Review of "Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders" on CBS From The TV MegaSite

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"Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders" review by Suzanne 4/16/16
Airs Wednesdays, 10/9c on CBS

I've watched "Criminal Minds" for many years, until a few years ago when I just had to give it up because I have other shows I like better, and there's just not enough time in my day.  I thought the first few years were best, when Mandy Patinkin was the star of the show. I don't know why they suddenly decided to do a spin-off of that show, but it seems a little late now.

The writing of this new show is hit-or-miss. Sometimes it's a really interesting story, but then it will have really clunky dialogue.  I like Gary Sinise a lot (he stars as Jack), but the rest of the cast is pretty boring.  They seemed to be trying to match the cast with the original, like they have some kind of checkbox. Black guy-check. Fat girl-check. Strong-jawed hero - check. Damaged woman - check.  Pretentious quotes - check.  None of the characters here are nearly as interesting as the characters of the original "Criminal Minds." The actors do a fine job, don't get me wrong. They're just not as interesting or as well-written as Reid, Hotch, Morgan or Garcia. Call it the "NCIS: Los Angeles" syndrome.

This show does seem to be less violent and gross, less horrifying, than the original show, so it gets points for that. The focus is less on serial killers and more on international incidents.  This special team, unlike the other one, deals with Americans who get murdered or go missing in foreign countries.  This gives the show a lot of chances to wave the flag and tell us how much greater the US is than other countries, so that's kind of gross. It's like they're crossing NCIS with Criminal Minds.

Maybe in time, they'll develop better stories and characters, and give us more insight into Jack and his crew. One can only hope!

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