively unharmed, still not arreests made by BAU. The mafia took care of it's own. I was not too surprised by the Natalya connection. I didn't see the son connection, but I did see natalya being involved. I actually thought that the mother might have been lying & natalya was not her daughter at all since no pictures iof her over the age of 5 when her brothers died.

    Honestly other than the casting of Kate Jackson & an brief glimpse into Emily's relationship with her mom, I was disappointed by this one.
  • It was kind of a let down after the past couple of episodes. I was kind of dissappointed.

    This one just wasn't Criminal Minds' best. The plot was kind of boring and you could guess the ending early on in the show. They really incriminated the daughter early on. I mean if you couldn't tell by yourself, Morgan observed her lack of emotional response to her father's kidnapping on the plane to her home. You usually don't figure out who'd done it until towards the end. I'm just used to being surprised I guess and on the edge of my seat. And what's up with Spencer Reid? He seems so not like himself. Granted I would act differently if I'd been through what he'd been through. I don't know what's going on with him but I'm not liking the change in his behavior. However this one wasn't too bad. It had it's redeeming qualities. There was a little bit of a twist that was a tiny bit exciting. The ending with Prentiss and her mother was a nice-fuzzy feeling moment. I still enjoyed it, I was just expecting something more I guess.
    All in all, not my favorite, but I didn't hate it. Hopefully the next new episode will be much better!
  • What a disappointment. We've learned to expect a lot more from Criminal Minds.

    Another Russian Mob show? Didn't we just do this last season on Numbers, and the season before that on Law and Order, and on every other "crime drama" for the last five years? Have the CM writers run out of plots already?

    And, while I'm on the subject, why is it when they want to focus a show on a female character the plot has to dry up and blow away? Both North Mammon and Honor Among Thieves has the BAU getting involved in a case for all the wrong reasons. Apparently the only way we can focus on either JJ or Emily is to go way outside the BAU box until the team has no role whatsoever.

    What role did the BAU play to bring the criminal to justice? Hotchner and JJ held Mrs. Chernus' hands. Morgan flubbed Natalya's profile. Reid and Gideon hung out in the street with Agent Kramer when they weren't taking Russian Mob classes. Emily had a few lines with her mom. The only one who really made a contribution was Garcia. Even some of the dialogue could have been transplanted almost word-for-word from another ep. Remember Natural Born Killer when the BAU confronted the killer's mobster boss? "You've lost control of your man." "If anyone in the organization finds out they could kill you." Doesn't this sound a little familiar guys?

    We didn't even get more than a drop of character development for Emily Prentiss - and haven't we been waiting for that for months now? She and her mother argue - what mother and daughter don't? Her mother hides her feelings. Wow. I'm floored by the revelations.

    The only reason I didn't give this ep a lower score is because, darn it, I love this show. I wanted to love this ep just because it has been so long since we've had a new one. And the plot wasn't bad - if it were for another show.
  • I liked the fact that there was a "clean" ending.

    Many interesting underlying plots and subplots. From the victims daughter and her interaction with her parents and her reactions to the Russian Mob and the BAU team. To Prentiss and her interaction with her mom. The team's willingness to aid the Chernus family was twisted when they learned that a Natalya was part of the plot to kidnap her father. I think one of the best things about this episode was that it was wrapped up in a nice little bow. You had the Russian mob boss ordering the murder of his own son, to Emily seeing her mother in a differ light and you have the BAU team with answers but not arrests.