The Mentalist Review: Jane's First Day

at . Comments

"Red Dawn" brought us Patrick Jane's first day at the CBI and, like any first time, it was a little awkward.

First off, Patrick did in fact give off a homeless vibe, as Lisbon put it. He looked completely disheveled with his hair askew and his inability to tuck in his shirt. This was not the charismatic, confident Patrick Jane we know now. 

Jane's First Meeting

This was a man who was just released from a mental hospital. 

I couldn't say that Det. Hannigan was wrong in what he told Jane. It would be best if he could move on, but to tell him to move away and start another family, as if that could replace the one that was brutally murdered... well, the guy was just a jackass. And any law enforcement officer who punches a victim's husband in the middle of the office deserves to get fired, or at the very least suspended without pay. I don't care how much Jane provoked him.

Did Teresa come off very cold in this episode to anyone else? I know Jane just wandered in off the street, but his wife and daughter were gruesomely killed and Teresa and her team were in charge of the case. I have no doubt she was busy but couldn't she have sat down with him for ten minutes just as a common courtesy. Telling him to leave and call back for an appointment left me disappointed in Teresa.

Where she didn't let me down was in how quickly she realized that Jane had exemplary observation skills and that she could use them to catch the killer.

It was obvious that Jane was still very traumatized by his past when he jumped all over Lisbon for referring to him as a psychic. He was very quick to call himself a fraud. You could tell he was feeling an overwhelming amount of guilt that his charlatan past put his family in Red John's crosshairs.

As Patrick said in this The Mentalist quote

The human mind is amazingly powerful. It can do things for real that sometimes feel like magic. | permalink.

And that's why I love Patrick Jane. What he does feels like magic but it's not. It's very much based in the skills of observation and knowledge of the human mind. It's fascinating but there's nothing supernatural about it.

Jane's first meeting with the rest of the CBI team was a bit comical. It felt as though everyone was playing a parody of themselves. Cho's deadpan, emotionless delivery was taken to the extreme. And Rigsby's clueless expressions, especially when he found Jane in the break room, had him looking like an idiot.

I enjoyed this episode, but not nearly as much as I had hoped. While I liked seeing this early version of Jane and I always love hearing his cold reads on the people he meets, I was dissatisfied with the early versions of the CBI team.

All except for Virgil Minelli. Oh, how I've missed him. In the early days of the show I had picked him as Red John but I've since dismissed the idea. Now we know that the FBI…and Red John have had their eyes on Jane since the beginning.

Was I the only one a bit disappointed or am I being too hard on Lisbon and the CBI team? And did the FBI twist give you any further insight into Red John or was it just one more turn in an already corkscrew case?


Editor Rating: 4.3 / 5.0
  • 4.3 / 5.0
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
User Rating:

Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (137 Votes)

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


Whoever Red John is, he/she/they must be wealthy and influential, able to manipulate people to even kill and die on command, and run around in a limo just to make a phone call. That limo may have been put in as a clue that it's someone like that. If it's someone we've already seen, who is able to do that? I can think of only Brett Stiles, Walter Mashburn, Cristina Frye and Erica Flynn. Anyone else? Someone secretly wealthy? It could be someone from Jane's past, possibly carrying a revenge grudge for some psychic thing Jane did. A couple of those people have already tried to kill Jane for that. He has a very complex past that might be catching up with him. I'm still wondering why RJ has bothered to keep track of Jane since killing his family.


To add, I agree with others that the Jane-Lisbon dynamic was interesting. Clearly Jane has had an influence on her, she was quite dry, stoic and kind of cold to him, which is realistic for how they met. As for the end scene, no, that's not Red John, that would be WAY TOO EASY. The question is whether the character is relevant at all. If I had to guess though a) its a younger version of a character we've seen b) its an a guy related to FBI that may or may not have relevance towards Red John. I tend to think that this is all a changeup by Bruno and that the idea that he could be somebody was by design for viewers but he'll end up not being that big.


About the time line: Unless I'm missing something it appears the writers have it about right as it appears to me according to statements, screen text, flashbacks, etc. as best I can remember: We are in the 5th season, so Jane has been with CBI for five years since the pilot episode where Jane meets Van Pelt for the first time. Probably a crime or two occurred before that, giving him a little time to shape up after spending a year in the mental hospital, then stumbling into CBI when Van Pelt was being considered for hiring. In one recent episode (Season 4?) Lisbon remarked about Jane's family's murder, "It's been 5 years." So at this time Jane's family was killed 6 years ago, followed by his one year in the mental hospital, followed by about 5 years with the CBI.


Decent episode, not bad, but they could have made it more intruiging. They portrayed the awkwardness really well but really after a while I just wasn't that interested in the whole thing. The scene where Jane found the murderer was very good though and salvaged the show. I would have liked to have seen more in the way of what went into hiring jane: just making the CBI look good solving one case isn't really a good explanation. They just could have done little more overall to add some more spice to the episode but overall a solid episode. The Lorelei storyline is going to pick up the next few episodes and I expect we'll get our first real info about Red John then.


anybody else notice kevin corrigan and kirk acevedo...Almost a FRINGE reunion ..Glad seeing sam wiess and charlie back on tv...waiting to see where kevin corrigan's character leads too..


I definitely think it was Red John in the back of the limo with the FBI director. BOTH RJ and his FBI contact were revealed in a very low key, no comment way. Loved that. I, too, hope they can wind up the RJ storyline. It was a big groan to find our Jane hadn't killed him after all in the shopping mall. Also, there were hints of "special feelings" between Jane and Lisbon at the end of last season and actually every so often, from Jane, in earlier episodes. Not to be trite, but where's that going?


I think Simon Baker said he found the theory that Patrick Jane is Red John amusing. Not the same as he loved it? I personally don't understand why people are never tired of it. Jane is so clearly not RJ. I think Lorelei is a clever addition to the RJ storyline. Hope Bruno Heller uses it wisely. As long as he can make Jane fail every time differently, it should be fine.


I saw a interview with Bruno Heller and Simon Baker in which Simon Baker said he loved the idea of being Red John. Bruno Heller then said that this would be an insult to the viewers and would rob them of a good harpooning. Heller also said it would be like Capt. Ahab turning out to be the whale in the end of Moly Dick, " it would rob the viewers of a good harpooning, would'nt it?" Bruno Heller was quite firm on this point. I hope this helps absolutelyunsure.


I didn't read where anyone caught on to the Mentalist insider joke. Where Jane comes in the next day in his suit and Rigsby tells him to take the desk in the back of the unit. Jane points to the back of the unit, then circles his mouth in reference to Rigsby's facial hair and then Jane gives him a salute with his index finger and walks away. Check it out! I thought this episode was fun all the way throught. Jane was being slick all the way through this episode. Very fun episode for me!


I thought this was a great episode. While Jane appeared to be vulnerable, he also seemed to be sizing up the people at the CBI. It seemed clear to me that Jane was willing to do what ever he needed to do to be a part of the Red John investigation. That's why he made Hannagan hit him. He knew exactly what would happen next. When Lisbon helped him up he said "Teresa Lisbon, that's a nice name." Jane was buttering up the boss after a cold read! He knew that while Lisbon was being cold outwardly she had a soft spot and that's why she was putting up w/ Hannagan. Her soft spot showed up again when she left Jane sleeping on the couch. She was being protective of him. She looked at him in a very maternal way.

Tags: ,

The Mentalist Season 5 Episode 5 Quotes

Let's hope that Mr. Jane remains so amiable when he wakes up with the morning with a pounding headache and some time to think.


Teresa Lisbon. That's a nice name.