I became completely addicted to this show and lost a considerable amount of sleep to it and can’t really give you any good reason why. It really is just another American procedural that hass followed on from CSI, with the hook here being that the team is a group of FBI profilers, travelling the country hunting serial killers, kidnappers and various bad guys too big for the locals to deal with.
One of the show’s strengths is that this is a believable plot. Some of the others (CSI Miami for example) suffer from the fact that they’re just too big, I expect in reality they’d spend most of their time on robberies and would not actually chase down a mass murderer every week. However it seems entirely plausible for the Criminal Minds team to be doing just that.
I think what I most like about the show though is that the characters seem real. Even the extreme characters like the genius child prodigy seem believable when surrounded by people who have kids, fall asleep on planes and make mistakes. It just felt believable that these people could get inside other people’s heads and manipulate them. The slow release of information about characters is also done very naturally in a satisfying but still intriguing way.
There’s the right balance of drama, intelligence, comedy and action in the episodes and there’s some great guest actors playing criminals, victims and supporting characters. The stylistic blue-screen and talking to camera doesn’t always work, makes me cringe a bit. But the moving through photos to a location is slickly done.