For a change – thankfully, I almost like to say – THE MENTALIST’s newest episode was a light one to digest. Nothing dramatic was happening; quite the contrary did we see a bit of the old humor again.
Reviews for MENTALIST are usually very thankful things to write. Because unlike OUAT, MENT is not a serial, but a procedural. The weekly crime case is not important for reviewing; only the things that are included in the show’s mythology are for analyzation.
“Panama Red” is, as mentioned above, a breather; much more than the last episode, seeing how it ended.
Of course we have, following the last episodes that were quite Red John heavy, a continuation to what we’ve learned about the killer and how close Jane has already come to him. The beginning of the episode finds Lisbon and Cho alone the crime scene – when Lisbon calls Jane, he sits in a darkened attic (what happened to the windows?!) and holds/reads his note book with the names.
This was the first interesting moment – Lisbon tells him to stop obsessing over the list and Red John (not a first, mind you). And shw lowers her voice to do so, while no one is really around to hear her. It gives the scene/moment this special air of… let me call it intimacy, for the lack of a better word. With every new episode it becomes more clear how much she is different from the others; how close she and Jane have become. Even though she is constantly pressing for information, to be kept in the game, we know that Jane would ahve ways to keep everything a secret if he wanted to. But instead he tells her, he lets her in. Which, on the other hand, it also interesting because we know that Red John is rather “fond” of hurting tose close to Jane – something that made Jane initially, last season, try to bring some distance between himself and the team, and especially Lisbon. I remember that Lorelei, and therefore also Red John, knew very well how much Jane cares about Lisbon; otherwise they could have demanded someone elses head.
Anyways. When it comes to RJ and now the list, Jane really does appear to be completely obsessed. He doesn’t even recognize Lisbon’s attempt to help him/wake him up. Kudos to Simon Baker – his play is fabulous, and he makes Jane indeed look like he’s under some kind of weird hypnosis as he is sitting in the attic.
This littl scene in the beginning, though, is the only RJ/mythology moment. What follows is mostly the easy banter we are used to (and I’ve missed a bit). Like when they are at the lab and Jane introduces himself, then vaguely points at Lisbon and says “This is not my boss.”. Her reaction? Her body language completely ignores him, but her words do not. “I’m Agent Teresa Lisbon, and I am his boss.” Classic Jane/Lisbon 😀
Another thing I noticed is how there is the couch and the little table in Lisbon’s office, and how Jane seems to feel very at home there. In fact. recently Lisbon’s office has started to look a bit like… a living room. Their living room. Don’t know, but I have this strange impression that this will have some meaning later on, and I can’t shake it.
Once again, and I’m not getting tired of pointing it out, we see how easily Lisbon trusts Jane. She may protest and even sort of pout, but she waits and trusts him to know what he is doing, obviously. And then there are also the details in those scenes – like when Jane puts a napkin in Lisbon’s lap. I was even expecting him to put some cheese in her mouth; even that wouldn’t have surprised me. Despite all (pretended) resistance, mostly from Lisbon’s side, those two are extremely comfortable around each other, what makes it such great fun to watch them.
Speaking of fun. Rigsby. I think I was falling off my chair when he had to smoke this Marijuana cigarette… only to be stoned after two draws. And damn, is Owain Yeoman a great actor. He was so believable when he played this part… and hilarious to no end.
Aside from Jane/Lisbon, there was also the “issue” of Cho and his women. While he is still on flirty terms with Tamsin Wade – for the better part of the episode at least – he’s also confronted with his recent past when suddenly Summer appears again. I have to say that I kind of liked the relationship between those two, even though it was a bit… strange? I think it became very clear that there are still feelings on both sides, and I wonder if this is supposed to have some follow-up later on. When I look at Summer’s husband, I sort of see some big fall-out coming up. The only question is if this is important enough to Bruno and his team to pursue; after all do they have enough work on their hands with Red John…
The ending of the episode provided another nice moment between Jane and Lisbon. The puzzle box Jane had been playing around with throughout the first half of the ep before he found out how to open it now appears again – he’s hidden her keys in the box. Of course does he dare her to try and get it open; solve the puzzle. Instead she takes out a hammer and smashes it – much to Jane’s shock. Of course because she destroyed the box – but also because he is confused to find out that she has a hammer in her desk. Her reaction: “You only think you know everything about me.”
Funny thing is, hearing those words had me instantly protest. We all know that Jane knows her very well, and she herself knows that best. I think if there is anything knowing her really well, it’s him. Same goes for her. And for some reason, those remarks sort of seem to hint at a situation coming up where this will be proven – that these two know each other very well…