“Criminal Minds” has had its fair share of truly sick and twisted unsubs over the years. But there’s one who presented himself almost like a horror movie villain, and he’s stuck around for some fans.
Mr. Scratch, featured in episodes ranging from season 10 to 13, was creepy, and sinister. He drugged his victims and made them hallucinate “Mr. Scratch,” who got them to kill their families. He even got ahold of Hotch, getting into his head and almost making him kill his teammates. Mr. Scratch, otherwise known as Peter Lewis, was also a hacker, and shut down the BAU’s online infrastructure. This made it that much harder for the team to find connections between the murders.
Peter’s murders had a pattern, though; he was targeting all the former children whom his parents fostered, and who accused Peter’s father of abuse. Their group home was shut down, and Peter’s father was killed in prison. So, he went after all the kids who had testified, and made them kill their loved ones.
In season 11, Peter convinces the U.S. Department of Justice that Hotch is a danger to his team and his family. The DOJ investigates and arrests Hotch for conspiracy, but the team proves his innocence. After they close the case, it’s revealed that Peter Lewis was involved in a prison break. His testimony about Hotch was just a distraction tactic, and he was working with the people who framed Hotch.
With Mr. Scratch on the loose in season 12, he really starts to kick his arc up a notch. He changes his victimology, and creates an elaborate room with nail guns that shoot nails from the ceiling if the trap is sprung. While the BAU is busy rescuing his victims, Peter escapes again.
‘Criminal Minds’: Why Mr. Scratch Was Such a Terrifying Villain
While some “Criminal Minds” fans couldn’t look past Scratch’s super villain-esque antics, there were still others who thought he was downright chilling.
In a Reddit post discussing the most disturbing episodes, several fans mentioned Mr. Scratch as the scariest villain. “Mr Scratch, for the hallucination scene near the end,” one fan wrote in response. “Still scares the crap out of me, every time, although I’ve seen it probably fifty times.”
Another commented, “Mr Scratch scared me so f—ing badly. I watched that in the dark by myself at like 1AM during a binge. Horrible mistake. That noise Scratch makes in the beginning of the episode was so creepy.”
In a thread discussing Mr. Scratch’s more theatrical antics, one fan wrote, “I know I’m supposed to be mad at him for what he does but I can’t stop laughing at how super villain’sh [sic] he is.” Another wrote, “They really jumped the shark with the Scratch storyline, IMHO. It was all just so much, it veered into comic book territory for me. I couldn’t get into it.”
A lot of differing opinions on Mr. Scratch, but you have to agree, there’s at least something scary about him, no matter what.