DVD review: “Profiler – Seasons 1 and 2” (1996-2000)

“Profiler” (1996-2000)

Television Drama

83 Episodes

Created by: Cynthia Saunders

Featuring: Ally Walker, Robert Davi, Julian McMahon, Roma Maffia, Peter Frechette, Erica Gimpel, Caitlin Wachs, Jamie Luner, Dennis Christopher, Michael Whaley, Shiek Mahmoud-Bey, Heather McComband and Traci Lords

John Grant: “We don’t have a lot of time here, Dr. Lawson. So if you’ve got a theory, I want to hear it.”

Dr. Samantha ‘Sam’ Waters: “You want a “theory”? You’ve got Chinese food in the refrigerator, you like your women in heels, your scotch straight, and yourself definitely on top.”

Released this month on DVD are the first two seasons of a mid-nineties television show that may have seemed forgotten especially in this age of peak TV but actually “Profiler” (1996-2000) was an obvious precursor to many of the series we see now especially on network channels that espouse lead characters with dark pasts with a touch of dark violence. It is possibly of no surprise that this show also arrived on screens at roughly the same time as ‘X-Files’ creator Chris Carters shorter lived (and even darker) “Millennium” (1996-2000). 

“Profiler” was an American crime drama that aired on NBC from 1996 to 2000. The series follows the exploits of a criminal profiler working with the fictional FBI Violent Crimes Task Force (VCTF) based in Atlanta, Georgia.

Ally Walker starred as profiler Dr. Samantha Waters during the first three seasons (1996–99), and was later replaced by Jamie Luner as prosecutor-turned-profiler Dr. Rachel Burke during the show’s final season. The series also featured the great character actors Robert Davi, Roma Maffia, Peter Frechette, Erica Gimpel and Julian McMahon who played parts that had or would portray very archetypal roles that would be very familiar to audiences that were fans of the serial killer genre.

The series centred around Dr. Samantha “Sam” Waters (Ally Walker) a forensic psychologist working for the FBI’s Violent Crimes Task Force based in Atlanta, Georgia. She has a unique gift to “see” through the eyes of others which gives Sam a special insight into the workings of the criminal mind. While she performs all of her duties diligently, her real motive lies in a both professional and personal tragedy years earlier in which her husband was murdered by a serial killer known only as Jack of All Trades. Sam is part of an elite team of pros led by her mentor, Bailey Malone (Robert Davi), also in support were Detective John Grant (Julian McMahon), computer hacker George Fraley (Peter Frechette), and forensic pathologist Grace Alvarez (Roma Maffia).

Other characters included Michael Whaley playing Nathan Brubaker who appeared throughout season one; a detective who was a former defense attorney. Shiek Mahmoud-Bey played Marcus Payton in season two who was an FBI agent skeptical of Sam’s methods. A Martinez, who had previously worked with Ally Walker on the NBC daytime serial Santa Barbara, appeared occasionally in the first and second seasons playing Nick Cooper, an ATF bomb disposal expert who was Sam Waters love interest, who was later murdered by Jack. Heather McComb appeared frequently in the first and second seasons as Frances Malone, the wayward and rebellious teenage daughter of Bailey Malone. Traci Lords appeared throughout the second season playing a violent ex-convict named Sharon Lesher, who became the serial killer Jill of All Trades after she was recruited by Jack.


Season One:

Insight: Dr. Samantha “Sam” Waters, a brilliant forensic psychologist with a unique gift for understanding the criminal mind, was a forensic psychologist with a special skill which enabled her to “think” in pictures and visualize a crime through the eyes of both the victim and the killer, until “Jack,” an admiring serial slayer, murdered her husband three years ago, leaving her devastated. Guilt-ridden, Sam retired and retreated with her young daughter, Chloe, to live an anonymous life at a friend’s in the country. She is coaxed out of self-imposed isolation by her old friend Bailey Malone, head of the FBI Investigative Support Unit, to assist in solving a baffling spate of weekend serial killings that have claimed the lives of several single women in Atlanta, GA.

Ring of Fire: Sam Waters joins the newly formed Violent Crimes Task Force (VCTF), based in Atlanta and led by her mentor, Bailey Malone, and assisted by detectives John Grant and Nathan Brubaker, forensic specialist Grace Alvarez, and computer hacker George Fraley, to probe a string of well-publicized arson fires in the Deep South, until her anonymity is shattered by her murderous, unseen stalker, Jack-of-All-Trades. As a result, Sam is forced to move with her daughter Chloe and her best friend, Angel, away from their country house, while she uses her skills to compose a profile of the self-destructive arsonist before he strikes again.

Unholy Alliance: Sam investigates a series of murders which bear striking similarities to the methods of a killer whom Bailey put in prison 10 years earlier. Sam suspects that the real culprit is still free, and through her gifted insight, she finds clues in the ancient I Ching art of divination that lead her to a high-ranking military officer who may be protecting the killer.

I’ll Be Watching You: Sam, Bailey and John must find a twisted assassin before he kills a celebrated political candidate. The clues lead them to a famous pop singer, named Morrisa (Tuesday Knight), who is also targeted by the stalker. But Sam is distracted by new evidence that could locate her own murderous stalker, “Jack-of-All-Trades.” Relying on audio clues from a recording that he leaves, the hopeful FBI agents zero in on a Baltimore church which they believe to be Jack’s lair, only to find the place cleaned out and a message from Jack saying he will be coming after Sam.

Unsoiled Sovereignty: A series of bomb blasts at power plants draw Sam, Bailey and the rest of the task force to Pittsburgh, where Sam meets a charming ATF bomb squad dismantler, named Nick Cooper, and the flirtatious pair quickly form a romantic bond. Even so, their primary focus remains on targeting a deranged man, with an obsessive fetish for cleanliness, who targets Grace as his liaison between the authorities, while he is working on a masterwork blast to poison the city’s water supply in just hours.

Modus Operandi: When the twisted, serial killer, Jack-of-All-Trades, murders a kindly neighborhood fix-it man, Sam discovers a pattern: her unseen tormentor is leaving messages to her through his victims, all of whom had some connection to her. As Sam agonizes over her slain acquaintances, her new beau Cooper and Bailey try to comfort and protect her. But they can’t watch her all the time: unlike Jack who sets out to antagonize her more when he targets Cooper.

Night Dreams: Sam, Bailey, Grant and Brubaker race the clock to track a serial kidnapper who curiously abducts a wide range of women from a college co-ed to a senior citizen. Based on his ritualistic clues, Sam deduces that they have only hours before the victims are executed. While in pursuit, agent John Grant is wounded during a shootout with the abductor, and the trail cools off until Sam gets an unlikely break when she finds a stripper who survived an attempted kidnapping. Meanwhile, Sam’s daughter, Chloe, continues to have recurring nightmares about being accosted by a mysterious man, whom Sam discovers that she witnessed Jack of All Trades killing her husband that day.

Cruel and Unusual: Sam and the team investigate a series of bizarre killings whose victims were connected to the trial of a charming murderer on death row sentenced to die within days. One of her prime suspects is a love struck protester who leads a candlelight watch outside the prison while appeals are filed to halt the execution. Elsewhere, the unseen serial killer and master of disguises, Jack-of-All-Trades, assembles a roulette wheel with pictures of the entire VCTF unit: and one spin will determine his next victim.

The Sorcerer’s Apprentice: When Native American chiefs are ritually murdered on an Arkansas reservation, Sam, Bailey and Grant tiptoe around local suspicions and superstitions as the locals blame a 1,000-year-old spirit, the Nacazanti, and a perplexed Sam consults a tribal wise man to narrow the list of suspects. Back in Atlanta, the unseen Jack-of-All-Trades steals Bailey’s FBI identification card and uses it to entrap and kill a woman, and frame Bailey for the murder.

Shattered Silence: The separate kidnappings of two high-profile doctors and the evidence left behind leads Sam to believe that the prime suspect is a patient with an incurable medical condition who is driven to take desperate measures. Meanwhile, Bailey is riddled with guilt when he develops a mutual attraction with the wife of one the missing men. Also, the unseen Jack-of-All-Trades continues his quest to isolate Sam by targeting Agent Brubaker and terrorizes him by dropping his jalopy on him while he’s fixing it.

Doppelganger: Sam interrogates inmate Arthur de Rhodes, a serial killer whom she put in a prison for the criminally insane six years earlier, over a recent murder of an elderly man from poison gas inhalation that bears striking similarities to his modus operandi. However, when another murder occurs, Sam wonders whether the culprit could possibly be the clever de Rhodes, or a copycat killer. All bets are off when de Rhodes eventually escapes, and no one is safe, especially Sam. Meanwhile, the unseen Jack of All Trades now begins to target and terrorize Angel to drive her away from Sam.

Learning From the Masters: When a series of murder victims are found arranged in elaborately staged tableaux, Sam, Bailey and the team deduces that the killer is replicating famous artworks with their lifeless forms. Her investigation plunges her into the avant-guard art world until she accidentally strays into the killer’s lair, where he takes her hostage and prepares to use her for his latest three-dimensional “masterpiece.” Meanwhile, the unseen, clever serial killer Jack of All Trades has compromised the team’s vital computer system by hacking in and planting various viruses to offset Sam even more. Also, Sam tries to spend more quality time with Chloe when work takes her away.

The House that Jack Built: When Jack of All Trades, the inventive but frighteningly elusive serial killer stalking Sam, continues to toy with members of the VCTF team and their families, Bailey orders everyone into the task force’s bunker-like command center (Angel and Chloe, Grace’s husband, George’s Partner, and Brubaker’s brother) as they scramble to devise a trap to ensnare Jack. Since their technologically brilliant quarry delights on eavesdropping and seeing them almost everywhere, the frustrated team uses Sam and Grant as bait to try to flush Jack out into the open. Unsuccessful on two times, they trace a hit man hired by Jack to his lair which is a children’s Catholic orphanage where Jack again escapes, but is forced to leave his lair and processes behind.

Shadow of Angels: Parts 1 & 2: Sam and the VCTF team investigate a series of bizarre murders where the victims are either crushed or strangled with silver coins. As the killings become more violent, Sam puts the evidence together to conclude that the killers are linked to a recluse millionaire named Charles Vanderhorn who may know the identity to the killers. Meanwhile, Sam and the rest of the team get a lead on the elusive Jack of All Trades when a man named Austin Keller, who has the suspicious nature of Jack, is identified, but he flees by plane to Costa Rica. In Costa Rica, Samantha and the VCTF team finally capture Austin Keller who they suspect is Jack. Upon arrival back in Atlanta, Samantha continues to investigate the Vanderhorn murders as well as seeking solace with Coop over the recent events. But Samantha is not sure if Austin Keller is Jack of All Trades, or an insane wannabe. Samantha then finds herself as a mediator in a hostage situation when the last surviving killer of the quartet of Vanderhorn killers is holed up in a TV station with Charles Vanderhorn as his hostage.

Film at Eleven: Sam and the task force probe a series of ghastly murders which are carefully videotaped and sent to TV newsrooms by a vigilante who announces that the crimes are righteous retribution against guilty people who slip through the judicial system. When a young Brooklyn woman is kidnapped and thought to be alive, Sam, Bailey and John accelerate the investigation to former law students with strong opinions about crime and punishment. Meanwhile, Grace secretly takes a leave when she realizes that she’s pregnant. Also, the unseen Jack of All Trades is revealed to be alive and settled in another lair while continuing to spy on Sam and tapping her phone line.

Crisis: Carl Zaun, a zealous anti-nuclear scientist leading a cadre of steely commandos, capture a banquet room full of Washington D.C. brass, and vow to kill them unless the President agrees to meet their demands to ban nuclear weapons. Sam tries to negotiate when they take her hostage as well. While Bailey, Cooper and John debate what to do, Zaun and a few surviving terrorists escape and are cornered in an airplane hangar, where a desperate Sam tries to “profile” the anguished scientist, hoping to find a common bond that might save both their lives. In the meantime, Bailey learns that his estranged, 17-year-old daughter, Francis, has run away from the home of his ex-wife in Baltimore and lands in jail for robbery. Also, when a nun of the orphanage that Jack of All Trades formerly resided at, recognizes him one day in a store from the scent of his special aftershave, he stalks and kills her.

Blue Highways: Sam and the VCTF investigate a series of fatal hit-and-run auto accidents on remote highways where the only clues are abandoned car hulks, a pattern which leads Sam to suspect a trucker who is reliving a traumatic accident from his childhood. Meanwhile, George is mugged and nearly killed in a video store holdup. Elsewhere, Bailey feels responsible for not being around when Francis begins cutting school and hanging out with a rough crowd. Also, Angel is very appreciative when John speaks to her art class and a romance develops between them.

FTX: Field Training Exercise: The task force comes under intense scrutiny when the FBI suspects that an insider is selling covert information. Bailey agrees to a mock field training exercise designed to root out the mole, where he learns that one of the agents, Art Behar, has a personal grudge against him for being involved with Behar’s ex-wife, Ellen. When one senior investigator, Ed Portero, is found murdered in the command center, Sam tries to profile which one of the team’s edgy members might benefit the most from trading FBI secrets. Meanwhile, Grace goes public with the news that she’s pregnant, and Nathan stands at the crossroads of the future of his bumpy marriage with his lawyer wife Michelle.

Into the Abyss: A burned-out Sam takes somber note of a psychic-turned-author, Elliott Wykoff, whose cooperation with police in solving serial murders has taken a heavy toll on his emotional stability. But worst of all, he’s targeted by a serial killer intent on putting him out of his misery. Meanwhile, John chafes under Bailey’s strict policy and hard-nosed code of secrecy. When John gets an offer to re-join the Atlanta police, he accepts. Also, Bailey has more problems at home when he attempts to rein in the trouble-prone Francis.

Venom: Parts 1 & 2: Sam, Bailey, Grace, and Nathan are taunted by a diabolical female serial killer who prefers to use a variety of exotic poisonous animals, (tree frogs, spiders, snakes, etc.) to kill her victims, while providing her pursuers with cryptic clues to her next murder. Meanwhile, John, now back working for the Atlanta police, arrests Francis during a drug raid and tries to talk some sense into her. A frustrated Bailey is further irritated by the arrival of a sexy private investigator named Christine Logan, who tries to aid the VCTF, but it’s the unit’s chief nemesis, a jealous Jack of All Trades, who ironically can help the most when he sends fax messages to Sam of clues to the killer’s identity. Also, Bailey asks Cooper to replace John on the team while Brubaker decides on a transfer. Sam figures out the identity of the so-called ‘venom killer’ as Robin Poole when a victim, suffering from sea wasp jellyfish stings, disappears from the hospital and it was Robin impersonating a victim. John and Cooper travel to Arkansas to investigate Robin’s origins for her murderous lifestyle. Bailey takes drastic measures to curb the carousing Frances by deciding to send her to a reform school, in which she shoots him with his own gun. John debates the future of his intimate relationship with Angel and they both agree to split up. After a few taunts, Jack strikes again, first by framing the FBI and VCTF by impersonating an agent and beating up a few suspects, and then abducts both Sam and the ‘venom killer’ Robin Poole, and taunts the VCTF by filming it on an Internet web site.

Season Two:

Ambition in the Blood: As Bailey clings to life in an Atlanta hospital following the shooting, Sam and the team are forced to take on a high profile case involving an international serial killer. The murderer, Ashok Dupree, has escaped from a prison in Calcutta, India and comes to the U.S. for the purpose of killing a celebrity, so that he too can become world renowned. While working to bring the killer to justice, Sam must convince herself and the overzealous Atlanta Police Department Captain Lou Handleman that she is innocent of the murder that Jack actually committed. Also, John decides to return to the VCTF, and Bailey’s daughter, Frances, now on the run as a fugitive, contacts John to check on her father’s condition.

Primal Scream: The VCTF is called in to investigate the seemingly random murders of four people beaten to death during a rainstorm. Sam and the team consults with a psychologist who informs them of a syndrome where people become extremely violent in response to certain types of weather. The clues lead to a construction worker afflicted with the seasonal disorder. Meanwhile, Sharon Lesher (Traci Lords), a young felon is released from prison and is met by her pen pal, Jack, whom he takes back to his lair and it becomes clear this is the beginning of an “unholy alliance.” Also, Bailey laments the fact that the police plan to charge Frances with attempted murder once they determine her whereabouts.

It Cuts Both Ways: The VCTF is summoned to New Orleans when the murder of a research librarian has the markings of a Jack kill. Sam is perplexed by what appears to be inconsistencies with Jack’s prior modus operandi. It turns out that Jack-of-All-Trades is wreaking havoc with his new lethal partner-in-crime, Sharon Lesher, who becomes Jill-of-All-Trades. Meanwhile, Bailey meets his new boss, Art Behar, who threatens to shut down the VCTF since he still holds a grudge against Bailey for dating his ex-wife. Also, George is confronted by his past misdeeds when a corrupt attorney asks him to use his computer hacking skills to embezzle funds from a local bank.

Second Best: When a hospital is the target of a bombing attack, the VCTF is called in to investigate. They are dealing with a highly skilled explosives expert who obviously has an agenda in mind. Bailey summons Cooper to Atlanta to assist with the case. His return is awkward for he and Sam as they have previously ended their romantic relationship. With Frances finally in custody, Bailey must deal with her legal problems as the prosecutor sees her case as a stepping stone for political office and is determined to see her do jail time for shooting her father and fleeing prosecution. Meanwhile, George also faces difficulties as he continues to be pressured by an old acquaintance to embezzle funds from a local bank. This “pressure” becomes threats of violence when the guy’s muscle, the mysterious Marcus Peyton (Shiek Mahmud-Bey), turns out to be an undercover policeman. Coop manages to capture the bomber, only to be abducted by Jack and killed by his lethal companion, Jill, who are impersonating ambulance workers.

Power Corrupts: The VCTF team is on the trail of a serial killer in Chicago who seems to be taking aim at people he deems corrupt. Jim Henegar, the Chicago detective investigating the murders, is reluctant to relinquish control of the case, and he becomes a hindrance to Sam and the team. The evidence leads to a judge, MacGruder, whose son was corrupted in one way or another by the three victims. At the same time, Bailey, who is still healing from the shotgun wound inflicted by his daughter, receives an unexpected phone call from Frances, who is still on the run and whom he tries to persuade to return home, to no avail. Also, the still-unseen Jack angrily rips down his wanted sketch posters from post offices and sends the VCTF a package that includes his own artistic self portrait made from the hair and teeth of his past victims. 

Old Acquaintance: At Christmas time, still recuperating from Coop’s death at the hands of the serial killing couple Jack-and-Jill-of-All-Trades, Sam decides to attend a college reunion. There, Sam and Angel reunite with friends Colleen, Drew, Greg, Monica, Tracy, and Roy. An enjoyable holiday gathering quickly becomes a nightmare when Colleen is murdered and all the evidence points to Colleen’s husband Drew, whom Sam never liked. Soon another friend, Roy, is murdered, and then Drew himself. Back in Atlanta, Sharon (a.k.a. Jill-of-All-Trades) strikes out on her own and murders a lingerie shop clerk. The team investigates and starts to make headway. When Sharon learns of Jack’s obsession with Sam, she sets out to kill her.

Jack Be Nimble, Jack Be Quick: Still investigating the reunion killer, Sam determines that one of her friends, Greg or Monica, is the likely killer. With the VCTF hot on his trail, a wounded Jack escapes to his lair to recuperate from being shot. In attempting to pursue Jack, as well as the killer of her friends, Sam begins to wonder if it’s all becoming a bit too overwhelming. Meanwhile, Frances attempts to give herself an 18th birthday ‘present’ by seducing John. The plan fails and John calls Sam to help him take the ever-rebellious teen home to her father. Bailey asks Marcus Peyton to join the VCTF team and he accepts, to John’s dismay. The team finally corners Jack at a convalescent home where he has gone to get painkilling drugs for his gunshot wound. But Jack hides in a body bag of one of the deceased residents and makes another clever escape.

Victims of Victims: When a North Carolina murder occurs that bears all the markings of an unsolved serial case from 1957, Sam and the VCTF team investigate and discover a fingerprint not previously detected. This enables the team to I.D. the killer, who turns out to have committed suicide prior to the most recent murder. Sam talks to a writer who researched the original case and learns of a young boy who claimed to have witnessed one of the crimes. Meanwhile, Jack (whose real name is finally revealed as Albert Newquay) recuperates from his gunshot wound at the Maryland home of his wealthy but equally deranged mother Miriam. With Jack gone, Sharon redecorates his lair by eliminating all traces of Sam. Also, Sam’s in-laws come to town to see Chloe perform in a school play and are angered when Sam is unable to attend. Her absence results from Grace going into labor while the team investigates a crime scene. Sam helps Grace deliver her baby boy and the team later celebrates the newest ‘member’ of the VCTF.

Birthright: A killer’s belief he was switched at birth leads him to kill those he feels stole his identity. Two men, born at the same time and in the same hospital as the killer, are brutally murdered. Sam and the team are called in once the link between the two victims is established. Evidence leads the team to an insane woman who believes her baby was switched at birth. The woman swears the badly-deformed baby she was given in the hospital was actually the child of someone else. She was never able to prove that charge, and unfortunately for the baby given to her, she was a cruel and abusive parent. Meanwhile, Jack reverts back to his old murderous form when he kills his mother’s butler when he learns the man has been following him at his mother’s behest. Also, Sam is concerned about Chloe when she feigns being sick in order to miss school. The problem is revealed to be that Chloe has to write an essay on her parent’s occupation and she’s afraid to talk about her mom’s secret job.

Dying to Live: Two men are killed, and in both instances, their organs are delivered to hospitals minutes before they are needed for transplant surgery. Sam and the team profile the murders and determine their suspect is someone who was probably an organ recipient in the past. Now, he is returning the favor by providing organs for people with his same rare blood type. Meanwhile, Art Behar, Bailey’s boss, sets him up to take a fall in a witness tampering scandal. But John, Marcus and George find evidence that clears Bailey and nails Behar once and for all. Elsewhere, Jack becomes displeased when he learns Sharon has struck up a friendship with the friendly proprietor of a local news stand. Jack kills the man, and angrily asserts Sharon that “he” is her one and only friend. Also, Chloe is followed by a man who is revealed to be a private investigator hired by Sam’s in-laws.

Ties that Bind: Ritualized murders are occurring in Atlanta and in neighboring states. The victims are stabbed and their homes are vandalized with gang-like graffiti. The VCTF is called in and focuses on the son of two of the victims. Further investigation reveals that the son is under the influence of a “Heaven’s Gate”-like cult. Sam goes undercover to infiltrate the cult. Meanwhile, Frances continues to cause discord between John and Bailey by claiming that John seduced her. Sam’s former mother-in-law continues to object to her raising Chloe and resorts to legal matters to gain permanent guardianship of her. Also, Jack sends Jill out to kill Sam’s former mother and father-in-law. But she backs out at the last second and flees Jack’s custody which proves damaging when Sam and the VCTF finally learns Jill’s true identity.

Shoot to Kill: Ohio’s cities are being terrorized by a seemingly random sniper. On the scene, Sam, Bailey and the rest of the team are perplexed by the sniper’s ability to shoot from increasingly long distances. This ability reminds Bailey of an elite task force he encountered while serving in Vietnam. Bailey obtains from his secret intelligence source Casper, the names of the task force members. Sam uses clues left at the crime scenes to put together a profile that suggests the sniper is trying to create his own mythology, much like the Archer in Greek literature. Meanwhile, John and Bailey look into Lou Handleman, who has tried to discredit John by using Frances. But when they attempt to arrest him, Handleman resists and accidentally shoots himself. Also, Jack travels to Aurora, Illinois to find the runaway Sharon in her home town to bring her back… or kill her.

Bloodlust: The dead bodies of badly beaten men are being found in the Boston metropolitan area. Sam and the team quickly surmise these men were involved in some sort of deadly, ultimate, bare-knuckle fighting match. Searching local hospitals, they find a participant in one of the fights. Sam is able to put together from talking to him and researching the backgrounds of the victims, that all were desperate men in need of money. All the men have a bookie in common and the team eventually gets this man to confess his role in the murders. To catch the fight’s mastermind in the act, John goes undercover as one of the fighters.

Every Five Minutes: Sam, Bailey, Grace and the VCTF are called in to investigate a serial rapist terrorizing the Florida panhandle. The victims are able to provide the team with a number of clues which Sam uses to form her profile of the assailant. In the midst of the investigation, Sam butts heads with a local female sheriff, Anita Pessoa, who continuously criticizes the VCTF’s handling of the case. Sam confronts Pessoa and eventually learns the woman was once a rape victim herself. Back in Atlanta, John and Marcus get a hot tip on the fugitive Sharon Lesher. Desperate for cash, she has made it known on the street that she is looking for Jimmy Coniglio, one of her old partners in crime who betrayed her in which she was sent to prison four years ago for an armed robbery that Jimmy actually committed. John and Marcus plan to use Jimmy to capture Sharon in a sting operation.

Breaking Point: Bill Porter, a desperate father, kidnaps Sam’s roommate, Angel, in a last-ditch effort to save his son from the electric chair. Porter’s son Scott has recently been convicted of murder committed during a robbery. The father believes his son was an innocent bystander and wants Sam and the VCTF to prove it by interrogating the two suspects who were suspected in the robbery. Also, Jack plots to break Sharon out of prison first by tapping into the prison’s blueprints to know the building.

Lethal Obsession: Sam and the VCTF investigate the “prime time kidnapper”, a madman who has a pathological need for media attention and projects his mania onto an attractive but terrified local TV anchorwoman, Nikki Ware, whom he wants to exclusively cover the prisoner exchanges. Meanwhile, Sam worries about what’s really behind her daughter Chloe’s reluctance to perform in the children’s ballet. Also, the murderous Jack-of-All-Trades makes plans for the release of his imprisoned Jill/Sharon, by killing a prison guard and planning to impersonate him.

Cycle of Violence: A series of vigilante ax murders of abusive husbands leads the Sam, Bailey and the rest of the VCTF team to an eccentric and reclusive cartoonist, named Evie Long, whose work has apparently influenced the killer. Meanwhile, Sam finally confronts the imprisoned Sharon Lesher (Jill of All Trades) and tries to solicit her help in finding and identifying Jack. But Sharon is very hostile and refuses to cooperate, knowing Jack will eventually try to break her out of the prison, while Sam tries to convince Sharon that Jack intents to kill her to prevent her from talking. Also, Sam becomes nervous when she plans to receive an award from the American Association of Women in Law Enforcement.

Die Beautiful: Sam and the VCTF are invited to an ongoing investigation on the murder of a teen beauty who was killed a year ago, and no arrests have been made. Bailey and the team first think the parents of the first victim did it. But they find a killer on death row with matching breaking and entering techniques, but Sam thinks the convict didn’t kill his victims. Meanwhile, Bailey’s budding romance with Ellen Behar makes his ever resentful daughter, Frances, more than a little jealous. Sam tries to give more confidence in Chloe who resents her school friends being better looking than she. Also, the still unseen Jack of All Trades escalates his harassment of Sam by mailing her a ghoulish board game detailing his next move.

The Root of All Evil: Parts 1 & 2: In the two-part season finale, the team tries to catch a diabolical killer determined to take revenge on people who are so blinded by their love of money that they can’t see the repercussions their actions have on the other side of the world, starting with the setting off of incendiary car bombs outside a wealthy business office. The game between Jack and VCTF begins with Sharon as bait to lure Jack to the prison so they can catch him. But Jack has other plans. Meanwhile, Sam pays a visit to her long estranged father for the first time in 10 years. As she struggles to both deal with her father and the elusive avenging killer still committing bombings across the country, she soon makes the final connection to the killer in order to catch him. Also, Bailey goes to extremes for Frances’s future when she’s accepted into a prestigious college in Boston, but is forbidden to leave Atlanta as a condition of her parole.

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