Mentalist The Red Barn Fan-Review

Hello everyone!

Yes, you read that right. It was bound to happen sooner or later. Real life came out full force this month and doesn’t show any sign of letting up soon. As I’ll be very busy the upcoming months I’ll be relying on you, dear readers, to review this episode by offering your fantastic comments as usual. I’ve been staggered with your responses over the years, so much that I don’t think my presence is even needed much anymore (though it would be nice to be missed ^_^)

I still love this show to pieces but reviews can’t take precedence over my career. Maybe I’ll be able to free my schedule to write some more in the future. But if not, please do come here for the discussion. I know I will; your opinions on our favorite show always make me think, smile, and laugh.

Mini-verdict: With regards to this episode,all I can say now is wow. Tom S. wrote an equally funny and important episode. Oh, and I loved the direction by Allison Anders. Baker and Tunney are as talented and delightful and in tune and perfect as always, etc. etc. But so was everyone and everything else.

    Image by Chizuruchibi. Copyright Reviewbrain, February 2013. Not to be used without permission.

Image by Chizuruchibi. Copyright Reviewbrain, February 2013. Not to be used without permission.

Sweet episode. I was only able to watch it once though, so I’ll grade it after that second viewing. For now, here are some possible topics for discussion:


I’m just going to point out that All-I-Need pointed out way back in Season three that he’s probably a member of Visualize, to which I replied that he might have been one who went rogue on them after learning all their secrets; a possible reason why Stiles knows so much about him but doesn’t like him (besides the fact that he killed all those women, I mean).

(not) Jealous Jane?

First the stripper, then Haffner. I thought Jane took the attention Lisbon was getting very well. In fact, he was downright sweet about it, going to catch the case with Cho and leaving her to enjoy her spotlight.

Ray Haffner

I don’t think Lisbon suspected he had anything to do with the crime; just wanted to ask him if he happened to notice anything. But his reaction “we’re still friends, why would you ask me that” raised a big red flag. Hence her going to talk to Jane.

Are We Partners, or What?

One word: Finally. Now excuse me while I get another box of tissues…


Robin Tunney got engaged! Woohoo! Read all about it at: Robin’s Green Shades.

Chizuruchibi is selling a calender featuring her art! Check it out here.

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85 responses to “Mentalist The Red Barn Fan-Review

  • JustMe


    I really enjoyed this episode and I won’t be able to go into the detail that everyone else but I will say that the first thing that struck me was how Cho had stated to VanPelt and Rigsby that Jane wouldn’t talk about the RJ symbol but cut to the next scene with Jane and Lisbon and he all but tackles her with the information and holds nothing back. Further proof of his trust in her and his openness with her compared to everyone else that he interacts with. That to me spoke volumes.

    Also Jane tried to obviously listen to Hafner and Lisbon’s phone conversation as they walk toward Visualize. Laugh all you want but I was like, “Jealous much?” I also loved her flirty hair flip when she said “lunch”… LOL Good on you Lisbon.

    RJ as a member of Visualize. HMMMM. I still think its Mashburn. Fits the age and the manipulation part and he would soon get sick of being manipulated by a religious organization but he would learn a few lessons from it also.

    Hafner as an unwitting mole? Quite possibly.

    I just loved the end so much. He called her partner and it was like he was pulling her through the looking glass to some degree. She has been fully let in to his obsession and she didn’t judge him. Maybe they both learned something from the Volker incident. His trust of her and the obvious cementing of her as the ONLY person that he fully trusts is huge. Like Daisy the Elephant Huge.

    I think that Lorelei will not be so much a thorn between them as she once was as I do believe that Jane will share everything with LIsbon now. Maybe after the fact but he will share. I also think that there is a distinct possibility that Lorelei will confront Lisbon with some hard truths about Jane and what he really feels for Lisbon. At least give her more food for thought than the jealousy that she’s been feeling whenever Lorelei is involved.

    My inner shipper is squealing but I don’t think that should suprise many as I do think that end was VERY IMPORTANT for our two leads. It was important on so many levels and it is the most intimate he’s been with anyone, like he was letting her into his mind. What happened with Lorelei was purely physical without intimacy so I would say that doesn’t count at all.

    For Jane, his mind is his most valued attribute and he only lets Lisbon wander around in it so it shows a level of trust and affection he shows no other. I like that distinction….

  • zee

    Hello Reviewbrain,

    What a bummer!:( Are you sure you’re letting us fans loose on your review blog? All I can say is, “Hark! There’s fandom a’commenting!” 😉

    My two cents: Jane’s composure in an RJ episode was amazing! No ‘crazy eyes’ this time, although you could see him cracking a bit at the last scene in the attic as he kept rubbing his leg. (its a common social habit of people to touch or pat one’s skin to keep comfort in a nervous situation.) Might be because Lisbon knows one of those top names. Apart from his composure, Jane worked like a good ol’ copper! I would assume the Volker case was pivotal to this transformation as well as for the growth of Lisbon’s characterization.

    I’m not sure if I heard it right – Cooper said he sent “someone” to check on the three Visualize members working on the farm, but that “someone” said it was empty. If i’m right, I’m curious about the “someone” he sent. At last there is some progression on the RJ arc, albeit small, but like Jane said, it eliminates a lot of possibilities.

    Also, what did Jane say (twice) to the school teacher to scare him at the diner? I didn’t catch that.

    Thanks Reviewbrain!

    P.S. Sassy lisbon aartwork Chibi! But if she takes request, I would like to see Rigsby’s rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody with killer tequila.

  • windsparrow

    Brett Styles knows who Red John is. Or at least strongly suspects. Withholding the knowledge from Jane and the authorities, I cannot decide what he is most likely getting out of it. Is RJ the one person he is afraid of? Is he so truly amoral that he is amused to keep the secret? Or thumbing his nose at the authorities? Does he perceive RJ as a comrade-in-arms because they have some goal or philosophy in common? My favorite Styles/RJ theory is that RJ is Styles’ smarter and more evil younger brother.

    Haffner was so squirrely when Lisbon asked him about that farm… unless he turns out to be RJ himself, he is showing his loyalty is first to Visualize and that he knows that, erm, there is some there there. Right. I know that is incoherent, but how else can I say this?

  • rita

    Love the art work, it reflects the episode perfectly.

    I really enjoyed this one, it was a great mix of creepy, serious and fun.

    Loved Lisbon’s facial expressions at the start with the surprised party and the stripper (My own greatest fear is that someone would do this for me!! HORROR!!!) And Jane….hands in the air…’I had nothing to do with it!!’ and the relief on his face when he could escape with Cho.

    I thought the scene where Jane goes out of the barn and we see him basking in the sun at the front of the barn, all relaxed, then turns around and sees…….the BIG smiley face…..the expression of horror and shock, and the body language perfect…..well acted and well directed. I know that I have read on other sites that some people are surprised that ‘no one’ has reported the smiley face on the barn (what with the Red John publicity and all) Having lived in a small village (all be it in England) I don’t find that odd at all…..for a lot of people living there it has just been there all their lives, they grew up with it so it didn’t have those connotations, for the older people it would have just been something drawn by kids staying with the funny people (visualize) and because it happened so long ago they probably don ‘t link it in with the serial killer…after all things like that don’t happen in their town!!

    I too loved the last scene where Jane pulls Lisbon into the attic….into his thoughts……He really DOES trust her….after all the attic is now double locked…no one else can gain access…..and own up….how many of you yelled at the screen in frustration at the end!!!!!

    I am looking forward to reading everyones thoughts, and reviewbrain, I hope that life lets up a bit so that you are able to let us into your thoughts.

  • novellastories

    I really liked this episode.
    I loved how the scene where Jane sees RJ’s smile was shot. Just perfect. The sun, the peaceful surrounding, and then, very slowly… the smile. Just amazing.

    Another scene I loved was the lunch one.
    Haffner said a couple of true things about Jane. It’s a possibility. And Lisbon knows that, but I guess she lives in denial regarding the possibility that Jane might leave. Seeing how she was during his six month’s trip to Vegas, I can’t imagine if he had to leave forever.
    I loved the whole interaction between Lisbon and Haffner, I liked the fact that she had already said no to his offer before she knew about his connection with Visualize.

    I also liked the fact that the case was connected with the RJ’arc. And we got to find out something new, even if lot of people already guessed the Visualize connection.
    I agree that Stiles probably knows who RJ is. Or better, I think he strongly suspects someone. Maybe RJ is a person who was once dear to him, one of his faves, who knows.

    Now I really can’t wait to know those names. I think in that final scene, Lisbon was the voice of every fan: tell me!!

    Looking forward to seeing the rest of this.

    And well… the whole party/stripper thing. Really… poor Lisbon! But Rigsby was adorable, he’s just one of a kind.
    And it was very sweet when he asked Cho if Lisbon was serious about not forgiving him for the stripper. And Cho’s immediate reaction was hilarious too. You just gotta love this family… sorry, team 🙂

  • C Hill

    for me, just a stunning episode. a couple of minor weak points, but very minor in the scheme of things. i’m also a fan of Jenica Bergere (she was so good in bones’ death of the queen bee) so that was nice.

    many points already hit. lisbon’s stripper scene (jane’s “oh boy” — lisbon’s “that’s my butt”) was very entertaining. libson’s almost giddy request at the end for the names. one thing i haven’t seen yet, regarding the “barn reveal”, was the excellent use of music — the ominous red john theme coming in just before jane notices. well done.

    i find the return to van pelt’s, well, religious roots interesting — echoing back to the pilot. one does have to wonder if that will come back to visualize, as some have noted. i wonder if one of the primary character’s parents will lead back to visualize.

    and as well crafted as the episode is, the jane/lisbon interactions are such the icing on the cake. “every year with your counts as two”. and, as noted, while jane won’t talk about RJ on the scene, he’s right there to show the evidence to lisbon.

    lots of meat and not much gristle in this episode. side note, during the haffner/lisbon lunch, i watched several times to see the cars in the background. i really expected to see that late model 70s car from the end of “Always Bet on Red” in the background…

  • windsparrow

    “but I guess she lives in denial regarding the possibility that Jane might leave. Seeing how she was during his six month’s trip to Vegas, I can’t imagine if he had to leave forever.”

    If Jane leaves the CBI after they take down Red John, I think he will say goodbye properly as well as leave lines of communication open. And she might have some concerns for him, but I think Lisbon won’t be so worrried. She will try to be optimistic that he can finally move on with his life, and if he has to leave so he can do that, well, she loves him enough to let him (regardless of what kind of love it is). When Jane was in Vegas, Lisbon was not torn up just because she missed him. She was aching with worry over his state of mind, believing that he needed help, either professional or just to be surrounded by people who care about him. So it will not smash the heck out of her morale and ability to cope in the same way, if Jane does go away again. And there is the possibility that even if he does leave the CBI he will not necessarily leave the area, making it even easier to keep in touch. (Who knows, maybe he will have the grace to leave the CBI so he can court her properly without making her face the same dilemma Van Pelt and Rigsby faced.)

  • bloomingviolet2013

    While I prefer a more traditional review too, I must say it’s rather fun to read everyone’s thoughts and theories about the episode instead of just answers and comments to question raised in the review. Some fairly good points have been made! 🙂

    1/ Visualize

    First, it was interesting to know that RJ has indeed been part of Visualize: we still don’t know for sure if he went rogue on them at the time (or later) or if he’s still somehow connected to them in an active way (that’s to say more actively than keeping an eye on them by Craig or them keeping an eye on him), but it’s a start…
    We got a few interesting titbits:
    – he probably invented his signature smiley face at the farm; he was already taking his distances with the group and creating his own philosophy
    – he killed two of the men working at the farm, or he made the third kill them…
    – … meaning that, given this last man’s murderous intents on the women later and him killing the pig, this may very well his first disciple: RJ might have convinced him by twisting his faith in Visualize dogma (hence using speed while the mainstream group don’t approve), or by using the influence drugs had on the man’s mind. If that so, we have an early case of 1) manipulation/ convincing if RJ tabled on hidden bloody urges (like with Todd Johnson, Hardy) or 2) brainwashing when his follower is in a straining mental situation (like Lorelei and probably Rebecca) or 3) completely overtaking one’s mind by mental conditioning and/or drugs (like Kristina).
    – The whole situation explains the mystical/ religious aspect of his network: he began when he was part of a sect that he joined at a young age. Since their leader at the farm was said to be a true believer in Vizualise and since the other member that left the community before the murders became a priest, we can guess that there was an heavy “religious” atmosphere there at the time…
    – We can guess that RJ left his family or didn’t have one. That matches what the brother said about the first identified victim: that he needed to cut ties with his biological family in order to discover his real identity. And that’s also what RJ did with Lorelei and Jane, by killing their families allegedly to help them come to a deeper truth (still dubious if it was the primary goal with Jane).
    – I guess that settles the question of whether Jane might be RJ or not: there are obvious similarities (an adventurous youth; escaping the carnie world/ the farm), still it seems pretty unlikely that Jane would have been at the farm when he was supposed to still be part of the carnies, since he met his wife among them.

    Now in Visualize’s official version of the story, they knew that the barn had been abandoned but they didn’t spot the corpses in the secret basement. Then, we have a new string of theories about Stiles’ mysterious knowledges:
    1) he suspects RJ’s identity because he was a former member
    2) he knows his identity and he suspected about the murders even if nobody had found the corpses. And, as it would be expected, he didn’t call the police.
    3) He only found out the link between RJ and his group later, after the official serial killings had begun.
    4) RJ has stayed with Visualize where he completed his learning: he would then be the person who told them the farm had been abandoned.

    Moreover, it seems that everyone’s goal this season is to target Lisbon :
    1) Some tried to separate them personally:
    – Lorelei tried to get her killed and tried to shatter their bond (using jealousy ; poking at Jane’s feelings)
    – Giving her a new potential male interest; Lisbon’s been seeing men outside of work in a increasingly personal way: first a semi-professional poker night with Mancini; then coffee with Kirkland and here lunch with her friend Haffner… Even Haffner tried to give to his business proposal a more personal vibe (taking her to lunch, calling her, telling her they were friends; see Jane unease when he called her, she played it as if he was asking her out). And all three of them would be the correct age to have hanged out at the farm as a “kid”.

    2) Others tried to separate them professionally:
    – First of all, Volker: if he was involved with RJ there are various possibilities: 1) if Kirkland is part of RJ’s network, he tried to get her off the case; 2) Kirkland’s part of the network, and he used the case as a pretext to make contact with her; 3) Brenda is part of the network and her deal with Volker implied for him to take her down (either by compromised her career and making her fired, or by killing her, or simply by giving her a new obsession that’d make her grown distant with Jane); 4) Volker himself is part of the network, and the same possibilities apply. Either way, the Volker case is suspicious and it was directed at Lisbon, not Jane.
    – Visualise tried to separate Lisbon from Jane professionally: they financed Haffner’s project in exchange of hiring Lisbon… In the same logic, Stiles helped Jane to free Lorelei, then he probably also guessed what really happened afterwards (that he let her go away to tried and get a better hold on her). He certainly knows about Volker too: the fact that people were aware of Lisbon’s involvement during the poker game hints enough that it was rather public knowledge.

    I guess everything depends on the true goals behind Visualize. If Stiles’ plan all along was to let Jane to get rid of RJ, because he genuinely likes Jane (or before that because he saw RJ as a dangerous concurrent) then what Brett did so far is to be understood as trying to help them out. Therefore, he was sincere when he gave Jane advice about letting Lorelei in jail: he wanted to protect him, because he considers him a valuable person. That may also explain his scheme to take Lisbon away: it may have been a way to save her since he’s aware that Jane has “overtaken her life and her team”, or, more probably, it may have been a test to convince Jane to let go of his revenge by threatening to remove the dearest person in his life (it could have been a catalyst for him to realise what he really wants).
    On the other hand, if we are to understand that he works hand in hand with RJ, then Stiles must realise that Lorelei may become a liability. Thus, he tried to hurt Jane by taking Lisbon away without actually killing her yet, maybe as a test as well. Or he was trying to isolate Lisbon from Jane’s influence to find a way to turn her against him.

    2/ (not) Jealous Jane?

    You’re right, Jane indeed let her have the spotlight for once, like he did with her solving the Volker case. Still, I agree with JustMe: Jane displayed discreet jealousy. He understood right away that the striper wasn’t dead and that he was about to kiss Lisbon and wasn’t too happy when the guy started his show. He stayed close to Lisbon and hurriedly explained that he had nothing to do with it. Normally, given the whole rather funny situation and Lisbon’s obvious embarrassment, he would have teased her with glee, or at the very least he would have been amused in spite of (or rather precisely because of) how tasteless the party was. I mean, where is the man who teased her merciless about her blushing or who was grinning like a fool because he was meeting her ex-fiancé? Here Jane seemed more ill at ease than amused.
    Same with Haffner: when he came to congratulate Lisbon at the party, Jane tried to interfere by provoking the man. That’s a distraction technique: he was protecting Lisbon by impeding a man he doesn’t like to have access to her. He also didn’t seem very happy when Haffner made overtures to her: if he thought that it was a maneuver to get to her, like it was indeed, he would have simply warned her or kept a closer eye on him. Here, he just kept watching the situation from afar but showed his interest by trying to overhear her conversation on the phone and by asking her before and after the lunch. And, moreover, Lisbon played her meeting with Haffner as a date when she told Jane about it: there was definitely a personal vibe in here. In both cases, his attitude reminded me of his inquisitive « who is this guy? » about Kirkland : he doesn’t display outright jealousy but he’s not comfortable nor pleased with the situation and is still attentive.

    3/ Ray Haffner.

    I don’t think either that Lisbon was suspecting him when she asked her questions.
    Still, Haffner’s position as Jane’s former supervisor raises some questions too: was giving him Lisbon’s job Bertram’s idea? Or, given his connections with Visualize, had Haffner been given the mission to monitor Jane’s progress and investigate the case for Visualize? Or, was he directly used by RJ to try and influence Jane and control the investigation? Remember that Haffner has been labelled as a specialist in surveillance, that works for both theories.
    Also, even though Haffner is not clever enough to be RJ himself (he didn’t even manage to answer Lisbon’s questions without becoming a suspect), it’s still possible that he has met RJ at the farm and warned Stiles against him, or that he worked as a disciple for RJ and has become a spy infiltrated in Vizualise.

    That makes me wonder: how old is RJ? A “kid” may refer to an adolescent, then RJ would be roughly Jane’s age; but a “kid” is also a young adult, someone who is a man by age, but is seen as the youngest of the group or someone perceived as naïve or less experienced. In that case, Stiles ad Minelli are out, because they’re too old, but Bertram would have been twenty something at the time (actor Mickael Gaston is 51 years old). Same goes for LaRoche, even though it’s unlikely since he wouldn’t let Jane pressure him because of his secret if he were RJ (and anyway, wouldn’t Rosalind have also mentioned his corpulence when she was describing Roy if he were her lover?)… And of course Brett Partridge, CBI Ron, Marshburn, and others still qualify.

    4/ Are We Partners, or What?

    The scene was both thrilling and sweet. Obviously, Jane wanted to let her in, otherwise he wouldn’t have been so adamant to show her that he was hiding a big secret… He did almost the same thing when he put the file on the prison where Lorelei was held under his mattress. And also back then in ‘Redacted’, Lisbon had to threaten him before he spilled the beans, here, he seems were eager to get her help, he’s just not willing to ask directly: she still needs to take the first step… And the look on her face when he started explaining her how much he remembered? Awe, a bit of incredulity and lots of admiration… Just wow.

    On a side note, I really liked that Rigsby was the one who came up with the party for Lisbon’s anniversary (even if that included a striper, lol). He has a strong sense of family: he was also the one to get the idea of a guys night when Jane was feeling down in ‘Devil’s Cherry’.

    Keep up the good work, Reviewbrain, we already miss you! 😉

  • estatica

    As short as it was, I still enjoyed reading your first impressions on this episode, reviewbrain (and Chizuruchibi’s drawing too, of course!). I also love reading everybody’s insightful comments and I can’t wait for the the ones that will follow after.

    These were this main things that I gathered from this episode:

    * Jane / Lisbon scenes *

    In the beginning of the episode, and because I had seen the promo, it crossed my mind that Jane was preparing an anniversary surprise for Lisbon, but I guess he is too engaged in catching Red John at this point to take time for that kind of stuff.

    I found his immediate reaction at the stripper similar to the one he had in 2×11 “Rose-colored glasses”, when that drunk guy kissed Lisbon saying she was the one. He immediately distanced himself physically and looked embarrassed with the whole thing.

    The way I see it, while he clearly has fun teasing Lisbon in social situations so she feels embarrassed (Greg and Mashburn come to mind), I feel that when he is confronted with Lisbon actually having physical contact / romantic dates with other guys, he is no longer amused. His jaw clenches more than usual and his body language looks very controlled, like he is keeping himself in check so his response is considered socially acceptable. We saw that in the end scene in 3X07 “Red Hot” as well, the moment he realized Lisbon was Mashburn’s date.

    If he wasn’t jealous of Haffner, he was at least intrigued with his sudden interest in Lisbon. He tried to listen to the phone call and Haffner’s lunch was the first thing he mentioned when she came back.

    The scene at the end, as others have said, was very revealing for both characters. Jane confirms what the writers were saying all throughout this episode, as he literally opens up to let Lisbon in and for, the first time truly acknowledges her as his equal partner. Lisbon, on the other hand, is no longer trying to force him to do as she asks as his boss, she now sees him as a partner too.

    His look when she asks him who he suspects is also very telling. I think he knows she won’t like it when he tells her about some of his primary suspects, like Minelli and Mashburn.

    * Red John theories *

    So far, I feel the writers, instead of pointing us to Red John, are rather helping us figuring out who Red John isn’t. After this episode, I’m almost certain that, at least, Haffner can’t be Red John.

    Haffner only reinforced what I already thought about the character. Since the first episode, he came across as weak minded (he was a bit rude when working with Grace and he lamely tried to force Cho to do his bidding). I can’t possibly see him being Red John, as I expect him to be more seductive and charming, much like Jane. He can, of course, know him from a previous connection in Visualize.

    As the episodes go on, I keep thinking Red John is probably that Detective Marco Francis guy. I wrote about it over here, I hope it’s ok to offer a link with extra thoughts:

    * Grace scene with the priest *

    I’m kinda worried about her now, more than after that episode when she kissed Bret Stiles.I wonder if this was a way for the writers to show us that she may be easily seduced to be part of Visualize. 😦

    Bonus: * The lemon juice trick *

    I loved that! I used to play with lemon juice as a kid and write secret messages! It was awesome to see Jane using it to catch the killer 😀

  • Callie

    Very sad, Reviewbrain! Your reviews have been so insightful and prescient. I will miss them. Don’t think you’re “not needed…” I don’t visit this blog just for the comments! But I will still try to check in now and then. Good luck with your career.

  • bloomingviolet2013

    The fact that Reviewbrain couldn’t provide a “normal” review once in almost three years, and has the courtesy to warn us that she may get too busy to provide them as regularly as she usually does, does not mean that she’s giving up on the show or on the blog. This is a special place and the comments have always been a part of the reviews appeal, at least for me. Just enjoy the little novelty this time, it may be interesting to see what everyone has to say about the ep for a change! Don’t give up on the blog yet, Callie! 😉

    (I hope I’m not sounding too harsh: I just don’t want people to get all negative. *That* makes me sad.)

  • reviewbrain

    You’re sweet, Callie. But please don’t worry too much. I’ll still mini-reviews (and normal ones) when I can. Thanks for the good luck wishes. Plus I’m sure Violet will write some as well when she can 😉

  • C Hill

    one thought about RJ did enter my head after watching this episode. does bret stiles have any sons?

  • reviewbrain

    Estatica, Brad Rowe is an actor whom I admire very much. I was very disappointed that he was never brought back on the show. But him as Red John? Maybe he’s *too* attractive for that 😉 It’s an interesting theory, though. My money is still on Ron, though…

  • Julie

    Wonderful art work as always. Miss your review but glad to hear you mention violet as was wondering if everything was alright with your side kick. Some fantastic comments so just a couple of things to address.
    The season 4 finale Lisbon says to Jane in the church “I thought we were partners” but it was a lovely scene. Simon baker said the line wonderfully, he has such great instincts. I loved the insight into his mind as he rolled out the numbers. You felt it works as quickly as he spoke.
    I cheered inside during the scene with VanPelt defending visualize as i had just watched the Styles episode a couple of days before and was reminded of the excitement i felt at the possibilities that could create. Now that rj has been positively connected with the group, even if just in the past, she could be useful. Wondering the reason for after being a member.
    Loved the party. Jane guessed what was coming and how it would be received. Personally i don’t think he did Lisbon any favours leaving her there. The smiley reveal was wonderful and simon’s directing idea. Great episode and exciting to be getting clues and red herrings to sort through.

  • Julie

    Forgot to hit the notify me button.

  • bloomingviolet2013

    Huh huh, that’s an interesting point, ladies: is RJ supposed to be just a charismatic man or is he attractive as well? Even though I never pictured him as a beautiful guy, I guess seduction might be part of his power over women like Lorelei, so he might be good-looking too…:) (That’s odd, but before this episode, I tended to always picture him as a bit older than Jane… don’t really know why, except that a cult master is traditionally pictured as respected and older than his disciples – a bit like Jane is a bit older than the team. And yeah, RJ was friends with Hardy’s father too, even though I realize now that this point doesn’t really mean anything, of course…)
    CBI Ron is definitely a suspect. As for Detective Marco Francis, I had to go back to season 1 to spot him, I didn’t remember him at all… But why not? 😉

  • JustMe

    I totally forgot about how vehemently VanPelt defended Visualize to the priest.

    Now how interesting to think that she could be indoctrinated to the religion as obviously the members fly under the radar pretty well. Remember the local cop last year in the visualize episode where Van Pelt kissed Stiles, now Haffner, and possibly VanPelt….

    I also forgot to mention Cooper suddenly gets to remain with Visualize after trying to oust Stiles??? Hmmm… Maybe Cooper knows more than we think or could he possibly be the weak link in the Visualize organization that will have an attack of conscience and spill what he knows?

    I think the wisest decision Jane has ever made is trusting only Lisbon. Mainly because she has the strength of character that is damn neared unbelievable and a faith in the goodness of Jane that others seem to lack.

    Now I also forgot to mention about the end scene that if he can remember all 2000+ people he has shaken hands with, then wouldn’t that have been a huge flag to Lisbon that he remembers the “LOVE YOU” also? And Jane would have had to know what he was admitting to by admitting he remembers all the people. Maybe he is also trying to come clean to her about what he said in his own way by leaving the breadcrumbs out to lead her….?

    Still think RJ is Mashburn… 😉

  • zee

    Worth mentioning this : Jane’s “Who’s a good boy?!” to the dog in a goofy voice:)

  • P

    I was disappointed in this one – I think I was just expecting something more. I don’t feel we learned anything new. I agree with All-I-Need – We have known for a couple of seasons that Red John has some kind of Visualize/Stiles association. The fact that Stiles was the one to tell Jane where to find Kristina Frye was kind of a big clue. I can’t believe Jane never followed up on that. I mean, he can remember 2,000 people he shook hands with, but he can’t remember that Stiles had info on a Red John victim? He can obsess over his handshake book, but can’t be bothered to ask Stiles and other Visualize members some questions about RJ? Maybe try surveillance or phone taps (he bugged Bosco’s office- he should try planting a bug at visualize.)…try something, anything? It makes no sense. They never actually investigate. Maybe interview family and friends of known RJ minions and victims- they didn’t even bother interviewing Lorelei’s mother till she escaped form prison. It’s like if RJ doesn’t leave a bloody knife with fingerprints and his business card, they can’t do anything.

    I am feeling led on. In pre-season interviews, Heller & Co. promised lots of new information about Red John. I understand that they want to keep the best stuff for the season finale, but they should be giving us some significant pieces throughout the season. I have a feeling this will end up like Little Red Corvette – a super rushed ending that doesn’t make any sense. I have realized that since the end of season 3 and the fake Red John killing that I am getting more and more annoyed with the Red John story line. If they don’t kill him by season end, I am giving up on the show, Better to go out with memories of 3 great seasons and 2 somewhat frustrating ones that still had bright spots than to end up bitter because I stuck around for a 6th season of being strung along.

  • windsparrow

    “For Jane, his mind is his most valued attribute and he only lets Lisbon wander around in it so it shows a level of trust and affection he shows no other. I like that distinction….”

    So true, so true. I disagree with you about the quality and intensity of Lisbon’s jealousy of Loralei. But I love how Jane lets Lisbon know his mind, his very self.

  • windsparrow

    “I totally forgot about how vehemently VanPelt defended Visualize to the priest.”

    I did not see it as vehement at all. It felt to me as though she was playing devil’s advocate, cheerfully as having learned to do so from Jane who does that sort of thing for the fun of it as well as to see what shakes loose in the other party’s reactions. Visualize members seem to deliberately fly under the radar. I cannot imagine Hafner, for instance, defending Styles teachings. He only admitted to being a member when he had painted himself into a corner.

    “I also forgot to mention Cooper suddenly gets to remain with Visualize after trying to oust Stiles??? Hmmm…”

    I believe that comes under the heading of “keep your friends close and your enemies closer” on Styles’ part. For Cooper’s part, his subdued behavior spoke volumes. I suspect that although he remains in a nominal position of authority, his main responsibilities now lie along the “cleaning up the dog poop” career path. My guess is that he has pretty much no other refuge that will offer even that much glory, that he can actually avail himself of because Styles can quite likely blackmail him into staying within reach (see above, friends close/enemies closer).

  • windsparrow

    “The fact that Stiles was the one to tell Jane where to find Kristina Frye was kind of a big clue. I can’t believe Jane never followed up on that. I mean, he can remember 2,000 people he shook hands with, but he can’t remember that Stiles had info on a Red John victim?”

    What makes you think Jane has forgotten Styles told him about Kristina? Remember that Styles is a mentalist with many of the same skills as Jane. I see this as Jane recognizing that Styles will not give any more information out than he wishes about Red John. I am certain that Jane has been ever mindful of the connection, and part of his angling to do Styles a favor thereby earning one in return is to plumb the depths of Styles’ connection. Earlier in this season, or perhaps in the aftermath of last season, I thought that when things got truly heated, Jane might ask of Styles that he hide Lisbon away to protect her from Red John. Later I thought it might be useful to ask Styles to hide Loralei away to protect HER from both RJ and the Feds. But… asking Styles to get Loralei out of jail when RJ clearly was not going to do it, that was telling.

    ” Maybe try surveillance or phone taps (he bugged Bosco’s office- he should try planting a bug at visualize.)…try something, anything? It makes no sense.”

    Visualize is being actively investigated by the FBI. If I were Styles, I would be sweeping for electronic surveillance on a, shall we say, religious basis. Jane isn’t the tech-y surveillance wizard that Michael Westin is (Burn Notice). Bosco caught Jane and tossed him into jail. What do you think Styles would do? Oh, the lawsuits would go for years.

    “Maybe interview family and friends of known RJ minions and victims- they didn’t even bother interviewing Lorelei’s mother till she escaped form prison. It’s like if RJ doesn’t leave a bloody knife with fingerprints and his business card, they can’t do anything.”

    Good point. The only objection that I can think of to this is that everyone they have tried to interrogate before has ended up dead or a disembodied spirit (Ok, slight exaggeration, but it is accurate to Kristina’s state, and Rosalind isn’t in much better state). They can hardly disappear into Witness Protection every known associate of every distant connection.

  • JustMe

    I didn’t see it as that way and I guess I thought VanPelt was defending Visualize as opposed to leading them in the questioning. Excellent point but I will be keeping my eye on her.

    Very true about Cooper. And probably the EXACT reason he’s still around.

    Loved your thoughts on this Windsparrow.

  • JustMe

    I don’t say that Lisbon will rip out her throat but there is a definite undercurrent of jealousy/hurt there. Now Lisbon is not the type to let her baser emotions rule in such matters but I can honestly say I think they were present. But she has to know now how much more he does share with her than anyone and I don’t think that those emotions will be so much in play.

    But I also believe she will be a bit more aware when Lorelei is around for many reasons and primary is her concern for Jane and that he doesn’t lose himself to the chase as he is prone to do.

    She may trust Jane, but she doesn’t trust Lorelei and being wary would be natural.

  • windsparrow

    I can agree that there is an undercurrent. Hmm. Maybe more like the silt at the bottom of the stream, rather than undercurrent. It’s there, but Lisbon keeps it well tamped down.

  • P

    They should be interviewing anybody and everybody close to one of the moles or victims – it is their job. To not aggressively do so is unrealistic. And when have you ever seen Jane let anything go when it comes to Red John? Knowing Stiles has information about him should make Jane obsessed with Stiles. I’m surprised he himself didn’t try to join Visualize to get closer to him. He just basically ignored Stiles for 2 years. That is not very Janelike. And Jane might not be techy, but he can manipulate somebody who is. The threat of jail wouldn’t stop him from taking the chance. I just find this to be a HUGE plot hole. The laid back attitude Jane is taking on this is just wildly out of character in my opinion.

  • Ness

    It is no longer the CBI Serious Crime’s Unit job to actively investigate the Red John cases. Their job is simply to close the everyday cases that they get given. Higher-ups have long discouraged them from looking into Red John. If they ever made it known that they were still looking into Red John, that would surely provoke him into messing with the investigation or indeed members of the team.

    It’s great that you’re so into the show, but this isn’t a typical procedural. Not all leads can be pursued and interrogated at a frantic pace to wrap up each case within an hour. Heller’s black and grey characters are too intelligent and organised for that. The instant gratification of NCIS/CSI/PoI isn’t what this show is about and that’s a large part of why it stimulates so much thoughtful discourse.

  • estatica

    I know it’s a bit far fetched and I can perfectly envision other guys like Mashburn or CBI Ron or even the red sweater guy to be Red John.

    Confession #1 I keep hoping Mashburn makes more appearances, even if it’s just to mess temporarily with Jane and Lisbon (I’m mean like that hehe). Currie Graham is an excellent actor and would make a really good Red John.

    Confession #2 In every episode I keep trying to spot CBI Ron to a point I almost miss the other characters lines. What is he doing, where is he going? etc. And when he talks… I just keep hoping he talks to Jane, try to detect some spark, anything! It’s pathetic.

    Brad Rowe’s character intrigues me more now than when I first saw him years ago. Perhaps because the information we now know about Red John allows us to refute some theories about other characters, but they never seem to rule him out. In fact, he seems to fit like a glove. Granted, this is only because we hardly got to see him say anything. But why cast Brad Rowe to play an insignificant part that was on screen less than 2 minutes?

    Perhaps I’m biased because I’ve seen him play a terrific killer (playing the dominant role and turning out to be submissive) in Criminal Minds… so I sort of expected more in that episode and felt a bit cheated that we didn’t see more. The fact that Marco Francis does look like Jane a lot, and that he has the droopy sexy eyes and killer smile thing going on favours him, in my opinion.

    I don’t know if Red John will turn out to be only charismatic and not really as handsome as Jane, but it wouldn’t shock me if he was. At the end of the day, Jane does use his looks to manipulate people (I’m only surprised the show doesn’t acknowledge this a bit more), so Red John probably does it too = )

  • P

    Uh, I’m not sure why you think it isn’t there job to actively investigate the Red John case. They are in charge of the case. Why do you think they show up at every Red John crime scene- because they’re bored? Red John is one of their cases. I have no idea where you get the idea that higher ups have discouraged them from investigating this. That is completely false. This is their job.

    It’s not about instant gratification, There’s a big difference between an hour and 5 years. 5 years of rehashing the same tired story time after time. Zero progress. Ridiculous Jane plans but no solid police work The fact that the team mysteriously fails to employ actual investigative techniques that it uses on other cases when it comes to their most prominent case is a glaring failure on the plot of the writers. And now they have the audacity to tell us something they already told us 2 years ago (Red John has a Visualize connection) and expect us to be excited about the “new” information. That is what I’m dissatisfied about.

  • calmom

    Actually, I have to agree with P. Jane will go to the ends of the earth to find/hound Lorelei (“I’d ask her to marry me if I thought she’d buy it” or whatever the exact quote was), but after Stiles gives him an actual address to find Kristina Frye, who Jane KNOWS was taken by Red John, Jane’s like “thanks. no need to follow up on that crazy connection.” It is a HUGE plot hole. I’m OK with it because my disbeilief is fully suspended and I will watch this show until the last episode, but it exists. My guess is they had to save it for a huge Visualilze reveal (which seems to be starting with this episode), but it makes no sense as it’s been presented to date, and no exposition to explain it.

  • bloomingviolet2013

    I agree with you, P, to some extent: yes, they should have interrogated witnesses such as Lorelei’s mother. Like they should have (and maybe are supposed to have) interrogated Craig’s family, or Rebecca’s and Gupta’s loved ones. The only plausible reason I can think of to explain the lack of reveals on those parts is that every one of them had cut ties with their families, like Lorelei did. But the matter should have been adressed in a way or another, instead of being just swept under the carpet.

    And yes, they should have also addressed the issue of RJ and Visualize sooner, because it’s odd indeed that obsessive Jane hasn’t investigating that part before. Still, I agree with Windsparrow too: Jane has certainly known from the beginning that Stiles wouldn’t tell him anything, at least not something that he hasn’t consciously chosen to tell him; the man knows much and tells little, as a rule. And he’s a mentalist too, used to lie and manipulate people, so I’m not sure if even Jane could cold read him on serious matters and not risk being led on.
    Besides, even thought I don’t think that Ness is right in her assumption that “it is no longer the CBI Serious Crime’s Unit job to actively investigate the Red John cases” (the question hasn’t been clearly resolved after the FBI took Lorelei), she may have a point: after so many doomed crazy plans to catch the elusive serial killer, even Jane would need to come up with some kind of evidence before getting legal access to whatever information is kept about Stiles in the official FBI files. Don’t forget that Visualize is a really very powerful and extended organisation: he would need a really good reason to get anyone to agree to collaborate officially (as he did with the jail guards after Lorelei’s disappearance). And honestly, he has no mean to unofficially investigate Visualize either: there aren’t any leads he could use, no witness close enough from Bret willing to tell his secrets (remember that lawyer who was killed), nobody we know he could blackmail and the man himself seems to be almost always travelling without telling when he will be coming back (in ‘The Red Barn’ and at the end of ‘The Blood on His Hands’). To put it simply, there is no chink in Stiles’ armor wide enough to use, at least at the moment. Jane’s better option is to keep his eyes open and bid his time, rather than trying to alienate such a potential ally/informant as Bret Stiles.
    Still, you’re right: they *should* have explained it: it is a major pet peeve to let such an important reasoning to the viewers.

    Personally, I always wondered if Jane didn’t let pass the opportunity offered by Visualize because he didn’t really suspect Bret to work with RJ. It’s possible that RJ himself informed Stiles of where Kristina was held captive: after all, everything was set before they got here. It was as if RJ had known they were coming, so he prepared Kristina, wiped his traces off and got everything ready. In that case, Bret would be too smart and proud to tell Jane directly that he was given the information from RJ on a whim to involve him. That may also explain Stiles’ eagerness to let the team know that he’s keeping a close eye on them: he might not know more than them but is still fishing whatever information they may have to conduct his own private and discreet investigation… And that may explain Jane’s attitude towards him too: he shows defiance towards a fellow conman, but trusts the other’s skills if he needs an ally; that’s pretty much what he did with pretended psychic Kristina Frye and he trusted her enough to ask her out. After this episode, there is a possibility indeed that RJ tries to goad Bret too, his former master, and that he may be trying to surpass him with his own spiritual church.

    “And now they have the audacity to tell us something they already told us 2 years ago (Red John has a Visualize connection) and expect us to be excited about the “new” information.”

    To be fair, we only suspected there was a connection. The only thing we knew for sure was that Bret was interested in RJ and that he gave Jane one single important bit of information (about Kristina): the part about RJ feeling “a kind of love” for Jane may as well have been a deduction on Stiles’ part, since his job is to convince people around him that he knows everything, even when he doesn’t. Now, we are sure that RJ was a former member (it was a guess at best before), so we can guess what type of connection there might be between the two. I really expect that “new” information to be only a first step in the right direction: there ought to be more soon, or so I hope. (I’d be very disappointed too if there isn’t.)

  • bloomingviolet2013

    I wonder if Lisbon’s wariness towards Lorelei should be labeled as jealousy… or more precisely if that’s the main reason why she dislikes her. Indeed, she has every right not to like her, since the woman is potentially dangerous for Jane, as she fuels his obsession and is rather unpredictable. And, yeah, Lisbon may have been hurt by Lorelei’s provocations in the interrogation room, as well as by her fling with her best friend, but I still don’t know it that should be called outright jealousy: after all, what had hurt Lisbon the most, that he slept with some woman (jealousy), that he did it when she was consumed with worry about him (hurt at his dismissing of her feelings), that he wasn’t brave enough to tell her about it (betrayal and disappointment), or that he was willing to go as far as using his body to get a new lead (horror at the extent of his obsession)? In other words, is Lorelei the real problem for Lisbon or rather is Jane, and the siren just enlightens that part of him Lisbon doesn’t like?

    Either way, I hope we get to see more of the interaction between the two women too: I was rather disappointed that the personal/ Jane-related aspect of their antagonism wasn’t explored further in the episodes where Lorelei appeared. Lorelei seemed more interested in dwelling in Jane’s feelings towards Lisbon so far, it’d be interesting to see what she would make of Lisbon’s as well, even more now that the partners have come to a deeper understanding. We’re still grasping at straws to interpret what Lisbon really feels…

  • bloomingviolet2013

    “The season 4 finale Lisbon says to Jane in the church “I thought we were partners” but it was a lovely scene.”

    Oh, yes, that’s right! I almost forgot about that line, thanks for pointing it out! That shows the progress they made towards a true partnership between equals. At that time, Jane wasn’t treating her like a real partner. He trusted her implicitly, but wouldn’t let her on the details of his plans for fear of being stopped. Even when he got the team as backup before getting in the limo, he went with a gun: he knew he had a chance to shoot RJ before the team got here, if the killer had really showed up. But now, Jane acknowledges that they are really partners and acts as such, so he let her enter his thinking room and, at the same time, give her the most honest insight into his thoughts so far.

    I keep forgetting to congratulate Chizuru-Chibi on the artwork. Really loved it! 🙂

    (And don’t worry, Julie, everything is alright with me, thanks for asking! Now if only that darn WordPress would just let me log in with my usual account… ;))

  • JustMe


    You said it better that I obviously did as I think it is probably a bit of everything and she doesn’t even know how to label it. I have a feeling it is a combination of alot of emotions and she has yet to sort or deal with them and they are all present to some degree.

    I am actually looking forward to the next Lorelei episode just to see if we get the growth of the Jane Lisbon dynamic in some manner and that it is obvious she is kept fully in the loop like a partner should be…

    That is my hope anyway.

  • C Hill

    i find it humorous that some expect a strait forward approach to finding RJ when, in almost every case it’s been tried, a straight-on attack is deflected, usually very early. even in red barn, magically stiles is again out of the country with short notice when visualize intersects with the case. enough folks have disappeared or died already.

    i will agree that it would be nice if there were some tie-ins to any on-going RJ cases, for continuity as much as anything. current US 42-43 minute “60 minute” shows puts pressure on the writing staffs to add in these nice extras.

    but this whole anti-RJ stuff is just, well, funny. this show is built around Jane vs RJ — period. it drives the show. it essentially *is* the show — or at least the first decade plus that Jane intersects with Lisbon, er I mean the CBI 😉

    i also find it funny that there are those that think nothing has changed — Jane early on was more like a raging bull. those efforts didn’t work, and he switched to using long games to reel in RJ. we’ve seen a significant narrowing of the suspect pool, though i think there are some surprises left on that front.

    i appreciate a show that gives the viewer a long payoff with lots of entertainment along the way. the mentalist has done this far better than most and, IMHO, they have put together a heckuva season 5 so far as well.

  • windsparrow

    It is hard to estimate or value how much of any given feeling Lisbon has toward Loralei (and I believe you are very right, violet, that the vast majority of her hurt feelings ABOUT Loralei are FOR or from Jane. Especially for shippers it is a bit of a Rorschach Test. And the same with Jane’s reaction to Kirkland’ presence in Red Sails. After Kirkland’s mysterious non-introducting himself to Jane, the man being oh so helpful with the prison-escapee hunt for Loralei would garner snide comments from Jane no matter how Jane feels about other fellows poaching on his preserve (Lisbon). Of course, the possessiveness that I observe in Jane toward Lisbon need not be romantic or sexual in nature. I think there IS some, but I also think that if his feeling for Lisbon were simply that of an ally in the work of finding Red John, he would still be possessive of her.

  • phoenixx

    Speaking of Lorelei and how Lisbon and her would “interact”.
    I’m actually hoping that’s gonna happen but then i can’t see Lisbon let her go of the hook, after all Lorelei should be in custody.
    Since Emmanuelle Chriqui has one last episode on her contract it looks like Lorelei will once again leave and i can’t see Lisbon being okay with that and this is why i think they once again won’t share the screen. As much as i hope they would cause i think that would be interesting especially since Lisbon and her have actually something in common. But looking at the pic Chriqui published on twitter it looks more like Lorelei and Jane are maybe back in Vegas or at least strolling along alone. And quite honestly i don’t want another Lorelei/Jane and Lisbon/rest of the team episode as i don’t think it would make much sense.

    Then again i don’t see how RJ can’t be bothered to kill Lorelei (maybe in the finale though?). His other minions hadn’t had so much luck, they were dead within 24 hours of being in custody but Lorelei not only managed to survive this but wasn’t killed in the other prison either. Somehow RJ must have huge trust in Lorelei since he doesn’t seem to think she’d spill the beans to Jane about his true identity which i think is sort of ridiculous. Even more so after Jane and her were “on the run”.

    I’m really looking forward to the new Lorelei-episode and how the writers (hopefully) explain some of those weird storylines.

    For the episode: Absolutely loved it. Lisbons/stripper just fun and i agree with some who mentioned they expected Jane to make some witty comment on that. My thoughts exactly, usually he wouldn’t wait a second to make some remark about it and see Lisbon blush on the contrary he was just as shocked as Lisbon.

    The other scene i thought was interesting was Haffner/Lisbon.
    When Haffner asked Lisbon if it was the Job or Jane, i immediately had to think about the Jane/Lorelei scene in which she asked him why he was still working for the CBI and she told him it was because of Lisbon. They seem to “copy” some scenes this scene.
    Also that Haffner told her Jane might just leave at the end because of RJ or because he gets bored. I think Lisbons face spoke volumes, she wouldn’t like it and maybe hasn’t really considered it or rather doesn’t want to think about it.

    I say it as it is, if RJ’s target this season isn’t Lisbon i’ll eat a broomstick. So far everything seems to point at the fact they trying to seperate Jane/Lisbon, now that she won’t leave i’m sure someone´’s not gonna like it. I somehow doubt that the only reason Haffner wanted her was because she is a good agent. I don’t think he is RJ but knowing he’s a Visualise member does make it look like someone wanted him to lure Lisbon away and how better to do that than a better paid job.
    And why would Visualise want her to leave the CBI. It has to be an RJ order of some kind. And since he already asked for her dead body that’s the next plausible step.

    And oh yes, how can anyone possibly cut an episode at that point *grrrr*. Although i presume the names he’ll tell Lisbon are the ones we saw in his book plus the ones we haven’t seen. And I have the bad feeling they won’t have the next episode continue where they left off.

  • Raven

    “Since Emmanuelle Chriqui has one last episode on her contract it looks like Lorelei will once again leave … ”

    We only know that she has 5 episodes in this season but we don’t know for sure whether she may appears in season 6 as well. (I’m one of this people which are absolutely certain that season 6 is waterproofed 🙂 ) So far we didn’t see any interaction between Lorelei and Lisbon and Miss Chriqui is running out of time, having her on screen a little while longer could be fun.

    “And oh yes, how can anyone possibly cut an episode at that point *grrrr* … “; “And I have the bad feeling they won’t have the next episode continue where they left off.”

    I agree with you. I’m afraid, this will happen off screen again.

  • JustMe

    Yeah good point Windsparrow…

    Where oh where is Kirkland?????

    three episodes, two were brief appearances, and one big appearance as Lisbon’s partner in crimefighting looking for “abducted” Jane, and where the heck has he disappeared to?

    If he was “taking care of” Volker as he implied to Lisbon, where was he in “Little Red Corvette?” You’d think he’d have a vested interest…

    I know that this doesn’t have anything to do with this episode but it just reminded me that he was put forward as significant and then dropped….

    I think Bruno is keeping his appearance under wraps for a reason and that could be interesting also.

    And Lisbon and Jane seem as confused as the fandom about their feelings so I will await declarations of whatever they are feeling, but inner shipper will probably rear her ugly head before then…. 😉

  • thebeatboy

    Hi there ! : -DD

    This was another great episode. I’m glad that Jane and Cho went on the field so Lisbon could enjoy her time with the celebration.

    I’m glad that Lisbon turned down the new offer.

    Jane may be tricky to work with but the CBI team does great work. I’m quite certain that Lisbon enjoys working with Jane and vice versa.

    Even after the Red John case, the show could still go on. I would hope that it does. There is so much more that he can do.

    I’m glad that Jane let Lisbon into the room. That was such a great scene!! I hope he tells her the names of the people at the top of the list.

    I think that Jane keeps things away from Lisbon perhaps to protect her. We know that RJ had already asked for Jane to kill Lisbon last year.

  • estatica

    “Even after the Red John case, the show could still go on.”

    I agree, I would very much like to have a whole season to watch Jane moving on, preferably with Lisbon at his side. After dedicating so much time on getting his revenge, I would expect he would need many episodes to get his life back on track.

    That being said, I’m trying to prepare myself for a horrible outcome as well: that he or Lisbon may not survive the last confrontation. If that happens, I’ll try and erase that from my memory palace and pretend it never happened! :p

  • Ortforshort

    You have to figure that Jane knows he’ll never get anything out of Bret Stiles. You also have to figure must know that RJ has ties very high up with law enforcement and so does Visualize.

    One question is – why is Jane treading so lightly on all of this? It’s obvious that RJ is someone involved with Law enforcement on a powerful level. RJ can obviously have Lisbon and Jane taken out at any time, but doesn’t. You would think that would embolden Jane, knowing that RJ has no interest in doing away with either one of them. Why not actively start investigating the big boys in Law Enforcement – the answer has to be there and Jane has to know that?

    Lisbon being part of the weekly poker game with some of the big law enforcement folks is getting her closer to the action. On the other hand, RJ, thru Visualize and Hafner, seems to be trying to move her away from the eventual action at the same time. Tough to figure what her role really is in this in RJ’s eyes.

  • ortforshort

    Jane joining Visualize would have been a great several episodes. A chess game between Jane and Stiles. Of course, you can’t imagine Stiles ever buying it – it would be hard to imagine anyone buying it. Presumably that’s why the show didn’t do down this path. The show’s been hinting at Van Pelt becoming a Visualize-ee. Even in this episode she goes out of her way to defend Stiles. She’s always been a candidate. Stiles has had sit downs with her. She was the one targeted by RJ’s FBI agent boyfriend of hers for his infiltration into the group. Would be interesting to see if the show moves in the direction of Van Pelt secretly joining Visualize.

  • Arco

    May have more comments later, but for now, why did Red John change his M.O.? In this episode, he was killing men. Usually, his targets are women.

  • bloomingviolet2013

    That raises another question: why does he kill people?

    – Did he kill those guys just because the opportunity presented itself to give in his sick instincts and they were convenient victims? In that case, choosing women later could be explained by the same logic, since women tend to be seen as easier, weaker targets.

    – Or were those first ones an experiment of sort and was RJ still searching for his identity as a killer? That would mean that he still didn’t know what his preferences in killing were, which could explain why he favoured women later when his tastes became more specific.

    – Or, if we are to believe that those killings had a particular significance in a burgeoning “religious” cult, then killing or making the last member of the farm kill the others might have symbolized cutting ties with their old lives/their familiar group at the farm, in the same manner Visualize made its members sever ties with their biological families… and the question remains: what the murders of women mean *now* in RJ’s group?
    If we think about it, so far, every murder that took place in the storyline of the show had an ulterior motive: Jane’s family’s murder aimed to punish Jane; the girl killed by Hardy was a mean to lure him to the crime scene; Bosco and team served the double goal of hiding some clues they had found as well as giving the case back to Jane; Todd was about to sell information on his master; Panzer’s death was a friendly gesture towards Jane, and Wainwright’s was a mean to goad him… So far, there haven’t been “normal” RJ murders except those mentioned when Jane began working the case before the murder of his family, as every one that occured served a very specific goal. Therefore, would it be really illogical to infer that, in the same way, those older “normal” ones may have served a greater purpose than to just entertain RJ? I know it’s far stretched, but what if they were like a kind of initiation for new members or something like that? In regard to those very first male victims, I can’t help but wonder if, maybe, the women killed afterwards hadn’t a kind of “sacrificial lamb” status for our “Tiger”. And, in that case, he might have stopped killing women with the usual MO (cutting them up and drawing the smiley face) for a precise reason, for instance because he got better at brainwashing and no longer needed them to convert minions to his views… I’m not sure at all about any of those points, but still, I can’t help but wonder… 😉

    (Of course, a simpler but more frustrating explanation would be that they hadn’t really defined RJ’s personality in the pilot, thus they wrote him as a scary serial killer, made even scarier because he targeted harmless young women and Jane’s little girl. The evil mastermind aspect may have been added after, which would also explain the discrepancies.)

  • Arco


    You’ve articulated a lot of what I was thinking. I’m no profiling expert, but you would expect that an evolving male serial killer would have started out with dispatching puppies, kittens, unicorns, etc., & then moved on to vulnerable young women rather than killing the barn guys, presumably much more difficult prey although drug addled. Of course, maybe there were even earlier murders of women although one suspects the guy was a bit young at the time for that.

    Lorelei’s sister’s case was the first one that I recall that introduced the element of rape/sexual assault linked with murder, which would tend to rule out male victims as fitting RJ’s pattern. Then I wonder about the 10-year hiatus between the barn murders & the previous murders that were thought to be Red John’s first ones. That would make you conclude that either he was living elsewhere & commiting murders there or was possibly imprisoned during that time. Cynical me, I suspect lapse in series continuity as you mentioned.

    I thought that RJ’s typical murders were a means of expressing his certainly unconventional “religion”–that the women’s deaths were a sacrifice. That’s why his followers talk so much about being religious–somehow murder is part of their belief system. Now how RJ got that way–one suspects that it’s another case of a dysfunctional family–including mommy issues. It would be interesting to me if the show delved into these aspects, but apparently we aren’t going there.

    I don’t discount what Timothy Carter said that Red John planned to retire & only resumed killing because Jane “forced” him out for the Panzer murder. I mean, at some point, think about the physical toll that an 80-year-old serial killer would face in disposing of his victims (tough on the knee replacements, for example). A serial killer, unless he uses surrogates, must have some kind of exit strategy from that career if he survives to old age.

    Chizuruchibi’s drawing is spot on for the episode, as always.

  • bloomingviolet2013

    Interesting! 🙂

    “Lorelei’s sister’s case was the first one that I recall that introduced the element of rape/sexual assault linked with murder, which would tend to rule out male victims as fitting RJ’s pattern.”

    Lorelei’s sister’s rape and murder doesn’t count as his typical MO. Don’t forget he was trying to break Lorelei by killing her sister in a particular atrocious way, so he was careful not to link her death with his usual Red John persona (different MO, sexual aspect, no smiley face), because, by letting her ignore his responsibility in it, he got to appear as Lorelei’s savior afterwards, a bit like Sophie Miller probably was for Jane during his breakdown. And there is a big difference with his usual murders too: Lorelei’s sister was able to write “Roy”, that means that she knew him pretty well… RJ probably had his eye on Lorelei so he got close and killed her sister to get to her. That would make it part of the useful and carefully calculated cases I listed above.

    “Then I wonder about the 10-year hiatus between the barn murders & the previous murders that were thought to be Red John’s first ones. That would make you conclude that either he was living elsewhere & commiting murders there or was possibly imprisoned during that time.”

    Or more simply, he stayed in California and he perfected his skills as by murdering random people or at least by avoiding leaving clues to link them together. A few isolated killings in ten years would have been ruled as simple murders, they certainly started labeling them as a serial killer’s work when RJ voluntarily decided to leave his signature smiley on walls at crime scenes…

    “Now how RJ got that way–one suspects that it’s another case of a dysfunctional family–including mommy issues. It would be interesting to me if the show delved into these aspects, but apparently we aren’t going there.”

    Mommy issues? That’s funny, but did you realize that even the main characters in the show seem to have problems with their mothers? Lisbon: her mother died when she was a teen, leaving her with a father who turned abusive; Jane, no mother in the flashbacks on his childhood memories, just another bad father; Wayne defended his mother’s memory, but was also left with a criminal daddy; Grace only ever mentioned her father… Where are all the caring, loving mothers one would expect? 😉

    About RJ’s possible retirement, I’ve been wondering since then if he wasn’t planning to stop actively killing because he was more interested in ruling his network of followers. I guess he would have a status comparable to Bret Stiles by now: a lot of power and adoration, also a lot on his plate in order to keep getting more and more influential. And no need to kill himself if some minions are more than glad to do it for you… If RJ really revels on his power over his victims and followers, what better way to enjoy it than to let the latters kill the formers in your name?

  • C Hill

    great question arco. interesting answers violet and a nice discussion. i’m still digesting this part of the story myself.

  • Arco

    Hope that you still have some time to spend on the blog, reviewbrain. We “Mentalist” fans sorely need an outlet for expression & discussion.

    Bosco said that RJ makes mistakes, but the CBI, FBI, local LEOs, etc., don’t seem to be able to find them or to capitalize on them. I think that I’m confused about what kind of serial killer Red John is. Is he disciplined or sloppy? What’s important to Red John about the killing? Is it the victim, the method, etc.? For example, there are cleaner ways to kill than cutting. And why the smiley face? The selection of young females in many of the cases must mean something significant to RJ’s ritual. Although serial killing doesn’t make sense to normal people, presumably there is some kind of internal logical system to RJ’s textbook kills. He has been presented as someone who is intelligent, which is borne out by the fact that he has been able to elude justice for so long after being linked to so many victims. Volker, although he didn’t like to get his hands dirty, wanted to watch murders in person. Would RJ be content to promote himself to upper management & not be involved in the actual murders?

    Lorelei is evidently an extra special snowflake for RJ–otherwise, she’d be dead by now. He obviously went to a great deal of trouble to recruit her by murdering her sister.

    Unless they were deliberately leaving breadcrumbs, wouldn’t RJ minions avoid quoting Blake poetry or recognizing Blake quotes as Bertram, LaRoche, & Cho have done?

    I’m glad that Jane let Lisbon in on the secret of his RJ murder porn wall. I do wonder what’s going on with the relationship. When he said “love you” before shooting her & then she questioned him about it later, he claimed that he didn’t remember it–which is at odds with his fabled memory palace (as if he goes around telling hordes of random women that he loves them all the time & doesn’t remember this particular instance but can remember shaking the hands of 2,000+ guys?). I’m not particularly shippy about Jane-Lisbon (the burying the guy alive kind of put me off Jane for good in that respect), but the fact that he didn’t just explain himself would indicate that his feelings are more than platonic. I also noted that Lisbon didn’t push him on this topic although she is pretty good about detecting his lies by now so I suspect that she knew that he was being evasive. Apparently, they weren’t ready to deal with their emotions at that point so the discussion must be slated for a future episode. Or maybe it will take place off camera.

    I sometimes amuse myself by imagining when Jane shook hands with RJ (if such a thing really happened). What if it was when they shared a sandbox together as toddlers? OK, not that likely. Maybe it was while teenaged Jane was on the carnival circuit, & RJ was just another teenager that Jane happened to meet in passing while he was in some Midwestern town?

    Bruno Heller definitely has something against moms.

  • bloomingviolet2013

    “Bosco said that RJ makes mistakes, but the CBI, FBI, local LEOs, etc., don’t seem to be able to find them or to capitalize on them.”

    If I’m not mistaken, that time, Bosco was able to spot one mistake because it was a murder that wasn’t planned (someone coming during the actual murder or something like that. Don’t remember exactly). Back then when RJ was killing in a regular fashion, those murders were carefully planned and he took extra care not to let evidence. And, after that, RJ did find a parade to avoid mistakes: he let his minions do the dirty work of cleaning up after him. Rebecca was in charge of tying loose ends by killing Bosco’s team and did a mistake in getting caught. As a result, she was executed. Craig killed another potential witness in Todd’s person: Gupta was in charge of cleaning up when framed Hightower got on the lam… and so on. Hard to find something to capitalize on when he doesn’t do the work himself and when he doesn’t hesitate to execute his henchmen when they are discovered.

    “For example, there are cleaner ways to kill than cutting. And why the smiley face? The selection of young females in many of the cases must mean something significant to RJ’s ritual. Although serial killing doesn’t make sense to normal people, presumably there is some kind of internal logical system to RJ’s textbook kills.”

    That’s interesting! 😉 What if the cutting was a mean to train/initiate someone? It’s rather long to do, and allow for more than one person to be at work. Moreover, the fact that the victim is still alive, afraid and bleeding would be a great way to test a disciple’s resolve and faith…
    That leads me to a somewhat crazy idea: what if the typical RJ murders were meant to be a team work? Considering that the leader at the farm was left alive with a shotgun -he wasn’t hiding or trying to defend himself against the “kid” since he had a pig with him- while the other two were already bounded and dead in the secret basement, we may wonder if both him and RJ were associated (the fact that he was alive really bugs me). Later on, we were told by Hardy and Renfrew that RJ used to “work” with a close friend too: Hardy’s father first, then Hardy himself. A hypothesis would be that it was RJ’s meeting with the crazy and drug-addled leader at the farm may have emboldened him to act on his urges at a young age. If we follow that logic, he may have kept working in team (hence the cutting) before widening his perspective and getting a whole network to play with. That would explain the “He is man(y)”… Not really sure about this theory, but still… 😉

    “Lorelei is evidently an extra special snowflake for RJ–otherwise, she’d be dead by now. He obviously went to a great deal of trouble to recruit her by murdering her sister.”

    So far, it seems so indeed. But we don’t know what he had to do (and maybe who he had to kill) to convert the minions who weren’t blood-thirty psychopaths in the first place, Rebecca, Craig abd Gupta. Still, you’re right and she may have had (or may have acquired) a special status since she hasn’t been killed and since she has been the only one who actually managed to make constructive contact with Jane, a thing that Todd failed to do… Maybe RJ simply likes/loves her too much? It might be interesting to go back and compare the date of when she started getting involved with the serial killer with his unofficial break-up with Rosalind…

    Great comment, Arco!

  • ortforshort

    I think RJ thought Lorelei was going to get killed when the FBI shot up the car killing Wainright. I thought it was an assassination attempt of both of them by the FBI. Somehow, Lorelei came out unscathed by the hail of bullets. still, after that, RJ hasn’t gotten rid of her, so maybe he had a change of heart. I agree with you, there’s a lot more questions than answers about RJ’s motivations. What’s going on with Lisbon, for example. Is she part of the game or is RJ trying to move her out of the game by making tempting job offers (thru Visualize and Haffner). Where’s the Van Pelt thing going? On the one hand, she seems to be a Visualize sympathizer. On the other hand, RJ uses her prematurely as a stooge to get his FBI mole inside which has to make her wary of anything moving forward.

  • C Hill

    interesting point, ort. sure lorelei is out there, but it was jane that busted her out, not RJ, so mebbe she is a sacrificial pawn who survived??


    “Or more simply, he stayed in California and he perfected his skills as by murdering random people or at least by avoiding leaving clues to link them together. A few isolated killings in ten years would have been ruled as simple murders, they certainly started labeling them as a serial killer’s work when RJ voluntarily decided to leave his signature smiley on walls at crime scenes… ”

    yes.a couple of ideas come in here for me.

    a) young RJ is experimenting –something sets him off. he’s immature without a real signature yet. well, except for the smiley face
    b) someone at the farm who is older is the “original” RJ. a younger person there takes over the persona later, whether by stealing it or via an apprenticeship.

    present day RJ develops from that point.

    the mother discussion is quite interesting, too. especially tied back to libson being a “mother” to her immediate family, her CBI team, and, to a lesser extent, Jane.

    i’ve watched this episode numerous times the past 2 weeks. it’s quite exceptional, IMHO.

  • C Hill

    ack. now i remember point 3. or c) ?

    c) RJ started at the farm, but left the country for a number of years (or went to jail i guess)

    hello, father dibuono…

    of course, di buono is “the good”, much like laroche is “the rock”. so are they good guys or bad?

  • Anomaly

    How interesting that I was thinking in the same lines, and I shared my them in the whoisredjohn blog. Below is a revised version of that:

    There are some interesting points I haven’t seen being mentioned anywhere:

    In the last episode of season three,” Strawberries and Cream”, about minute 32, when LaRoche arrives to take Gupta, which doesn’t seem to be his responsibility in the CBI, he addresses Lisbon and Jane and says well done to them. But just note the tone of his voice and that he is actually staring at Gupta in a very meaningful manner when he utters those words, as if he was addressing him, sarcastically of course, while Gupta avoids any eye contact with him and reacts as if he knows LaRoche and is being rebuked because of his lack of success. LaRoche then asks if he has given them anything to which Jane responds “Not a thing”, and less than a minute later Gupta is killed by LaRoche, which may be interpreted as an attempt to silence him. So what do you think about it? Is it a real clue to LaRoche being in contact with Red John or even Visualize for that matter? Or is it another red herring thing?

    And a little and probably far-fetched hunch about Father Debuono, I suspect him of being in contact with Red John or at least knowing his identity, because he revisited the farm at the time in which Red John supposedly worked there, his time with Visualize was “an early stage in a long spiritual journey”, seemed not to be telling the truth about not being aware of the symbolic meaning of the smiley face drawing on the wall of the barn, which struck Jane as strange, and to explain his ignorance he mentioned that he was out of the country as a missionary mainly in Central America, which increases the possibility of him being present or crossing Mexico at times. And that makes me suspect him as a possible candidate for the person who killed Jarred Renfrew and the hooker, because then the smiley face was drawn on the “wrong wall” of the bathroom. It was not the first thing a person entering that room would see, merely the first thing we saw, probably to mislead us into thinking that Red John himself killed them, or maybe just a continuity error, and that leads me to the thought that Father Debuono is a very charismatic character and has that enigmatic vibe about him that I expect of a Red John candidate as you are referring to, hence maybe “He is man” of God. I don’t know much aboutChristianity; my attitude towards religious belief is very much in line with Patrick Jane, so enlighten me please as to why there should be a need for a foreign Christian missionary in Central America which is dominantly Christian?

    I am new to your fantastic blog and entered my thoughts about Laroche here and not under the review of Strawberries and Cream, because I thought it unlikely many would read them. Please tell me if this is an accepted practice or not.

    Hope Reviewbrain would find some spare time to continue writing her addictive reviews, and Kudos to you all, specially Violet and Chizuruchibi.

    Any comments, comrades in couches?

  • tayab

    Please please please please etc….bring jane and lisbon together. Perfect song for the scene would be adam lambat’s—-better than I know myself

  • mosquitoinuk

    Hi ReviewBrain,

    I hope that you will have time to keep writing (even if a bit)! I just found your blog after becoming rather obsessed with the Mentalist and your analyses are fantastic.

    I wanted to discuss about Jane/Lisbon and how much longer we have before “the end”.

    All Mentalists fans hope for proper closure and we live hoping that the Mentalist won’t suffer the same fate of CSI: Miami, but never mind, I digress.

    I think it was telling that finally Jane let Lisbon in the attic, let’s see how things evolve from there. Partners at last? I still see far too many issues: Lisbon and Jane have been each obsessed this season and there was a visible rift in their relationship. Lisbon has also been hurt by Jane (“use this apology for your top issue”) and he knows it. He has been a jerk often this season, although he was supportive of her in “Red Barn”.

    You see, the thing is that with these two is like 1 step forward and 2 steps back.

    For me, the core of the Mentalist is Jane’s journey. Cho said as much: what happened to Jane’s family made him a better person. But he isn’t quite there yet. His journey has been lead by revenge, but true closure will only achieved by Jane moving because of love. I truly believe that Jane wants to be happy, he just can’t: he is riddled by guilt. Also, please let’s not forget that this is a man who married his childhood sweetheart. Always secluded, he married someone from the same background and I am pretty sure that they were both quite insular. Jane’s abilities also give him an insight in other people’s minds and that can be ugly more often than not.

    I am a bit concerned that Jane (and Lisbon’s) personal growth and acknowledgment of their feelings will take far too long (if it ever happens) and I fear that his arc will finish with an act of revenge which will (I believe) alienate Lisbon. I think the only way to propel this forward so that Jane has a real chance to be happy is by something ugly happening to either of them (but no so ugly that it actually kills them of course!). These two need to be in a crisis to speak the truth it seems. I think Lisbon needs to make her feelings known, even if they don’t act on them immediately as the RJ situation is dangerous to say the list and Lisbon has been marked, we know as much. They must act with caution. But my point is that Jane needs to see an alternative to hate and revenge: instead of mourning the dead, he needs something to live for and I think Lisbon is the one able to give him that.

    Anyhow, my two cents, sorry if it was a bit rambling. I think that we are making progress on the RJ case but I’m not so sure about the personal progress of Lisbon/Jane. We are a bit stuck if we keep going like this.

  • estatica

    I just saw this episode again, as I’m eagerly waiting for 5×14 to air soon, and just realized something about the murders that I hadn’t noticed and don’t think it was addressed here. I think I have read all the replies in these past few days, so forgive me if I missed someone pointing this out already.

    According to Father DiBuono, Martin Talbot told him a “kid” drew that face. We also know Talbot was already dead by the time Lester was shot by Holly Preston. So, this raises a few questions, assuming Father DiBuono isn’t lying:

    1- Was the blood on the barn wall from Allan Charney or just some farm animal?

    2- Did Red John kill Allan Charney first, painted the smiley face and then proceeded to kill Talbot after DiBuono’s visit? If so, wouldn’t Talbot or Dibuono have reported Allan’s disappearance?

    3- Considering the corpses were pretty fresh by the time Holly and her mother dumped Lester, I wonder if Lester knew Talbot and Charney were dead already. I wonder if he was Red John’s ally or just the next victim.

    If Father DiBuono isn’t lying, then I can assume a) no one had been killed at that point and the two men were killed afterwards, b) Allan had been killed already, but Talbot didn’t know (which was why he talked so openly about the kid to DiBuono).

    I’m inclined to think RJ first killings were farm animals. I’m unsure if he was initiated by other church members or if he was the one initiating other members, considering there were already rumours around town of satanic rituals happening at the farm.

    By that point, DiBuono visits the farm, talks to Talbot, who I assume is unaware of what’s really going on on the farm. DiBuono leaves and Charney and Talbot are murdered shortly after. My guess here is that they may have confronted Red John or Lester doing something to the pigs and paid with their lives.

    In a short amount of time after this, Lester is seen killing a pig using a gun, so he does come off as someone also deranged. If I had to take a guess, I’d say it’s possible that he hadn’t been murdered yet because he a) could have been a disciple or b) an accomplice to those crimes or c) Red John simply hadn’t had time to kill him at that point.

    Someone mentioned (sorry, can’t remember who and I’m lazy to read the replies again 😦 ) that these victims were stronger than the typical easy targets Red John picked 10 years later, which doesn’t look like the natural progression of a serial killer. I agree with this. My guess would be that these two were gunned down simply because they found out something they shouldn’t have. Red John may have been torturing animals (lambs, pigs, etc.) and then, by having to shoot those two guys to keep his secret, he may have discovered the he much preferred killing people instead.

    Sorry for the long rant! Not even sure this is relevant at all, but I thought it best to put this here.

  • mosquitoinuk

    sorry, I spotted a few typos…was in a hurry!

  • bloomingviolet2013

    About LaRoche’s ambiguous tone and meaningful glance to Gupta, those were indeed very suspicious, but don’t forget the context. Back then, they were setting the stage for the finale and preparing us viewers by making almost everyone into a potential mole. Before that, there had been various hints that O’Laughlin was hiding something, Brenda was making more frequent appearances, Osvaldo had his fall-out with Cho and Bertram started quoting Blake… So it’s hard to tell if LaRoche’s attitude and his shooting of Gupta were left to interpretation because they were indeed significant or because his generally ambivalent behavior was a way to fuel our paranoia in preparation for the five suspects in the second part. Because, let’s face it, if they hadn’t tried to put someone else forward, Craig would have been painfully obvious…

    Besides, LaRoche was Hightower’s replacement back then: it’s plausible that he wanted to take such a big case into his own hands for the sake of good publicity, like Luther did in ‘Ring around the Rosie’ and in ‘War of the Roses’.
    I don’t mean that LaRoche isn’t a possible suspect; he is, as well as every other potential suspect from ‘Strawberry and Cream’: Brenda, who double crossed Lisbon by selling information to Volker; Osvaldo and LaRoche both have dark secret worth being blackmailed about. And Bertram spontaneously mentioned the rope that planted the idea in Jane’s mind that there had been a shenanigan at the hotel when they set the trap to catch the mole: was it a coincidence or was he manipulating Jane to make him understand Craig was the mole and make them kill him, because the real goal wasn’t to get rid of Hightower but to provoke an encounter between Jane and Carter? 😉

  • bloomingviolet2013

    “You see, the thing is that with these two is like 1 step forward and 2 steps back.”

    In my humble opinion, it’s more a two steps forward, one step back: Jane keeps risking Lisbon’s trust indeed, but he seems to be better at trying to gain it back afterwards. In the pilot, he was just trying to distract her to make her forget his bad behavior. Progressively, they have started speaking about it and their talks, when we see them, are getting more and more genuine: first, Lisbon has begun addressing the fact that people “care about him”, until she recently shouted at him that she was not his girlfriend, so there is a definitive progress in her vehemence and in the depth and the sincerity of her feelings. And, as a paradox, this is proof of trust and intimacy, even more from someone who doesn’t do personal. As for Jane, even though he keeps getting in trouble and trying to let her out of the loop when he sees fit, he’s been treating her more like his partner, not only because he tells her his secrets, but also because he is more respectful of her opinions and abilities. Therefore, albeit they are still taking steps backwards after every one of Jane’s stunts concerning RJ and there have been a rift between them after the debacle with Lorelei, the relation they are having now is more deep and balanced than it was even at the best times last season: back then they were having fun together; now they act like two adults who trust and care for each other. I just hope now they’ll manage to keep it that way…

  • bloomingviolet2013

    Also, thanks for the shout-out, fellow comrade in couches! 😉

  • mosquitoinuk

    Hi Violet,

    I watched the new Mentalist episode “Red in tooth and Claw” last night and I have to say that it does look like making progress (a tiny little bit). I will not discuss the new episode here because we’ll have soon a new post for it (hopefully) but there are some unsettling news about Simon Baker wanting to opt-out of his contract ASAP flying over the web. I will take these with a pinch of salt (or two) though, but here we are, very, very, very slowly progressing things on the Jane and Lisbon front. I know this is a conundrum for the writers because of the way Lisbon and Jane are. Two loners with trust issues trying to make sense of each other. Jane likes puzzles (i.e, the wooden box in “Panama Red”), that’s just who he is. He has found a rather difficult puzzle-box in Lisbon, he’s finding his way to her. It was excellent that last scene in “Panama Red”, when he was completely baffled by Lisbon’s reaction to the keys hidden in the box. It is a good thing that she is able to keep him interested still eliciting his trust. Not an easy thing to do. His ‘solving puzzle’ activities with the CBI revolve about precisely never trusting anyone. With her, he’s got the ‘thrill’ somehow with the comfort that she is trustworthy. The pace is definitely going to be slow. Now as for Lisbon, I find her very hard to read. But honest to God, Saint Teresa might be, but why on Earth would she put up with him like that?! He’s a loose cannon, a maverick. Fair enough, he closes cases, but still. As you said, she doesn’t do personal and keeps her team at arms’ length, yet, she seeks his company. Will she be able to ‘fix him’?. I think these two won’t resolve anything for sure until he shows that he will seek the path of justice and that will only happen towards the end. Lots of ambiguity to come. But on the road to the final showdown, I sustain that something rather horrible has to happen so that we (and they) know where they stand and Patrick has a *real* ‘option’ to ponder against hate and revenge. I think the situation with Jane is so grave that he needs to *know* that he will be ruining his chance to happiness (and possibly Lisbon’s) if he kills RJ in cold blood.

    My worry is: since progress is sooo slow and we’re in for a bumpy ride, will these two ever make it? it would be so dissatisfying if Jane keeps stuck in neutral and the whole Mentalist thing was just the story of the capture of RJ. Life might not necessarily be like that, but this is a TV show, so, they have the luxury to know what will happen to the story and its characters. I can’t possibly tell to the writers or Bruno Heller what to do but hopefully we’ll have time to see the story of Jane’s transformation unfold.

  • bloomingviolet2013

    You have a point, still I have some reservations. 😉

    1) “But honest to God, Saint Teresa might be, but why on Earth would she put up with him like that?! He’s a loose cannon, a maverick. Fair enough, he closes cases, but still. As you said, she doesn’t do personal and keeps her team at arms’ length, yet, she seeks his company. Will she be able to ‘fix him’?”

    Lisbon used not to do personal indeed, but it was back then. Compare her cold attitude with Grace when she entered the team with her concern as a boss and as a friend after the ruined marriage: Van Pelt was the one who didn’t want to acknowledge that there was a problem and talk about it, not Lisbon. Under Jane’s invasive familiarity, Lisbon has made much progress: she started doing to yoga with Grace in season 2 and accepted to be her bridesmaid in season 4. She *does* personal now, albeit still a bit awkwardly.
    About her relation with Jane, maybe the thing is that she doesn’t really have to “fix him”: he doesn’t need to be mothered or comforted, but simply to start grieving, and that a personal path he has to chose to take. So the way I see it it’s a two-ways road: she helps him accepting he has a problem (that he’s been starting doing), and he helps her overcoming her reluctance to create and maintain deep meaningful bonds with others.

    2) About their slow progress, let’s compare it with the love story between Rigsby and Grace: they had been in a limbo for quite a long time before getting together, that’s to say until when the writers started to make things a bit more tangible with the other possible couple (‘Red Scare’ was the episode before ‘Black Gold and Red Blood’ where Jane started questioning Lisbon about Bosco’s interest in her and that she made the decision to chose Jane over her friendship with him). Before that? We had: a seemingly unrequited interest for a rather oblivious Van Pelt and an unacknowledged confession when Rigsby was drugged, while others kept mentioning Wayne’s feelings. All those have happened in the –admittedly longer- arc concerning Jane’s interest in Lisbon: oblivious Lisbon? Check. Covetous glances from Jane? Check (‘Red Moon’ and that pink bridesmaid dress). A confession that seems to lead nowhere? Check. People mentioning his feelings? Check (Lorelei, Charlotte)… And, to pursue the comparison, Van Pelt’s acceptance of Rigsby’s overtures was both build up in various episodes and still quite sudden (I personally wasn’t expecting them to almost kiss in the secret passage or to actually kiss in the end of that episode back then). Same goes with Jane and Lisbon: the first sign of his interest in ‘Red Moon’ was quite unexpected (a faithful asexual widower peeping to his boss, really?), as were his almost confession in ‘Strawberry and Cream’ and above all his confession in ‘The Crimson Hat’. So, you may be right, and it might take something huge to make him realize she’s a potential second chance for him and to bring them together… or, they could as well make it happen suddenly (*if* that is meant to happen), as they did with Rigsby and Grace, since there has been enough building up step by step until now.

    3) Concerning Baker’s contract, I hope that is just an unfunded rumor indeed. There are quite a few of those circulating at some point, and they are rarely optimistic. 😉

  • bloomingviolet2013

    Forgot to mention I love your comparison: Lisbon is a puzzle indeed. She’s even hard to crack for us viewers, lol! 🙂

  • Anomaly

    You’re most welcome, and let me say: Wow! You have a very keen eye for seeing the big picture. And please pardon me folks for the typos and weak grammar.

    In analyzing the show, I think that we are supposed to read between the lines. The complexity of the story demands it, as there is little concrete evidence we can rely on to address the most important questions raised. As I feel more confident in spotting peculiarities and isolated clues than constructing a coherent picture of them, let us explore more of what is left for excavation:

    There is a clipping on Jane’s Board Titled “Killer Strikes again, Victims connected” which can also be seen in season 4, episode 23 “Red Rover, Red Rover”, when Jane is burning Red John case files. That could be a trivial fact about the connection between some victims killed at the same time (e.g. Janet and Carter Peak), but due to its recurrence, more probably an important clue to a suspected general pattern in his killings which is not revealed to us.

    And now that you properly reminded me of LaRoche’s position in the CBI at the time, how come nobody replaced Wainwright this season?

  • Anomaly

    Nice points, but I suspect it could not have been drawn in blood, as it would have long since weathered off the wall, decomposed, or discolored. Most probably it was done in red paint.

  • estatica

    Those rumours sound completely off character to me. Simon Baker is producing, directing… he even brings his own son to feature in an episode on the Mentalist. He keeps claiming he loves the people he works with. It doesn’t look like he is unhappy to me or that he has any intention of leaving, as tired as he may be.

    I didn’t read the original rumour, but if I had to guess, I think they just started circulating this idea so they would have official statements from either CBS or Simon Baker denying the renewal / cancellation of the show early on.

    I caught this comment at tv fanatic that only reinforced what I already feel about it: “Hahaha, I ran on to an article by “that woman” I guess. Rebecca had secret star parents, Simon also, as well as all their children and Angus T. Jones was their secret son that they gave to somebody else. Whoa! Get a grip!”

    Perhaps I’m an optimist, but I really expect at least a 6th season more. This season is about closing in on Red John more than ever before (which is already in motion), which is what Bruno Heller told us we would see. If this was indeed the final season, I think at this point writers would be focusing more on showing us Red John, Jane’s redemption. Also, his relationship with Lisbon would certainly have progressed a lot more and they’d be kissing at this point. My guess the kiss will only happen in the 5th season finally…. Hmm.. why do I keep on having these ridiculous traitorous shipper thoughts? Now I completely lost track of what I really meant to say. Sorry about that, I’ll shut up now.

  • estatica

    Of course! You’re absolutely right. I’m so used to thinking of the Red John symbol written in blood, I completely missed the obvious. Doh!

    p.s. I’m so glad I found this blog. 🙂

  • mosquitoinuk


    and additionally, l would be happy to make a friendly wager on the resolution of the Lisbon/Jane arc 😉

  • bloomingviolet2013


    Sorry, but no wager when the writers are such mischievous tricksters: the odds are too high that we’ll both end up being wrong, lol!

  • bloomingviolet2013

    About the recurring clipping on Jane’s board, it’s an intriguing theory… Very interesting! I wish we knew more about RJ’s victims, at least that could provide us with a bit more insight.

    About Wainwright’s replacement, I’m getting the feeling that Bertram has started taking the problem that is the SCU in his own bossy hands. It may be because he’s willing to show to their FBI colleagues how much the CBI is keeping an eye on their most troublesome team, or simply because they couldn’t find a suitable replacement since supervising Jane has become a pretty dangerous job (I’m still smiling at that drawing Chizuruchibi did for the finale…). But, more probably they just wanted to give Bertram a bigger part to make him appear even more suspicious… Still, it would be nice if the matter was addressed somehow.

    (And thanks again, Anomaly! 😀 )

  • Anomaly

    Makes perfect sense. And yes, that drawing is totally awesome. Thanks! 🙂

  • Anomaly

    Thanks. And I’m absolutely thrilled of finding it
    , too.

  • OldMan

    I am new to this site. Let me see if I set things up right before I start commenting.

  • OldMan

    Seems to be OK.
    When Renfrew and the prostitute are killed we see a Smiley. But, it is seen (by us) in the mirror. It is a mirror image. It looks right, in the mirror image shot, but it is, actually, therefore, backwards in “reality”, on the wall. Red John would not paint his trademark, signature symbol, backwards. He is an artist, perfectionist. I think it unthinkable that he would get his symbol wrong. It would be like The Batman using his bat-sign upside-down. It just won’t happen.
    Red John did not do those killings. Someone else did. This may have bearing on what was written in blood on the wall. Probably does.

  • Anomaly

    Exactly! You’ve made my day! That and the fact that the smiley is drawn on the “wrong wall” and there is no way Red John (as described by Jane) could have done it. But it’s just the beginning of the revelation and I suspect that there is much more to what you just said. It makes many things clear for me (and makes me very nervous at the same time for some reason!). Hint: Watch the last minute or so of the second episode of season one, “Red Hair and Silver Tape”, the funeral scene, with utmost attention if you have access to it, keeping in mind the Blake poem.

    I would try to write a more elaborate response when I’ve regained my consciousness!

  • OldMan

    At the funeral Van Pelt and Patrick comment:
    VP: She actually enjoyed helping him kill. One crazy person I can understand, but two? Husband and wife? Marriage is supposed to be a sacred, loving thing.
    PJ: Ah, they were soul mates in their own strange way.

    A “fearful symmetry”.

    Did you also notice the grave stone the team passes as they are leaving the graveyard? On the headstone is written “In Loving Memory of James Tarlton Moon…”. James Tarlton Moon is a relative of a worker of the show “The Mentalist”…James Tarlton Moon is a relative (deceased) of one of the set designers.

  • Anomaly

    Seems wordpress does not take my comment in one piece, no matter how many times I tried the last few days. So I take my chances and post in two parts:

    Well done! One point you noticed well is this symmetric (or anti-symmetric) pairs we are presented throughout the series: Husband and wife, tiger and lamb, left-handed and right-handed images and people, blind and sighted (more than once), genuine and fake, superstitious and rational, gullible and manipulative, faithful and disloyal, believer and nonbeliever, good and evil, Patrick Jane and Red John…

    You’ve noticed almost all I was referring to and more. But in my humble opinion the most important point in that scene, aside from the revealed fearful symmetry, is Lisbon’s facial reaction to both Van Pelt’s speech and Jane’s response; it’s as if we are supposed to take something from it, maybe to fear another, much more significant symmetry. Do you remember when Jane demonstrated how telling gestures and involuntary movements are to Wainwright? Well, why don’t we pay attention? Note Lisbon’s eye movements and her twitching eyelids; we’ve seen that time and again in deep emotional situations.

    As ‘mosquitoinuk’ and ‘Violet’ nicely put it in the comments above, Lisbon is a rather difficult puzzle-box for Jane and us viewers alike, and we may not get to know her well enough until the end of the series (God forbid that ever comes!). So let’s take our time and see what little hints can we find here and there and take the fun route anyway, even if we may not succeed in cracking the box (what follows is mostly speculative, so don’t expect much commonsense) :

  • Anomaly

    Continued from my last post which might not have gotten through wordpress filter:

    By her own admission, Jane, and some of us, only think to know everything about Lisbon (final scene of “Panama Red”). Also the opening scene of “Flame Red” is about Jane playing a mind reading game and claiming to have gained access to Lisbon’s innermost thoughts and says that what Lisbon thinks at that exact moment is “I’m so glad Jane is joking around and he can’t actually read my mind”. Lisbon reluctantly confirms that, but says that it’s not for the reason Jane thinks.

    The way she refused the necklace Jane bought her in “Red Handed”, her telling Jane that Red John does not belong to him in the Pilot and other episodes, and their discussion over how to treat Red John if they catch him are all interesting in some way.

    In “Red John’s Friends” we see her asking Jane as to the meaning of the writing on the wall and maybe indirectly all of what is seen on the walls of the bathroom. Maybe we have another fearful couple. Maybe the mirrored signature is that of the soul mate. Maybe “He is Mar”ried to …

    Another thing that bothered, and frankly shocked, me was the looks on her face when she took some personal time and was walking by the river in “The Crimson Hat”. And besides one thing very suspicious was the neurotic behavior of Van Pelt the following day, speaking of which have you noticed the level of curiosity she showed about Lisbon’s personal life and her past in “Red Tide”?

    Another thing relevant to your discovery is the right-handed left-handed duality. It is well known that the red sweater man in “Strawberries and Cream” is probably left handed due to his used cup handle position. Roy Tagliaferro also holds the tea cup in his left hand in “Red is the New Black” also notice that CBI Ron, another Red John candidate, writes with his right hand.

    So what do you think, is Red John and Roy the same person or a couple? Could Red John moles only know Roy and not the real Red John? The possibilities seem to be endless and we are facing more questions than answers, as always!

    Well enough said for now, and please don’t be so mad at me ‘cause I am as much a shipper as you all and Lisbon is the favorite character of the show for me, even if our darkest fears come true. The real question is how Jane would react to that?

    P.S. Where did I put my cup of tea?

  • Rose UK

    If Lisbon turns out to be RJ/his other half, I think I’ll cry myself to sleep! 😉

  • Anomaly

    And I might become her disciple! 😉

  • thebeatboy

    Hi !! I don`t think that Lisbon is RJ.During the last scene in the ep ” Red John`s Friends” when Jane got the call from RJ, Lisbon was in the room with Jane.

    : D

  • anomalycommenter

    Hi! Excuse me if I were not able to express myself clearly. I was not claiming that Lisbon is definitely Red John, just that there is some delicate yet deliberate clues left to incriminate even Lisbon particularly in season one. IMHO just about anyone in this show can turn out to be RJ, and there is suspicious lines or actions that we heard or seen from almost every character. That’s very smart on Heller’s part. We may never know, but it’s quite possible that the person or group of people Heller had in mind as Red John has changed throughout the course of the series.

    There is even more hints in season one pointing to Lisbon: The lady marshal in “Red Sauce” keeping a big secret from his partner while that episode had a focus on Lisbon , Sheriff Hardy specifically attacking Lisbon at the end of “Red John’s Footsteps” and his strange laughter and uttering of RJ’s name when he was dying. And the point I referred to above about Van Pelt indicating that maybe she is investigating about someone in the CBI. So IMHO Lisbon may not be RJ but most probably she is keeping a very big secret!

    You may consider the point of Red John symbol being on the wrong wall as a continuity error, but what ‘OldMan’ noted about the symbol being a mirrored image of the original is indisputable, even camera moved in such a manner not to show us what actually was on the wall. That could be because Red John is probably right handed and the person who draw that smiley is very likely to be left handed. Just try to draw that symbol yourself. You’ll be amazed that you would not be able to draw the circular part (in the manner show by Brett Partridge in the pilot) in one stroke for either the original or the mirrored one depending on the hand you choose. Yes, you could always use the back of your hand or the other hand, but the point is that it probably does have a symbolic meaning.

    If you consider the possibility of RJ and Roy not being the same person (as Rosalind Harker insisted), or RJ using a minion to kill Renfrew, the other person could’ve been at the other end of the line laughing and not RJ.

  • Manda

    Great Review guys! 😀 Awesome artwork Chibi ❤ And ofc we'll miss you reviewbrain 😀

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