Considering how creepy a normal episode of Criminal Minds can get, is it any wonder that the one airing just in time for Halloween this season, “The Night Watch” (directed by series star Thomas Gibson), looks extra disturbing?
The BAU heads to Detroit, to investigate incidents of bodies being incorporated into macabre graffiti art, and they suspect an elusive-yet-notorious street artist may be the UnSub they’re looking for. Also, Dr. Lewis struggles to balance her relationship with her fiance and her work.
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Watch the promo for “The Night Watch”:
“It almost feels like some sort of taunt,” Reid remarks of the UnSub’s work: turning death into disturbing street art. Really, it’s hard to choose which is the most chilling work of “art” glimpsed in this video — at least until the hint of what he has planned for his masterpiece.
Check out a sneak peek of the team getting the case:
“You know the phrase ‘art imitates life’? This is like that, but a dead version,” Garcia tells the profilers before jumping into the details of the case. Last night in Detroit, a body was found with Morpheus’ signature next to it. Morpheus is a prolific street artist who has been active since the summer of 2007. No one knows who he is, and the only photo taken of him (seven years ago in Los Angeles) could be of anyone.
The victim is Russell Pearson, a community activist opposing a controversial development project that’s supposed to revitalize the downtown area but really only seems to be revitalizing the bank accounts of the developers. While it seems that he and Morpheus would be on the same side, Pearson had been accused of taking bribes from the developers. However, Morpheus has never committed an act of violence before, so is this his work or not?
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Watch the team discuss the case on the jet:
Morpheus first popped up in Detroit six weeks ago, and Garcia sends the team a video of a burning car. There had been a heat wave in August, and a homeless woman and her child locked themselves inside to sleep, but died of dehydration. Of the two other pieces Morpheus has done, a rival artist dismantled the second before anyone could see it. “Competition among street artists is intense,” Reid explains. “It’s like turf wars.”
Morpheus posts his work to his website, but unfortunately, it’s impossible for Garcia to track him down using it. He has yet to take credit for Pearson, but is that because he didn’t do it or because it involves murder?
Then Garcia reports some alarming news: the eight-month-old daughter of one of the developers behind the urban renovation project has been abducted, and graffiti and Morpheus’ signature was left on the walls of her nursery.
Check out a clip of Reid finding something that could help find the UnSub:
There’s no pattern to Morpheus’ street art over the last eight years, though there is a higher concentration of it along the coast of Florida. Reid also noticed signs that he may have had a formal art education, which could help them track him down. Meanwhile, Morgan has identified the street artist who took credit dismantling one of Morpheus’ works.
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As for the missing baby, there’s no news yet, but he had to know that law enforcement would come down on him hard. It has to be personal, according to Hotch, and it doesn’t seem likely that Morpheus plans to remain anonymous for much longer. “It’s got to be an endgame, and whatever it is, consequences don’t matter,” Hotch says.
Criminal Minds season 11 airs Wednesdays at 9pm on CBS.
(Image courtesy of CBS)