The Mentalist Review: A Desperate Grief

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The one thing that The Mentalist never lets us forget is that Patrick Jane is a tortured soul. "Devil's Cherry" drove that point home.

At the start, I couldn't believe that Jane would make tea in the victim's kitchen. He's been at enough crime scenes to know better, but Jane wasn't himself here.  Lorelei's disappearance looked like it sent him spiraling into depression and, as Cho said, who could blame him? He went deep undercover for six months only to have his one lead to Red John stolen from him. 

After 10 years of chasing a mad man, Jane is no closer to finding him - and perhaps too close to going mad himself.

How Will Jane React?

The hallucination sequence was a lot of fun. Seeing the pot lid jump had me doing the same and I enjoyed the delay on revealing the contents. I knew something was up when Jane started chasing the bunny. When he passed the couple dressed as garden gnomes, I figured this was either a dream or a drug-induced hallucination.

Obviously, I was correct on the latter but I have one question: How could Jane have taken that walk if he passed out on the kitchen floor?

However, I'm willing to let that question go to get to the heart of the episode... and that heart was Charlotte.

I liked that Charlotte had sprung from Jane's subconscious and wasn't yet another Red John plot. Yet, at the same time, it made me ache for Patrick. He longed to see his daughter so badly that his mind conjured her the first chance it had.

Their father/daughter conversations were really fun, as she berated him with teenage snarkiness and he told her to stop rolling her eyes. But it was Charlotte shining a light on Jane's empty life that was the most touching, as she told him in this The Mentalist quote...

 I've been dead for 10 years and you're still stuck in neutral. | permalink

Deep down inside, Jane was questioning what's fueling his obsession with Red John and whether sacrificing his own life to catch the serial killer was really worth it.  Make no mistake, Jane has sacrificed his life for Red John. It's been a decade and this obsession has become his life. The image of Charlotte tried to show him how sad and unnecessary that is.

The look on Jane's face when Charlotte disappeared was heart shattering. It was as though someone had ripped open a barely healed wound. His overwhelming grief was there to consume him once again.

This episode had some other interesting moments. Like when Jane told his daughter that Lisbon was the one person that really knew him and soon after he told Teresa that she could call him Patrick. Both were small moments but telling ones of his awareness of his feelings for Lisbon.

And the killer was... evil doesn't seem to cover it.  She drugged a man and made him saw himself to death while she watched! Horrifying evil is the only term I can come up with to describe it.

This episode was filled with wacky tea, butterflies, bunnies, garden gnomes and eagle's claws. All of it was great fun and kept me guessing. Then the end came and I was left to wonder if Patrick added the bella donna to his tea. I couldn't blame him if he did because I don't want to imagine that kind of desperate, gnawing pain. 

But if he did add the drug, he won't be able to stop and that could lead to a very dark and dangerous season of The Mentalist.


Editor Rating: 4.6 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.9 / 5.0 (190 Votes)

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


I cannt believe I have to explain this to the writer of this review. The sequence started with the butter fly then the rabbit then the knomes and then the rabbit hole. Do you get it yet its Alice in Wonderland for gods sake if you didnt or couldnt get that then I guess you just dont read. I have to ask but have you even read the book thats the main plot for this show Mobey Dick or any Sherlock Holmes its a blend of the two.


Fantastic episode, I only disagree with one thing that Jane wouldn't make tea in the victims house. It is exactly the sort of thing he would do, and has done in the past. It even mirrored the first ever episode where Patrick is making tea in the house where a daughter has been killed.


Simply extraordinary. The best episode so far in history. The writing, acting, stage. I tore the heart Jane / Baker.

Kitanishi h mcdonald

This was seriously amongst THE BEST Mentalist episodes ever aired so far. Perfect , angsty and sad exploration of Patrick Jane and what the loss of his family means to him. There's something horribly depressing at watching him imagine/hallucinate the daughter whose life was taken from him. And at the same time the show manages to present it quite comically. Seriously depressing episode and easily amongst the best.


There wasn't a garden there when they went back, it was a swimming pool


Awesome episode!! I loved it so much that I watched it again.
The steps where Jane saw the couple that led to the garden is the same place in the beginning of the episode when Jane arrives at the crime scene and gets off his car. Since he saw the steps and gnome figures, he must have imagined the same environment in his hallucination. Just the end result was different (pool instead of a garden)as he did not know what was beyond that gate.
I really hope the tea he drank in the end did not have belladonna.
Jane & Lisbon babbling in Scandinavian language was hilarious.. Ja Ja


This was an amazing episode! It was produced by Simon Baker himself too :)
I just hope he doesn't get addicted to the tea, but his expression when Charlotte was gone was just as Christine said "heart-shattering"...
Hope the rest of the season is just as good as this :)


Great episode. Alice in Wonderland-esque. Jane's made tea before without permission before. I also didn't understand how he walked over to the "garden" if he never left the kitchen. I know it's possible to have a complete environmental hallucination (or whatever it's called) but if he had had one then he wouldn't have hallucinated the gnomes as people because he wouldn't have seen the gnomes.

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The Mentalist Season 5 Episode 2 Quotes

How can I know what I know will help you?


Same as it ever was, more bodies, more death.