Criminal Minds Season 14 Episode 4 Review: Innocence

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One family was healed.

But another family was ripped asunder on Criminal Minds Season 14 Episode 4.

First, and most importantly, Garcia appeared to be on the way back.

Ritualistic Murder - Tall - Criminal Minds Season 14 Episode 4

There's no denying that she had been off lately. She'd still been competent at her job, but her sunny disposition had been sucked from her soul.

After all that has been thrown at her through the years, it's a wonder that she hadn't cracked sooner.

Recently, there was the parole hearing for the drunk driver who had killed her parents when she was barely out of her teens. On Criminal Minds Season 13 Episode 20, she forgave him, but her brother Carlos disowned her because he didn't agree with her action.

Related: Criminal Minds Season 14 Episode 3 Review: Rule 34

Then, on Criminal Minds Season 14 Episode 1, she and Reid were abducted by the Messiah's cult, old BAU baggage in which she got caught up.

Garcia adopted the attitude that going through such travails was just standard operating procedure for those in the BAU. Looking back over 14 seasons, she ain't wrong. Everyone that's still living has been through worlds of hurt.

She brushed off the abduction, despite Prentiss urging her to take some time off. But there were signs, little mistakes that were unlike Garcia.

Changing Attitude - Criminal Minds Season 14 Episode 4

Then there was the unicorn mug (symbolism much?). She accidentally broke her favorite mug, then dismissively tossed it away. Prentiss rescued the pieces and reassembled it for her.

Prentiss cajoled Garcia until she admitted that it was the split with Carlos that was affecting her most.

This is Prentiss's strength as a leader. She worries about her team members' mental well-being, which is important considering with what they deal. Hotch always struck me as a "rub some dirt on it" kind of guy.

Related: Watch Criminal Minds Online: Season 14 Episode 3

Rossi and Prentiss did a lovely thing convincing (and probably paying for) Carlos to fly east and talk with Garcia. It was clear he was hurt by what Penelope had done at the parole hearing, without consulting him. But it was more obvious that he loved her and wanted to be there for her when she was in pain, rather than cause that pain.

Now that rift appears healed, maybe Garcia should find a new hobby, something to take her mind off the sludge she's immersed in every day. Maybe some online role-playing game where she could take out her frustrations?

At least Garcia's little flub ultimately had little impact on the case of the week.

Gruesome Ritual - Criminal Minds Season 14 Episode 4

I'd place the root cause of this unsub squarely at the feet of that old-time religion.

Yes, Melissa had an adulterous affair and Jacob was the result of it. But it was the pastor hammering on the sin of adultery that damaged Jacob's self-worth to the point that he was willing to murder anyone having to do with his mother's affair, seeing it as God's will.

It didn't matter if it was his mother, his aunt, his sister. He was meting out punishment in the Lord's name, as Pastor Monroe had preached.

Related: CBS Cheat Sheet

Never having researched this, I wonder if there isn't some age minimum for clients of those do-it-yourself genetic sites. Not everyone is emotionally equipped to process the results they may get. For a boy that was already unruly, finding out his father wasn't his biological dad was enough to send him over the edge. 

And I blame the preacher for instigating the violence that followed. It's like he gave his blessing to Jacob to do what he ended up doing, and based it on God's words.

I always hate the children-as-unsub episodes. For kids to have gotten off the tracks that far, the adults in their lives have failed them badly, wnether out of a misguided sense of love or on purpose. This cases just feel like they shouldn't have happened.

Finding Boy's Secret - Criminal Minds Season 14 Episode 4

It also takes the BAU longer to suspect a child, as they work through any adults with a motive to be the unsub.

Granted, sometimes a child is just bad. But I don't think that was the case here.

Danny showed his love for Jacob by confessing to the murders so that his son wouldn't have to go to jail.

Related: Get CBS All Access via Amazon Channels for Hit Shows, Exclusive Originals & Live TV!

On a side note, did anyone else get a kick out of the Tallahassee medical examiner enthusing about the CSI shows in front of Alves, played by Adam Rodriguez, a longtime cast member of CSI: Miami?

To follow Garcia's struggle, watch Criminal Minds online.

Did anyone suspect Jacob up until the end?

Was the genetic-testing site storyline realistic?

Who was most responsible for Jacob's fate?

Comment below.

Innocence Review

Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.5 / 5.0 (16 Votes)

Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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Criminal Minds Season 14 Episode 4 Quotes

"When wounds are healed by love, the scars are beautiful." -- David Bull

Garcia

You are not the mug. You are the glue who holds the mug together.

Prentiss [to Garcia]