CSI: Crime Scene Investigation

Season 2 Episode 13

Identity Crisis

Aired Sunday 10:00 PM Jan 17, 2002 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
437 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Grissom's nemesis, serial killer Paul Millander (Matt O'Toole), reappears and claims a third victim in this gripping episode. The latest slaying matches Millander's previous killings in that it recreates his father's murder, which Millander witnessed as a boy. In each case, the victim is shot once through the chest while lying in a bathtub. A nearby tape recorder contains the person's supposed suicide message. All three victims share the same birthday of Aug. 17---the date Millander's father was slain---with the years in descending order from 1959. So presumably, the killer's next target was born Aug. 17, 1956...which just happens to be Grissom's birthday.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

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  • Paul Millander is back or is it Paul Millander????

    Paul Millander returns with his first killing of the episode being a hitchhiker.Then the teams investigation leads them to finding out that Paul Millander is living two identities the other as a judge Douglas Mason which confuses the CSI's to even believe that judge Mason isn't Paul Millander .Paul Millander messes with Grissom's mind throughout the episode even inviting him to his house which was a really good part.In the end Paul Millander kills his mother and himself and we find out he was born on August 17 1956 like his victims.Definitely a perfect 10 loved the episode.moreless
  • Perfect killer

    Unpredictable episode. Great bad character, he reminds me Hannibal Lecter :). Grissom knew who is Paul Millander. To the bitter end he have racional mind to find the anserw. End of story looks like perfect mourder. Who winns? Always justice. I like this mysterious puzzle.
  • "Nerve-wracking" is as close as I can find to "chilling", which was my gut reaction to this conclusion of the Paul Millander story arc.

    There were several things that really caught me about this episode, the first being the chill that I can still feel, even ten minutes and one cup of tea after seeing it for the second time. It wasn't a scary episode, by my definition, and it didn't bother me, but it did stick in my spine, somehow.

    I was glad that they waited before bringing Millander back into the series. Giving him a bit of time to be dismissed, save for one reference which acknowledges that he's still an active threat, seems to help him from becoming a cheap suspense trick, and added to his character. Paul was more than content to wait until the time was right, and the series was as well, which added to the impact of this episode.

    O'Toole deserves credit for the way he managed to act Judge Mason. The entire bearing of the man was different, the confidence he exuded that had me drawn to him, and the absence of the stutter that characterized Paul Millander made it clear that Mason wasn't just an act that was put on occasionally; he was a man, with a son and a family, and I got the sense that those things mattered. At the same time, I was as convinced as Grissom that he was the same man that we had seen before. There was something in him that was Millander to the bone, and it was very well portrayed.

    I enjoy seeing intelligence rewarded, although one might call death a dubious reward, and I can't say that there is any victory that Millander could gain that would fit into any conception of justice. The way this arc ended, though, left it with neither man gaining a clear victory over the other, whether or not Millander achieved his own ends, and I enjoyed the way that played out.

    Looking forward to other such poignant characters in the future.moreless
  • This episode was amazing!

    The plot of this particular episode was very clever and magnificent. Twists and turns that some would've never expected. Just amazing and brilliant. One of my personal favorites. I particularly liked how you couldn't quite tell what Millander was planning up until the end. It was hard to even tell if he'd get caught! I particularly enjoyed the fact that you have to interpret the evidence he leaves behind differently than regular evidence. It just blew me away that he was trying to tell a story with the evidence he was leaving behind. This episode was a fine conclusion to the Paul Millander story that began in the pilot episode of the CSI series.moreless
  • The return of Paul Millander.

    The final installment in the three episode story arc involving Paul Millander begins with a driver picking up a hitchhiker (Millander) and then turning up dead in a tub in a warehouse out of Vegas’ jurisdiction. Grissom and Catherine are called to the scene because Grissom is addressed on the “suicide” tape. We learn that Grissom’s birthday is the same day as all the previous victims and that his birth year is next in sequence for the killer. This time the killer is purposely leaving evidence behind. He leaves an ancient hair fiber with the victim. He leaves his prints on the bars of the jail for Grissom to run. Millander is both confident in his ability to outwit Grissom and ready to reveal himself. The team slowly connects the dots, researching Millander’s past to find his mother and analyzing the DNA in the hair fiber. Unfortunately the hair fiber belongs to a woman. However, Catherine manages to lift a fiber from old clothing at Millander’s mother’s house and takes a stack of baseball cards with a print on them. This combination of evidence shows Millander/Mason/Paula Millander are the same person. However it is Sara who figures out that Paul Millander was once Paula. Millander is arrested and brought to trial. He chooses to represent himself causing his case to be the last on the docket that day. He uses this delay to escape from prison using a fake ID badge made from Grissom’s ID. Catherine catches up with Grissom as he is leaving the lab and points out an irregularity in the tapes of the victims causing Grissom to leave the lab running. He rushes to Mrs. Millander’s house only to find she has been stabbed. He then walks to the bathroom to find Millander in the tub with a suicide tape. Millander did manage to outwit him, choosing death over being convicted of his crimes.moreless
Matt O'Toole

Matt O'Toole

Paul Milander

Guest Star

Micole Mercurio

Micole Mercurio

Isabelle Millander

Guest Star

Neil Flynn

Neil Flynn

Officer Yarnell

Guest Star

Eric Szmanda

Eric Szmanda

Greg Sanders

Recurring Role

Robert David Hall

Robert David Hall

Dr. Al Robbins

Recurring Role

Archie Kao

Archie Kao

Archie Johnson

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (10)

    • Goof: The staff repeatedly refer to "endogenous testosterone" as evidence of hormone treatments. In actuality, "endogenous testosterone" is what is made naturally by the body, not the result of injections.

      It is wrongly explained in the episode that endogenous means "outside of the body", but this is false. "Exogenous" means from outside. "Endogenous" is defined as being from within the body or cells in biological organisms.

    • Ths is the second time Grissom draws his weapon. The first time was in episode 1x06 Who Are You?

    • Goof: At the very beginning of the episode, before Peter Walker picks up Paul Millander, the windshield wipers of the car move at changing speeds between outside and inside shots.

    • Grissom's birthday is August 17 1956.

    • Goof: After Grissom finds Isabelle Millander dead in her chair, he walks towards the bathroom. When the shot changes, you can see Micole Mercurio, the actress that portrays Isabelle Millander, shift her legs even though she's dead.

    • Goof: The hair Catherine finds in the bathroom is 12 inches long, she says. Paul later mentions cutting his hair after his father's trial. However, all pictures and flash backs of child- Pauline have short hair.

    • Goof: The birthdays in this episode are not consistent with age. 1) Mrs. Millander states that Pauline was 10 years old when Paul Millander Sr. was murdered. Sara states in Season 1 episode "Anonymous" that the event occurred on August 17, 1959. But when Grissom finds Millander's body in the bathtub and the birth certificate, it clearly states that Millander's DOB was August 17, 1956 and was only 3 years old.
      2) Paul Millander has a birthday of August 17, 1956. His victim in the episode has a birthday of August 17, 1957 (a year earlier). However, the victim says on his tape that he is 44 and Millander later says that he is 46.

    • Goof: In the Season 1 episode "Anonymous" it was stated that Millander's father's name is John, but now it's stated as Paul.

    • Goof: The eyes of Paul Millander's mother blink twice when the camera pans around to show the knife in her corpse.

    • Goof: At the dinner Grissom's looking at Paul Millander, not at his son who's taking a picture of him. But when the camera later shows the picture he's looking directly into the camera.

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Catherine: I re-read the backgrounds of Millander's victims. I think that he slipped up. You know how every victim reads the suicide note "I'd like to say 'I love you' to my mother"? Well, Pete Walker had no mother. (beat) She died in childbirth.
      Grissom: He never slips up.

    • Paul Millander: Aren't you wondering about your birthday?
      Grissom: No.
      Paul Millander: Why I didn't kill you, since you were next?
      Grissom: No.
      Paul Millander: I've already picked my next victim, if you're curious.
      Grissom: It doesn't matter, Paul. You'll be in jail.

    • Greg: Okay. The hair you found in Pauline Millander's bedroom two x chromosomes-- female.
      Grissom: You didn't beep me for that.
      Greg: Well, Sara had me compare it to the hair found in the tub at the crime scene. They're a perfect match. (beat) DNA identical.
      Catherine: So, her brother planted it?
      Greg: Well... Not exactly.
      Sara: Yeah, he planted it. He planted his own hair.
      Catherine: Millander. It's female hair.
      Sara: With endogenous testosterone. Pauline was taking male hormone injections.
      Grissom: Why?
      Sara: My theory? Sex change.
      Catherine: You know, when I was back at the house I saw several photographs of Pauline and nothing of Paul. In fact, the only proof of Paul is a hidden baseball card.
      Sara: There is no birth or death record for Pauline.
      Grissom: Paul killed Pauline. But he didn't murder her.

    • Sara: Grissom, Catherine briefed us about your birth date.
      Warrick: Yeah, what's up with that?
      Grissom: Coincidence. Make anything more of it gives Millander more power than he deserves.
      Nick: We work together; he can't outsmart all five of us.
      Grissom: Yes, he can.
      Catherine: Plan of attack -- split up. Nick, take the tape over to A-V. Break it down. Warrick, Sara -- examine the perimeter. We need to know how he got in and got out. We'll stay with the body. (they all pick up their kits and leave)
      Grissom: Thanks.
      Catherine: Anytime.

    • Catherine: Pete Walker, California. Date of birth: August 17, 1957. It's got to be the work of Paul Millander. What do you think brought him back out?
      Grissom: The rain?
      Catherine: Hasn't changed his M.O. -- kills men whose birthdays are on the anniversary of his father's murder.
      Grissom: In descending order -- first victim was August 17, 1959; second victim, August 17, 1958; this guy, 1957.
      Catherine (picks up tape recorder): Ready for this?
      Grissom: I have a good idea what it's going to say.
      Pete Walker (on tape): My name is Pete Walker. I reside at 715 Lady El Sol and I'm 44 years of age. I'm going to kill myself. I'd like to say "I love you" to my mother. I'm so sorry, I never wanted to put you through this. I just can't do it anymore." (gunshot heard on tape)
      Paul Millander (on tape): Happy... birthday, Mr. Grissom.
      Catherine: Isn't your birthday in August?
      Grissom: August 17, 1956. (Catherine looks shocked)

    • Sara: Greg, did you match the female hair from the crime scene?
      Greg: When you say jump I say how high?

    • (Nick is examining a car)
      Greg: Is this the car the guy was killed in? (Nick is clearly startled)
      Nick: He was killed in the warehouse. And don't sneak up on a person like that!
      Greg: Now you know how I feel, like ten times a day.

  • NOTES (3)