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April 23, 2015

Criminal Criminal Minds

(Spoilers; this is entirely about the ending of the Criminal Minds episode, Mr. Scratch)

I enjoy Criminal Minds. I especially like Thomas Gibson's Agent Hotchner. With the exception of the ever-pervasive music that they can't seem to get away from, the show is top-notch.

This week's episode, "Mr. Scratch," was very good. It was eerie and atmospheric. It played on fears and with the mind. It was clever. They discover a bad guy who was always a step ahead and who was using chemicals to make his victims do things by planting suggestions in their heads.

And then they ruined it by having Hotch go, alone, to the last suspected victim's house, enter said house, and get gassed? Really? Really?

This is beyond unbelievable. Hotch knows when to stretch the rules and when not to. He knows his team and he knows his own limitations. He knows the criminal mind extremely well. And, on top of all of this, he's a smart man. Knowing what the criminal uses, the effectiveness of the chemicals and the brainwashing techniques, why in the hell would Hotch ever enter the victim's house without backup? Even if he feared for her life, he would have called the local PD to help out, or called to her from outside and have her come to him.

Then, you have the Hotch versus Unsub battle of wits where Hotch gets a bit of the upper hand (maybe?) and then succumbs to the criminal. At the end, the criminal gives up and makes it seem like he's done something to Hotch.

Well, first, this scene should never have happened because Hotch would never put himself in that position (Derek might, because he often leaps without looking and lets his emotions get the better of him). Second, how strong a suggestion could the Unsub implant in the very few minutes he had with Hotch?

My only feeling is that Thomas Gibson likely wants to leave the series and they are setting that up with this totally out of character instance and its possible side effects.

All in all, this was one of the better, creepier Criminal Minds that they have produced in a while. I'm just so disappointed with the ending. I hope I'm wrong about Gibson leaving.

April 9, 2015

Francis Bean

Francis Bean Cobain is now 22. She has been in the news lately discussing her father, Kurt Cobain (lead singer of the seminal 1990s band Nirvana), and what her father wanted from life, his band, and music. Here's the problem with that: Francis Bean was 2 years old when her father died. Unless she has an eidetic memory, she has no idea what her father wanted. She was simply too young to remember (not to mention that her father likely didn't discuss such weighty matters with a two-year old).

Everything she is saying in these interviews is secondhand at best. She is reiterating what her mother, Courtney Love, or what her dad's friends and band mates have told her over the years. And, while I believe each is trying to stay true to Kurt's memory and life, time changes our perceptions and memories. What they think "Kurt wanted" at the time is warped by their own lives lived since and changing memories. However, as has been proven with the various lawsuits since Kurt's death, Courtney, Kurt's band mates, and others had very different ideas about what Kurt wanted -- enough so that it led to those lawsuits over rights, money, credit, and other issues. Even taking a middle ground between all of what each says leaves you with a much different interpretation of the actual man than who he really was or who he might have been today had he not ended his life.

Francis Bean Cobain is a young woman coming into her own. She has a lot of life left to live, and a lot of decisions to make about herself and who she will become. We should not add her father's legacy onto her, nor should we ask her about it. She needs to make her own path in life and she doesn't need her dad's baggage added to her's. Let's leave that to the rock historians.