CBS The Best Criminal Minds Episodes  

Reference
27.5k votes 6.2k voters 503.6k views 99 items

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

If you're a big fan of the show, you'll love this 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.

The 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. In fact, this list serves as a great Criminal Minds episode guide.

list ordered by

1
1,963 621
100 is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Criminal Minds - Season 5 The BAU team races to help Hotchner find The Reaper and save his family before it's too late.

2
1,112 316
Revelations is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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

3
823 212
Hit is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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

4
776 205
Mosley Lane is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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.

5
755 198
Amplification is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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.

6
748 207
Penelope is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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.

7
723 199
Zugzwang is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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.

8
638 166
Mayhem is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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
583 147
Profiler, Profiled is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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
584 153
Minimal Loss is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Criminal Minds - Season 4 Reid and Prentiss are taken hostage when they go under cover to investigate possible child abuse at an underground cult.

11
829 255
Riding the Lightning is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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

12
616 171
Seven Seconds is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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
445 115
Demons is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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
356 83
North Mammon is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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

15
367 91
Lauren is listed (or ranked) 15 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.

16
375 105
L.D.S.K. is listed (or ranked) 16 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.

17
363 100
The Fisher King, Part 1 is listed (or ranked) 17 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.

18
395 122
Somebody's Watching is listed (or ranked) 18 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.

19
326 90
Lessons Learned is listed (or ranked) 19 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

20
238 47
Omnivore is listed (or ranked) 20 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.

21
301 86
To Hell...And Back Part 2 is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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

22
320 97
Masterpiece is listed (or ranked) 22 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.

23
205 46
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
185 43
Run is listed (or ranked) 24 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

25
256 85
No Way Out, Part II: The Evilu... is listed (or ranked) 25 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

26
205 57
Elephant's Memory is listed (or ranked) 26 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.

27
222 71
Memoriam is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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
203 63
The Replicator is listed (or ranked) 28 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

29
181 56
The Big Wheel is listed (or ranked) 29 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.

30
141 32
Jones is listed (or ranked) 30 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

31
217 80
Derailed is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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

32
121 22
It Takes a Village is listed (or ranked) 32 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

33
130 27
Risky Business is listed (or ranked) 33 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.

34
153 43
Sex, Birth, Death is listed (or ranked) 34 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

35
165 52
Zoe's Reprise is listed (or ranked) 35 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.

36
151 45
Damaged is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Criminal Minds - Season 3 Rossi travels to Indianapolis to continue his investigation into the two unsolved murders that have plagued him for 20 years.

37
163 54
Nameless, Faceless is listed (or ranked) 37 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.

38
115 26
Valhalla is listed (or ranked) 38 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.

39
162 60
No Way Out is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
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

40
163 61
To Hell...And Back Part 1 is listed (or ranked) 40 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

41
146 52
Legacy is listed (or ranked) 41 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.

42
112 30
...A Thousand Words is listed (or ranked) 42 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.

43
99 21
Exit Wounds is listed (or ranked) 43 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.

44
132 46
Conflicted is listed (or ranked) 44 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.

45
162 75
Pleasure Is My Business is listed (or ranked) 45 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.

46
102 31
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
112 41
52 Pickup is listed (or ranked) 47 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.

48
94 29
The Last Word is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
The Last Word Criminal Minds - Season 2 The daughter of high-powered diplomats, Special Agent Emily Prentiss joins the team, and she must convince Gideon and Hotchner she deserves the job based on merit and not on her family ...more

49
49 6
The Uncanny Valley is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
1525406471746 added The Uncanny Valley Criminal Minds - Season 5 An unusual personal obsession is at the center of a BAU abduction case. Meanwhile, Hotch struggles with his return to work.

50
79 29
The Big Game is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Criminal Minds Episodes
Criminal Minds - Season 2 In this special two-part episode, the BAU is called to investigate after a wealthy couple is murdered in their home following a Super Bowl party. The team pursues what they believe might be ...more