Criminal Minds

Season 1 Episode 16

The Tribe

Aired Wednesday 9:00 PM Mar 08, 2006 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
385 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

When college students in New Mexico are found tortured and murdered in an unoccupied house, the BAU suspects a group of killers with a knowledge of Native American rituals is responsible.

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  • I don't understand

    If the kidnapped victim was part of the tribe of "Grandfather's" then

    why was she there at the house where the college students were murdered?
  • Several college students are murdered whilst having a party in an unoccupied house in New Mexico. The MO of the murders suggests that either a Native American or someone with a vast knowledge of their culture may have been responsible.moreless

    To be honest, I wasn't overly impressed with this episode as I thought that given the very interesting aspects of the case that the script was very weak and poorly written in places. One advantage though was the appearance on the scene of Hotch's younger brother, Shaun, an obviously clever young man who arrives at the BAU to inform Aaron that rather than go to Georgetown and study law like his brother and late father, he wishes to move to New York and work in a top class restaurant with the idea of eventually becoming a chef. To say that Hotch is far from impressed is an understatement!

    Meanwhile, the murder of the five college teens leads the BAU to believe that they may be dealing with a 'pack' or killers who work within the pack mentality and who will not stop until they are stopped, according to Gideon, by a stronger pack or 'tribe'. The bodies were severely mutilated and skinned alive and one was impaled which leads Reid to point out the connection to ancient rituals of Native Americans.

    The question is, is the crime in any way connected to the local Native Americans or is someone just trying to make it look that way to throw the investigators off the scent of who is really behind the crimes?

    It was good to see some back story on Hotch and they story could have been so much better with a better script. Not awful but not great either in my opinion.moreless
  • Excellent episode, well written episode with riveting plot and great job by Greg Cruz as John Blackwolf.

    Exceptionally gripping character portrayl by Greg Cruz as John Blackwolf. Good plot development of Hotch in this episode with the introduction of his younger brother. what really stole the show in my opinion is the Character of Blackwolf. The whole native american apache and the tracking abilities all sauced up, great one liners made an impact with the story. The loses a tenth of a point to being a perfect 10 because the murder scenes should have been a lot gorier. It seems a little sterile, when you have people in this episode skinned alive and impaled on metal stakes. Other than that one of the most entertaining episodes yet with twists and turns and good action and witty lines.moreless
  • really really good.

    ok, so this show surprises me in that it tackles issues that a lot of people are either unaware of or uncaring about. the fact that it brought in native american culture, and displayed some of the abilities of that people along with a lot of the misconceptions and discriminations impressed me. also, i think this episode was intersting beginning to end. i mean, i didn't think her dad kidnapped her, did you? all in all, very very good television!moreless
  • Way better than usual episode, and since they are always pretty good in this series - that is really saying something!

    This show was really great.

    I really hope they making the Indian a reoccurring character from time to time. He adds a lot more physical strength to the team. His world-wise but sincere humor is also a big asset.

    The bad guys in this show ranged to from possessing weak character, to being truly dangerous, to being actually pathologically evil and cunning. In other words, ideal game for the show's expert profilers.

    This is one of my favorites of the episodes I have seen so far. They should do more like this show. I don't know if it was the writing, the chemistry with the new actor, the directing, or the actors just found their groove more than usual. It was a terrific episode, whatever the reasons.moreless
A.J. Cook

A.J. Cook

SSA Jennifer "JJ" Jareau

Lola Glaudini

Lola Glaudini

SSA Elle Greenaway

Mandy Patinkin

Mandy Patinkin

Senior SSA Jason Gideon

Matthew Gray Gubler

Matthew Gray Gubler

SSA Dr. Spencer Reid

Shemar Moore

Shemar Moore

SSA Derek Morgan

Thomas Gibson

Thomas Gibson

Unit Chief Aaron Hotchner

Sonya Stephens

Sonya Stephens

Jane Bear

Guest Star

Gregory Cruz

Gregory Cruz

John Blackwolf

Guest Star

Skyler Shaye

Skyler Shaye


Guest Star

Kirsten Vangsness

Kirsten Vangsness

Analyst Penelope Garcia

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

  • QUOTES (14)

    • Sean: You saying that I can't take care of myself?
      Hotchner: No. This is my way of saying that I'm a jackass.
      Sean: I guess it's hereditary.

    • Hotchner: We took down these four.
      Reid: Without firing a shot?
      John Blackwolf: Captain America here shot number five.
      Hotchner: You're welcome. Number six is cut up pretty bad. I don't think he's gonna make it.
      John Blackwolf: At least I didn't shoot him.
      Morgan: I think I'd rather be shot.
      Hotchner: There's an old Apache saying, "You can take many paths to get to the same place". (Blackwolf smiles)

    • Deputy #1: Are you trying to tell us that Indians wouldn't be so brutal?
      John Blackwolf: No, I'm saying that Indians wouldn't be so confused.

    • John Blackwolf: Inside 21 feet, I win. Outside 21, I have other options besides shooting a man.
      Reid: Like negotiating.
      John Blackwolf: Like running.

    • John Blackwolf: There are many paths to the same place. Trust me.
      Hotchner: Just so you know, you sound like a fortune cookie.

    • JJ: That's Hotch's brother? I don't see it.
      Hotchner: Sean, listen to me. All I'm saying is that you're 25 years old.
      Sean Hotchner: You know what? Don't profile me, Aaron. (storms away)
      JJ: (looking at his butt) Now I see it.

    • Hotchner: This is a surprise. Haven't cut your hair since Thanksgiving.
      Sean Hotchner: That's what you said at Christmas.

    • Elle: Brother? As in that's Hotch's brother?
      Garcia: Maybe Hotch is adopted?

    • Gideon: Are the Ga'he good spirits or bad spirits?
      John Blackwolf: They're both. Like men.

    • John Blackwolf: Samuel, tell the men from the FBI who the Ga'he are.
      Reid: The Ga'he are mighty spirits who dwell in desert caves.
      Hotchner: Reid, is your name Samuel?
      Reid: Sorry.

    • John Blackwolf: (to Gideon) You look like a college professor. (to Reid) You look like his student. (to Hotchner) You look like FBI.

    • John Blackwolf: We don't do massacres. You do.
      Hotchner: Me personally?
      John Blackwolf: Your government.

    • Hotchner: Nietzsche wrote, "The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe."

    • John Blackwolf: To the Apache, killing, unless absolutely necessary, was a sign of stupidity and weakness.

  • NOTES (2)

    • Local law enforcement explains that the land was seized from the Apache's through use of Eminent Domain. Eminent Domain allows the government to take private property for public use.  A controversial 2005 ruling by the Supreme Court allowed the government to seize land and give it to a private developer in order to increase revenue.

    • The music played at the beginning contains excerpts from the 17-minute song, "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida," recorded Iron Butterfly in 1968.


    • John Blackwolf: Captain America here shot number five.

      "Captain America" is a Marvel comics character that first appeared in 1941. After drinking Super Soldier Serum, he became the perfect fighter and fought against the Nazis. According to Marvel comics, although in his undercover role as a normal soldier he carried a gun, Captain America's shield was his only weapon.

    • Reid: She's answering every question with just her name and Social Security Number.
      Hotchner: Like a prisoner of war.

      According to the Geneva Conventions, POWs can only be asked for their name, rank, and serial number.

    • Gideon: Like the Symbionese Liberation Army that kidnapped Patty Hearst.

      Patty Hearst was a granddaughter of William Randolph Hearst, who was kidnapped by the SLA in 1974 and held hostage. Then she started committing robberies with the group before being arrested. There was a great deal of public sympathy for her, but she still was convicted and served some time in prison before President Jimmy Carter commuted her sentence. She was eventually pardoned by President Bill Clinton.

    • Elle: From the Munich Olympics to Iraqi insurgents…

      At the beginning of the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich Germany, the 19 athletes on the Israeli team were taken hostage and murdered by a Palestinian terrorist group calling themselves Black September. To this day, athletes in the Olympic Village are not allowed to hang national flags in their windows because that was how Black September located the Israelis.

    • Garcia says that John Blackwolf's father was killed by federal agents during the seige of Wounded Knee.
      The Massacre of Wounded Knee was in 1893. The American Indian Movement (AIM) occupied the site in 1973 to protest government injustices. It was intended to be a peaceful protest, but it ended up as a standoff with U.S. Armed Forces that resulted in deaths on both sides.

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