'Criminal Minds' Recap: The BAU Battles a Delusional 'Hero'
'Criminal Minds' Recap: The BAU Battles a Delusional 'Hero'
Megan Cole
Megan Cole
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
In the season's 19th episode, "Pay It Forward," the team heads to Colorado to investigate the murders and decapitations of several townspeople in the 'City of the Future'. If fiction has taught us anything, it is that any place that gets an award for being perfect is hiding some dark secrets. Read on to find out what the minds behind Criminal Minds have in-store for us this week.

Heads Will Roll

In 1988, the citizens of Bronson Springs, Colorado -- named the 'City of the Future' -- buried a time-capsule. 25 years later in 2013, they dig up said time-capsule and out pops a head. When a second victim is killed and decapitated in the present, the team is asked to investigate. Could this be the same killer? If so, why did the Unsub wait 25 years between kills?

As the investigation begins, it appears that there is no obvious connection between the first two victims -- Wade, a recent college graduate and Charlie, a retired police officer. But when a third victim is killed, the agents figure out that a single Unsub killed all three victims because he believed their personal lives did not live up to their public reputations and considered the victims to be hypocrites.

What's Another 25 Years?

After another person is murdered and decapitated, the team discovers that all four victims were part of a cover-up back in 1988 when a young woman reported a sexual assault. The Unsub was in a holding cell at the police station that same night and witnessed the cover-up. The Unsub murdered Wade-the-first-victim in 1988 for committing the rape and spent 25 years planning the other murders, all in a twisted attempt to play hero to his wife -- the young woman who reported the assault.

But the Unsub's wife informs him that she gave a false accusation back in 1988 because she was afraid her father would find out about her relationship with Wade-the-first-victim. The Unsub is horrified to learn that his wife is 'worse than any of them' but the team is able to save her from becoming his fifth victim. When the Unsub is arrested, he tells the agents that he is crazy and crazy people get less jail-time. The Unsub is not concerned by the possibility of facing up to 25 years in jail, as he knows he will be released eventually.

A Weak Episode

After last week's personal Morgan-centric episode, this week's episode is all about the case, without even a side-plot involving one of our main characters. But tonight's case was not particularly strong -- and the writers revealed the Unsub's identity far too early in the episode -- so I think this episode could have been improved by including some personal moments with the team members.

On a side-note, I always find it off-putting when shows give us storylines involving false rape accusations. I realize that this is something that happens in real life, but more often than not, rape victims who are brave enough to come forward face doubt as to whether their stories are 'believable' enough to warrant an investigation. In a society where it is still hard for victims of rape and sexual assault to be taken seriously, why do we need stories about false accusations? Especially when the false accusation has no significant impact on the storyline, as it did not in tonight's episode of Criminal Minds.

What do you think? Were you pleased that this episode was so case-oriented or did you miss having a B-plot about one of the agents? Do you think the case would have had a bigger impact if the Unsub's wife had been a rape victim after all? Hit the comments section and let us know your thoughts.

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(Image courtesy of CBS)