The Mentalist Season 5 Report Card: A

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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.


@entwife i enjoy your stuff. it has energy. it's unabashedly sexy. makes you seem like you'd be fun on a date.


continuing thoughts about poor pregnant teresa fanfics. these pieces usually begin with the death of red john. authors then create a new tragedy to fill the vacuum. almost like what season seven would be if season six results in the death of red john. i think this solution to "what comes after" by so many of the authors of fanfics shows how difficult it will be to maintain the drama of the show after rj. the many moms out there (many of whom want rj to be over) replace rj with their own worst fear, seduced and abandoned with teresa as themselves -- and as the new star of the show. the second most popular solution tends to be a copycat red john. "just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water... i like the sexy fanfics and the showdown with rj fanfics. usually the most successful, imho. HOWEVER, the grammar and syntax and malapropisms in some of the best make my teeth hurt.


I think I said to @KM recently that I have an inkling my stories are me in a mighty wrestling match against containing the good and the bad, the happy and the sorrowful, the potential of happy ending and tragedy as a whole with all aspects, and letting it be as it is. I want to run the "bad" out, with the awesome power of the creative drive, leave no room for a shard of the unhappy. TM's Jane and Lisbon disturb my psyche in some way and the writing is what calms my storm. My fan fics seem like my argument against the entropy of the universe, On another level, they're just an indulgent raw romp. Either way.


Amen to that, @huisclothes. Bad home movies is a perfect description! And definitely writers reveal more about themselves in their stories through any plot line. That's just part of it. But it shines through in fan fics more I think, they're so short and it's mostly amateurs like myself. I don't even get the cover of the cloudy murk of a crystal ball. It's probably a clear day in there. There it s. :-) re-watch of Days of Wine and Roses, coming up


@bonaduz have not watched the director's comments about simon on the not forgotten dvd. keep in mind that this guy and a few of his partners were indicted for bilking people out of money to fund the production of the film. there was some "creative" bookkeeping going on there. so take the director's comments from whence they come. scumbags usually dislike nice people.
@entwife re: fanfiction. i too cringe at the endless "patrick leaves a pregnant lisbon" fanfics. themes like mothers are martyrs, mothers are gods and stretchmarks are temples to be worshipped by errant men abound. the authors are struggling with these issues, i'm sure, in their own lives. brave of them to share their own fears and anger on some level. but after chapters of diapering and burping, i feel like i'm watching someone's home movies with jane and teresa playing their roles.


@bonaduz Thanks for being such a great sport. It's me writing the stuff who is the bad girl! It's good to be forgiven when I'm too rambunctious. :-) Hi to @all! How is everybody this morning?


calling it a night so I can reign in my up late, out of bounds little self! Catch everyone on the flip side!


@Entwife - aahh good, I already thought you think of me as a baaaad girl! LOL
btw - I had a look at reviewbrain's comments of today! Great! Thank you for mentioning it. I'll have to pop in there more often. But - there's only so many hours in a day! :-)))
@rationalgal - I never watched Castle. Friends tell me though that they like it. Maybe I'll give it a try this summer. Back to your comment a few pages ago about 'Not forgotten'. I re-watched it with the director's comment. Puuhhh, gave me a strange vibe about those two guys. They really didn't like Simon! Something must have happened on set between them. Who knows....


@ bonaduz, no, actually I wasn't quoting you, just reacting to your delightful comment. All me :;)


@Entwife - are you sure you're talking about my comment? Yesterday's? Oh boy, I can't even remember what exactly I wrote...! Anyways - keep writing. I really enjoy your stories! Thank you for taking the time.

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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.