The Mentalist Review: The Ghoul at Sea

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"Red Lacquer Nail Polish" wasn't as much fun as I had hoped it would be. Perhaps my expectations were what left me disappointed.

Investigating an Heiress

The creepy, overgrown mansion had so much potential. Even the security guard seemed freaked out just being there. When Jane slyly told Lisbon, "Ladies first" as they entered the house worthy of a horror movie, I found myself hoping the CBI team would be forced to spend a lot more time there. Unfortunately that didn't happen.  

With the entire body burned to ash, the coroner began explaining how a human being can be turned into a fatty wax candle. When he proclaimed, "Isn't that awful" he had a strange but gleeful smile on his face. Jane was right. The guy was a ghoul. 

The investigation quickly turned to Elise's nephew. Although he wasn't actually guilty of anything, I disliked Curtis the moment he referred to the men and women at the Soldier's Home as mentally unstable war veterans. He didn't seem to care much for the place which made his turn around at the end hard to swallow.

Lissie Calhoun was the obvious red herring all along as we never got to see her. That almost never happens. If they kept talking about her, I knew she had to have some significance, although I didn't guess that she was the actual burned body until the end.

Jane was lucky he didn't set the whole darn boat on fire when he threw that lit flare into the cabin. Then out popped Elise Vogelson, who turned out to be even odder than anticipated. How could someone who dedicated her life and her family's fortune to helping veterans kill a woman who was a nurse in Vietnam as though she was doing her a favor?

From there, Elise out and out mocked Casey at how easy it was to gain her trust and manipulate her. No wonder this strange woman ended up alone for so much of her life. 

With all of its twists and turns, this story never really hooked me. It felt like a bunch of aberrant pieces that never quite fit together. 

Cho's attempts to push Rigsby into moving on from Grace were amusing. He certainly knows his partner as he asked Wayne in this The Mentalist quote

 So have you actually made any dates or are you just hesitating and second guessing yourself like you usually do? | permalink

No, Rigsby made the dates. He just didn't show up for any of them. How funny was it that they all looked like Grace?

I'm assuming it won't be long until we see him make another play for VanPelt, but won't that leave them with the same obstacle? CBI rules state that coworkers can't date one another. Unless they're willing to hide the relationship or have one of them transfer, they'll end up right back where they started.

Another favorite revelation was Jane's love of the sea and Lisbon's inability to see the appeal. Lisbon saw nothing romantic about sailing as she told Jane…

 Stuck on that thing in the middle of the ocean. It's like being in a prison cell with a chance of drowning. | permalink

Perhaps these two should stick to the beach.

With a Red John case looming ahead, what did you think of this serial killer-free episode?


Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (92 Votes)

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


actually think the bit about the ecosystem being disrupted in lisbon's poker game may be happening here. lorelei comes in and suddenly it's not so ok for jane to operate on his own without lisbon. and it's not so ok for lisbon to tear him a new one like she always does. the relationship will be stretched to the breaking point. will they agree to disagree? i think it will turn out that he hasn't gone as rogue as the promos depict. seems like the only way they can be wearing cowboy hats a few episodes from now.


We must see them the same way. I like your Annie Hall reference.


@km can't believe you just wrote that. i just posted my last comment and yours comes so much from the same place. being someone who's attracted to brilliant difficult men (and who's good at dealing with them), i can relate to lisbon. the point on his head does fit into the hole in hers.


@euterpe. i get what you're saying. you've seen the movie, annie hall? at the beginning he tells a joke -- a guy comes into a doctor's office and says, "doc, you gotta help me, my brother thinks he's chicken." the doctor says, "well, why don't have him locked up?" the guy replies, "i need the eggs." i think lisbon and jane need the eggs. there's something about each that the other one needs. something intangible. it's true, she can break the cycle and toss him. but i think she'd be cutting off her nose to spite her face. when he was gone for six months, she suffered terribly. he may be a jerk (not to me, but that's another story) but he's her jerk. she takes him back. she loves him when others hate him. she sees a side of him that she loves. and she likes and values a lot about him that's a pain in the ass. what's she gonna do? guide him away from doing bad stuff and stick with him. imeho (in my ever humbler opinion)


I sometimes think that Lisbon minds less than the audience does. Remember the 100th and Jane cold read her as having a soft spot for badly behaved men. He said something about it being because they remind her of her father. I think that observation has some truth. She sees a good man within him and she sees a lost wounded person. Clearly after 10 years she thinks he is worth the grief he causes. The way they are connected is enough for her most of the time. But, that is just my 2¢.


The Jane-Lisbon thing drags on for the same reason the RJ thing drags on. The creators want this series to run as long as possible, but the plot doesn't allow much leeway for that. The longest they can stretch out something like this is 6 seasons and that is really pushing it. So we get frustrated because in the normal order of things this should have been wrapped up in season 3 - or 4 at the latest.


@ huisclothes,
The black. I have a chocolate brown pair from last year. I do like the periwinkle. Yes, shearling at the opening and underside of the tongue. I find they are warmer and have better arch support than my Chucks.


(cont…) Jane is basically a child. He is always going to push the limits. If Lisbon keeps letting him get away with it, then he will never have any incentive to change, and will continue to be an obnoxious a**. Just as those children who are never disciplined will continue to be annoying little brats (as KM previously pointed out.) I don’t know what Lisbon is afraid of. Yes, Jane will initially challenge the ultimatum and leave, but he will always come back because he has nothing and no one else in his life and desperately needs the info. and connections afforded him by his involvement with the CBI. I don’t understand why she can’t see that she holds all the cards here.


@huiscloths – In answer to your question on what constitutes Lisbon calling Jane on his crap…yes, it involves pointing out the unacceptable lines he has crossed and giving him an ultimatum. And again, yes, actually following through with the decision to walk away. She briefly did this in the opening of season two. When Minelli reassigned the Red John case to Bosco’s team, Jane immediately threw his temper tantrum and started packing up his toys to go home. Lisbon called him on it, he insulted the team, and she told him to hit the road. What happened…he came crawling back and begged her to let him back on the team because “I don’t have anywhere else to go.� Unfortunately, she quickly backed off her original requirements for his return and he was immediately back to his same old tricks.


@km these are nice. what color did you get? do they have shearling?

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The Mentalist Season 5 Episode 15 Quotes

If you hadn't mentioned the congealed human fat in the lightbulbs I may have had the stomach to stick around and find out. You're a ghoul.


Normally I'd be tempted to mock your superstitions but in this case I'm inclined to agree.