The shows that have the ability to make your jaw drop to the ground. There’s not many of them – at least not for me – but THE MENTALIST is definitely on the list.
I watched the season premiere – the one I’ve been waiting for so much – and clung to my chair to not fall off of it.
I have to start with the ending, because my mind went into overload when I saw it.
Lorelei is gone. I doubt that the fact that there was a wrong woman brought to Lisbon and Jane was only hinting at Lorelei having a wrong name (another thing I assume possible). She has to be gone, from prison, therefore she might just be back in Red John’s clutches. So this is a total shocker, because I kind of thought the spoilers were actually hinting that she’ll, for once, stay in custody (yep, fell for it, congrats, Bruno ;)).
So Lorelei is gone again, but she might be still alive. It’s just a feeling, plus I think I read that we’ll see her a few times throughout the season.
The ending came with another thought for me – and only then because I wasn’t capable of thinking straight while watching – which shocked me a lot more. Lorelei’s words to Jane about Lisbon: “You’re a little bit in love with her.” This can’t come from her. She barely knows Lisbon; much less does she know (about) Jane’s relationship with her. But obviously, Red John does, and he has to be the one she got that information (and speculation about being in love with her) from.
Now I know Bruno & Co. are playing with us fans and especially us shippers. Clearly this is a shout out to the season finale’s “Love you” from Jane to Lisbon which is supposed to play a big(ger) role this season. But I can’t help but wonder what exactly it means when RJ knows that Jane has feelings for Lisbon – because he does, in one way or another – and the other way around. They do have feelings for each other, of whatever nature, and even if it isn’t yet love, it is still stronger than mere friendship.
Ultimately, this makes of Lisbon someone who could be or could become RJ’s preferred aim. My gut tells me that if he took Lisbon away from Jane, if he abducted her and let Jane know, he’d have something – someone – to blackmail Jane with. Very effectively I might say.
This is a direction I thought in before, but never once in the past four years was it more clear that Lisbon could be Jane’s weak point. There is no one else for him, except for the team maybe, and they’re not as close; even though he probably would also do much for them, and much more than for anyone else. But Lisbon? He’s already once before literally killed his chance to get closer to RJ just to protect and save her when he shot the police officer/ RJ disciple in the S1 finale. Seeing how obsessed he is with RJ, this said much about how close he feels to Lisbon; should she be in danger now, abducted by his personal nemesis, his reason to be so eager to get to the killer could just change completely.
 
Another thing are the J/L scenes in general. Lisbon is clearly on edge because of Jane’s love confession. We still not know how truthful his words were, but as I wrote in my season finale post, there was not really a reason for him to say it; he knew he wouldn’t actually kill her, he also knew that there was nobody listening in – not to his words anyways (the shots were of course heard outside the office); the blinds were closed and in general, well… there was no reason. Unless, of course, you count the possibility that he was telling the truth. And that he is indeed, as Lorelei said, at least ‘a little bit’ in love with Teresa.
Now, there is this kind of tension in their air between them that wasn’t there before, and it is awesome. I was patiently waiting for years to see them take the next step, and I was always content with how Bruno Heller and his team handled the relationship between those two because to make of them simply a happy couple and be done with it wouldn’t have been right. There is too much baggage, especially on Jane’s, but also on Lisbon’s side, and to have them get together just like that would have been wrong.
But in the past four years the writers as well as the actors’ play made it believable that there could be, one day, something between those two, something reaching farther than friendship. There is trust and a very deep connection, even though they appear like ever-quarreling siblings on the surface, and as soon as they leave behind what is weighing on them – I’d say Red John does on both of them, not just Jane – they will hopefully be able to start anew. Together.
Now the first steps are taken into this direction, as they both have reached a point in their life and their relationship where they will realize that there’s more to their feelings than friendship. And the stronger feelings for each other become, the stronger the reaction to each other will be. This is exactly what we can see already in the season premiere.
The two scenes where they talk had me almost crawl into the screen because this tension was unbearable. The way these scenes were shot was also ingenious; there is now suddenly this very serious, very adult touch to the whole set-up we find them in, and I particularly loved when in the beginning of the ep Lisbon came to Jane and told him they’re up and she was just a face against a black background.
Really interesting was the scene in the car. The Lisbon from four years back wouldn’t have just said out loud what she said about Jane and Lorelei – that he slept with her and that she was the first woman since his wife. It also shows that she seems to have quite some insight into his (love) life as he knows he didn’t have any other woman – or one night stand, for that matter. We know it is true; there’s no reason to believe otherwise. It was surprising to have Teresa say that; it is a good indicator of how close they really are; how close they’ve become in the past years. Plus, Jane’s reaction kinda expressed that, the surprise about Lisbon being so unexpectedly “bold” by naming the events as they happened.
The only thing I now wonder about is why Lisbon argued that she isn’t his girlfriend. Why this word, of all? She could just have said the rest of the sentence, that she is an officer of the law, and left the girlfriend part out. But she said it, and I guess it is part of the new Teresa Lisbon, the one who’s slowly recognizing that Patrick is more to her than just a colleague and friend. Her own mind is already playing tricks on her, and if they continue like that, it will get very interesting; especially if Jane, now also pushed into that direction of thinking, notices it. Of course Bruno said that it will mostly come from Lisbon’s side this season, that it will be her feelings going wild, but then, he also once said that the love issue will never be of any importance when it comes to Jane/Lisbon, and now we’re right on exactly that path…
 
In general, the season premiere was definitely a very good episode, and one that has finally found the show’s humor again. There were several scenes I was laughing at, something I missed a bit in season four. There were some Jane/Lisbon moments that made me grin, as were there moments between Cho and Rigsby (the couch, anyone?), who are almost always hilarious together 😉
I was reminded again that Lisbon/Cho as friendship is another relationship I like very much. Sometimes it seems like he’s like some kind of bodyguard or even bigger brother to her. In any way, he appears to be very protective of her, which I think is very sweet. The moment the FBI guy pushed her away, Cho attacked him, and it shows pretty well how much he cares for Lisbon.
And then there is the apology thing, which brings me once again back to Jane and Lisbon. Jane might still not apologize often, but when he does, it really sounds sincere, something that wasn’t the case before; before it was mostly a game, and apologies only half-hearted. Another thing that shows that Jane has indeed changed.
 
I’m looking forward to Jane’s and Lisbon’s reaction to the girl claiming to be Charlotte in next week’s episode… and I’m really looking forward to what this year will bring!

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Tags: Jane/Lisbon, Patrick Jane, Red John, Teresa Lisbon, The Mentalist
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