CSI: Crime Scene Investigation

Season 3 Episode 6

The Execution of Catherine Willows

Aired Sunday 10:00 PM Nov 07, 2002 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
286 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Fifteen years ago, Catherine helped put a man on death row for the rape and murder of a coed at a nearby college. The man is about to be executed when he's granted a stay based on new DNA evidence. When bodies turn up at the school, killed in identical manners, it's thought the killer might actually be on the loose.moreless

Who was the Episode MVP ?

No results found.
  • "The killer is smarter than I am" Grissom

    This episode brings a new serial killer into the storyline called the blue paint killer when a man is about to be executed new evidence comes into to stop it that re opens the case and another murder just like it and they find out that the man who was going to be executed is an accomplice of a serial killer and that he is still out there.At the end Grissom says to Brass that he thinks that the blue paint killer is smarter than he is.This episode proves to be brilliant and I can't wait for the next Blue paint killer episode.moreless
  • Case reopened

    How terrible it must be for all those involved in an investigation, when the final step has to be put on hold and go back to relive everything again.

    In this case, parents and CSIs had to deal with this but they were moved by a the goal of putting the responsible in jail. Or the new responsible.

    What makes the show very enjoyable is those moments where they set up the environment of a crime scene and their theories based on the evidence have to come out of their minds.

    I don't think I saw the second part of this episode, but it was good to see that Catherine made no mistake at all.moreless
  • Execution of Catherine Willows

    Found trash bag with a girl in it. Another girl was found in a bag also. She was tied too tight and cut into her skin. Found blue paint on her body. Found out that paint was from a rail paint. Found out that her killer was watching her and waiting for her to go by. Drunk man dead girl...

    Deadbolts on bedroom doors... The woman had her own refridgerator and she was trained in self defence. Found a towel in her room with blood on it. Found father's gun ... Glock Lazer Slide missing... M 119 empty box 16 rounds but only 2 remaining in chamber. Domestic animal burrial in backyard. VW convertable Blue.moreless
  • Although we never see him, in this episode a new killer is introduced to the story line who prooves to be yet another would be nemisis for Grissom.

    Although we never see him, in this episode a new killer is introduced to the story line who prooves to be yet another would be nemisis for Grissom. In this particular episode, a murder takes place which leads to the team to think that it is a copy cat murder of a man currently on deathrow. However, the evidence later shows that the man set to be executed, may in fact be the copy cat, which means that the real murderer has been free the whole time.moreless
  • Series classic, especially cos these killer is coming back again.

    This is one of the first CSI episodes I remember I've seen. This is a special episode, with an interesting story-line. You can see that because the bleu-paint killer is coming back again. Anyway, about the episode. It's a story where Catherine is sort of "head-part" in, and I like it. A old serie-murder is getting back again, and Catherine and the rest of the team has to find out if the old killer, is the killer. Wait a minute.. this is getting very confused, for me 2. Hope you still understand me. At the end of the episode, witch is my favorite part, Catherine has to be with the exicution of the killer. I love that part, Catherine's fear and everything. I love this episode, it really is a classic I think.moreless
Beth Grant

Beth Grant

Sally Roth

Guest Star

Wayne Pére

Wayne Pére


Guest Star

Viola Davis

Viola Davis

Ms. Campbell

Guest Star

Skip O'Brien

Skip O'Brien

Det. Ray O'Riley

Recurring Role

Romy Rosemont

Romy Rosemont

Jacqui Franco

Recurring Role

David Berman

David Berman

David Phillips

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (2)

    • Warrick is an alumni of Western Las Vegas University (WLVU).

    • Goof: When Catherine is at the coffee shop and the parents of a murdered girl come to talk to her. She is holding her coffee in the right hand and her cell phone rings and she grabs it with her left. The shot switches angles while Catherine is talking and her cell phone has shifted to her right hand.

  • QUOTES (16)

    • Brass: I keep racking my brain going over these unsolved murder cases and I keep coming back to the fact that they're fifteen years apart. That means he's either out of town or in the joint.
      Grissom: Why wouldn't he take his business to some other college if it was only about young girls?
      Brass: It's got to be personal. He wanted to kill those girls.

    • Jacqui: You got to wonder when a guy gives it up this easily. Prints, DNA, his car ...
      Nick: Yeah, well ... maybe he thinks he's some kind of smart guy you know, covering all the bases.
      Jacqui: Or maybe he didn't do it.

    • Catherine: Mathers' execution's back on. The Roths asked me to sit with them.
      Grissom: Is that a good idea?
      Catherine: I just need to do it.
      Grissom: Why?
      Catherine: It's like your first autopsy ... your first murdered child. You can make it through that you can keep doing this work.
      Grissom (shows her results): All the paints match all the victims except for Charlene Roth. See, being capable of matching paint samples that are fifteen years apart that's why I keep doing this work.
      Catherine (smiles): Well, that's the difference between you and me.

    • Grissom: So Janet Kent's killer saved some of her hair and planted it on Debbie Reston fifteen years later on the night that John Mathers was set to be executed.
      Catherine: John Mathers is the copycat.
      Grissom: Yeah. And the original killer's still out there playing a really twisted game.

    • Grissom: We just learned something we didn't know about the prior murders.
      Catherine: Yes, what the paint was all about.
      Grissom: And if we just learned about it now, how did the copycat killer know?

    • Catherine: Ms. Campbell, I have no personal opinion about your client. I tested the evidence in his case and that evidence failed to exonerate him.
      Ms. Campbell: Fifteen years ago. Before DNA. Before the real killer struck again. You are going to test the pubic hair sent to the federal lab against the new suspect ...
      Catherine: What suspect? I can't help you.
      Ms. Campbell: You CSIs are biased for the prosecution. You decide ahead of time how you want the evidence to come out.
      Catherine: Ms. Campbell, I am only an interpreter of the evidence. I know how to make the evidence speak to me. I don't care about the outcome.
      Ms. Campbell: How about guilt or innocence? John was 15 seconds from execution. Sure you're not biased? I hear the same evidence speaking. You know what it's telling me? The killer's still out there.

    • Mr. Reston: I don't know her schedule. She works, goes to school. I hardly ever see her.
      Brass: She's 17. She lives in your house. You're going to have to do better than that.
      Mr. Reston: Stuck-up bitch is ashamed of me. Can't wait to graduate high school and move out. She's already got a job: Coffee shop. Got a car.
      Brass: What kind of car?
      Mr. Reston: VW convertible, blue.
      Brass: And as a concerned parent, you're going to ask me to put out a broadcast, aren't you?

    • Warrick (looks at the body): This looks familiar.
      Catherine: A little too familiar.

    • Nick: Missing girl's old man's got blood all over him. Blood in her room ...
      Grissom: I think it's time for dear old dad to go to detox.

    • Jacqui: You and me need to catch up. How's Lindsey?
      Catherine: Second grade, tons of homework.
      Jacqui: Lucky for her she got your smarts, not Eddie's.
      Catherine: Now I know why I missed you so much.

    • Grissom: Dead bolts on her bedroom door.
      Nick: Trying to keep something out.
      Grissom: A bedroom refrigerator? (looks inside it) There's milk, fruit ... a toaster?
      Nick: Guess they weren't much on family dinners.

    • Brass: His blood alcohol level is .37.
      Grissom: Ooh... alcoholic.
      Brass: Yeah.
      Sara: Lucky me.
      Grissom: Yeah.

    • Grissom: So, how do you feel about it?
      Catherine: Mathers was convicted and sent to death row by a jury of his peers. I played a small part. I presented my findings ...
      Grissom: Non-responsive.
      Catherine: Okay. I haven't figured out how I feel yet.
      Grissom: It's just about evidence. It's not up to you whether he lives or dies. Case has no face.

    • Brass: He's going to kill again.
      Grissom: Yeah. And all we've got is a partial fingerprint and an M.O. that may lead us in the right direction.
      Brass: You know sometimes in this job I'd rather be lucky than good. Maybe
      next time we'll get lucky.
      Grissom: I don't believe in luck. My only real purpose is to be smarter than the bad guys to find the evidence that they didn't know they left behind and make sense of it all. Makes me very uncomfortable to realize maybe this guy is smarter than me.

    • Nick: People are pigs.
      Grissom: Don't insult the pigs, Nick. They're actually very clean.

    • Greg: Hey, I hear you're cheating on me with an out-of-state DNA analyst.
      Catherine: Apples and oranges, Greg. Fifteen-year-old hair samples no roots, room-temperature storage.
      Greg: Room temp?
      Catherine: Yeah, that's how we stored hair evidence back then. Microscopy was king.
      Greg: Really? I thought Elvis was king.
      Catherine: And you are how old?
      Greg: Age is irrelevant in our relationship.
      Catherine: Maybe so, but face it, Greg you just don't have the equipment.

  • NOTES (1)