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The Mentalist Review: Psychotic Soulmates

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The Mentalist is back for season four and "Scarlett Ribbons" starts off with Jane in prison, Lisbon nursing a gunshot wound and Grace with really great hair.

Poor Patrick. The police find no gun or cell phone on Red John. Is he losing his mind? Even he has to wonder, as his colleagues are definitely questioning his mental status. To their credit, they don't give up on him. Of course, there's a bit of self-preservation in that. Bertram is looking to hang the entire team out to dry. If Jane was justified in shooting this man, proving it may save them all.

A Visit from Lisbon

I'm surprised Lisbon seems so undisturbed that Patrick shot and killed a man, even if it is Red John. She's always seemed so set on convincing him to bring the serial killer to justice, not exact his own. Perhaps it's that there's nothing she can do about it now or maybe it's that she's determined to save her friend from a life in a prison cell, but I somehow expected more of a judgmental attitude from her.

And only Patrick Jane can find a high stakes poker game in prison on a whim. Although I have to wonder why he needed it. If he has a home in Malibu and a couple of million dollars worth of specialty cars, can't he come up with the bail on his own? My only explanation is that this was more expedient and simply more fun.

As for the rest of the team, Grace keeps telling everyone she's fine. She's obviously not. As Cho says, "Two days ago you shot and killed your fiance. You can't be fine."  She's hanging on by a thread and old flame Rigsby doesn't seem to know how to help her or he may be scared to get too close. Hard to tell if this will bring these two back together or drive them further apart. Either way, I expected more from him.

On a side note, Lisbon now drives a Volt which I find refreshing given that every other character on TV is driving a Prius. It's nice to see some diversity in green transportation. I just hope she wasn't taking too many of those amazing pain killers while she was driving.

Timothy Carter's wife is just creepy from moment one. Who lets their husband's murderer stay for tea?  But the woman being held captive in the basement was still a complete surprise.

I think the jury finding Jane not guilty is highly plausible. Given Jane's story and the fact that Carter had kidnapped and held a woman captive in his basement, I'd probably let him go, too.

This whole ordeal appears to have brought Jane and Lisbon closer together and that's always a plus. I love that the Red John story can still continue. I've seen some shows start to lose their way as they hit season four. I'm happy to say that so far, The Mentalist seems to be as entertaining as ever.

** For a look at what's ahead, view this trailer for next week's The Mentalist now!

Review

Editor Rating: 4.6 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (181 Votes)

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.

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The writers on this show are stealing from The Profiler and The X-Files. Apparently, there will be intermittent shows in which more clues about Red John emerge. But does this villain make any sense? Red John is a serial killer who has enlisted law enforcement officials in his "conspiracy" to do what?
There was little in the way of follow-up from last season's climax. Everyone seems to have some type of amnesia and is walking around focused on proving that Jane killed Red John, but not tying in the other stuff that happened.
Jane is now a cold blooded killer, albeit he thought he was killing Red John.
And people he works who are in law enforcement with accept that!? This murder dictates any future plot-line. He will not get away with murder twice, which means that 1) somebody else will have to kill Red John, 2) Jane will kill in self-defense, 3) Jane will kill Red John and go to prison, or 4) he will have more sense and kill Red John without witnesses in private like Magnum did to the Russian spy.
Why would anyone confess to Jane to being Red John? Makes no sense to me. Also, it appears that this character has links to Red John, which is back to some psychotic bizarre conspiracy with an unnamed goal.
Anyway, I liked the show when it focused on solving murders and did not have Red John. Unfortunately, NCIS is also adopting a parallel story line in which there is a nameless conspiracy with an undefined goal and someebody is running around killing sailors. The X-Files lives on.
I will tune in to The Mentalist again in 3 or 4 more seasons to watch the last episode. I have limits on how much I can suspend disbelief, and I do not like being played around with by the producers and writers to keep me guessing and watching. Finally, I found Hannibal Lechter's escape in Silence of the Lambs beyond belief. Whatever happened to intelligent mystery writing? Oh, yeah. It's on the BBC.

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I’m not sure why so many of you are upset that the Red John story continues. I think it needs to. I loved the scene where the bag of money was handed over to Lisbon too, and the blueberry muffin lines. These little scenes/details are what make the show fantastic for me. Also, I don’t agree that Jane has become a heartless murderer. The scene where he shot RJ/Carter was gut-wrenching for me and I think most of us felt his emotions and justifications in doing so. Jane has since been able to analyze the whole scenario and no doubt sees the grand picture. I love his character, and what’s so wrong with Lisbon being kind to him? The whole unit has been through so much and has seen what RJ is capable of, so I was quite happy to see her softer side. Finally – sure there were some flaws in the episode, but that’s a given with every show. I think Heller covered as much as he could in one episode. Love this show!

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Tamara, It's called jury nullification. It DOES happen in real life. Rarely yes, but it CAN happen, so no - it isn't stupid. Also, yes TC did have to be another evil guy - he was working for Red John afterall. When working for a serial killer you kinda need to have that in you.
Jane feeling guilty? Well, Jane has shown an almost right wing attitude towards criminals/killers in the past. Such as the time he refused to care about the murder of an ex con, one who had been charged with murder himself (3x04 I believe.) I think Jane is safe in the knowledge that not only was the man he killed evil, but he couldn't have done anything about it. He was duped. At the time he did, as he said, what he had to, as he believed it was Red John and for Jane that meeting can only ever result in RJ's death.

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I just don't understand Jane's acquittal thing.The jury seem to have made an arbitrary verdict. Jane's killing "Red John" tends to be a lynching. Jane shall be punished for manslaughtering even when he is the victim of the Red John's crime. After all, lynching Red John is one thing and being victiom of RJ's crime is another.

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Bruno Heller is playing with all of us. Red John will not be revealed until the series finale. He once stated that "Red John is what defines Patrick Jane". Watch the wonderful Masterpiece Mystery: Jekyll. It helps explain how Patrick Jane and Red John can be the same person, only Jane doesn't know it. In the last season finale Jane was convinced he could get one step ahead of Red John, but as we saw in this season premiere, Red John is always one step ahead of Patrick Jane. Easy to do when he knows what he's thinking, because he is the same person! Even Jane says when talking about Carter and psychopaths "inserting themselves into the investigation" of the missing girl, he reminds us how RJ knows what CBI is up to (other than his mole(s)). And Jane does not EVER show compassion, he is at his core an evil genius. Use that filter while watching the next few shows - RJ is PJ. It only makes the show better.

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I think it was a good episode, but Im not a 100% happy.
Here is what annoys me:
1) I love Jane, really, but Im sometime so annoyed. I know that sounds weird, but sometime I just wish he would feel shit or he wouldnt get everything right. I mean ok he is smart, but if he ALWAYS knows everything ( he talks to a woman for 5 min and knows she is a freak? ) and that happens soooo often that i feel like: oh come on thats bullshit. He seems so arrogant and he doesnt even care anymore, cause he knows he is always right anyway.
2) Lisbon is not angry or disappointed at all??
3) Jane doesnt feel guilty for killing a guy? ok the guy was evil, but Jane met many evil guys, and he hates guns! So its not like he would shoot every evil guy so why doesnt he care? Honestly for me thats a prrof that every person has a evil side. Just cause they guy was evil doesnt mean u can just shoot him and then dont even feel guilty.
4) he shot a guy!!! it doesnt matter why! How can they let him go with a not guilty? thats just stupid!
5) as far as I know, prisons are not soo nice and the people there either. He wins 1 Mill. Dollars at the first day with his new jail friends???
6) so he shoots a guy and its not Red John.. alright, but why does the guy has to be an evil boy? that makes it so: yeah yeah he shot a guy, but hey he was mean... would have been better if it would have been a ,,normal" man. And that Jane knew that his wife is evil aswell after 2 min talk - come on? Like I said I love the show, but Im worried that after 3 more episodes, everything will be the same again. Thats not right and not logical. I know it sounds stupid, but I hope Jane starts to feel guilty big time and Lisbon freaks out.

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For those who haven't yet realised: Jane knew from before the main titles even kicked in that Timothy Carter wasn't Red John. From the moment that the two detectives tell him that no gun was found on the scene and no calls were logged to O'Laughlin, you can see it on his face. From this point on, at no point in the episode does Jane state that 'Timothy Carter was Red John.' The episode is then basically Jane attempting to dig dirt on Carter (knowing he's likely involved in some dark things, clearly working for RJ) in the hope of building some sort of case for his trial to attempt to decieve the jury into thinking that 'maybe' Carter was Red John, therefore giving Jane the 'not guilty' verdict and avoiding his imprisonment, something Jane said would have been 'a victory for Red John.' Oh and btw, LaRoche is in next weeks episode. Plus, the new boss comes in at 4x04, so I guess the Hightower situation will be cleared up then at the latest. Jane got off due to 'dury nullification' which, whilst very rare, CAN happen and is perfectly legitimate as a way of Jane getting off the murder charge. Brilliant premiere, loved everything about it. Those who don't like the RJ story and complain EVERY time we get an ep on him: Either don't watch the RJ eps or don't watch the show at all. I wont miss you, neither will Simons amazing hair.

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No gun? Why was it that NOTHING was ever mentioned in the show about the newspaper on the mall floor that supposedly held the gun? When the video of the aftermath of the shooting is reviewed, the newspaper is still folded after the barrista visits "Carter," is not (I think I remember) after the guard visits, but is seen unfolded and in a different location after the crime scene tech visits. NEVER mentioned. . ..

Fortyseven

Jane's lines about the muffins were great.

Fortyseven

While I would have liked the RJ story to be over, it does make sense for RJ to manipulate Jane into killing someone he thinks is RJ. RJ wants Jane to suffer as much as possible. RJ's organization shouldn't get too big/influential or it'll stretch credulity though. The court case/Jane in prison until new evidence comes to light might have been better than clearing it up in one ep. If the jury weren't allowed to consider a lesser charge then there's a better chance they'd acquit. I was wondering why the DA said Jane had no ties or property too. Since Tim and his widow had connections to RJ, it makes sense for her to invite Jane in and be hospitable.