CBS The Best Criminal Minds Episodes  

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23.4k votes 5.6k voters 444.5k views 99 items

List Rules Vote for your favorite Criminal Minds episodes, no matter how popular they are.

List of the best Criminal Minds episodes, as voted on by other fans of the series. Crime drama fans will also enjoy the best CSI: Miami episodes and the greatest NCIS episodes. With so many memorable episodes of the show, it's hard to trust just one person's opinion of what the top Criminal Minds episodes of all time are. Fans of Criminal Minds are extremely passionate about the show, and there is often debate over which episodes are better than others. That's why this list exists- so you can vote for your favorites and we can find out once and for all what everyone thinks the best episode of Criminal Minds is.

Currently at 14 seasons and still running, Criminal Minds is one of the most watched police procedural crime dramas on TV.

List features "Open Season," "A Shade of Gray," "Lucky," and more episodes. What is the best Criminal Minds episode of all time? Look below and find out. You will find the top 10 episodes, good episodes, and more in this Ranker guide. 

1
1,721 561
100 is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
100 Criminal Minds - Season 5 The BAU team races to help Hotchner find The Reaper and save his family before it's too late.

2
702 185
Hit is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Hit Criminal Minds - Season 7 When the BAU goes up against a gang of serial-killing bank robbers in Washington, D.C., the team tries to negotiate the situation unfolding inside the bank, but the stakes rise when one of their ...more

3
982 290
Revelations is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Revelations Criminal Minds - Season 2 In this conclusion of a special two-part episode, finding the serial killer becomes critical to the BAU when the team realizes Reid is being held captive and a live feed of him being tortured is ...more

4
663 177
Amplification is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Amplification Criminal Minds - Season 4 When a new type of chemical warfare is released into the open air, the BAU must act quickly to find the source before any more innocent people are exposed.

5
635 172
Zugzwang is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Zugzwang Criminal Minds - Season 8 When Reid discovers that his girlfriend has been kidnapped by her stalker, he and the BAU team band together to find her before it's too late.

6
679 194
Mosley Lane is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Mosley Lane Criminal Minds - Season 5 The BAU is called by local authorities in Ashburn, Virginia, to profile a predator who may have been abducting children for at least eight years.

7
663 189
Penelope is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Penelope Criminal Minds - Season 3 As a team member fights for life, the BAU continues the search for an attacker that leads the unit to believe the assailant could be someone close to the investigation.

8
565 150
Mayhem is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Mayhem Criminal Minds - Season 4 When an SUV carrying members of the team explodes, the rest of the team fights to save them and catch the terrorists responsible for the bombing.

9
501 131
Profiler, Profiled is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Profiler, Profiled Criminal Minds - Season 2 Morgan is arrested as a serial killer after he goes home to Chicago to visit his family. Because the detective making the arrest had used a profile provided by Gideon, the team travels to ...more

10
736 232
Riding the Lightning is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Riding the Lightning Criminal Minds - Season 1 After interviewing a couple on death row for serial murders, Gideon suspects that the woman is actually innocent. But since she's set to be executed in two days, it's a race against time to

11
501 136
Minimal Loss is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Minimal Loss Criminal Minds - Season 4 Reid and Prentiss are taken hostage when they go under cover to investigate possible child abuse at an underground cult.

12
538 160
Seven Seconds is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Seven Seconds Criminal Minds - Season 3 The investigation turns to the family as the BAU and local authorities race against time to locate a young girl who has disappeared from a local shopping mall.

13
404 106
Demons is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Demons Criminal Minds - Season 9 The BAU continues its murder investigation in Texas, and clues uncover a deep web of corruption that could be the motive for the killings.

14
320 79
Lauren is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Lauren Criminal Minds - Season 6 As Prentiss faces off against Ian Doyle, JJ receives a call and returns to help them find Prentiss and capture Doyle before it's too late.

15
314 81
The Fisher King, Part 1 is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
The Fisher King, Part 1 Criminal Minds - Season 1 While on their vacations, each of the team receives a clue from a psychopathic killer challenging them to save his next victim.

16
294 75
North Mammon is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
North Mammon Criminal Minds - Season 2 After a man kidnaps three teenaged girls and locks them in a cellar, he tells them only two of them will live and they must choose which one will die. The BAU team takes the case when the mother ...more

17
323 91
L.D.S.K. is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
L.D.S.K. Criminal Minds - Season 1 The BAU is asked to identify a killer who is shooting at victims in broad daylight, and the team works with local law enforcement officers to recreate one of the shootings.

18
283 79
Lessons Learned is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Lessons Learned Criminal Minds - Season 2 Gideon, Reid and Prentiss travel to Guantanamo Bay to interrogate the leader of a terror sleeper cell being detained there after a chemical weapons dispersal device is discovered during a raid ...more

19
272 74
Masterpiece is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Masterpiece Criminal Minds - Season 4 When a narcissistic psychopath confesses he has killed seven people and more will die, the team must locate his latest victims before it is too late.

20
268 73
To Hell...And Back Part 2 is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
To Hell...And Back Part 2 Criminal Minds - Season 4 The BAU tracks a serial killer who chooses junkies, prostitutes and the homeless off the streets of Detroit as his victims and takes them across the border into Canada, and an agent's life is in ...more

21
337 108
Somebody's Watching is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Somebody's Watching Criminal Minds - Season 1 Reid finds himself in danger when he falls for a starlet whose stalker has turned into a killer.

22
194 44
Omnivore is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Omnivore Criminal Minds - Season 4 Agent Hotchner revisits the first case he worked at the BAU when details come forth that one of the deadliest serial killers in New England's history has struck again after a 10-year hiatus.

23
171 38
Lo-Fi is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Lo-Fi Criminal Minds - Season 3 The BAU faces one of its toughest cases when the team is called to New York City to determine if a series of random shootings is the work of one serial killer or a team of killers working

24
224 72
No Way Out, Part II: The Evilu... is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
No Way Out, Part II: The Evilution Of Frank Criminal Minds - Season 2 When the prolific serial killer Frank returns and murders Gideon's girlfriend, Gideon takes off to find him without telling the team where he is going. The BAU must then profile Gideon as well ...more

25
175 48
Elephant's Memory is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Elephant's Memory Criminal Minds - Season 3 The BAU is called to West Bune, a small town in Texas, to investigate what appears to be spree killings that involve a teenaged boy and his girlfriend.

26
176 50
The Replicator is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
The Replicator Criminal Minds - Season 8 The Replicator zeroes in on the BAU when the killer targets one of the team as the next victim. Also, the BAU is called in to investigate a string of deaths in Manhattan tied to apparent ecstasy ...more

27
192 62
Memoriam is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Memoriam Criminal Minds - Season 4 As Reid's investigation of a young boy's murder in Las Vegas continues, he discovers possible connections to his own past.

28
151 39
Run is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Run Criminal Minds - Season 7 As the BAU team continues to pursue the bank-robbing serial killers, the team determines that the suspects have a bigger target in the Nation's capital, and with one of the team still a hostage, ...more

29
195 68
Derailed is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Derailed Criminal Minds - Season 1 Elle, along with many others, is held hostage on a train in Texas by a paranoid schizophrenic who is convinced that the U.S. government is monitoring him. Hotchner and Gideon are forced to play ...more

30
146 49
The Big Wheel is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
The Big Wheel Criminal Minds - Season 4 When the team is sent a videotape from a serial killer detailing one of his crimes, they discover a hidden message asking them to help him stop his murderous ways.

31
141 47
No Way Out is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
No Way Out Criminal Minds - Season 2 Gideon is pitted against the scariest and most evil murderer in his entire career. When the BAU confronts the sadistic killer in a remote diner in the Nevada desert, the local authorities want ...more

32
146 51
To Hell...And Back Part 1 is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
To Hell...And Back Part 1 Criminal Minds - Season 4 The BAU tracks a serial killer who chooses junkies, prostitutes and the homeless off the streets of Detroit as his victims and takes them across the border into Canada, and an agent's life is in ...more

33
127 39
Damaged is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Damaged Criminal Minds - Season 3 Rossi travels to Indianapolis to continue his investigation into the two unsolved murders that have plagued him for 20 years.

34
135 44
Nameless, Faceless is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Nameless, Faceless Criminal Minds - Season 5 As Rossi, Morgan and JJ profile a killer who is targeting an emergency room doctor, Prentiss realizes that Hotch is missing.

35
129 41
Legacy is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Legacy Criminal Minds - Season 2 When homeless persons begin going missing mysteriously from the streets in Kansas City, a local detective calls the BAU to investigate the disappearances.

36
140 50
Zoe's Reprise is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Zoe's Reprise Criminal Minds - Season 4 The team pursues a copycat serial killer who is recreating the techniques used by past famous murderers.

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123 37
Sex, Birth, Death is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Sex, Birth, Death Criminal Minds - Season 2 The BAU is called to investigate the serial murders of prostitutes in Washington, D.C., and suspect a teenager is guilty of the crimes. The case becomes complicated when a congresswoman about to ...more

38
107 27
Jones is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Jones Criminal Minds - Season 2 A case involving a serial killer believed to be copying Jack the Ripper takes Gideon to New Orleans after three victims are found with their throats cut. Once thought to have been killed in ...more

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101 24
Risky Business is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Risky Business Criminal Minds - Season 5 A rash of startling teen suicides in a small Wyoming town is the focus of a BAU investigation.

40
92 20
It Takes a Village is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
It Takes a Village Criminal Minds - Season 7 The BAU team is at a crossroads as they are questioned by a Senate Committee for their retaliatory actions in the wake of Prentiss' loss, but an unexpected familiar face could help them win ...more

41
145 58
Pleasure Is My Business is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Pleasure Is My Business Criminal Minds - Season 4 The team searches for a female suspect who uses her professional skills as a high class call girl to lure and kill high-powered executives.

42
88 22
Valhalla is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Valhalla Criminal Minds - Season 6 After a series of murders, Prentiss becomes suspicious of a former nemesis (Sebastian Roché) and fears for the safety of her team.

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110 39
Conflicted is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Conflicted Criminal Minds - Season 4 The team travels to Fort Lauderdale during spring break to find a serial killer with multiple personalities who is targeting co-eds on vacation.

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90 26
...A Thousand Words is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
...A Thousand Words Criminal Minds - Season 5 The BAU team must profile a serial killer covered in tattoos who commits suicide, but leaves clues to the whereabouts of his last victim.

45
74 18
Exit Wounds is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Exit Wounds Criminal Minds - Season 5 Garcia plays a crucial role in a case when she travels to Alaska with the BAU team to investigate the murders of several members of a small town.

46
83 25
Children of the Dark is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Children of the Dark Criminal Minds - Season 3 When home invasions involve the murder of entire families, the BAU is called to Denver to identify the killers who possibly have been abused while in foster care.

47
80 28
The Caller is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
The Caller Criminal Minds - Season 9 When a young boy goes missing from his home in St. Louis, the BAU reinvestigates a similar cold case to search for the UnSub.

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52 Pickup is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
52 Pickup Criminal Minds - Season 4 Agents Prentiss and Todd go undercover to profile a serial killer who uses skills of persuasion to lure women into danger.

49
74 25
The Boogeyman is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
The Boogeyman Criminal Minds - Season 2 The BAU travels to a small Texas community to investigate the murders of children. Meanwhile, Elle is having readjustment issues after being shot, and Hotch becomes worried about her when she ...more

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80 30
The Lesson is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
The Lesson Criminal Minds - Season 8 A ritualistic killer is hunted after male bodies are found that have been physically altered. Meanwhile, Reid gets anxious at the prospect of meeting his mystery woman.