Shoes. That was what it was all about in last Sunday’s MENTALIST. Or at least it was if you leave out the “Crime of the Week” case.

Until now, Jane’s way to dress, his clothing, was never much of anyone’s concern; especially not that of the team. We fans may have spotted unusual things, moments in which he’d changed the style had become so familiar with for just a short while, only to then return to… tradition. I remember that in one episode, he wore no vest beneath his jacket and it brought forth some discussion as to why he’d forgone this part of his three-piece suit.
But never in four years saw we Lisbon or anyone else in show comment on it.
That seems to have changed not. Or at least did it during the last episode. Another part of Jane’s trademark style are his brown shoes. Old and worn-out, they look like he’s been wearing them ever since he started working with the CBI eight years ago. We are used to them, and so is Lisbon, it seems – because as a premiere in this episode, we have her commenting on something he wears for the very first time.
After the poor cobbler goes into shock because of the bank robbery and one of his shop windows being shot to shards in the progress, it takes him longer to repair Jane’s shoes where before Jane had sat down in the shop and was obviously about to wait for the old man to finish his work. Now that he can’t finish it, he gives Jane loaners – white running shoes from the look of it.
And this is also the first thing Lisbon notices when she enters the bank a while later to find Jane already sitting there, waiting for her and the team. She actually comments on his new foot wear. And she does again through the episode. Twice.
This is what I found to be most unusual in this episode – this focus on his shoes. And it’s not like the team paid much attention to it – only Lisbon. And those exchanges were incredibly funny, because she just didn’t like the new foot wear, whereas he commented that he was getting used to them. Now one can speculate that he was just teasing, because we all know how much he loves his shoes – the brown ones – and we could also see that in the end.
The question here is: Why was he teasing? Why was it something brought up so often – in comparison – during the episode? Of course we’re now going deeper into Jane’s character; it’s one of the themes of this season. This and… well, and his relationship, of whatever nature, to Lisbon. Talking about his shoes is nothing that is of any importance to the episode or the show… not as much as it is made us believe here.
It is of importance to his character, though, because it brings us closer to Jane. And – it doesn’t need saying, but sure it brings also more relationship bits for Jane/Lisbon, because IMO, a few years back, she may have commented on it once, but not so often, and not in that teasing manner as she did when she told him repeatedly that she doesn’t like his new shoes.
On another note and despite all, we have a Lisbon who still reacts with shock at his antics, like when he bluntly told her who their new suspect was (the victim) – with the victim’s family present, no less. One would think she has gotten used to it by now; at least as much that it didn’t have her eyes fall out every single time. But maybe she also doesn’t have a straight impression of him as she is influenced by emotions and feelings… or it’s simply played for laughs 😉
In any way – I still love that they bring in that Jane/Lisbon dynamic with the new aspects of them slowly becoming more than just colleagues and friends; that their friendship is becoming deeper and stronger and preparing the way to more.
Oh, and this also includes her new way to wake him. Is it just me or has she become gentler when it is about waking him? I don’t know, it just felt like it…
Then we have the FBI. Still not sure what all that is about. Especially not sure why the guy whose name I’ve just forgotten is flirting with Lisbon. Because let’s face it, he is. He is also quite attractive, and maybe it’s time for Lisbon to have another nice night after Walter doesn’t seem to return (soon) – although I’m still hoping for it.
On the other hand, there is this fact that he brought her to the poker round, something that promises to become rather interesting, seeing that Bertram is there as well.
Last but not least a few words on Rigsby/Van Pelt: I’m not sure where they are heading with those two, though I think to remember that they’ll sooner or later get another chance. In any way it’s good to see that they get along so well and that the focus shifts to them again, a bit at least. I’d love for them to be together again.

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Tags: Jane/Lisbon, The Mentalist