We all know that Reid has an eidetic memory.

Nevertheless in the very first episode Extreme Aggressor he keeps scribbling into his notebook. Why does he need to take notes even if he will not forget anything?

In later episodes I can not remember seeing him with a notebook.

  • 1
    This more or less is probably to do with showing the audience what Dr. Reid is thinking more than him really having to take notes. They are trying to introduce the entire crew in that episode, plus what they do, and how they do it. Just like the visions they would have at the beginning of the series where, as they would explain things, you'd see it happen as part of the background, still seeing the actor talking. (Note: I say visions because I don't know what else to call them.) No links or hard facts to back this up, I've just seen the 1st episode too many times not to say something. May 9, 2015 at 22:34
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    I haven't seen this show, but surely one of the main reasons that policeman and FBI agents use a police notebook is so they've got an auditable trail that others (such as prosecutors, juries, senior officers, etc) can refer to later. It's no use having an eidetic memory if you fall under a bus
    – user7812
    Nov 20, 2015 at 12:04
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    @sanpaco's answer is, I think the correct one. If you wanted an in-universe justification then Reid himself states in a later episode (The Fisher King IIRC) that his eidetic memory is most effective with things that he has read rather than heard so writing notes and reading them back to himself would help ensure retention. Aug 25, 2017 at 10:00

1 Answer 1


It is the first episode of the first season. Typically actors, writers, directors, etc are still getting a feel for the characters early in a show's run. It is likely that they had him with a notebook at first and later determined that it didn't make sense for him to have a notebook because of his eidetic memory.

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