With its intense plots and suspenseful mysteries, Criminal Minds has grown its already sizeable fan base since the show was put on streaming platforms like Netflix and Hulu. It follows the adventures of Quantico’s Behavioral Analysis Unit (The BAU) as they use psychological and sociological tactics to determine who is their culprit or, as depicted in the show, the unidentified subject (the unknown subject).
The show had its twists and turns, but one that hardly anyone saw coming was the beloved character Spencer Reid, played by Matthew Gray Gubler, who ended up in prison for half of season 12. surrounding was tangled and a bit confusing, so if you happened to look down on your phone while watching, you might get lost for the rest of the story. Don’t worry though, we’re here to tell you if you’ve missed something or just need a freshen up!
Reid’s mother Diana, played by Jane Lynch, was a recurring guest star on the series. She suffered from schizophrenia and lived in an institution where she Reid visited occasionally. In subsequent seasons, she was also diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. So, not only did Reid watch her break out of schizophrenia, but she also had to sit down while she had memory lapses that involved him at times.
Initially, Diana was accepted into a medical trial for Alzheimer’s and seemed to work, however she was eventually let go due to budget cuts. In Houston, Texas, Reid finds another studio his mom could apply for and visits Texas to see what it is all about. While he admits it, it doesn’t last long and doesn’t seem to work.
Eventually, Reid takes her home to live with him and hires a caretaker, but Diana doesn’t think she needs one, which leads him to look for other options. While in Texas, he met a woman named Rosa Medina who was an Alzheimer’s doctor. She had written an article that Reid had read and brought him to look for her. It is later revealed that he has gone to and from Mexico, where Medina was staying, three times without notifying the FBI.
In the episode titled “Spencer”, Reid is arrested in Mexico on drug charges and the murder of Rosa Medina, who ended up being a woman named Nadie Ramos. Due to Ramos’ dual citizenship in the United States and Mexico, Reid was flown to the United States to be convicted, but the FBI refused his help because not telling him about his trips to Mexico was against protocol.
He is then sent to prison on these charges after refusing two separate plea deals under the guidance of his lawyer. Where things really get confused, though, is the truth behind Nadie Ramos’ murder and how Reid got to where he was. After the BAU proved him innocent and endured a tough run in prison, Reid is released back into the world. However, there is another problem: his mother was kidnapped by two strangers from Reid’s past.
Cat Adams, a notorious hit man who was directly captured by Reid himself and Lindsey Vaughn, who is part of the national drug cartel, set the whole thing up to frame him and try to ruin his life. Cat even goes so far as to say that Reid is the father of her child she is pregnant with, but she quickly denies this allegation. Eventually, she manages to reunite with her mother and be out of jail, as well as knowing that she hasn’t actually hurt anyone.
While it’s a long explanation, it’s still an interesting storyline. It definitely divided the fans, as some people thought Reid was out of character after going to jail. Then again, who wouldn’t be? Criminal Minds ran for fifteen seasons and ended in 2020. All episodes up to season 12 are on Netflix. The last three seasons are on Hulu.
Fortunately, for fans, the show will be back soon for what appears to be a limited run on Paramount +, so we’ll be filling up on most of our favorite characters again. While Matthew Gray Gubler hasn’t confirmed whether or not he’s coming back, fans are still hoping we’ll see Spencer Reid in all his genius glory at least one more time.