Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Criminal Minds 5.22 and the Dark Side of New New Media

Just checking in here with a review of the next to last episode of Criminal Minds this season - 5.22 - which pitted the BAU against what I call the "dark side of new new media" (chapter 11 in my book, New New Media), or the use of Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, and other social media for distinctly anti-social activities, such as cyberstalking, cyberstalking, terrorism, and murder.

Since the BAU fights the worst monsters in the word - Hotch, Derek, Rossi, Reid, Prentiss, J.J., and Garcia are really the only thing between those monsters and us - you know abuse via the Internet in this episode will be as bad as it gets:  a computer master (almost as talented as Garcia, which is talented indeed) trolls the Internet for women he can not only kill, but video as he first kidnaps them.  He's put together an online club of voyeurs who enjoy this sort of thing, which is as easy as pie these days to put up for live viewing on a web site you control, and disguise your role via a series of proxies.

The Internet as villain is no stranger to television, and has reared its head on episodes of Bones and CSI to name just two (see New New Media for further examples).   But I've never seen the matrix of social media and the possibilities it opens for deviant minds better explained than on Criminal Minds.

I also usually like my cop shows leavened with a little more humor than you find on Criminal Minds, but my wife and I are avid fans of the show, and I think it's time I started reviewing just about every episode from now on.





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"challenging fun" - Entertainment Weekly

"a Da Vinci-esque thriller" - New York Daily News

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