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What Criminal Minds Gets Wrong About Murderer Confrontations

Suspending one's disbelief is a core tenet needed to enjoy almost any piece of fiction. Sometimes that's a process that's easier said than done, however. This is certainly true of "Criminal Minds," the popular crime procedural show that originally ran for 15 seasons on CBS. Despite a few hangups, its fanbase has seemingly never really had an issue with the suspension of disbelief. Still, there are certain corners that a procedural cop show typically has to cut in order to maintain suspense — and, like other shows of its ilk, "Criminal Minds" has cut plenty.

"Criminal Minds" focused primarily on a group of criminal psychologists and profilers who work together to catch "unsubs," or "unknown subjects." These cases usually only lasted over the course of 40+ minute episodes and rarely ever went beyond that. This often meant that the members of the BAU (Behavioral Analysis Unit) put themselves in grave danger on a regular basis. This also led to members of the team being taken, gravely injured, or even killed from time to time in the line of duty.

While it's necessary to implement suspension of disbelief, there's a huge part of the BAU's process that's a little hard to swallow. In fact, it's one of the major components of crime solving that "Criminal Minds" got wrong.

Criminal Minds team members would never confront an unsub

As noted by Screen Rant, one of the most egregious errors in the depiction of the team on "Criminal Minds" is the fact that the BAU typically confronted the unsubs themselves. In a real life situation, this would almost never occur, as criminal psychologists typically aren't expected to go into a dangerous situation like this. Most of them have very minimal combat training (if any combat training at all) and they are rarely ever used as field agents in such a way. 

This isn't exactly surprising or even new in the world of police procedural shows. "CSI" often got a lot of its science and police procedures wrong (according to Business Insider) for the sake of dramatic tension and speeding cases along. It's not that far-fetched to think that "Criminal Minds" employed similar methods for similar reasons. After all, how exciting would it be to watch profilers create their reports and then wait for the bad guy to be caught on a weekly basis? For most viewers, it probably would not be entertaining at all.