That was indeed the better half of Shameless‘ favorite power couple Gallavich portraying the disturbed kiddo Jeffrey Charles in the 2006 episode of Criminal Minds. As a refresher, that episode (titled “The Boogeyman”) found the B.A.U. gang in a small Texas town hunting a killer who’s taken to bludgeoning youngsters to death in the woods. The team initially believes they’re looking for a methodical, murderous adult, but are shocked when they eventually discover the perpetrator is the freckled, ginger-haired kid played by Monaghan, who delivers a truly chilling performance as the violent pre-teen.
Criminal Minds was hardly the last time Monaghan played crazy, by the way. Throughout his run on Shameless, he’s plumbed the depths of bipolar disorder to play his character Ian, and he spent a total of 20 episodes playing the batsh*t crazy Jeremiah Valeska (essentially the Joker) on Fox’s gonzo Batman saga Gotham. But just to circle back to Monaghan’s Criminal Minds episode, if you count yourself one of those super-savvy fans, you likely recall Jeffrey’s would-be final victim in the episode was a little girl even younger than him. And you just might recall she was played by another then up-and-coming child actor. The character’s name was Tracy Belle, and yes, she was actually played by an 8-year-old Elle Fanning.
Like Monaghan, Fanning’s star has risen dramatically in the years since that Criminal Minds appearance, with Fanning now ranking among the most respected and in-demand actors of her generation. That status is in large part due to her lauded work in the likes of The Neon Demon (2016), The Beguiled (2017), and Hulu’s hit period drama, The Great. So even as “The Boogeyman” ranks as one of Criminal Minds‘ most unsettling episodes, it also offers a fascinating glimpse at a pair of legit stars in the making.