The Mentalist Review: Anniversary of Evil

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Last week's The Mentalist was obviously the last bit of light hearted fun we're going to see for a while. "Red Rover, Red Rover" had Jane taking the plunge into the dark side and it's anyone's guess if he'll make it back out.

Red John was just cruel, but I suppose that's a prerequisite for a maniacal serial killer. As if leaving an anniversary card to celebrate the murder of Jane's wife and child weren't enough, he also sent a messenger.

Lisbon & Jane Investigate Dennis

The little girl was so sweet it was almost creepy. Seeing the child with the red face painted on her hand was rather horrifying. I can only imagine that Red John chose her because she bore a resemblance to Jane's daughter. 

I loved that Jane's first concern was for the child. He first asked if the man who approached her had done anything to her, then he hypnotized her so she'd forget she'd ever seen Red John.

As much as Wainwright and Lisbon were right - further questioning might reveal something - Jane was adamant. His own little girl died at the hands of Red John. He'd protect Haley any way he could, even if it meant letting Red John go.

Torturing Jane seemed like such a personal vendetta for Red John. Why wasn't killing his family enough? Was it Jane's crusade to take him down that has made this into some sort of twisted game for the killer?

Of course, the man is a psychopath so finding understandable answers might not be so easy.

Jane's meal of Bloody Marys with the empty chairs meant for his family was heart-breakingly sad yet macabre all at once.

The murder of the week mirrored the horror and darkness that Jane was suffering but I have to ask: who lets a coworker strip them down, handcuff them and lock them in a metal box? What club could possibly be worth that?

When Jane hit Ben in the head with the shovel, I flinched. He's lucky he didn't kill the man right there. And I love that Grace was the one person who said she thought Ben deserved what he got. She's not quite the naive girl we met at the beginning of the series. Of course being engaged to a psychopath's apprentice will do that to you.

Was Jane really trying to catch a killer or was he looking to get kicked out of the CBI? It appeared that suspension wasn't good enough for him. Jane's cruel streak reared its ugly head and he pushed Wainwright until he snapped. 

Poor Lisbon was in total shock. Her partner's spiraling out of control and there wasn't anything she could do to stop it. 

So was the thought of never catching Red John too much for Jane? As he said in this The Mentalist quote:

 If you don't get the bad guy then what's the point of all this? | permalink

Had this evil game of cat and mouse simply gone on too long? If Jane crosses over to the dark side, will he find his way back? With the season finale on its way, we'll have to hold our breath and wait for what comes next.


Editor Rating: 4.6 / 5.0
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C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.


It's time to resolve the Red John plot. It's become boring.


Maybe Jane got the information about Red John from the little girl and then hypnotised her.


we watched the final show of the Mentalist tonight and thought there were some clever things, but overall we are 'sick' of hearing about Red John. It is totally boring and unrealistic. we love Simon Baker but have decided not to watch the show next season if the writers don't kill Red John off SOON!!!


Hey guys.........there is no rj........the writers haven't decide who it will be....I for one wish they would be done with him....catch him already


We won't see the killer untill the series ends.It's just not that type of show.See how they only bring the Red John Story in the beginning and end of the season ? Exactly the way they did it with Monk(with some exeptions) Frankly I don't really care who the killer is as long as the "meat" of the season is top quality stories about other murderers.Some are quite boring.Some are quite good.As long as they make Jane interesting while he solves crime I'm gonna watch it. If you really want to watch a cunning detective catching their nemesis, watch Sherock.


Yes, Jane shows what he's thinking much of the time. (I love reading the expressions on his face!) So he figured Wainwright out to be evil? He probably is, but as a Red John minion? Jane has never been able to identify a Red John minion until it's too late and the minion gets killed before Jane can question him or her. How come he recognizes typical-killer evildoers but never a Red John killer? On the other hand, maybe with his latest defeat he is becoming more aware of the nuances that can identify an RJ minion and actually does see Wainwright as one. It would be great to see how Jane deals with that. So maybe he IS working a long con now and the breakdown is central to that.


One must recall that Jane always gives the culprit a sideways look of pure malice when he knows the evil in that person. Go back to the previous seasons, you can tell his feelings just as you can tell when he is bored of the tediousness of questioning a person who he knows is lying, the looking around, the tapping of his hand etc. He deliberately leered at Wainright before going on his rant.


Red John has always been a step ahead of Jane. So it must be someone close to him. someone who knows his plans. I think one of his team. I think it's Grace. She's been always said as the good and bad girl in the show.


I think Wainright is up to his ears with red john, another disciple or maybe even the man himself. I can't see Jane egging on one with such a schoolyard taunt if he wasn't trying to expose something about the man, I'm also not so sure that his team doesn't know anything about it. I've got the episode on DVR, and I'm going to watch it again with critical eyes to see if I can see any hint about what is going on in Jane's head.
I hope they don't take a turn of Jane turned Red John disciple on the bad guys. If you want a serial killer good guy, get showtime and watch Dexter reruns or go buy the seasons at your nearest electronic stores. Lets not turn prime time into evil time.


Let's not get upset over Jane being a vigilante. Been watching reruns of the old "Monk" series. Same plot as Mentalist. Oddball detective with unconventional crime solving ways. Wife, Trudy, murdered seversl years ago in a car bombing. Monk seeking murderer to get revenge ever since. Finds the killer (tho not the one who ordered the killing). He's in hospital, dying, kept from severe pain by morphine machine. Monk gets confession. Murderer asks forgiveness. Monk (totally heartbroken) then says, "This is me. The husband of the woman you killed, turning off the morphine." Presses switch off. Turns away, all distraught as murderer feels intense pain returning. Monk finally turns back to machine. Says, "And this is Trudy. The woman you killed. Turning it back on." Presses switch on. Leaves room. So who knows how people in desperate emotional circumstances will act. We'll see soon enough whether Jane stays in vigilante mode or sees things as Monk finally did.

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The Mentalist Season 4 Episode 23 Quotes

We're in the middle of a toxic waste dump. Hurry up.


It's probably not too dangerous, as long as you know, you don't breathe.