Mentalist Red and Itchy Review


CBI Consultant Patrick Jane (Simon Baker) abandons working on the Red John case when he learns that Agent Lisbon’s (Tunney) newest case involves fellow Agent J.J. LaRoche’s (Pruitt Taylor Vince). LaRoche asks for Jane personally and he quickly finds out why: a tupperware box in LaRoche’s safe, whom only Jane knows can ruin the man, was stolen from his safe. The culprit is using the box’s contents to blackmail LaRoche (Pruitt Taylor Vince) into giving up a leak he is investigating in CBI. Jane’s help to find the culprit and retrieve his box before the 24 hours he was given to end his investigation is over.

Concise Verdict

Leading up to the finale, Red and Itchy is an episode with sublime writing and acting, intriguing recurring guest stars, a fan favorite mystery revealed, continuity, stirring character moments, beautiful music, fantastic direction, nice Jane…it’s winning attributes are quite endless. Plenty of episodes this season moved me beyond belief but two in a row, ones that were so good it hurts…..sigh. I love this show.  10/10.

Detailed (AKA HUMUNGOUS) Review (spoilers galore)


This really was an all around perfect episode, but I won’t pretend that much of my elation was due to the fact of seeing one of my favorite actors and characters on the show depicted in a way that portrayed him to be what I always believed him to be. Unless I am being horribly led on, Red and Itchy completely vindicated my soft-spot for LaRoche and all the conclusions I ever made about him as well as Jane’s opinion regarding his character.

Speaking of vindication, it was also nice to see compassionate Jane make yet another appearance, to vindicate him from always being labelled as a jerk. Everyone knows Jane is a kind person in theory, but seeing him in action is always a wonderful experience. It truly is a joy to see him help people with minimum dosage of pain (since his love is usually of the “tough” variety).

Also, Jane’s often times misunderstood/miss received “help” is at times motivated by mixed purposes. But unequivocally altruistic intentions are not so often the drive behind his exertions. And if they are, then his implementation of them can at times leave much to be desired. Thankfully, not a single of these drawback’s exists here. I’ll always find Jane’s softer more compassionate side the most irresistible aspect of his character.

LaRoche, Jane and Lisbon; Friends? a Recap

In the Bloodstream episode review, I’d stated:

Jane’s proximity to J.J is probably part of a conscious strategic decision. If the man is guilty, then Jane has a better opportunity to find out. And if he is innocent, then it can only be beneficial for Jane to be close to someone as smart (and now, as powerful) as LaRoche…..Finally, perhaps Jane is spends time with LaRoche because he sees him as an actual friend. I liked when in the previous episode Jane told him “are we kids or what?” Obviously, he just said it to get the man’s guard down, but you also get a feeling of mutual respect there.

 in the Redacted Review…

I don’t care what anyone says. I am positive that LaRoche likes Lisbon (as a colleague at least). Else why would the writers have bothered clarifying that Lisbon’s one week suspension is mandatory? Why would LaRoche have clarified it? And the 6 months anger management classes, while undoubtedly tedious, could just as easily have been ordered out of concern for Lisbon as much as out of anger with her. I am positive that if not for LaRoche’s respect for Lisbon, her punishment could have been much worse.  Especially considering how much LaRoche was looking forward to making Culpepper “very sorry” for breaking into his home as he stated earlier on in the episode.

In the  Strawberries and Cream Review…

LaRoche dawdles and waits for Jane and Lisbon (who are arguing) to walk away. Only then does LaRoche get in the car. This scene was very cleverly written. Having LaRoche act strangely kept him under suspicion with viewers. Because what explanation could there be for him lingering behind, only to have him happen to kill Gupta and have the reason not be sinister?

.I’ve previously stated that I think LaRoche likes Lisbon (‘Bloodstream’); that he respects her. Also, we know Jane’s been trying to befriend LaRoche. When Jane offered LaRoche a bottle of scotch (Red Queen) LaRoche was visibly moved…I contend that LaRoche now likes both Jane and Lisbon and wants to befriend them but doesn’t know how. He just seems like such a misunderstood and awkward character that has a hard time having normal interactions with people. His hanging around could be because he simply enjoys being in their presence. Who can blame him? Their banter is always fun….A more serious possibility is that LaRoche was more interested in what they were saying. Lisbon was admonishing Jane for disobeying her order to leave, saying that it is her responsibility to keep him alive. I have a feeling that Lisbon’s sense of responsibility for Jane will be a huge theme in season four. And the fact that LaRoche heard her struggle with Jane’s insubordination will probably tie into that as well… what is undeniable is the look of pure interest made obvious because of the forced disinterest on LaRoche’s face as he listens to Jane and Lisbon’s banter. Pruitt Taylor Vince was remarkable in this scene. Initially he makes LaRoche suspicious and then endearing in retrospect. He truly is a joy to watch.

…also in Strawberries and Cream

Jane is amused at LaRoche appealing to his (questionable at best) sense of responsibility. He laughs and says “I love you.”

-BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was right! Jane likes LaRoche!

Ahem.  Never mind Jane probably just appreciates how simple LaRoche’s black and white ethics are (no doubt they make him easier to read) I genuinely believe he likes the guy. LaRoche’s reaction to Jane’s statement that he loves him is priceless. Like he doesn’t know whether to be pleased or scared; if Jane’s mocking him or if he’s being sincere.

Jane, seeing that he can’t manipulate LaRoche using ambition, goes for something else: fear. Jane tells LaRoche that if he gives him the list, Jane will not only tell him where Hightower is, but will also keep LaRoche’s secret. LaRoche tells Jane he could arrest him. But Jane says he won’t or he’ll reveal what’s in the box. LaRoche seems shaken and tells Jane “That is private” Jane responds that “it” should be, bluffing since he doesn’t really know what’s inside, adding that he’d love to help LaRoche keep his secret.  The man finally yields under the threat and writes down the name of the suspects. But before he gives it to Jane he tells him, not unkindly, “You’re a fascinating man, Patrick. Who knows what you might have achieved in this world were you not quite so damaged.”

J.J’s statement here can only reflect positively on his character. There he is being blackmailed by Jane into doing something against his moral character and work ethic. And instead of being furious with Jane he only seems to feel sympathy, maybe even pity for him.

In the Blood-Feud Review, I stated:

LaRoche is no dummy. He probably knew perfectly well that Jane called Rigsby and Lisbon is just protecting him by claiming she did. I see his refusal to acknowledge this truth is his way of succumbing to her wishes to protect her team. I’m just not sure why. Perhaps, like Hightower before him, he hopes Jane will behave better if he realizes that Lisbon will be held responsible for his actions.

LaRoche: Agent Lisbon, your instincts to protect your team are admirable, and your biggest flaw.

We have it in canon that this guy loves Lisbon (who doesn’t?). He got upset when she insulted him (Bloodstream) and he gave her a hug (Little Red Book). His statement here truly seemed like he was trying to look after her, protect her from herself. I find his behavior admirable, and not just because it annoyed Jane…

Jane: Yes, well we all have our flaws. Don’t we agent LaRoche?

Jane’s statement here is a not so subtle reminder to LaRoche that he knows a horrible secret LaRoche has (Strawberries and Cream) and his way of telling LaRoche his advice is not wanted. Jane does not want anyone influencing Lisbon and/or his relationship with her. It makes me wonder how he’d react if she ever gets a boyfriend.

Perhaps this threat is the reason why we never saw LaRoche make more attempts to befriend Lisbon…or Jane, for that matter. But it felt like Jane wanted to make amends since (later in this season) he enlisted LaRoche’s help on a case (Behind the Red Curtain). Unfortunately that pure emotion might have gone over J.J’s head since Jane had to bring up his blackmail material once more to get J.J. to cooperate. It sort of nullified his statements of  “Trust me, you’ll have fun.” And “J.J. You have to live a little. You spend your days chasing paper clip fees. When do you ever get the chance to nail a killer?”

But despite the successful cooperation in that episode, Itchy and Red shows that J.J. still felt/feels ill-used by Jane, despite Jane’s honest attempts to disabuse him of that (not quite unreasonable) notion.

Let’s take it from the top….

Teaser: Jane Willingly Leaves the Attic

Lisbon knocks on Jane’s door. He yells out “I’m busy!” Lisbon says she’s been trying to get him on the phone and demands he opens the door. Jane does so quite unwillingly. We learn why when Lisbon asks if his RJ suspect board has him any closer to getting to Red John. Jane replies: “I don’t know I keep getting interrupted. What I need is radio silence for a week Lisbon, if you can.”

-I was struck with how irritated Jane sounded here. It’s a stark contrast from the last episode when he tells Lisbon “Anything for you.” Methinks perhaps Lisbon has been calling Jane out on cases because she worries about him up there alone in the attic. And Jane’s irritation might stem from the fact that this (unnecessary, in his opinion) worry is getting in his way of making real progress.

Lisbon tells Jane: “The dead body in LaRoche’s house won’t wait that long.” Jane replies in surprise “J.J’s?” Lisbon concurs when she tells him that he asked for him specifically. Jane quickly follows her out the door.

-The difference between Lisbon and Jane’s reference to the Head of Professional Standard’s Unit is quite telling and in character. We’ve heard Lisbon refer to many of her colleagues by first name (Osvaldo, Bob, Madeline) but unless my memory fails she never called LaRoche by his first name. It goes to show that despite my (and probably Jane’s) suspicions that LaRoche likes Teresa, she still hasn’t warmed up to him completely. Mores the pity. I was hoping the hug the man had given her ( Little Red Book) would have clued her into the man’s regard. But it looks like it might have just weirded her out. Poor man.

In contrast, Jane calling LaRoche by his first name, suggests more friendly feelings on his part, as does the fact that he instantly left what he was doing to help out on the case, despite just demanding to be left alone.

More clues to the friendship are found when they reach La-Roche’s house. To my delight, Jane says “Oh, they hit the Hummels” commenting on the figurines he knows LaRoche loves to collect (Red Queen) before asking with genuine concern “Is LaRoche okay?”

Sigh. I totally ship JaRoche friendship.

Jane later makes his way to the ambulance where J.J. is waiting to talk to him before he goes to the hospital. Jane greets him by his first name commenting that he noticed the man bought a new safe, but that it wasn’t safe enough. J.J. asks the paramedic to leave them before telling “Mr. Jane” that he’ll cut to the chase.

-The fact that J.J. addresses Jane so formally clues us in to his idea of the relationship’s status: purely professional. Also, the cordiality hints of timidness and humbleness. Perhaps it’s due to the favor he’s going to ask Jane, or it might be due to being under Jane’s control for so long…

LaRoche tells Jane that he wasn’t honest with Rigsby. While he told him the thieves he surprised didn’t take anything, they in fact stole the tupperware box from his safe. Jane says he figured.

-Probably, when Jane didn’t see the box in the safe, he concluded that it was the target of the burglary. Perhaps he’d even guessed it was the reason for the crime the instant he heard the man’s house was broken into again.

LaRoche tells Jane he thought he was the only one who knew of its existence, but that after the remaining thief left he found a note in the box’s place “drop the case, you have until tonight”. He then explains to Jane that he’s being blackmailed into forgoing an investigation he’s working into a security leak at CBI. LaRoche then adds “you know what will happen if they unseal that box.” Jane replies “I do.”

-Of course regular viewers will be amazed at Jane’s ability to lie since we know he has no idea what’s inside, just that such a box exists and that he himself once blackmailed LaRoche, bluffing to reveal its contents.

LaRoche replies “of course” with a knowing tone. Here Jane is compelled to say “I didn’t take that box.” LaRoche then states “I know that, Patrick. It’s your favorite blackmail device” and attempts to win Jane to his cause by saying “Your puppet mastery of me ends if its contents become public knowledge.” Here, again, Jane clarifies “I never thought of you as a puppet,” to which LaRoche sadly replies “You ever thought of me as a friend?”

Aw! PTV totally broke my heart here. And probably Jane’s as well. Baker’s concerned empathetic face is a beautiful, beautiful sight to behold. But he doesn’t reply to LaRoche’s question. Perhaps it’s because, while he does like LaRoche (I do not doubt that for a second) his motives in getting to know him were not quite so altruistic in the beginning (he suspected him of being an RJ mole). Or maybe Jane is simply shocked that despite LaRoche butting heads with Jane, the man is tacitly admitting that Jane’s friendship was something LaRoche would have sincerely valued, had he felt confident he had it.

And just to make things more heartbreakingly awkward, J.J., barely able to keep his composure, tells Jane “this is difficult to ask”. At Jane’s (encouraging) expectant silence, LaRoche adds “I need your help. Please.”


Sniff. I think it was Mary who once coined LaRoche as being “creepy but fluffy” on this blog. But now he’s just plain fluffy. He looks like a poor sick mutt.

Jane is quite stricken. It’s so wonderful to see him so touched, even more because it’s completely in character. We know that nothing moves Jane like honesty. And trust. So how can he remain unaffected by the man’s request here? He can’t. He isn’t, and is quick to reassure LaRoche that he’ll find his box.

-Baker’s tone here was so irresistibly kind that millions of fans melted into the floor.

LaRoche tells him, “I would appreciate that. As would my mother.” Before telling the paramedics that they can take him to the hospital now. Jane quickly takes the hint and leaves the poor afflicted man to try to collect himself in private.

-And any fans who managed to remain solid after hearing Jane’s husky voice had no chance against seeing PTV barely suppressed tears of pain and gratitude.

Lisbon then joins Jane as the ambulance takes off to ask Jane “So what’s in the tupperware box?” Jane honestly replies “I don’t know.”

Lisbon’s question is continuity to the fact that Jane had told her about the box’s existence when he used it to blackmail LaRoche into giving him his suspect list (strawberries and cream).  But her question here lets us know that she noticed no such box was in LaRoche’s safe and was insightful enough to figure out why the PCU head asked for Jane personally on the case.

Jane asks Lisbon to help LaRoche

Jane recaps to viewers how he originally came to find out about the box’s existence, and how Lisbon had to endure 6 months of anger management classes to keep LaRoche from finding out Jane had hired a man to break into the man’s apartment. He then tells her that the box’s contents might end J.J’s career and asks her to have Rigsby and Van Pelt to try to find out what’s inside it to help him. Lisbon replies: “Our job is to catch the criminal that got away, not protect some CBI agent who might be dirty.”

Poor LaRoche. If readers weren’t convinced by her refusing to use the man’s first name basis in the teaser that she didn’t care for him, then her being so unconcerned about his plight here is more than enough evidence. Perhaps her lack of empathy comes from the fact that the man had previously tried to warn her from protecting her team; something her motherly instinct must resent. Then there’s also the fact that J.J. had been the one to assign Lisbon the detested anger management classes. Although, in retrospect, I can’t but help wondering if they are what had her handle Jane’s Vegas stint/Lorelie affair as well as she did. Anyone else probably would have flown off the handle…

Jane seems disappointed with Lisbon’s stance, as hinted by his “so much for the anger management training” comment. He then tries something else; he tells her that if they find out LaRoche’s secret it will lead them to the missing criminal. Lisbon, always the voice of reason asks Jane why he just doesn’t ask LaRoche. Jane explains “It’s embarrassing and deeply personal”. Lisbon then asks “and it’s in tupperware?”to which Jane replies “Yes, how can you not want to investigate?”

How not indeed?!

In the Strawberries and cream Review, I had said:

Jane later tells the team that for his bluff to have worked so well, LaRoche must be hiding something horrible. I think, given how melancholy LaRoche’s demeanor and his statement to Jane, what LaRoche is hiding is something very sad. And that his statement that Jane is “damaged” means that he can’t believe Jane would threaten him with something so sad. Because while LaRoche may not know Jane very well, he should know Jane has no problem using people’s faults (mistakes) against them. I think he’d only be so affected (almost disappointed?)  if what Jane threatened him with was something he thought Jane could understand. A keepsake maybe, of a lover or a family member?

When LaRoche mentioned that he and “his mother” appreciated Jane’s help, my mind instantly surmised that the contents might have been her ashes, or something similar. We later find out that the item in the box was kept around the same time as a tragic event in his life: his mother was assaulted and raped, and later took her own life due to the trauma. But that wouldn’t explain why he would have a fear of the contents discovered.  Also, in a later scene, something he says to Jane establishes the idea that the contents must be truly horrible, as Jane said in the season three finale…

LaRoche explains the Leak

LaRoche tells Jane that he’s suspected a mole for months now because too many high profile suspects were evading arrests. When Jane tells LaRoche that he hadn’t noticed anything, the latter replies: “That’s because you stop at nothing to close cases for your team.” Jane, pleased, replies “Why thank you,” LaRoche then continues “Other CBI Agents, they have principles.”

-Snap! LOVE LOVE LOVE LaRoche. I also love how the banter recalls the “are we kids or what” statement (Red Queen). We know these two like to verbally spar together. But in this case Jane didn’t seem to derive as much pleasure from it. He replies to LaRoche’s jab into his work ethic, by telling him: “I leaned into that one”. Could it be, just like LaRoche cares about Jane’s friendship, Jane actually cares about what LaRoche’s opinion of him. I honestly think so. Despite differences of opinion, there was always a mutual respect between these two.

In case regulars didn’t guess who the leak was from the fact that Rebecca Wisosky, the actress that portrays Brenda was guest starring in this episode, LaRoche soon tips us off. He explains to Jane that CBI was going to bust into the warehouse of a drug lord, Miguel Leva, only to find the incriminating cocaine disappear before their arrival. Another rich suspect, Tommy Vokler (Little Red Corvette) was always ahead of Jane and Lisbon. Once he was caught LaRoche discovered that he had a secret cell phone and had gotten calls from CBI. Hence, LaRoche’s belief that a CBI employee is on the take.

-Regulars will no doubt remember that Brenda, the CBI’s head of PR was the one who kept providing Vokler with info on the case.

Jane tells LaRoche that at least he has a suspect; whoever is blackmailing him is the leak and once they find hi he’ll be safe. When LaRoche expresses doubt that it can be done before the deadline he was given to stop his investigation, Jane then reassures LaRoche: “Like you said I’ll stop at nothing.”

The two then have the following conversation:

LaRoche: ”You know what’s in that box, Patrick. What do you think of me?”

Jane: You’re going to have to be more specific.

LaRoche: Am I a monstrosity to you?

Jane: “A monstrosity? No. I mean, you’re interesting and complex.

“I am?”

“ And obviously creative. Tupperware.”

LaRoche: “Well, I suppose that’s true. I’ve been afraid to ask that until now.”

Gold. Gold. Gold. Gold. LaRoche’s question, Jane’s clever answer to hide his ignorance, and how quick he was to quell LaRoche’s fears in spite of that ignorance was so very intriguing.

First, LaRoche’s acknowledgment that he feared what Jane might think of him, is evermore proof that he actually cares about Jane. What other proof of regard is needed other than caring about what a person thinks about you?

Second, this fear might be another reason why, after the events of Strawberries and Cream, LaRoche (apparently) kept away from Jane. If he thought Jane knew what was in the box, he could only assume Jane would have researched his past to connect the dots. And if Jane was blackmailing him over revenge of such a tragic event as had happened to his mother, then that would certainly explained the “damaged” comment LaRoche had said to Jane in S&C. It would also explain LaRoche’s later keeping Jane at arm’s. He was afraid of him, both revealing his secret and his possible ill opinion of J.J. After finding out about that secret. PTV was fantastic here, portraying  this new (insecure!) side of LaRoche.

As was Baker. Jane’s reactions and tone were phenomenal. As were his facial expressions. At LaRaoche’s queary, the actor’s expressive expression gave insight into the mentalist’s thought process: he sensed inherently the man’s need for compassion and didn’t hesitate one second in reassuring him, despite not knowing what horror, what “monstrosity” might lie in that plastic box, that he didn’t think he was a monster.

I think, for the first time, Jane realized that he may have more in common in this man than sharp intellect and the ability to get under people’s skin.

LaRoche Start to Panic

Once Jane finds out where the plastic box was left for J.J.’s blackmailer to find, he immediately calls LaRoche to find it. To their disappointment, they find that the box was already taken from the park which was the drop-off point. Then LaRoche sees a man with a plastic container and threatens him at gun-point into giving it up. Jane tells the (as it turns out later) innoncent man “He’s usually very calm I’d do what he says” and checks the box to find out it only has a young kid’s lunch. LaRoche is appropriately apologetic, tells Jane his time is running out, and thanks him for his help.

-The moment was important to see just how desperate LaRoche was to get his box back. It also explains why Jane is helping LaRoche: he says he’s like a puppy that’s rolled onto its back: “You have to rub its belly.” LaRoche accuses Jane of mocking him to which Jane replies:  No, no, I’m happy to rub your belly.” Here, LaRoche responds, “That won’t be necessary,” much to Jane’s relief.

I love these two together XD. Also, J.J. looking at his belly as he said the words made me laugh loud.

LaRoche Feels Betrayed by Jane

When Jane figures out that Brenda is his blackmailer and hence the CBI leak, he takes his suspicions to LaRoche. The man concurs that she’s a likely suspect as most information in CBI passes through her. But he adds that it will take him time to build a case against her; time he doesn’t have before she reveals his secret. Jane tells LaRoche he can take her down before then but he needs Lisbon and the team’s help. LaRoche immediately balks at this idea, saying nobody can know about his box. To his dismay, Jane admits that they already do, that he had to tell Lisbon a very valuable container was stolen from LaRoche’s safe. He assures the man, swearing that that he never mentioned it’s contents, but LaRoche is nonetheless upset: “You had no right to reveal its existence at all.” Jane replies simply: “Lisbon is my partner.” The statement only makes LaRoche feel worse: “Allegiances, loyalties. Yes. Of course. What…what was I thinking?”

Awwwww! Poor LaRoche! It’s like he felt, hoped, that Jane would be loyal to him as well, but now feels like a sad idiot for entertaining such thoughts. Despite his awkward attempts, he’ll never be a friend to Jane and/or Lisbon. Jane seems to understands the man’s dejected feelings based on how bad he looks for the man. I can’t remember the last time I saw him so compassionate to someone other than Lisbon.

LaRoche goes on to break my (and Jane’s heart) a little further: “I understand. You and Lisbon, you’re trusted friends. You do what you will, Mr. Jane. It’s what you’ll do anyway,” before walking off like a puppy who’d been kicked in his gut.

Jane feels really, really bad. He goes as far as to say “J.J. Come on, don’t be like that!” but to no avail. The poor, awkward man goes to lick his wounds in private, much to Jane’s consternation, especially since, he truly is trying to help him.


This scene was so, utterly devastatingly beautiful. It made me cry, not just because I felt bad for LaRoche, but in disbelief that I was witnessing such a fantastic character moment. I LOVE character moments. And by two such unbelievably talented people, by two such profoundly deep characters…. Happy tears were shed all throughout this episode. Then as if that wasn’t enough, Neely’s music was there just egging all the emotions on, taking them so much further than on-screen relationships between two adult men usually go.

Jane Presses Lisbon Into Cornering  Shettrick

Jane, more motivated than ever to help LaRoche urges Lisbon that they need to move against Shettrick. She’s reluctant due to the lack of concrete evidence against her. She also tells Jane “Have you ever thought that maybe LaRoche’s secret should be known?” Jane’s reply is very intriguing “Endlessly. But I’ve come to the conclusion that whatever happened he had punished himself enough.”

-Jane here was probably debating whether he himself wants to know what’s in the box, since I don’t think the idea of exposing LaRoche ever actually crossed his mind. As to LaRoche having punished himself enough, I think Jane came to that conclusion based on a new understanding as to why LaRoche now is such a die-hard stickler to the rules: trying to make up for his past mistake, he overcompensates by sticking to the rules no matter what. It is probably the reason he is such a misunderstood person and alienated by so many people. Even Saint Teresa doesn’t like him…

Jane then goes on to tell Lisbon that she knows in her gut that Brenda sold her out to Volker. That she almost got an eight year old witness killed (Little Red Corvette) and finishes off his speech saying: “For once in your life Lisbon, don’t be the voice of reason, be the voice of wrath.”

It’s a powerful, powerful statement. It’s followed up nicely by little miss fierce saying: “All right. How do we get the bitch?”

I can’t for the life of me find any reason to fault Lisbon’s stance here. The trap that subsequently ended up capturing Brenda wouldn’t have worked, wouldn’t have had any harm (that I could find) if she had been innocent (unlike some of Jane’s other ideas). It was therefore very satisfying  to see her sufficiently lured.

LaRoche regains his Box

When Cho and Rigsby find the tupperware in Brenda’s office, Jane arrives just in time to stop the younger agent from sneaking a peak. He asks Rigsby “Is that yours to open?” The caught agent puts lowers the box.

Jane then returns it to LaRoche, who thanks him for keeping his secret. When the grateful man surmises that Brenda can still bring him down, Jane says that she won’t since she cut a deal with the DA to give up drug lord Leva, and that she won’t talk of the tupperware if LaRoche drops the blackmail charges. At LaRoche’s query on how Shettrick knew of the box to begin with, Jane assumes that she must have asked Culpepper, the thief Jane hired to break into LaRoche’s safe, to give her dirt on the man she wanted to blackmail.

-I liked that an explanation was given for this since this question really would have bothered me.

LaRoche tells Jane that this “concludes our business together” Jane pointedly replies “I certainly hope not.”

I want to hug Jane, so sweet was he here!! Hopefully LaRoche now won’t doubt Jane’s genuine desire for his friendship. We certainly got plenty of hints of their passing time together in Season three. They both could probably use the friendship.

LaRoche then tells Jane that while he appreciates his never asking him why he kept the box, he must have wondered. Jane agrees that he does.

LaRoche then tells him: “I hold this box as a warning. It reminds me to the depths to which a man can sink if he lets himself.  And it reminds me of my mother.

-I can’t help but wonder if LaRoche’s interest, warning to Jane is a result of wanting to protect him from sinking to those depths he’s only too aware of.

Jane bids LaRoche farewell.

Jane asks Lisbon to Leave him Alone

As Jane heads into his attic, Lisbon asks if he looked into the box. Jane replies: “And violate the man’s privacy?”

-Okay, since when does Jane care about people’s privacy? We’ve only seen him so discrete when it is someone he truly cares about (i.e. Lisbon in Red Badge).

Aw, crap. J.J. is gonna die in the finale, isn’t he? Why else would he have been so in focus this season. Note to self, prepare tissues.

Jane then goes on to tell Lisbon “What’s inside the box is of far less significance for me than what the box represents.”

Lisbon won’t leave it alone asking: “I just want to know why you bent over backwards for that man.” Jane, enters his attic, then turns back at the threshold and tells her the following:

“What’s important to know is that a man will go to extreme lengths to find peace. As I must do now.” Lisbon, unaware of the new empathy between J.J. and Jane is understandably confused: “What are you talking about?” Jane replies “Until I come out of this room, I need to be alone, Lisbon alone. No interruptions. No distractions.” Lisbon reluctantly agrees and tells Jane to do what he has to do.

-The difference between Jane’s demeanor at the beginning and at the end of the episode is striking. Here, he is much nicer when asking Lisbon for space. I think perhaps, spending time with LaRoche, who doesn’t appear to have anyone in the world, Jane felt that even Lisbon’s interference in his work is a blessing. I’ve no doubt she does it because she’s worried about him, and he probably appreciates that more now. Not that I doubt he ever did, but the day’s events might have served as a reminder.

The secret is revealed…or is it?

Grace tells Lisbon that she found the address of LaRoche’s mom’s rapist. Lisbon tells her to forget it since Jane is busy and the case is over, but when she learns that the perp, Scott Saynay, lives with his mom, Lisbon is intrigued and pays them a visit. The mother is shocked when Lisbon tells her she wants to ask her son some questions: she reveals that her son is mute: a man broke into Scott’s apartment nine years ago, gave him a sedative and cut out his tongue. She tells Lisbon that the police never caught the man or ever discovered why the crime was committed, nor did they ever find his tongue.

-Woah. I guess we finally know what’s in LaRoche’s box: the tongue of his mother’s attacker. And yet, something doesn’t sit right with me.

The choice of taking out Saynay’s tongue, as opposed to other body parts seems strange and I scoured the episode in search of an answer. Here are some possible clues I found:

-Earlier in the episode Rigsby said that Saynay was on anti-depressants the night he attached LaRoche’s mom.

-We were also told that the only evidence found that Saynay was the perp is LaRoche’s mother’s blood on his clothes. Again, there seemed to be a specific reason for giving us this knowledge.

Could it be that LaRoche took revenge in his own hands because he feared Saynay might plead instanity/lie on the stand and therefore successfully withstand the trial? Did he not want to risk the man getting an “innocent” verdict?


What if Saynay is innocent and his tongue was cut out, as opposed to any other body part, to prevent him from ably defending himself in court?

Could it be that the blood evidence was planted?

I know I’m veering into conspiracy territory here and I’m loathe to suspect LaRoche of more than what we’re being asked to conclude here, I just can’t shake off the weird vibe I got at the end. I blame the look/demeanor of the actor that was chosen for the role of Saynay. He doesn’t look like a sick or evil rapist. He looks like a broken boy. I guess that might be a natural result of incurring LaRoche’s vengeance; he has to live mute forever as payment for his terrible crime. But what if his demeanor is actually that of an innocent man who suffered unfairly? I know what I should think: the obvious conclusion which, based on Lisbon’s smile of comprehension she came too as well. But something just feels off somehow.

Speaking of Lisbon, under the disturbing circumstances, I might have been a bit surprised (disturbed?) by her amusement, except I am positive it was mostly ironic due to finding out something Jane doesn’t know (thought he probably guessed as much) and at the fact that Robo-cop LaRoche, whom is even more by the book than she is, had veered off the law so terribly in the past.

Best Lines

“You know we can have someone handle the dog.” Lisbon, to Rigsby, on his holding LaRoche’s dog.

“Oh yeah, I know,” Rigsby in reply to the above, holding on more tightly to the gorgeous white fluffy animal. Of course Rigsby loves dogs.

“I hope you learned something.” Jane, to Lisbon, when she recalled the anger management classes. Lisbon’s light smack, coupled with a beautiful smile to let Jane know she was only kidding, is the closest thing we’ve ever gotten to her flirting with Jane. Not that I’m saying she is, here. Pity Jane was too intent on LaRoche’s case to notice. He reaction might have been telling.

“Tupperware is never handy, it’s always in the wrong drawer.” Rigsby, to Lisbon.

“And when you do find it the lid’s always missing.” Grace, in reply to the above.

“Right? I hate that.” Rigsby, again, in reply to the above. I love how this short exchange hints at Grace and Wayne’s newly on relationship. They’re just so in tune, which shows how much they’ve matured as opposed to their bickering spats when they had a relationship before.

“Since when do we attend autopsies?” Lisbon, to Jane. Since the pilot, dear Lisbon.

“I’ll take your word for it.” Lisbon, to the coroner, declining to see something in the body. It’s intriguing to see how Lisbon here isn’t shy about showing her disgust, as opposed to professional Lisbon in the pilot, all professionalism in front of Jane (more of a colleague, less of a friend at the time). I’m more inclined to think it shows that she’s less uptight around Jane than to think it a lack of continuity.

“You’re father was losing the use of his hands he needed help so he taught everything he knew to the woman he trusted most.” Jane, to the victim’s daughter, on how her mom knows how to open safes. The line seems like a pretty good explanation for Jane constantly wanting to teach Lisbon his methods as well.

“Oh, Lisbon it doesn’t matter what was inside. The exciting part is the mystery of not knowing. It’s what makes the journey memorable.” For a nosy man like Jane this entire line seems like a load of crap. I’m thinking he said it to prepare Lisbon for the fact that she’ll never find out (not from him anyway) about what is in LaRoche’s box.

“Sacramento’s most eligible singles? Or should I say sexy spinsters of Sacramento. –Jane’s inquiry on what Lisbon is being interviewed for. I guess it could be possible that it was Brenda Jane was flirting with, but I don’t think so. especially considering the previous episode. I think his statement here is continuity on how Jane is making increasingly suggestive remarks regarding Lisbon, and how, while not encouraging him, she isn’t exactly shying away from him either. I remember asking this before (and being outvoted), but I can’t help wondering, again, if the writers want to prepare us for the fact that a Jane/Lisbon romance will (has already been) established off screen…

“Let me do what I do. You do what you do. Whatever that is.” Brenda, to Jane, when he challenges the point of Lisbon’s interview. Baker and Tunney’s shared amused glance at the jab was great fun.

“LaRoche is pressed for time, we’re doing fine,” Lisbon, in reply to Jane’s statement that they’re pressed for time. Again, it’s interesting to see how more vested Jane was to help LaRoche than Lisbon is.

“Trading favors and inside information to anyone who’d have you…Just another political phony on the take. Baa.” Jane’s powerful soliloquy explaining Brenda’s motives, making the noise of a sheep at the end, mocking her earlier statement of suspects being sheep taken to the slaughter by showing her that she’d turned into one long ago. Baker showing his characters merciless derision here was a fantastic contrast to the empathy Jane had shown for J.J. throughout the rest of the episode.

Icings on the Cake

J.J’s dog doesn’t like Lisbon. Maybe she’s jealous of her?

Karl Sonnenberg looks very imposing and photogeneic. Truly loving all the screen time he’s been given.

Lisbon telling Brenda that she didn’t read blogs, and Shettrick telling her that she should made me smile.

Honorable Mentions

David Paymer (AKA the San Joaquin Killer) directed this episode. And what a marvelous job he did of it. I loved all the focus he had on the player’s faces. Viewers didn’t miss a single facial expression. Then there was the angle he used to show us Lisbon on camera. I know it turned out that Shettrick was the one watching her, but at first I could swear angle suggests RJ was watching the interview as well.

I’ve already flailed plenty about Simon Baker and Pruitt Taylor Vince. But Rebecca Wisosky was fabulous as well. Especially at the end. Her portrayal of Brenda’s mortification and shame during interrogation, as Jane painted a pitiful picture of her decline into becoming corrupt, was extremely well done.

Tunney was marvelous as well, especially at the end in portraying how hard it was for Lisbon to succumb to Jane’s wishes of being left alone. Worry doesn’t seem to be her main (only) difficulty here of letting go. You can tell that she’s going to miss him as well.

Blake Neely’s music as as emotionally manipulative as ever. What would the show be without it?

Best Scenes


Readers, please share your own favorite scenes.


In the comments to the last episode’s review, Pheonixx said something which I not only completely agree with, but saw some evidence of in this episode:

Also wouldn’t it be harder on everyone -when you know you can’t be with someone- to push the person away and not act on your feelings but then you realize this person reciprocates your feelings. If you knew that other person only sees you as a friend that’s one thing but if the possibility of a relationship presents itself, I personally think it’s becoming harder for Jane to stay away therefore he might act even worse.

This theory is supported by Jane’s behavior in this episode. There was a sense of urgency at the beginning when Lisbon interrupted him. His (yelling!) telling her that he’s busy, her not wanting him to be alone, his urging her once more at the end, her relenting (though not easily) to let him to what he has to do….it all seems like the writers are laying a foundation for something. Could it be that now that Jane has real reason to believe Lisbon might actually be returning the depth of his emotions for her, he feels more anxious than ever to catch RJ? Or could it be his fear for her safety is increasing, maybe as a result of their increasing regard?

Then there’s the fact that Lisbon appeared on camera to say the following, as a comment on the break in to LaRoche’s home:

“It’s stark evidence that no law officer is ever truly off duty. We’re all targets. But J.J. chose to be a CBI Agent which is a life of serving other people…”

I wonder if RJ saw Lisbon’s interview. If so, will he be tempted at all to prove to her just how true her statement is.

Then there’s the fact that the reason Lisbon gave the interview is because, as she and  Shettrick told Jane: “Bertram wants to put a public face on the LaRoche break in, to assure the public that we are not rattled by criminal attacks on our people.”

Now Shettrick might have been lying. Bertram might never have ordered the interview, she just arranged it because of the access such an interview would give her to LaRoche’s case, without Lisbon ever suspecting her.

But what if the interview really was Bertram’s idea? The idea kept nagging me especially as I researching the past reviews for previous analysis on LaRoche’s character. I ran into previous suspicions raised into Bertram’s character in season three when he, LaRoche, and O’Loughlin were all introduced. I’d always found him and Craig to be more suspicious than LaRoche.

-He quoted a William Blake poem in front of Lisbon (perhaps to ascertain how much info on RJ Jane shared with her).

-He’s the one who told LaRoche about Hightower’s affair with the CHP officer, thus implicating her in the murder of Todd Johnson (Red Queen).

There were other things as well, but those were the main points I remembered. And now, we have Bertram wanting Lisbon (not J.J, who was most involved) go live on air saying that she’s not afraid of attacks. What is going on?


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

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

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125 responses to “Mentalist Red and Itchy Review

  • Rose UK

    Welcome back, ReviewBrain! 😉

    Can I join you in the “I love JJ” club?! He’s a great ally, and I really really hope your prediction doesn’t come true. 😦

    Ok, some thoughts:

    Boxes and doors and keys and locks. Again. Whoever flagged up those elements in previous episodes seems to be on to something!

    Again, we have a physical (and metaphorical) door between Jane and Lisbon – the camera work often focuses on their separation as the attic door closes (like in the episodes where Jane gets into the lift and shuts Lisbon out, as posters have previously commented). That said, in RVC the attic door opens from Jane’s perspective, and there’s Lisbon, waiting for him. Always there, behind the door.

    There was another small duality/mirroring in Rigsby holding the dog versus Jane holding the cat, although I’m not sure there’s anything in that!

    On a different note, I loved how Jane’s dishonesty actually made him honest. He didn’t know what was in the box; he had to bluff – but his bluffs were all truths. He was able to tell JJ what he really thought of him, sincerely, without having been influenced in any way by the contents.

    And Lisbon’s unreadable smile at the end? Various interpretations, but I think it was mostly a case of her thinking “Well, I’ll be damned. JJ La Roche, you dark horse” and feeling kind of satisfied that she’d found out the secret. Just like in Panama Red, she takes the direct route to opening the box and goes straight to the horse’s mouth.

    I wonder if there’s any symbolism surrounding tongues?

  • Auli

    Brilliant review as always! I was absolutely thrilled about this episode. I agree with all your points about LaRoche and Jane, those two together is just wonderful to watch. Btw, I read somewhere on the internet that the writer who brought LaRoche on intented him to have Asperger’s, which actually explains a lot about LaRoche´s somewhat awkward social skills.

    I’d like to add one point why Lisbon was not that keen on helping LaRoche. He messed with her by putting Cho to lead. The reasons behind the happening was indeed Lisbon’s fault but I think that it had also some reasons why Lisbon doesn’t trust LaRoche. She also started to call Hightower by her first name when she was not her boss anymore if I remember right.

    My favourite scene was the ending and especially when the rapist came walking downstrairs. The music was brilliant, the direction, lighting, everything! It was so creepy and for a second there I though that something bad will happen to Lisbon. I also got some strange feeling about the ending. I try to avoid the conspiracy territory and decide to believe that the guy was the rapist and LaRoche had his vengence. My strange feeling came from VanPelt’s notice that the rapist lives with his mom. Didn’t Jane say in some episode that RJ lives with his mom and something about lemon tree in front of the house? Could this be foreshadowing that Lisbon will end up in wolf’s nest? Ok, apparently I see everything as foreshadowing. Anyhow, my wish is that when they do reveal RJ to us, it would be something similar than the ending of this episode.

  • Auli

    It was so nice to see Jane being honest and not manipulative! I really liked that he came clean about the whole Culpepper business.

  • Rose UK

    Oh goodness, that’s a good point. What with all the talk about family, when the word “mother” was mentioned it was like a huge anvil dropping on our heads!

    The ending (season or series) is so going back to the pilot…

  • Mandy cranney

    Awesome as alawys!

  • mosquitoinuk

    Hi Rose,

    I loved your comment about Lisbon taking the direct route to opening the box, just as she did in “Panama Red” and the puzzle box.

  • All-I-need

    Oh god, that episode was amazing!
    I freely admit that I used to be very suspicious of LaRoche (especially in Season 3) but I’ve come around since then and I absolutely adore him now. He is a great character, very interesting, and I love all his scenes with Jane. Those two together are amazing.

    I wonder why LaRoche thought Jane would consider him a monster if he knew of the tongue in the box. After all, Jane is the one who has spent 10 years hunting a serial killer, shot two people, slept with a Red John diciple and once buried a man alive. Considering that Jane is plotting a cold-blooded murder, cutting off a tongue (and using a sedative!) is almost harmless in comparison. Even LaRoche can’t have missed that Jane is determined to end Red John, after all, so why worry about his opinion? Jane is the first to understand a need for revenge, after all.

    What really struck me in this episode (and the entire season, to be honest) was the way Jane and Lisbon are acting around each other.
    Ever since Season 3, we’ve been getting increasingly broader hints at a romance. There was Jane’s “There’s something I need to tell you” in the season 3 finale, his “Love you” in the Season 4 finale and his increased flirting ever since. Only last episode he was asking about her fetish, for god’s sake!
    And now he called her “eligible bachelorette” AND “sexy” in the same scene, in the bullpen, with the entire team and Brenda present. And the way he pronounced “sexy” had me almost crawling into my laptop.
    As far as I am concerned, the writers have clearly kicked it up a notch (or five) and I am desperately hoping for a kiss this season finale. Call me optimistic, but that’s the way I see it.

    I can’t wait to see the final episode of this season and I just know that it will kill me – one way or the other.
    Problem: the finale airs on Sunday, meaning I’ll have to wait until Monday to see it in Germany. And guess when my final exams are starting? That’s right. Monday! If I screw up, I’ll blame the Mentalist writers…

    Anyways, thank you for this wonderful review, Reviewbrain! I agree with everything you said concerning LaRoche and his desire to befriend Jane (who wouldn’t want to?!) and I absolutely can not wait to see the finale.

  • mosquitoinuk

    Hi Reviewbrain!

    Well, I haven’t got much to say to this *really* humongous (and excellent) review! thank you very much for keep the discussion going.

    I am such a J.J-Jane shipper: they’re adorable together. They respect each other’s intellect and sharpness. I love J.J’s centred episodes. This episode was also about Jane’s best personality traits, which we desperately needed after so much darkness this season.

    I hope your intuition about J.J’s demise is not true. I always thought that he would have a key role to play in capturing RJ. Lisbon is in too deep, she’s been marked by R.J as a potential target and Jane will need help I’m sure (and he’ll do his best to protect Lisbon). I think this doesn’t foreshadow J.J’s death and I hope it does open the door for more cooperation (and trust) between J.J and Jane. J.J. is internal affairs and my guess is that he will have (I think) the seniority, knowledge, power, insight and intelligence to investigate and dissect the CBI-R.J’s connection. I think he’ll be instrumental in Jane’s quest in fact. I’m an optimistic at heart, but I also think it makes sense. La Roche is someone that Jane can trust and for me, this episode wanted to establish that, amongst other things.

    That been said, I hope La Roche is not one of the 7 names in that list!

  • Valentinasweet

    Thank you so much reviewbrain for your wonderful review, i love your review and i hope to read this review for days so i am so happy thank you…but before to say what i think about this episode, i wanted to you a question….what do you think about jane sentence “the most attractive single of Sacramento,or I should say the most sexy maid of Sacramento?”
    I wanted to know your impression about it, i really care so much *-* pleaseeeeee

  • Rose UK

    I agree, Mosquito (and also thank you for your comment above!). JJ is a brilliant person to have on the team and I think it would actually mean a lot to him to be brought in. Jane definitely has a soft spot for vulnerable, hurting and lonely people (and people who are in trouble), especially when those people put their trust and faith in him. When that happens – for example with Hightower, Lisbon, Steiner, even Cho – he never lets them down. It’s awesome to see, particularly when he can be such a selfish brat in other respects!!! 😉

  • III Frogs

    Auli, I don’t think you’re off-track at all about feeling the significance that the rapist lived with his mother. I remembered the same thing about Jane’s description of Red John living with his mother. And this scene in Red and Itchy highlighted the connection, I think.

    Lisbon shows no interest that Van Pelt has found the rapist and was prepared to blow it off since the case was solved. UNTIL Van Pelt mentioned that the rapist lived with his mother. Then, she can’t get over there fast enough! I can make no other sense of Lisbon’s reaction than she, too, remembered Jane had predicted Red John would live with his mother.

    Having just agreed not to interrupt Jane for a week, or was it to jump at the chance to follow up on a clue that Jane now did not have privy to?, she heads out alone. That’s the only thing that doesn’t really make sense to me, and casts a shadow of doubt in my mind that her motivation is about Red John. But what else explains it? Anyway, Lisbon dashes out without back-up of any kind. Pretty foolhardy, if she thinks she might be on Red John’s trail. Instead she finds a sad, mutilated young man and the key to the mystery of what’s in Laroche’s tupperware.

    So, she still wins out over Jane, since he still doesn’t know (Yes, I do believe Jane did not look in the box, out of friendship and compassion to J.J.). A totally fascinating and riveting scene.

  • C Hill

    “I should say the most sexy maid of Sacramento?””

    it was actually “or should I say sexy spinsters of Sacramento”?

    I think “sexy singles” was for Lisbon — the spinster comment foreshadowing for Shettrick.

    Thanks for mentioning that playful slap in the car, rb.

    And, at the end, was the “kid” trying to say “LaRoche”? Or something else?

    Very creepy finish to be sure.

    On continuity, the pink orchid was gone.

    More later. Great review, rb. I’ve a bit to think about for the next 36 hours 🙂

  • III Frogs

    Reviewbrain, this review is absolutely breathtaking to me! I can’t remember ever having agreed with every point in a review before, especially one so comprehensive. Bringing in the Laroche parts of previous reviews here gives us a goldmine of continuity in J.J.’s relationship with Jane since we first met him. I can’t thank you enough for that.

    I, too, was completely charmed by the development of a real friendship between Jane and Laroche. I’m not aware of Jane having any male friend, someone he might actually call to go have eggs or a cup of coffee with him just for the friendship. I think he now has this with Laroche and it kind of blows my mind. I totally ship it! It feels profound, actually, in Jane’s personal development. In the world he came from it seems that there are no real friends. There are relationships governed by favors traded or owed and by participating in various con jobs, and these “ties” are perhaps less important than family. But it seems to me that in the world where Jane grew up, real ties of friendship might be more for marks. I could be totally off about this. Just feels that way.

    Something that I’m toying with: the new friendship viewed in light of the intended original order of the episodes. Red and Itchy was to be episode 20 and Red Velvet Cupcakes episode 21. If the order had held, we have almost a two-hour look at Jane’s growth in terms of childhood social development. That is, generally, a child developmentally creates same-sex friendships first and opposite-sex friendships later as he/she enters adolescence and sexual maturity. There are exceptions to this process, of course. Learning the art of same-sex friendship actually facilitates the development of opposite-sex relationships as a person approaches sexual maturity.

    I view Jane as fairly stunted in social development because of his unusual carny background and because of the profound trauma of his family’s murder. R&I was about Jane developing what looks like what could be his first real same-sex friendship. This is real growth in Jane’s understanding of the actual expectations in genuine friendship. And he meets the challenge. It’s real personal growth, in my opinion.

    The death of his family had put Jane on hold for romantic relationships for a long time until Lorlelei. RVC concentrated more on the tensions of a possible opposite-sex relationship by deepening the already existing strong friendship with Lisbon. Jane very awkwardly initiated (perhaps almost against his will due to the sexual tensions of the case they were dealing with) and then sabotaged this. It seemed like a very adolescent ploy to me. And, whether purposely or accidentally, it had the unsurprising bungled or mangled result of many adolescent relationships.

    These are just thoughts I’m having. Really interested to read all the comments coming, reaction to this idea and all the others! Thanks again for a great review!

  • III Frogs

    Jimmy Gadd, a head editor for TM, tweeted that the rapist actually said, “I can’t talk.”

    C Hill, that was one of my favorite lines. I saw it the same way as you. Jane said “sexy” for Lisbon, and saved “spinsters” for Brenda. Just a little delicious. 🙂

  • Rose UK

    Love your comment, Frogs! I ‘ship this bromance too, haha! It also links back to what someone (Candee?) wrote about in a previous review regarding the mother-child relationship, which is also missing in his life. Could our boy be growing up at last? 😉

    We don’t actually know much about carny relationships, except that it’s very much an “us and them” world with a different kind of loyalty. I’ve always pictured Jane as quite a lonely kid, with an obviously erratic and rootless upbringing, friends coming and going, just him and his dad. I always assumed he “escaped” with Angela for stability and to create a proper home. Which was then ripped from him. And in his current life, he’s reverted to that “homeless vibe”, which Lisbon mentioned, and he’s built a little nest for himself in an office building, close to the comforting sounds of trusted people, a bit like little animals do when their natural environment is gone. Bless.

  • Ifrah

    Thank you for yet another amazing review, ReviewBrain. This episode has left me befuddled on what to truly think of LaRoche, I’ve always suspected him, but maybe it’s part of a plot twist. JaRoche was simply amazing (we have something new to look out for in the season finale, besides Jisbon), but the Jisbon scenes were divine as well. The method that the team used to ‘fish’ Brenda was perfectly executed, and the bonus was seeing a more adventurous side of Lisbon. There isn’t much room for debate here, so I’ll close-off wondering what Betram and Kirkland have been up to this entire time. There are so many mysteries that remain within the CBI offic, and only so many that Jane can uncover.

  • III Frogs

    Thanks, Rose. I’m kind of operating on what I think the bottom line of carny/huckster relationships must be, as it’s been presented to us in TM. Sacrificing one’s own benefit in the name of friendship would probably be viewed as mark or sucker behavior. Even if you did sacrifice, you’d have to make up a reason why you didn’t really care or how it actually benefited you, maybe. So, you can pretty much predict what the other party would do based on what their personal benefit is. You’d have to leave out any calculation of personal loyalty or compassion unless the other party owed you. And you might have to be pretty up front on calling for the return favor. Niggly point. Just zooming around in my head.

  • Ifrah

    I completely agree with you, and the tongue could have as simple of a meaning as keeping one’s mouth locked out, and the inability to speak, as the truth lurks elsewhere. Has anyone else noticed how all the recent episodes have begun at Jane’s attic? The writers may had some purpose for Jane’s character, or left another motif for us to decipher.

  • All-I-need

    Uh, it looks like my comment is still awaiting moderation. Been a bit long, don’t you think?

  • paperdasher

    Great review! As for LaRoche taking out the criminal’s tongue, it was somewhat symbolic. I believe it was either Van Pelt or Rigsby who found out that LaRoche’s mother was raped and the attack lasted for a few hours. During the whole ordeal, she kept begging for him to stop. I think LaRoche made sure the guy wouldn’t be able to ask for help for the rest of his sad life.

  • Carla Oliveira

    Very, hiper, great review! What a wonderful eye you have, Reviewbrain! Thanks.

    My favorite scene: in the car when J and L talk and he said her: “I hope you learned something” when she recalled the anger management classes. So she gives him a light smack, coupled with your most beautiful smile to let Jane know she was only kidding.

    By the way, what you did mean which you said: “I can’t help wondering, again, if the writers want to prepare us for the fact that a Jane/Lisbon romance will (has already been) established off screen…”? I couldn’t understand you. Please, explain it. Sometimes I’m a little bit slow.

  • julie

    I am also a lover of LaRoache and Jane ever since jj’s ‘interogation of drunk Jane, Baker and PTVjust sing together, actually probably from their scene down in the depths of the CBI.

    I do believe that to Jane the mystery is more important than the solution. When he does push the limits of his curiousity it is either important to solving the crime or helps him understand a person better. I don’t think he looked in side the box for two reasons.

    a) He wasn’t going to learn anything from it.

    b) From learning the details from the visit to the prison he had already worked out what was in there. It wasn’t a hard puzzle for him to solve.

    I can’t remember if PTV is in the finale cast or if Kirkland is even but I am confident he is not Red John. I don’t think that Jane would act this way if he was still on his suspect list which should be getting very short by now.

  • Carla Oliveira

    Great! I also would love LaRoche did join with Jane and the team. I do love LaRoche.

  • Carla Oliveira

    I also feel they are behaving like high school adolescents. He makes her some flirting jokes and she pretend don’t take them seriously…

  • Rose UK

    “JaRoche” – love it!

  • Rose UK

    I getcha. I suppose the exception would have been Angela – I personally imagine her as Jane’s first and only (?) real friend. Which would have made his loss all the more devastating.

  • C Hill

    thanks III Frogs.

    do we know the significance of the closeup on the hummels at JJ’s?

  • III Frogs

    Good point. I think it all kind of went dark reset after Angela.

  • III Frogs

    I haven’t seen anything in print or anything. I just know JJ values and collects them. I’ve always sort of assumed they were his mother’s before she died and he continued on in her memory. But I have absolutely nothing to base that on that I can think of.

  • Manda

    Ah, loved the review. ❤ And the episode. So exciting! Can't wait for the finale!

  • estatica

    Reviewbrain, you tweeted you were pulling an all-nighter for this episode and got me all excited in anticipation! And as expected, I was not disappointed.

    I’ll try not repeat what everyone has said already, so it’s best if I skip my love for Pruitt Taylor Vince and for all the other guest stars’ performances.

    I felt the tongue symbolized many things in this episode:

    – It represents speech, or rather, the freedom of speech. Brenda’s attempts to control the media and shush Lisbon during the interview remind the viewers how this character has been consistently trying to influence everyone’s speech. In “Bleeding Heart” 3×12 she tried to get the team members to loosen their tongues so they can expose their vulnerabilities. Now when the truth bothers her, she demands that everyone holds their tongue.

    – Cutting off tongues has been associated with punishment for blasphemers. LaRoche not only wanted the man who raped his mother to be punished, he also needed to ensure that he would never be able to defend himself by uttering falsehoods. Sure, he could always give his testimony in writing, but no one would ever hear his voice again.

    – I find there is something very visceral about the image of a tongue being cut off that make me recoil in disgust. Even more than the thought of LaRoche castrating his mother’s rapist. I thought about it for a while and realized that the latter would merely affect Saynay’s sexuality. Removing the tongue, however, would affect not only Saynay’s sexuality, but how everything will taste in his life from now on.

    – Metaphorically speaking, when we lose our own voice, we lose our own identity, our sense of self. Dickens’ “Tale of Two Cities” makes a few references to tongues, namely this one: ““I perceive your tongue is,”” returned madame; ““and what the tongue is, I suppose the man is.””

    Anyway, I better stop now because there’s so many things I liked about this episode that, like Jane said in that AA meeting (coincidently, LaRoche’s first episode “Jolly Red Elf”): “If I start talking about it, I don’t know if I’d be able to stop.” 😀

  • zee

    Bravo. Just BRAVO to you, Reviewbrain, to the bromance and to People of the Show!!

    So, it was ‘animal’ in the tupperware…. I thought it was LaRoche’s mother undergarments from the crime scene 9 years ago. But the tongue is less sicker I suppose…(aaaand probably that’s why I’m not on the writing team for the show..)

    That ending send shivers, not because of Laroche’s suspected crimes, also Lisbon’s smile. It felt like she was giving him a ‘You Deserve It’ smile, very vindictive.

    I have been wondering: why would keeping a tongue, keep Laroche’s mother happy/appreciated? It could be LaRoche was coerced by his mother to cut off Saynay’s tongue so he couldn’t lie in trials. But he could still communicate by writing couldn’t he?

    I agree with you Reviewbrain. It’s seems to be off and boiling with maternal issues.

    Thank you 🙂

  • SteveK2013

    I think if J.J. LaRoche isn’t associated with Red John, then he will help Jane in season 6. Jane helped Stiles in season 4, who helped Jane in season 5. So LaRoche will probably help him expose Red John (possibly, a member of a law enforcement agency)

  • valentinasweet

    i love your comment all-i-need *-*
    i really love it….i saw it as you,n this entire season Jane and Lisbon are passed to a “higher level” in their relationship, particularly in the last two episodes, 5×20 and 5×21, I saw a Jane who flirted openly with Lisbon, come on guys …. . those who would ask a friend what is her fetish? I would not care to know what it is that triggers the spring of my friend…. it would be a little ridiculous, why Jane has insisted in doing so at lisbon say that she goes crazy for turtlenecks? was an obvious reference to Mashburn …… well, he remembers the names of persons to whom to shake hands in 10 years, remember that Mashburn wore turtlenecks and then does not remember saying “love you” to lisbon 🙂
    come on….
    i liked the way they are flirting in these lasts episodes…i hope that reviewbrain is right….that means that maybe they are “preparing” a way for jisbon finale 😉 i hope with all my heart *_*
    at last of the end of season 4 there was the “love you” from jane to lisbon so what will happen this season finale? I have read on the web many who think that the season finale will not be “happy” as the finale season 4, but it will be tragic …. just points of view of some viewers but when I read this, I’m scared and my positivity has gone away, I really hope for the fans jisbon there will be a nice end to the season and…… I want to see a kiss, jisbon fans deserve it after 5 seasons of waiting 😉
    i wonder,if in this season we have seen a jane flirting with lisbon so openly….what will we see in next season? 😉
    if in a hand i want to see the finale of season son badly…in other hand i am o sorry and sad that the show ends and we have to wait so many months for watch new season 😦
    the mentalist obsession -_-

  • Ifrah

    I think many do now. 🙂 Jisbon & JaRoche

  • rita

    Thank yhou for another great review

    I have to say that this was one of my all time favourite episodes, I LOVE JJ, and he and Jane being friends is just so good….Jane needs a friend (other than Lisbon that is) and JJ is also a very solitary person….just him and his dog….and now Jane I hope…..Jane is also a solitary person, he only has Lisbon, he doesn’t let many people get too close to him.

    I loved how Daniel Cerone managed to put drama, angst, and humour in just one episode, and how we have had a case of the week and two historical loose ends tied up…in ONE week….wonderful.

    The bit that made a huge lump come into my throat was when JJ asked Jane in the ambulance if he thought that he (JJ) was a monstrosity…..poor man….he has probably been very lonely all his life….his looks and personality probably put people off (Jane has said in the past that people don’t change much beyond high school) and Janes answer was perfect. I know that he was bluffing his way through all of it, but in general, with people who are vulnerable, Jane is never judgemental….people are what they are (unless evil of course)

    This was a great jumping off spot for the finale….they have laid some great ground work, and I only hope that you are wrong in your prediction that JJ will be killed…..I think he is such a good value character, and so sweet!!

  • C Hill

    III Frogs, I’m speaking specifically of a close up. The camera shows a couple of shots of the crime scene and broken Hummels. Then Jane enters. The camera goes to him, then veers to the left and focuses (soft focuses?) on a shelf of broken figurines. I can’t ID them from this shot, but I’m not sure we’ve even gotten a shot of that shelf in another episode. I just thought it odd, or significant, that the camera went there.

  • bloomingviolet2013

    First of all, I can’t say how enjoyable it is to read another full-length review from you! You’re truly the best, Reviewbrain! 😀 I loved every part of it! I’ll just have a few things to add but those are more side notes than anything.

    “As to LaRoche having punished himself enough, I think Jane came to that conclusion based on a new understanding as to why LaRoche now is such a die-hard stickler to the rules: trying to make up for his past mistake, he overcompensates by sticking to the rules no matter what. It is probably the reason he is such a misunderstood person and alienated by so many people. Even Saint Teresa doesn’t like him…”

    Indeed. I may also explain why he’s chosen to stay in his position as Head of Professional Standard’s Unit instead of keeping Hightower’s job (aside from feeling bad about accusing her and being afraid of what Jane may have revealed): he’s trying to ensure that no other agent would make the mistake of taking justice into their own hands like he did. And that’s also probably why he genuinely likes Lisbon: she’s sincere and she follows the rules because she believes in them, while he must feel like a fraud being a cop and having mutilated someone out of revenge…

    Moreover, I believe that that was the rapist’s tongue in the Tupperware. What else would have made him ask Jane is he believed he was a “monstrosity”? Therefore, I got the feeling that both Brenda’s and J.J.’s were a warning for Jane. LaRoche did something really horrible in memory of someone he loved: he became the monster he was chasing; like Brenda became the fraud she was eager to reveal when she began her career… Both ended up impersonating people they no longer were at core, yet there is a big difference between them since Brenda sank lower and lower, corrupting her most basic principles (selling information about a little boy, even though she was clearly not comfortable doing so), while J.J. tried to redeem himself in concentrating on his job and keeping a reminder in order to avoid a similar reaction in the future. LaRoche offers an insight in Jane’s mind, because he’s doing what Jane has been doing to himself for years: punishing himself for a mistake and trying to find a form of redemption. Somehow, both Brenda and J.J. present him with two possible endings if he manages to get rid of RJ. He has the choice between becoming a complete monster like Brenda, who is has been left alone, bitter and has no longer a conscience, or becoming like LaRoche. Regretful, he’s isolated himself and is certainly living in the past (keeping a reminder of what happens because he can’t let go of his loss).

    Beside, is that me, or was there an allegory in the little safe with the red circle (for the combination, don’t know how that part is called)? The meaning of the scene was that what is important is how to discover how to open the safe, not what is inside, just like it was for the Tupperware (the symbolism as a reminder and what Jane did to help LaRoche to recover it were more meaningful than the content). But it’s also the meaning of the show somehow; Jane’s path towards redemption is more important than knowing who RJ is. And Jane putting that red stripped cat in the safe might be an allusion to RJ, the “tyger” ( a feline with a similar color and strips as the cat): the cat-tiger is in the safe, thus becomes too the object of a quest. That enhances the parallel with LaRoche’s situation before the finale.

    Last, I loved how the writing built up the expectation and horror of what was inside the Tupperware: the remarks about nothing staying very fresh after nine years, about it certainly being animal (as opposed to vegetal)… Really great writing.

    Thanks again for this amazing review, Reviewbrain! 🙂

  • bloomingviolet2013

    Interesting interpretations. Not sure to what extent they’re all connected to the reasons behind the choice of the tongue (except the meta-reason of having a small body part to put in the box, since a finger might have been a bit mafia-like… 😉 ), but very intriguing nonetheless. 😀 I particularly like the parts about Brenda wanting everyone to hold their tongues and Laroche making sure he wouldn’t utter falsehood. Very interesting.

    Also, there is a contrast between Jane telling Lisbon that she needs to stop being the “voice and reason” and become “the voice of wrath” and the ending where no one was talking, from the speechless and shocked Lisbon to the mute guy who could do no more than mumbling. Is *that* the terrible and horrifying voice of wrath?

  • bloomingviolet2013

    “JaRoche” was great! It made me grin like a fool! 😀

  • P

    Not to rain on your parade, but he also called her a spinster. That is not usually a word men use when they are flirting with a woman…unless they are incompetent flirters, and I don’t think anybody would call Jane that. 😉

    And the fetish conversation is evidence of nothing. I actually have been asked questions like that by friends…male and female. Many people enjoy discussing sex with their friends…it is always interesting to know what other people like, even if you don’t care to put that knowledge to use. I think we all have a little of the voyeur in us. Jane certainly has shown that. He is ALWAYS amused when anything sexual is revealed by anybody…team member or suspect.

  • III Frogs

    C Hill: Re-watched the sexy spinsters part of the episode. Didn’t happen the way I was thinking, so I have to retract. Looks like Jane was referring to both with his remark. Although Lisbon smiled big and Brenda soured. So maybe they reacted to different parts of the comment depending on which part each thought Jane was applying to her. Ha! That’s funny to think about.

  • estatica

    Daniel Cerone just phrased everything so brilliantly that we could continue to make different (and perhaps all valid) interpretations.

    It is interesting to see, after all these seasons, that so much about these characters is defined by their radio silences, by what they leave unsaid. Is it a coincidence that Jane and Lisbon were only seen dancing once with “More than words” as the background music? My shipper heart says there are no coincidences! 😀

  • valentinasweet

    some minute ago look I just read an interview heller on the season finale where he speaks of lorelei and frankly I dropped my arms because I have not received any good, but just a “bad” feeling (i repet is just my feeling )I do not know and frankly I do not think there will be a final jisbon “romantic” (but i hope that with all my heart,but after reading that interview :/ )but the exact opposite, I love Jane, I love jisbon but like everyone I also have my favorite character and that character is lisbon, then I want to see that the season finale will be there….i am hopening for a wonderful finale…..i am sure that jane has a thing for lisbon…..but you have all right to think what you are thinking and i understand you because there are times that I blame the behavior of jane,when he replies in bad way to lisbon for example…..but he cares about her,or at last i hope O.o i want to see the finale season i am so curios about that…..

  • Rose UK

    Perhaps La Roche now has his redemption in the form of acceptance or comprehension (from Jane, at least). As ReviewBrain said, Jane’s opinion really seemed to bother him and there was a sense of closure and relief once it was delivered.

    I really like what you suggest about the allegorical cat-in-the-safe: it’s therefore interesting that Jane himself should say he doesn’t need to know what’s inside. Does this have any relevance to his attitude towards RJ as an actual human being, do you think? Or at this point, is it exclusively about the cat-and-mouse game? (Ha – another cat. Oh, also, in the Wild West episode I noticed a stuffed wild cat on the victim’s desk – it was fairly noticeable, and I did wonder if it was foreshadowing somehow.)

    And yes, the build-up to the reveal was excellent. Although at one point I was slightly concerned that Rigsby might try to eat it (it was in a food container, after all). 😉

  • Rose UK

    That’s certainly answered my question, Estatica! Your theories definitely work, in my opinion. 🙂

  • Carla Oliveira

    Heller said it will be good surprise. Let’s wait… What more can we do?

  • Rose UK

    Darn, forgot to add:

    The only things I could think of were phrases like “silver-tongued” (meaning someone who is very eloquent and persuasive in their speech, or has a clever way with words) or “forked tongue” (linked to snakes, meaning someone deceitful). Not necessarily relevant, but I can think of a few characters who fit the bill!

  • Valentine0214

    First, let’s get this out of the way: Reviewbrain, I love you! Since I am a lot obsessed with this show, I read many reviews and not one is as thorough and thought-provoking as yours. You are the standard by which to judge all others.

    I loved this episode because the ones with Jane and LaRoche are always interesting. What captured my thoughts most was the growth in Jane’s character. Although I’ve always loved him, I am just head-over-heels now! It’s wonderful to see a character change right before your eyes just as he would in real life. He said to LaRoche in Red Queen “Are we kids or what?” But it’s easy to see that he’s not a kid anymore, but an adult, introspective person who CAN put other people’s needs before his own. In earlier seasons, Jane has been cocky, a braggart who just wants to impress the world with his status as the smartest person in the room. But now, when I remember that he told Lisbon that she could always count on him (Carnelian, Inc.) and that he would always save her (Blood Money) I actually believe him.

    Looking back at past episodes, Jane does seem like a kid but now, he is seriously focused. I just hope he doesn’t lose that childlike quality and sense of fun that I so love.

    I am SO worried about tomorrow’s finale. I want him to find Red John AND peace, but I’m not ready for the show to be over. It’s been a great companion and I would miss it so much.

  • C Hill

    I agree each took it separately — plus the well-done smirking between Jane and Lisbon during that scene — especially after Brenda’s “whatever it is you do” comment.

    Whomever had the comment about Lisbon being orchestrated to talk on the air about “being on duty all the time” — note after this “spinster” exchange, we go to Lisbon’s interview and the view is from outside of the room in the hallway…

  • suzjazz

    I think my favorite scene was the cat in the safe. It was so typically Jane
    to force the locksmith’s wife to open the safe that way. He was so cute holding the cat! I have a cat myself and of course anyone but Jane doing it would be an atrocity. But I knew he would not do it if he were not absolutely sure that she could open it.

    I am not a LaRoche lover, and I’ll tell you why: he wanted Van Pelt to spy on her fellow agents and she scornfully refused. He also interrogated all the agents about the prisoner who died in the fire, and he did it in an extremely unpleasant and menacing way. I don’t think someone who does this is a good person. Although, as we know, all people have their good and bad aspects. I do have to admit that I felt sorry for him when I saw the broken Hummel figurines–it was so unnecessary for the thieves to break them. (I think the things are hideous, but they obviously meant something to him. Probably his mother’s.) I still do not trust LaRoche.

    I also think that Jane being Jane, he sneaked a peek at inside the box even though he told Rigsby not to. That way, he could make sure he was the only one besides LaRoche and Brenda (who cut a deal and wasn’t talking) who knew what was in the box. (And Lisbon, too, because she’s his partner, as he said.) There’s an odd irony here–Jane initially lied that he knew what was in the box in order to blackmail and manipulate LaRoche; then, when he finally saw what it was, he was able to answer LaRoche’s question without lying about having seen it. I do think that LaRoche’s comments about the depths to which a man can go were a reference, and perhaps a warning, to Jane: maybe LaRoche knows or suspects that Jane wants to kill Red John?

    And finally: It makes a lot more sense that this episode was originally scheduled to air BEFORE RVC. So Jane would already have told Lisbon to leave him alone when she comes to him saying, “I need you Jane,” in RVC, and he leaps at the chance to help her (showing his ambivalence being torn between his solitary quest for RJ and wanting to help Lisbon.) And then the fetish talk/teasing occurs, AFTER an episode in which Lisbon has slapped Jane playfully and flirtatiously. (She actually has slapped him before, but more in irritation than fun, and this was plainly fun.) Also, their conspiratorial glee in fooling Brenda was full of flirtation. (It was SO satisfying to see Brenda go down–the traitorous harpy!) So, what I’m saying is (in response to a comment someone made on RVC) that if it’s true that the episodes were switched and are out of sequence (who knows why?) maybe the writers are preparing us for some form of Jisbon after all? They know most of us want it to happen as much as we want to know the identity of Red John.

    p.s. re Brenda’s background: when Jane says she went to Mount Holyoke (a seven sisters college) I was so relieved that he didn’t say “Wellesley,” because that’s my alma mater. Though I have to say there were more than a few potential Brendas there. 🙂

  • Sol

    First, thanks for your great review as always, ReviewBrain. I religiously come to this page every time there’s a new episode to read what you or Violet or whoever writes the week review thinks, and also to read the comments of everyone since they usually contribute a lot to what you’ve already gave us.
    Now, as everyone has said very great things about this great episode, which I agree with must of it, I would like to make just one remark. I think that when Jane was teasing Lisbon about the interview, he decided to add that “spinsters” reference right after he had just said the word “sexy”, to keep it as a joke and not sound too bold. Anyhow, I just think they both keep making progress, step by step, but still progress to something else.

    Also, I would like to say that I agree with everyone who say that Jane is “growing up”, he’s definetely showing being more mature, I just hope he keeps on this track and that makes him change he’s approache to the RJ case.

  • Sol

    That was exactly my explanation about why LaRoche chose the tongue as a symbol of his vengeance. She begged to the criminal who didn’t listen to her, so he shouldn’t have the right to ask for help himself.

  • Sol

    I understand and agree with what you say about friends having those kind of conversations, but simply I just don’t see that Jane and Lisbon have that kind of relationship. If it was just a ‘friend thing’ for me it would seem out of character since they don’t discuse private things practically at all and they can even touch each other. I could say that thay have a very close relationship just they don’t seem to show it very often, so I’m not sure that here there’s no “care to put that knowledge to use”. Anyhow, just my thoughts, but everyone is entitled to their own opinions.

  • C Hill

    one (perhaps) last comment. i thought it interesting in the interrogation room scene with Jane, Lisbon, and Shettrick that when Jane “broke down” Shettrick, when the camera was on Jane, Lisbon(her back at least) was reflected in the observation room’s one way mirror.

    almost as if Lisbon was the exact opposite of Shettrick — someone who came to Sacramento and was able to fulfill their potential. and, perhaps, find someone who loves her??

  • Valentinasweet

    I would miss it so much too 😦 i don’t want that the show ends….if i can’t resist for new next season….you think that i can’t imagine how i will miss it when the show ends definitively 😦 so sad

  • valentinasweet

    “There were other things as well, but those were the main points I remembered. And now, we have Bertram wanting Lisbon (not J.J, who was most involved) go live on air saying that she’s not afraid of attacks. What is going on?” -ReviewBrain

    oh my O.o you have right RB
    I have just read now in the best way your review, I’m Italian and I do not speak English perfectly, so i took more to read step by step your review, translating phrases that I did not understand and I must say that aside from the fantastic review you have done, how can you be so good at understanding the details? it’s great how you interpret every little gesture, really amazing, however I was saying …. your last sentence it hit me, it’s true … it’s true …. and if Lisbon was really endangered after the interview ? I do not want to think that the season finale ends with Lisbon who was kidnapped or “hit” O.o no, i do not like this likely final,please heller don’t do this to us 😦

  • Cece

    That was my take, as well. Saynay (Say nay/ Say nothing! Good one, writers) spent nine years in prison unable to call out for help if he *ahem* dropped the soap in the showers.

  • mosquitoinuk

    This is so clever CHill…I am always very impressed with the attention people pay to the little details!

  • Rose UK

    @ Suz. Admittedly I’m a La Roche fan (and therefore somewhat biased!), but my view is that he was initially introduced as a possible RJ suspect for us – he was creepy and a bit menacing, and he presented a challenge and a foil to Jane. No, he shouldn’t have tried to blackmail Van Pelt (perhaps he was trying a spot of Jane-esque manipulation, albeit darkly), but what’s interesting here is that Van Pelt only refuses AFTER the situation has been sorted out. I remember being disappointed at that, because I wanted her to be heroic when there was a chance she might go down.

    Secondly, a fair few characters have done something shady or underhand and we still love them because we know (or think we know) that they are good people from other aspects of their behaviour. But to date we haven’t known much about La Roche to make the same judgement. I mean, O’Laughlin was presented to us as a bit of a handsome golden boy (aside from a couple of red flags such as not helping VP in the shoot-out) who never put a foot wrong, and look what happened there.

    My impression of the character – particularly with the hindsight of this latest episode – is that this is someone who is afraid of rejection, so he puts up a defensive wall of intimidation and by-the-book meticulousness. In that way, he’s in control of the rejection – he acts a certain way so that people can’t reject him first; they can’t get close enough to see the person behind the mask he wears at work.

    I think Violet and others are right: he is a peek into the rabbit hole of revenge. I think Jane trusts him (or is beginning to) and I really like that. If he turns out to be a RJ accolyte, I will be utterly disappointed and shocked!

  • phoenixx

    Thank you reviewbrain for an amazing review about one of my fave episodes now, huge LaRoche and PTV fan myself (always fascinated me since i saw him in “Identity”).

    I wouldn’t be worried about LaRoche dying, Jimmy Gadd mentioned that we might get another episode with them together next season, plus it wouldn’t make a lot of sense killing him off IMHO. 😉
    But how great is JaRoche’d budding relationship, especially the “Puppy” comment, so cute.
    Still wondering if that means he won’t be on the list, well i guess we’ll see in a few hours. *superexcited*

    And well, feel sooo honoured you mentioned me in your review *blushing* 😀 Thanx

    Totally agree with you Estatica about “more than words”, actually I wasn’t a shipper right from the start, they won me over slowly but when i watched that episode and they started dancing to that song, i was like “okay, one could interpret a lot in that choice of song”. I thought they could have used any song for that but they chose one which has some meaning about feelings you don’t need to say out loud to know they exist, well and thinking about how their relationship progressed the song is more than fitting, i mean right now we’re exactly at that point, they have feelings for each other but don’t say it, still they probably (or at least Jane) know(s) -if we take their lingering looks as any indication- what they feel for each other.

  • mosquitoinuk

    I just saw this and thought it was hilarious:

    Poor us. We need a life! LOL

  • Carla Oliveira

    Will we survive? kkkkk

  • Auli

    Mosquitoinuk: That’s brilliant! I can’t wait for the finale! But due to stupid time difference and responsibilities in life such as work, I have to wait until tomorrow. I WANT TO SEE IT NOW! This is btw the first time that I have ever been so excited about a tvshow.

  • Suzanne Davis

    I also want to see love blossom between them tonight! But I am not getting my hopes up. I am almost afraid to watch this finale because something terrible might happen!
    How many people are having a Mentalist season finale viewing party? 🙂

  • Carla Oliveira

    Why everyone is so afraid? I’m so, too. Someone has good feelings, please?

  • Lou Ann

    Thank you for a fantastic review and for all the follow-up comments. I’m overjoyed to have found this site.

    All i wanted to add was my favorite line: Lisbon calling after Shettrick, “Bring back a drug lord.” Theresa really got into her role conning Brenda.
    Thinking back to her con of Dr Roy Carmen, I can say she looks like she really enjoys the task now.

  • canddee2012

    Reviewbrain, I watched seasons 1-4 before during a short period of time last year before I found your site. I think I have said before; now it is like going to school and studying The Mentalist. I enjoyed the series mainly because Simon B. is the star. But now, reading your reviews, I have aquired so much more understanding. I dont want to be redundant but thank you so much for all your thoughtfullness and ability to pull the meat out of the story so to speak, and make it so digestible. This goes for Violet as well. You writers are the best.

    I have one small comment….thinking about how JJ would have to go about doing the dastardly deed, and getting away with it….it was only alluded to by him as something that would end his career. We would have to accept the fact that he must have been insane to mutilate someone with a knife….maybe like RJ does to his victims. I know Patrick as stated that he wants RJ to suffer like his family, but when he did in Timothy Carter, he used a gun. Bam, bam, bam.
    Somehow I am not at the place where I believe JJ did it. Also, what is he going to think when he finds out his friend lied to him by letting him believe he (Patrick) knew what was in the box. I think I still need to know what is in the box.

  • mosquitoinuk


    About finale: you won’t be disappointed I think

  • Carla Oliveira

    That’s right! I sign down. I’m sure about it.

  • valentinasweet

    really mosquitoinuk? you are giving me much power with these words,because i read in some part that some people was disappoined about finale:( so i was worry and i have to wait this evening for watch finale with subs…..but yours words make me feel better so thank you 🙂

  • Auli

    Mosquitoinuk: I just watched the finale and oh my, that was intense! My expectations for season 6 (I think it’ll be the last one) is sky high.

  • Rose UK

    I already can’t wait for the next review and to hear everyone’s thoughts!

  • mosquitoinuk

    @Rose, Auli, Vale, Carla

    I KNOW, right? God I need to discuss with someone! but we’ll wait patiently for Violet or ReviewBrain to guide us through this…

    “…row, row, row your boat…gently down the stream…”…a little ship has sailed…

  • Rose UK

    We need a chat room, is what we need. Although I’d never get any work done. 😉

    And no pressure on RB or Violet – we must seem like hungry chicks clamouring for food! (Sorry!).

  • Auli

    It will be awesome to hear your thoughts about the finale! I have had a discussion about it with myself since my boyfriend is only finishing up season 3 and he threatened to do something horrible if I spoil something for him. But I will wait patiently.

  • Carla Oliveira

    Write for me if you want:

  • Carla Oliveira

    “we must seem like hungry chicks clamouring for food!” hahahaha! Yes, we seem so.

  • Valentinasweet

    I would add to the list of those who are going crazy by the desire to comment on the latest episode, I just finished to see it ….oh my….

  • suzjazz

    I have a whole theory about Red John that I was able to work out after giving a lot of thought to the season finale episode–I watched it twice, the second time to pick up details like orchids and a fishtank, and to freeze-frame to make sure I saw what i thought I saw. I can’t wait to share it with you all but i must wait until Reviewbrain or Violet weighs in on it. It will be interesting to see if anyone came up with the same theory. I will post it when the review of RJR comes out! 🙂

  • Lou Ann

    Can I also add to ReviewBrain that I am a quilter, so I do so appreciate the little quilt blocks (as they seem to me) that you attach to each of our messages. I feel even more at home whenever I enter your blog.

  • suzjazz

    So that’s what they are! I’ve been trying to figure that out! 🙂
    I’m not a quilter but I like them!

  • suzjazz

    If anyone wants to read my theory about Red John, go to my blog, “Existential Angst.”

  • Carla Oliveira

    What are both you talking about?

  • C Hill

    interesting, but i’m going to wait until the brainy review before commenting.

  • Rose UK

    Hello ReviewBrain – I had a comment to Suz’s post that was stuck in moderation for a few days but it now seems to have vanished. Was it rejected? I don’t mind, I’m just not sure how the mechanism works! Thank you. 🙂

  • Rose UK

    Oh wait, i see it. Ignore me, please! Sorry!

  • Lou Ann

    Next to my name at the top of my reply, ReviewBrain has inserted a colorful design that is unique to me. In other words, all my posts have that design. Oh, and I just noticed it’s also next to my email address in the space for making a reply. Mine’s a bright kelly green, very appropriate for my Irish last name (although I inherited the Irish heritage from my husband). As a quilt maker, I have been noting everyone’s own special “block” and contemplating how i could replicate them in an actual quilt.

  • Lou Ann

    I know. Me, too. But I know the longer we have to wait the more in depth and awesome it’s going to be. It must take hours and days to create such brilliant reviews.

  • Carla Oliveira

    I see. Mine is a sweet green, my favorite tone of green, my favorite color.
    Thank you.

  • thebeatboy

    Hi! 😀 thank you for posting such an excellent review. I really enjoyed reading it.

    I have a question? During the scene involving the character Scott Saynay with the tongue cut out, he tries to say something. It sounds like two words and it almost sounds like he is saying Red John ? Could this be?


  • III Frogs

    Jimmy Gadd, a head editor for the show, tweeted that Saynay said, “I can’t talk, I can’t talk.”

  • Ifrah

    Indeed he did, I recall viewing that tweet.

  • thebeatboy

    Hi!!! = D thank you for info

  • Valentinasweet

    But there isn’t yet the review of 5×22? O.o

  • Carla Oliveira

    I’m also still waiting. Anxiously.

  • suzjazz

    Are we going to get a review of the season finale? I am anxiously awaiting it! 🙂

  • Carla Oliveira

    So am I, Suzjazz. How long did it take in season four? I hadn’t knew this blog yet.

  • Rose UK

    Patience, grasshoppers! 😉 Violet & RB will want to do the episode justice and not make it a rushed job. I’m sure it’s going to be excellent. 🙂

  • Carla Oliveira

    Hello, Reviewbrain
    You said :”I remember asking this before (and being outvoted), but I can’t help wondering, again, if the writers want to prepare us for the fact that a Jane/Lisbon romance will (has already been) established off screen…” What did you mean with that? They can be having a secret romance and making a kind of words games? Why do you think this? Please, explain.

  • Simone

    These reviews of yours are amazing. Thank you so much for putting in all the effort and time to put every tiny detail under the microscope.

    One comment again on Jisbon.
    You wrote: “… if the writers want to prepare us for the fact that a Jane/Lisbon romance will (has already been) established off screen…”
    I do hope the writers didn’t cheat us out of the “getting together” part. I would love some serious displays of affections, public or private.
    Speaking of private, if they had a secret relationship, nothing would have stopped Lisbon from reminding him what he misses if he shuts himself in that attic: She’d have kissed him senseless, to the point of doing it against the damn attic door, to give him something else to think about. That’s what I’d have done, if this was my boyfriend. 😉

  • Elaine

    I guess we’re not going to see a review for the last episode Red John’s Rules. I hope RB is alright.

  • C Hill

    to quote Lisbon, and I have a feeling this line (repeated I believe 3 times in RJR and a few other times over the course of season 5) will be mentioned in the review: [RB and Violet] You are killing me! 🙂

    I’m sure it’ll be up soon. I know this epi could well take a lot of work. I’m looking for a few fresh pairs of eyes. I’m not pulling as much out of the epi as I think is there.

  • Rose UK

    Yes, there seems to have been quite a lot of linguistic repetition/mirroring/echoes this season – I wonder if it’s intentional…? I’ll leave it there for now. 🙂

  • Manda

    So exciting 😀 Checking my mail everyday (twice a day) to see if the review is done ^^

  • suzjazz

    Every day I go to Reviewbrain’s blog hoping to see a review of “Red John’s Rules” and every day I am disappointed! I hope that you or Violet will write it soon. I know there’s a lot there to comment on but we are awaiting your insights!

  • C Hill

    judging by twitter, reviewbrain has been on a four day bender of watching the new simon baker givenchy ad on endless loop instead of working on a review 🙂 🙂

  • Carla Oliveira

    HAhahaha! We are screwed up!

  • C Hill

    also, ladies, whatever you do, don’t follow this link for a short “making of” video of said commercial 🙂

  • reviewbrain

    I laughed so hard at this I almost popped my hernia again.

    Not to worry, Violet sent me the review so it’s just a matter of editing now. It was supposed to be a joint effort but I haven’t been able to sit at my computer for a month now. Patience, children.


    The Givenchy campaign is everywhere I go. It’s not my fault Simon Baker is stalking me 😉

  • Carla Oliveira

    HAhahaha! Thank God, or else. I was worried about you. And missing the review, of course. I hope you get better.

  • C Hill

    glad i could, er, help? 🙂 hope you are feeling better soon, RB!

  • Ifrah

    I have all the patience, Reviewbrain, I just hope you get better soon! 🙂

  • bloomingviolet2013

    I *love* this artwork!!!! Thanks for posting it, Reviewbrain! Thanks Chizuruchibi! Go, Lisbon! Punch him! Lol

    (and the discussion about that ad made me burst into laughter! lol!)

  • III Frogs

    Oh, how many times have I wanted to see that on my tv screen, Chizuruchibi! LMAO!

  • rita

    The artwork is just so good, I laughed until I fell off my chair…..Well done and thank you Chizuruchibi

  • Carla Oliveira

    Hahahahha! Why everyone likes when she beats him? Poor Jane. Hahahaha!

  • mosquitoinuk

    The artwork is great Chizu. Thank you for posting RB!

  • mosquitoinuk

    Ohhhhh boy, first time I see this but I think I’m going to go to my happy place and look a few more times….

  • anomalycommenter

    Please take care and get well soon. Thank you and Violet & Chibi for the good job, and all the best to you! 🙂

  • anomalycommenter

    Well, better late than never! Happy to find some time at last to thank you all for the great review and comments. 🙂

    What can I say arriving this late, when all that was worthy of thought is already said? So pardon me and let me have an attempt to over think on some things.

    I remember that the last time Jane came to the door of LaRoche’s house he was very eager to take a peek inside, well, now there’s another chance! So there is a vase full of Red Roses fallen on a ‘Marine’ magazine issue! And a lot of figurines, among them a lot of bird shaped ones, so fish and birds again! And those broken Hummels which I don’t know why and I don’t think it’s relevant, but reminded me of Holmes’ “Adventure of the Six Napoleons”.

    In responding to Reviewbrain’s question about if the secret is revealed or not, I feel that they still are playing with our minds! How could there not be anything about Naysay’s cut tongue in his files? That’s really hard to believe, unless someone’s tampered with his files. Well, I think Lisbon could be right in suggesting that maybe LaRoche’s secret should be known. And I’m not convinced that we finally found out what was really in the Tupperware! The nature of it, animal, vegetable, or mineral still puzzles me. Please don’t try to visualize it, but if it was really his tongue, as Van Pelt truly said, “Nothing stays fresh for nine years!”, and if was put untreated in the box, I really doubt anyone could find anything useful in it to present to a court, maybe not even traces of human DNA! Also Saynay’s mother said something that may be of help: “He (Scott) needs a little extra motivation sometimes!”, so is it really likely that such a man on antidepressants be able to do such a monstrous act? (I may be totally wrong here, but a search on the internet shows that a common side effect of antidepressants is “decreased sex drive or no sex drive at all”!!!). Pardon me for bringing up such things but the antidepressant use may have been mentioned solely to justify the length of the attack, yet that would undermine the desire to attack in the first place! The other possibility as you may imagine is so horrible that I prefer not to talk about it at all!

    So what kind of a dog is J.J.? A fluffy one who barks but does not bite or …?

    P.S. They should retake the episode’s ending the way Chibi depicted as an extra in the DVDs! 🙂

  • reviewbrain

    My dear friends I’m sorry the comments have been awaiting moderation; I’ve been getting more spam than usual so please give your comments a day max to show up; I usually moderate comments twice a day so if I miss you the first time I won’t the second 🙂

  • Rose UK

    No problem, RB – a lot of my posts are going to be duplicates, in that case, so please could you discard, well, most of them? Otherwise I’m going to clog up the review stating the same things over and over again! Many thanks.

  • Rose UK

    I mean, in the Red John’s Rules review! Thank you so much.

  • Carla Oliveira

    Hello, Reviewbrain! I hope you are better. I was missing your comments.

    I’m inclined to agree with you, Reviewbrain, when you said you feel like writers are preparing us for an off screen relationship, recently, rewatching some episodes in this season. Some pieces seems like missing. Like the absolute happyness in 5×17, soon after the stressing 5×16. I found things in this season finale as well. Are you thinking so yet?

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