If you're planning on watching the wildly eventful eighth season finale of Criminal Minds at some later point, stop reading right now. This recap is almost nothing but spoilers.
First of all a BAU team member died at the hands of The Replicator, the fiend who has been bedeviling our profilers for two seasons now. Section chief Strauss (Jayne Atkinson) went out in the worst possible way for a recovering alcoholic: drunk. The Replicator forced her to drink wine which had been spiked with "Doctor Death", the insidious new drug BAU had been investigating in New York.
At least Strauss got to die in Hotch's arms. (I don't know about you but that's the way I want to go.) And she ingeniously left clues that lead the team to identify the Replicator, who was…
Mark Hamill, the puffy Padawan. I knew it. Turns out his Curtis character has been nursing a deadly grudge since the Amerithrax debacle. It ruined his career, but Blake (Jeanne Tripplehorn), after years as a lecturer at Georgetown University, was allowed to join BAU? Someone had to pay for this injustice. Actually a whole lot of people had to pay.
The clip (below) shows how the Replicator's deadly secret began to unravel. That mysterious 8 branded on Strauss's wrist was actually a ruse she planted to implicate Curtis. And it was Strauss's AA sobriety chip that Rossi used to seal Curtis in that chamber loaded with explosives! Also Atkinson isn't exactly out of work. She plays the Secretary of State on House of Cards.
So it's all good. Well, except for the fact that the Replicator's body was not recovered. Damn you, son of Anakin Skywalker!