The Mentalist Midseason Report Card: B+

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As we wait for The Mentalist to return on January 6 with "Days of Wine and Roses," we're using our down time to relive some of our favorite - and not so favorite - moments of the season so far.

We've already set fingers to keyboard for our Once Upon a Time midseason report and Sons of Anarchy Season 5 report card. Now take a look as we take a look at what Patrick Jane and company have been up to...

Back to His Old Life

Best Episode: I'm so very torn over this one. In the end it's a tie between "Devil's Cherry" and "Red Sails in Sunset." The first dove right into Jane's tortured psyche as he spoke with his deceased daughter while in a drug induced haze.  It was poignant, funny, sad, and hopeful all at once.

But "Red Sails in Sunset" brought Jane's obsession with Lorelei to a head as we learned why this intriguing character became the psychopath's mistress. The best twist was finding out how much Red John had taken away from Lorelei, and whether or not she'd ever believe Jane's theory as he let her go off to find her own truth. 

Then there was that whole issue about a handshake as Lorelei told Jane: I only wonder why the two of you didn't become life long friends the moment you shook hands. | permalink

Now that will surely have repercussions throughout 2013.

Worst Episode:  Perhaps it's simply because Wayne Rigsby has never been one of my favorite characters but I didn't find much to love in "Blood Feud." Rigsby's father was a despicable man and Wayne has never really known when to walk away.  Heck, in the past he'd even dragged Cho down into his mess.  So the only upside I saw in this episode was that dear old Dad won't be returning.

Most Improved Character: I'm not sure you can call Patrick Jane improved as he continues to carry this show but my love for the tortured ex-psychic continues to grow.

From the intimate look into his tortured heart that we glimpsed as he spoke with his deceased daughter to his obsession with the serial killer that took her and his wife away, somehow Patrick Jane just gets better with age. 

Most Disappointing Character: Almost all of the secondary characters have been disappointing this season for one reason or another but I've really missed these two...

Kimball Cho because we really haven't seen enough of him. I've been craving more of Cho's deadpan one liners and observations all season but they've been few and far between.

Grace Van Pelt has been stuck behind a desk most of the season, not that it's her fault.  Amanda Righetti is very pregnant which explains the large purses, plants and boxes that continue to jump in her path but I've missed the bad ass Grace we got glimpses of in The Mentalist season 4. Hopefully once the actress' beautiful bundle of joy is born we can get back to the sweet but snarky Van Pelt I've grown to love.

Most Intriguing Character Return:  Lorelei Martins. When we first met Red John's newest minion in The Mentalist season 4 finale she was certainly sexy and alluring but this season gave her a new twist.  Whether she realizes it or not, Lorelei is a victim of Red John. Will she survive the tug of war between Patrick Jane and the infamous serial killer?  I hope so. Watching this intriguing beauty's blood spill would be tragedy.

Most Disappointing Character Return:  Summer Edgecombe. I never thought she was a good match for Cho but Summer was smart and fun and funny. Upon Summer's return this season she was dumbed down and boring. Apparently they brought the former hooker / criminal informant back just to knock her up, marry her off to some dim witted guy and send her on her way. What a lousy way to close out a once interesting character.

Hopes for 2013:

  • More character development for Teresa Lisbon. I feel as though we only get glimpses into Lisbon and after five season's we should know her better.
  • I know this will probably never happen but I'd like to see the show decide whether Jane and Lisbon are headed towards a possible romantic future or if this is more of a brother / sister partnership. Surprisingly, I'm good with either scenario but wondering which way this duo is leaning can get confusing.
  • As much as I'm loving the slow build of tracking Red John, I hope the appearance of increased momentum isn't a fluke.  Perhaps we can have the answer to Red John's identity at the end of this season without having Jane and company catch him just yet.

Overall Grade: B+

Okay, fans. What grade would you give The Mentalist season 5 so far.

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

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