The 9 Most Disturbing Cases of 'Criminal Minds' Season 13

The 9 Most Disturbing Cases of 'Criminal Minds' Season 13

For all the changes Criminal Minds has gone through over the years, one thing has remained consistent: the disturbing cases. Whether it's what the UnSub does to his victims while they're still alive, how he kills them, how he disposes of them or how the case ends, some cases leave us feeling unsettled even after the episode is over.

Here are the nine most disturbing cases from season 13.

9. Episode 16, 'Last Gasp'

I'm not sure what was more disturbing: the photos the UnSub took of his victims or the fact that Barnes refused to believe they weren't photoshopped (even after J.J. pointed out all the reasons why the "death" photo had to be real.) 

Originally, they thought the UnSub had only taken three photos of his victims -- one candid, one in captivity and one after death -- but they soon learned he'd taken many more and was giving them to those on the dark web interested in such photos. If the dark web's involved in any way, it can't be good.

8. Episode 1, 'Wheels Up'

Mr. Scratch has been responsible for some of the most unsettling moments of the series, and in his last episode, he kidnapped Prentiss and used his hallucinogenic concoction to make her believe she'd been severely injured in the accident -- and even died.

Scratch's involvement alone means an episode has to at least be considered for this kind of list, especially when he's done something to one of the team, but because he hadn't thought his plan through enough (Prentiss knew what it was like to truly die) and he's made an agent see worse before , his actions here don't put him very high on this list.

7. Episode 17, 'The Capilanos'

The 9 Most Disturbing Cases of 'Criminal Minds' Season 13Clowns can be creepy. It's a given that a clown on Criminal Minds will be creepy. With the UnSub dressed up as one in this episode, normal "jump" moments -- like hiding under a bed, being there when a person closed the refrigerator or banging on a van window -- were made even more startling.

However, once we learned about the UnSubs' childhood and saw the brothers turn on each other, that shifted the focus of the entire episode, somewhat eliminating that terrifying element.

6. Episode 2, 'To a Better Place'

Hallucinating a dead loved one is nothing new for an UnSub. In fact, it's usually 50/50 on whether a loved one actually exists if we only see them interact with the UnSub. So, finding out the UnSub's grandmother was dead and she wasn't actually there wouldn't be enough to get this episode on this list.

But knowing that his grandmother killed his mother and the UnSub sent his victims packing by folding them up in suitcases? That image was disturbing enough.

5. Episode 3, 'Blue Angel'

Almost every part of this episode earns it a spot on this list. The UnSub tortured and castrated his victims (brutal and gruesome!) He recorded what he did on tape (a cassette tape, even) and sent them to the victims' homes.

It just got worse, as it turned out that this was the UnSub's way of trying to protect his daughter (who had to find out the truth about her parents after he kidnapped her and her adopted mother/aunt.)  

4. Episode 6, 'The Bunker'

The UnSub was obsessed with doomsday prepping and kept his victims in an underground bunker. He brainwashed them into thinking that the world had ended (with videos), and the most disturbing part had to be what was ahead for the women once they were rescued. It's not as simple as just being reunited with loved ones and returning to their normal lives.

3. Episode 5, 'Lucky Strikes'

Criminal Minds brought back sadistic cannibal Floyd Feylinn Ferell in this episode, and those two words before his name should be all you need to know for his episode to end up where it does on this list.

Recalling him was bad enough. Even just thinking about another person's fingers in a victim's stomach was awful. Having Ferell try to get his freedom via a patsy made it worse. And the fact that it was a victim's fingers in his stomach that would keep him being set free? No one's hungry anymore, right?  

2. Episode 20, 'All You Can Eat'

The creepy part wasn't that the UnSub used rat poison to kill his victims (though the results of it were gruesome -- all that blood!) However, while he began by targeting individuals, he then added his fatal mixture to food and drink at a business meeting, where anyone could have ended up his victim, and his final move was to add it to the food at an all-you-can-eat buffet. Imagine if the BAU hadn't figured it out in time.

1. Episode 22, 'Believer'

The 9 Most Disturbing Cases of 'Criminal Minds' Season 13The fact that a cult of (potential) serial killers existed wasn't that disturbing. The fact that its followers (or students, as the Messiah called them) burned off their fingertips as part of the initiation was shudder-worthy, yes, but on Criminal Minds, probably par for the course.

But by episode's end, the team still hadn't figured everything out. They still thought that Quinn, the former FBI agent they found who got them started on the case, could have been playing them and part of the cult -- and could attempt to free the Messiah from their custody. They were wrong. Another agent, from his former team, was a "student" and had two others holding Garcia at gunpoint and wanted Reid to free her leader. The Messiah's followers could be everywhere.

Congratulations, "Believer." You've earned the top spot on this list.

(Images courtesy of CBS)


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