Scary, dark, touching – what an episode. The writer kept the stress level ramped while giving us the best view of the real souls of these profilers we have ever seen. And. let’s face it, even though the plots are tight and involving, it’s the characters that keep us coming back for more. This episode had everything I wanted, except the scene we were all waiting for between Morgan and Garcia. JJ’s vulnerable response to her own situation was very realistic – much more so than most television characters’ one-dimensional reactions to horrors. Hotch was finally humanized, ending up, surprisingly, with the big emotional reunion with Reid that we would have expected from Morgan, or Gideon. The torture scenes were hard to watch – which should be a compliment to the actors and director. While I was hurting for poor Reid (and no one can show abject terror like Matthew Gray Gubler), Van Der Beek had me feeling almost worse for Tobias – the sad connection that grew between Reid and Tobias made the ending even more tragic. Having Reid “save himself” by shooting the man who had literally brought him back to life was an excellent solution that will only leave more internal scars for Reid to recover from. And the drugs? They were a way for Reid to escape from the torture for a moment during his ordeal. Clearly, his physical ordeal may be over, but his emotional/ psychological ordeal continues. On a more practical note, no one should stop taking Dilaudid cold turkey – the physical side-effects are much worse than a gradual withdrawal. Brilliant Reid will know this, and this could be a real rationalization for continuing to take the drugs. For a while.
Gideon continues to make the hard decisions, and also pays the psychological price for the consequences to his team/family. I see another “major depressive episode” in his future.