While Sheryl Lee Ralph’s debut playing the ex-wife of David Rossi (Joe Mantegna) in the Apr 13, 2016 episode of “Criminal Minds” gets the attention, the real focus of the episode “Inner Beauty” is actress Katie Fountain. She plays (spoiler alert) Danielle Steinhardt, an ex prostitute/drug addict that is kidnapped by a man Joseph Berzon (Devon Gummersall) trying to recreate his deformed deceased girlfriend. Berzon ends up using home made implants to disfigure Steinhardt’s face.
“Criminal Minds” isn’t a mystery. It usually isn’t a drama. (This episode had more drama than most with Rossi dealing with his ex wife and his grandchild.) “Criminal Minds” survives on its acting. The only thing Criminal Minds has is the audience’s fascination that there are criminals that act like those depicted on the show.
The actors have to be believable in their actions as villains or victims. Katie Fountain and Devon Gummersall are believable even when the motivation of the killer (spoiler alert) is so strange the Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU) didn’t get the profile right the first time. For about the only time in the twelve seasons of the show, the BAU is initially wrong and they have to change the profile. However after their “It’s time to deliver the profile” signature line they later change the profile but the BAU isn’t portrayed updating the locals.
Amber Stevens West who has played Rossi’s daughter Joy Struthers in the past is off starring on NBC’s “The Carmichael Show”. Her character is replaced by her character’s husband Shawn Struthers played by Dan J. Johnson.
The episode is available at cbs.com here for at least five weeks.