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.


hi hi!
how are you all?
I miss the show so much these days, at first it was quite hard then it got better but now it's hard again.
I cant wait for the new season! Rationalgal, yes I hope so:-)


What I got out of tonight's "Wine and Roses" ep was the sense that Lisbon is building up to be a major take-charge person in bringing RJ down. Also that Jane is still emotionally frozen into not seeing any future but death or prison for himself, so he stll encourages Lisbon to get a love life so she can be happy. He badly wans her to be happy because under it all he loves her. His true feelings showed when he thought she might get into danger. There was real and deep concern in his face and voice. Also I noticed that when he was doing that scam about being a klepto and was asked if he was still trying to please his father, he said yes as the plan required but his face and voice said that there was truth in that. I expect S6 will bring out a lot of this baggage carried by Jane and Lisbon so they can deal with it, kill RJ and move on together.


I'm with KM on this. Red John functions as more than one person (Jared's bloody message: He is ma[ny]), tho he is the leader and enabler. That is Stiles. He is paired with Partridge as the ghoulish killer. As I said earlier, Partridge started as a "normal" serial killer but has been recruited by Stiles as ringmaster of the operation that developed from a lone killer to an operation with minions and influence. Stiles with Visualize supplies that - power, money, political influence AND protection from close investigation through state-church separation that protects Visualize. The others of the 7 fit in as working for the FBI to catch RJ or to kill him for personal reasons or as disciples of RJ. (Except for Smith and McCallister - there is NO way they fit in without the writers developing a whole new plot line.) Barlow and other enemies from Jane's carney past may also be involved with Stiles, but the main perps are Stiles and Partridge.


continued... ill address later. I have a theory Kirkland is looking for Red John just like Jane, but out of revenge or protection. I think he was either a former follower of Red John and trying to kill him for redemption, or he was the boyfriend of Lorelei's sister and is looking for revenge. Either way, I don't think its him. And Bertram is such a red herring its not even funny. When he quoted the Blake poem, that sealed the deal. Also, Red John wouldn't need poker help, because he obviously has a great mind already. These two are red herrings to me. So that narrows it down to Ray Haffner and Brett Partridge. Both of whom have many reasons to which they could be Red John, especially since they both fit the physical description. There are other reasons too, which I am sure have been discussed here at length. So, in my opinion, it has to be one of these two. Thoughts...


Okay, so this is my first post, and I want to tackle the "Who is Red John" from the 7 suspects, and get some feedback. Some of these aren't facts to narrow the list down, but rather opinions and guess work, which is all we can do at this point. It has been CONFIRMED by multiple people the Red John IS DEFINITELY on that list. First off, I am going to disregard Reede Smith, Bret Stiles, and Sheriff McAllister. They came out of nowhere, and the fans wouldn't respond on an emotional level with them. Also (no offense) Reede Smith is too fat, according to the description of Red John by Rosalind Harker. And the Sheriff is not in a position of great authority, and didn't display the charisma and characteristics I would think Red John would have. Brett Stiles, in my opinion, is too old to be him, and also doesn't fit the description. Also, it is said Jane and Red John are not friends, and see those two as friends, albeit in a weird way. However, I do think he knows who Red John is, which I will address later on. Gale Bertram is so much a red herring it is ridiculous. When he quoted the William Blake poem, I was sure he was not him. Also, Red John would need poker lessons from someone, because he has good intuition and a good mind enough on his own. And also, in the season 3 finale, the CBI team told him and Agent O'Laughlin two separate rooms where Hightower was, and O'Laughlin reported to Red John (who sent the assassin). If it was Bertram, he would have known it was a trap because the team told him one room, and O'Laughlin another. So common sense rules him out. Next is Kirkland. My theory is that Kirkland is looking for Red John just like Jane is. I think Kirkland was a Red John follower, and is now looking for him to silence him (either for protection or redemption for his past mistakes). Or, I think he was the abusive boyfriend of Lorelei's sister, and wants revenge. So that, and the fact that (to me) he is like Bertram and is a red herring, I am crossing him off. So, in my opinion, Red John is either Brett Partridge of Raymund Haffner. Both of them have a bunch of weight behind them, which I am sure has been discussed here, and they both fit the physical characteristics of Red John. Thoughts...


I've thought of the theme of partnership and what you have heard me mention on mirroring. Jane and Lisbon are an example. Kudos to Violet and others at Reviewbrain with the 7 suspects, 7 deadly sins, 7 virtues connection. So why not have RJ to be a partnership too, two working together? Red John the person and his apprentice. They both murder under the Smilie face calling card. The original and aging one from Elliston Farm who is refined, charismatic, wealthy, with god-like delusions. The younger is vigorous, hungry, well "educated" int the cutting techniques, perhaps rash and lacking charisma, but (mostly) obedient to his master. Just some musings.


I also noticed in S1 how Lisbon's background was developed. It make it clear that she and Jane share the same dysfunction, pain and loss but in different ways and handled in different ways. But the message I got was that these 2 have so very much in common and fulfill each other so well, that in the end they will get together. Maybe following abbsolute55's scenario (I like the hospital one best).


abbsolute55 I love your scenarios. They are sweet and consistent with the characters' behavior. Meanwhile, I started watching S1 of TM to see what I could see about RJ etc. I noticed that Brett Partridge has a voice that could very easily be adjusted to sound like RJ when he speaks to Jane. It's SO close! And he certainly has a serial killer vibe. However, he doesn't show signs of having the organization, the minions, the money, the political influence to do what RJ does. So I'm wondering if he was a garden variety serial killer to begin with but was taken up by someone with the RJ requirements to mess with Jane in major ways. There was none of this minion stuff before the Jane murders. There may be a link between Jane's carney enemies, who are hostile to his leaving the carnival, and Visualize, to use Partridge as a kill-on-demand puppet (which he does gladly) while Stiles and others (Barlow) run the teach-Jane-a-lesson show.


Are we there yet!


I like it very much @Abbsolute55, great scenario to think about. I like either choice, as long as Lisbon comes out well.

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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.