Sunday, January 17, 2016


You will end up mental with so much bluffing

THE MENTALIST – SEASON 1 TO 7 – 2008-2015

I just discovered I did not review each season though I – of course will I say – watched them all year after year starting in 2008.

The series is entirely centered on one character, Patrick Jane, an Australian whose wife and young daughter were assassinated by a serial killer in Texas, Red John. Patrick Jane is in no way an FBI agent but he becomes a consultant because he has a high level of deductive power and he is extremely talented at reading the mind of people through their behaviors, their attitudes, their face expressions, and all other bodily signs. He knows a liar when he meets one and is never wrong, or at least or at most hardly ever.

The series as a whole is interesting from beginning to end because of the evolution of Patrick Jane who will keep up with chasing Red John till he catches him and that will take at least six years to do so. When that Red John is out, when Patrick Jane is finally avenged, when he finally gets justice he can start relaxing and that is the most difficult part since from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder he has to shift to a relaxed and unstressed behavior, to being a normal man looking for happiness and letting bygones finally be bygones since they have been taken care of. And that’s the seventh and last year. Like god he can rest on his seventh season.

This series is strange in many ways because it has a very regular one episode one case or one case one episode, and yet there are logics and dynamics that run from one season to the next, from one episode to the next, at times even to the two or three next ones. This long-running architecture is rare in such criminal series that can last for decades if necessary, meaning if the audience sticks to it. But this one lost its long term logic in its last season. So they had to finish it.

It is a common fact that series are terminated after a decent number of years. I can think of Prison Break, Dexter, Queer as Folk, Lost, Breaking Bad, Babylon 5, House MD. That is not a final and complete list. CSI Miami also found an end in 2012 though other CSI branches like Las Vegas or New York lasted a couple more years to finally give way to CSI Cyber in 2015. The ends are very varied and in this particular case it was even rather delicate. They only got one casualty, and it was the last arrived agent. They avoided the massacre of everyone. But the unit had to be disbanded, at least somewhat to make an end possible.

The boss is just moving to Washington DC, following his wife who becomes deputy Secretary of Commerce. Kimball Cho will take over and will have to rebuild the team. A candidate for a transfer is friendly ordered to stay put. But then what may happen to Patrick Jane and Teresa Lisbon? That’s for you to discover. But after Patrick Jane’s finally getting free of his OCD, a smooth, sweet and happy ending is possible, with a little bit of suspense, that is to say.

The great positive point of this series is that Patrick Jane is not a psychic and he does not believe in it. He is a deductive mind that can observe details and deduct a lot from them. Then the rest is poker bluffing based on guessing when there is a hole in the deduction? Bluffing is the best thing you can imagine and it can pay big money. In most of Patrick Jane’s cases it enables him to catch the killers one after the other. At times it is difficult and even dangerous but we are in a series, so the outcome is what you may expect, though you may expect many things and only one will happen.

The nicest and most Hollywoodian element is that Patrick Jane falls in love with a few things and one person. I can tell you about the things: a cabin first by a lake second with a few ducks third and a nice trailer fourth, which is a lot better than some kind of secret storing space in the FBI building. As for the person it is both surprising and natural so that we can end up with a wedding party, a kidnapped judge and a serial killer as prime guest, without speaking of the stow-away that will take a few months to reveal himself. Have a good session with this Mentalist who is no psychic because he does not believe in psychic, spirits and any other world beyond the surface of things, no matter how cruel and brutal things can be.


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