The Mentalist Season 5 Report Card: A

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Ready to play school teacher?

As we struggle through the long summer hiatus and await the return of The Mentalist this fall, let's relive some of our favorite - and not so favorite moments - from The Mentalist season 5. Read on for our latest TV Fanatic Report Card and grade the CBS drama below...

A Red John Lead

Best Episode: The Mentalist gave us a really solid season so picking one favorite episode was pretty darn difficult. But in the end I've got to go with the season finale, "Red John Rules." Between floating the idea that Red John is psychic, to breaking into Jane's memory box, the finale was filled with twists and turns. When Red John used an already deceased Lorelei Martins to tell Jane he'd predicted who would be on the final list of seven suspects, even before Jane came up with them, that really got my attention. Knowing that the serial killer will be killing a lot closer to home…let's just say I'm hooked on season 6 and it hasn't even begun.

Worst Episode: I can't say there was an episode that I really hated but "There Will Be Blood" was disappointing. I was a big fan of Lorelei Martins and it felt as though there was more story there to tell, so finding her as Red John's next victim may have been inevitable but was still a disheartening turn of events.

Most Improved Character: Wayne Rigsby. I've never been a big fan of Rigsby. Other than his arson investigative skills, he's always felt like the weakest member of the team.  With "Red Velvet Cupcakes" Wayne finally stepped up and told Grace how he really felt. I didn't even care that it was undercover. The words were honest enough to garner my respect and win back his one true love.

Most Disappointing Character: Grace Van Pelt…and only because she was either stuck behind a desk, or plant, or file box for most of the season and then shipped off to Los Angeles for training. I'm happy for actress Amanda Righetti and her new baby but I'll be thrilled to see Grace back full force next season.

Most Intriguing Return: JJ LaRoche. I had hoped we'd see more of this season and The Mentalist gave me my wish, culminating with "Red and Itchy." The fact that LaRoche not only worked with Patrick Jane but asked…no make that begged for his assistance to find his missing Tupperware made for a gratifying episode. The story behind what was in the mysterious container gave this already compelling character yet another curious layer.

Most Disappointing Return: Lorelei Martins. I was captivated by Lorelei from the beginning. She was the smart and seductive Red John disciple who had reason to turn on the psychotic madman. But watching her run around shooting at people and ditching Jane to go rogue was discouraging. Having Red John murder her may have been inevitable but it felt like a mediocre ending for such a unique character.

Hopes for Season 6:

  • More danger. I'd love to see Red John go after the core members of the CBI team. Not that I want to see anyone's blood drawn in a smiley face on the wall but I'd love to see how Patrick Jane deals with the people closest to him being in imminent peril.
  • With Red John playing head games with Patrick, it would be great to see Teresa step up her game. I'm hoping she's an integral part of keeping Jane on track and hunting down the serial killer.
  • Red John. I'd love to see him caught by the end of the season. As show creator Bruno Heller has mentioned, it will be interesting to see how Patrick Jane gets on with his life once Red John is no longer his focus. That said, at the very least I want to know who the maniacal serial killer is before the season ends.

Final Grade: A

How would YOU grade this season of The Mentalist?


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


@Huisclothes - re. 'Not forgotten': now I remember, that (was it you) I was told a few month ago that there was some weird thing going on with investors for the film. Hmmmmm, that must be it. They probably disagreed on a lot of things! Thank you for reminding me.


Oh wow! Surprise! I got through!
@Entwife - glad we feel the same! I haven't read any stories with babies or cooking yet! I guess I pick only the naughty ones??!! ;-))


I keep trying. Maybe all of a sudden I'll get through!


@ rationalgirl,
Warner Bros. release date is September 17. My estimated arrival date is earlier than yours. Likely because I'm right here in the Pacific Northwest. I'm guessing your date is to cover shipping time.


p.s. Yes :-) how Simon appeared in Smith was my image for Patrick at the beach. So lovely. Also the idea that men can be beautiful in a sport like surfing from that novel Breath. So true.


@bonaduz So glad to get your note on the latest chapter and sorry to hear about moderation. I especially liked what you had to say about the healing properties in the generative urges. I had two other stories started, working on both, and had just realized they were actually one story, and along just those lines. And sort of a shadow of what @rationalgal was talking about what she'd like to see/write in fan fics. It's great to be got, and you totally get me on this! Thanks so much!


Oh yeah, and in fan fics Jane almost always does the cooking, ha ha! In those, he has a distinct David Niven feel, I call him Sir Patrick. But I do kinda like that he cooks for Lisbon. Guilty pleasure.


Those sound like great plot lines @rationalgal! I saw something that said the release date is 9/17 and I think it was KM who said that last year, her dvds arrived from Amazon on the release date. Maybe it will do the same this year.


Little Red Corvette. Lisbon gets the sealed deposition by Jane methods. And then a warrant later from the judge by lying Jane methods, ha. A little bit proud of herself. And Jane takes on the odious work of partnership by helping lisbon search a deposition for clues to get Volker. Is this a first?


These fanficks focusing on the Jane-Lisbon relationship post- RJ seem to ignore the real problem—Jane's adjustment to a post-RJ world. It would include Lisbon but that would be tough on her. Jane would have no past he could return to. His family is gone, he has rejected the carney world and his CBI stint was essentially a means to find and kill RJ. In focusing on that and expecting to die or go to prison, he closed off every opportunity for more than a working relationship with Lisbon. He is even homeless, which that barren Malibu house symbolizes. Cho told him in Fugue in Red that without some deep motivation he was "just a hustler." Some really compelling dramas could be written involving scary setbacks into hustlerdom about how he pulls himself out of his past - with Lisbon's help of course - to find a new, satisfying way to live. I'd like to write some eps but I'm no good at dialogue. I'm hoping the TM writers get a season 7 to do this.

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The Mentalist Quotes

Tea? It's like a hug in a cup.


As they say, you can take the girl out of Chicago but you can't take the Chicago out of the girl.