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The Matthew Gray Gubler-Directed Criminal Minds Episode Fans Agree Is The Creepiest

Matthew Gray Gubler played Dr. Spencer Reid on "Criminal Minds" for 15 years until the beloved CBS series ended in 2020. In 2010, the actor decided to step behind the camera and ended up directing 13 episodes of the show, per IMDb. Now, some viewers may be shocked to find out that their favorite supervisory special agent directed quite a few "Criminal Minds" episodes. However, during a 2018 BUILD series interview, Gubler revealed he had received a filmmaking degree from NYU Tisch and intended on becoming a director before pivoting his focus to acting. 

Gubler noted that he was "a meticulous lunatic" when directing his colleagues on the CBS procedural. He also shared that he collaborated with the show's writers, casting directors, and sound engineers to ensure he could perfect his directorial vision. "I put a lot of time and energy into it but it's what I love," said the actor.

"Criminal Minds" fans seem to have an appreciation for Gubler's directing style, as evident by several Reddit users dubbing one of the episodes that the actor directed as "the creepiest" on the series' subreddit.

Criminal Minds fans were disturbed by an episode from Season 8

In July 2021, a Reddit user took to the "Criminal Minds" subreddit and shared that they were disturbed by Season 8, Episode 10, titled "The Lesson," directed by Gubler. In the episode, the unsub, Adam Rain (Brad Dourif), mentally regressed after waking from a coma. He becomes fixated on the memory of a robber murdering his father — who was a puppeteer — in a room that contained two of his marionettes. Adam decides that he can save his father if he reenacts the robbery. Unfortunately, his plan includes capturing numerous people to turn them into living marionettes.

"The Lesson (human marionettes) – the creepiest episode to me. I'm not sure what it is about this episode but no matter how many times I see it, it makes me feel so unsettled after," the thread's original poster, u/Darylashlyn, wrote. The OP then asked other "Criminal Minds" fans to list disturbing episodes. Quite a few Reddit users shared that they also found "The Lesson" particularly upsetting.

"I've watched it two days ago and it's still haunting me. The scene that the unsub pulled the rope which was connected to the female victim's wrists killed me. She hanging in the air with all her joints got messed up. Ugh," wrote u/zephyr3452. A different fan, u/sophialovxx, also noted that "the music, the tone of voice, the lighting, everything was perfectly set to add to the creepy demeanor of this episode."