“ Genre: Television - The Mentalist / Theatrical Release: 2008 / Suitable for 15 years and over / Actors: Simon Baker, Robin Tunney, Amanda Righetti, Tim Kang ... / DVD released 2010-03-08 at Warner Home Video / Features of the DVD: Box set, PAL „
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As a big fan of crime drama, after having watched all the episodes in shows like Criminal Minds and CSI, I decided to watch the Mentalist on recommendation of my mum. She said that this crime drama not only was interesting but the lead character - Patrick Jane - made the show pretty funny.
I watched the show without knowing much about the show with no other recommendations other than my mum and even from the first episode I knew this would be a good series. It's a bit of a mix between Criminal Minds and CSI, as they use both physcological attributes and real evidence to capture criminals.
The Mentalist is based around Patrick Jane, a man with amazing observational skills who aids the CBI or California Bureau of Investigation in solving crimes. He is not actually classed as part of the police themselves, but as a consultant. This is because Jane isn't technically a police officer, as he just uses his skills to help them close cases.
His main skills is the use of observation as he can take any scene and take it apart to find clues (reminds me a bit of Sherlock Holmes!), read people and the signals that they send out subconciously and use hyptonism. His skills are clearly beyond what an ordinary person would possess which makes the show so different from the other crime shows about. In fact, his skills are so ordinary people often just believe he is physic!
Patrick Jane is one of the best lead characters in a television show I have watched since House. He possesses a great charm which makes you empathise with him, find him funny and be amazed at how he can solve puzzles and con the truth out of people.
However, he does have a sad past which the show's plotline is loosely based around. Patrick does not help the CBI as his chosen career path, he began working there to find Red John. Red John is a serial killer who killed Patrick's wife and child after becoming angry he was using his gifts to fool people into believing he could read minds. Now Patrick is hunting Red John down, with the aid of the CBI team while working on other cases. (if you notice, all the episodes have Red mentioned somewhere in the title!)
The supporting cast (although they are featured as much as he is in the series so I wouldn't really call them a supporting cast!) are as good as the main character, and add an overall charm to the team itself. It's nice seeing a team as close as they are on crime shows. The boss of the overall team is Agent Lisbon, a strong woman who although has to put up with Jane's stunts which can be quite extreme is kind to him and believes that these stunts that he pulls are often for the benefit of the Bureau. The two are quite close, as Patrick rarely talks about his past, but when he does it is always to Lisbon.
Then, there are the supporting agents,Agent Cho who is the tough guy of the group and tends to be the harshest to criminals, Agent Rigsby who is sweet and adorable, with a crush for fellow colleague Agent Van Pelt. She is the newest addition of the team, and often discusses the moral side to things. The whole team together blend really well, as they are friendly and make for excellent viewing. The fact that there is an office relationship was quite sweet to, as it adds to a bit extra in the plots! Sometimes they are a bit wary of following Jane's crazy stunts, but tend to end up doing them anyway as they know he's mostly always right.
There is hardly any plot throughout the series, aside from the Red John case and each episode is different from the next. The murders don't tend to be very gruesome, and not as gory as some of the other shows. You rarely see any gory effects within them in the Mentalist. The storylines always keep you interested and on the edge of your seat, as Jane is always getting into some kind of trouble trying to find the killer. Every episode is so varied, and has many different situations, with no episode ever being the same.
There are some very good effects included within the Mentalist, as occasionally there will be an explosion, and it will look very well done. Fire can sometimes become involved somewhere and this is always so tense as someone is always just that little bit to close!
I would recommend The Mentalist to anyone who loves a crime show, as the plotlines combined with Janes ridiculous antics are a combination to keep anyone interested. His charm and humour never fails to make you laugh at the things he does, and the way he catches the criminals is always so unique you'd never have thought that person would have done it! And of course, the underlying plot of Red John keeps you watching, as all you want to do is find out if Patrick will ever catch him!
A reasonable success The Mentalist first series started on Channel 5 in 2009 after losing House to Sky. Simon Baker plays the main role and despite protests from others I still believe that he looks like a young Michael Flatley! I began watching this after a chance visit on the channel which was showing the advert. I was interested almost immediately and earmarked that Thursday evening to tune in, there in for the next 20 or so weeks that 9pm slot was booked in for a bit of criminal delight!
Patrick Jane is an ex psychic now freelancing with the CBI in their cases. In the past he played the role of a celebrity psychic medium, using his 'paranormal abilities' he provided a service to people who needed comfort or answers. That was until he caught the attention of serial killer Red John. A big mistake to speak of him on TV in an almost provoking manner, that ends in the death of his family. Filled with remorse and grief he turns towars the police force to help solve serious crimes with his ability to read body language, use hypnotism and picking up on the tiniest things which might otherwise go un-noticed.
It's clear that he is nowhere near close to getting over the death of his wife and daughter even though his colleagues don't appear to of noticed. This becomes most obvious when speaking to another psychic. The team he works with deal with the slightly more gruesome crimes, some of the scenes can be a little grizzly at times however their different personalities bring a good mix to the show.
You have Patrick Jane, ever charming, he uses this at his advantage especially when talking to females. Never seeming to lose control of his emotions Jane is able to coax people into saying things which they may want to keep covered. Agent Lisbon is the only member of the team who really knows what happened to Jane, meaning he trusts her a lot more. She becomes more likeable as the series progresses. At first she is a bit too straight for want of a better word. Acting more tough than necessary and not appearing at all approachable. As time goes by she does soften and by the end I had become quite fond of her. Although there is a romantic interest between two other members though it does look slightly one sided, I felt as though there would eventually be some sort of involvement between Lisbon and Jane much to my disappointment. Cho brings a bit of humour to the show alongside Agent Rigsby, the two making a good partnership. The final member is Van Pelt. I have no lasting opinion of her!
The episodes always start with a murder like a lot of other crime dramas, the main difference being in how unrealistic some of the scenes seem to be. Such as getting into someones house and then persuading the police that the owners are the ones intruding! There does tend to be a massive turn around at the end as well. Taking about 50 minutes for the whole story and then a very quick solution in the last 10. The show has a nice approach to solving the crimes and Patricks use of hypnotism is very convenient in getting the answers they want.
I recieved this as a present and have thoroughly enjoyed rewatching it. It contains a whole mixture of aspects which can show that some crime dramas can be both serious and have humourous moments rather than being too much of one or the other.
Unfortunately as it moved to a Friday night I have missed the remaining series and have only just got the next boxset. So no spoilers please!
So I had never heard of this show until both my boyfriend and housemate on separate occasions recommended it to me, as I am a fan of the crime drama. So last week I settled down to watch season one - now I need season two!
I started watching it with no clue about the show, except for being told it was brilliant and they solve crimes - good enough for me! But for those of you who would like more details, The Mentalist is based around a character called Patrick Jane (played by Simon Baker) who is freelancing for the California Bureau of Investigation (CBI - a fictional kind of FBI I think). The reason he is freelancing? Patrick Jane is a sort of psychic, who had previously used his gift to con people into believing he was a medium. That is until he appeared on television claiming he could use his gift to profile a serial killer known as Red John - who in turn brutally murdered Jane's wife and daughter. This resulted in Jane teaming up with the CBI to help them solve cases, in return for being able to try and catch Red John with them.
Although he isn't a psychic, Jane has an almost unbelievable ability in being able to read people, use hypnotism, incredible observational skills and an incredible insight into the human psyche. I don't think it's ever clearly defined what he is, as his colleagues and people around him always presume he is a psychic, but it's absolutely fascinating to watch him solve puzzles or find missing items or be able to use his ability to get the truth out of someone. That alone makes this show worth watching - at least for a little while.
The CBI team Jane works with are headed up by Agent Lisbon, who is the only person Jane trusts with his past. I tend to feel sorry for Lisbon as she has to put up with a lot of Jane's 'stunts' and antics, which can end up with him and other people in danger, as well as the consequences. But she is patient with him and understands his value - and she isn't at all annoying! The rest of the team are made up of Agent Cho, who is a sort of double act along with Agent Rigsby (who is big and loveable, and although you don't hear the accent, the actor is actually Welsh so I'm definitely a fan!). The final member of the team is Agent Van Pelt, who is the newest member of the team and is the romantic interest of Rigsby. So there you have it - the team with two strong leaders, a comedy duo and a romantic interest - a classic mix. Over the series you really get to know the characters, and slowly learn about their past and what makes them the people we see now (thanks mainly to Jane's perceptiveness and tendency just to blurt out what he thinks - which can cause problems when dealing with bereaved family members and suspects). At the beginning, Lisbon and the team strictly follow the rules, and disapprove of Jane's sometimes unorthodox methods, but I love how slowly over time you notice them relax and work with him - the boys faster than the girls, which, when you watch it, is what you would expect from their personalities and such.
Each episode pretty much begins with a murder, and the CBI being called in to investigate. Sometimes the murders can be a little gruesome, but unlike with a lot of these types of shows, I haven't really noticed that much gruesomeness (or I've finally become immune to it!). You follow the team as they work to solve it (or work to clear up any mess Jane has made!). Sometimes I have sat there thinking that the confession would never stand up in court, and it's all so totally unrealistic, but that is fairly infrequent. The storylines grip you, and the varied characters, both within the team and outside the team, keep you interested. And of course there is the story arc of Red John, which appears sporadically throughout the series (although it is mentioned quite often, there are only a small number of episodes that actually involve cases to do with it).
Although there are parts that will have you hiding behind your hands, asking yourself why did he just do that??, and some parts do seem to be a little far-fetched, I think that the Mentalist is a fresh new take on a crime series. It's that little bit different due to Jane's abilities and sometimes recklessness, but it doesn't forget the key things that make a good show - an excellent, interesting team who I can't wait to know more about, a female lead who isn't at all annoying, a little bit of comedy, a little bit of danger, and enough mystery to keep you guessing "who done it"! Definitely worth a watch, it's just a shame I didn't start watching it sooner!
There probably isn't much series out there that deal with profiling or mind games and me not knowing about it. Unfortunately they are only on my "must see" list. And from time to time I manage to find some time to see something from my list. The mentalist was one of those lucky's. And what is this show all about.
Patrick Jane (Simon Baker) was a well-known psychic (conman if you wish), that was approached by the police that needed help with catching a killer. Patrick full of pride and confidence, insults Red John (killers nickname) who in revenge kills Patrick's wife and daughter. Making revenge the basic motivation in Patrick's life. So that he could be "closer" to the case he starts to work like as a consultant for the police. He closes almost every case in his funny and confident manner.
The show it self isn't nothing new:
- Conman going strait ----seen before
- Conman helping the police----seen before
- A deranged killer on lose ---- seen before
- Profiling ---seen before
but there is a different approach and characters are good, that is probably fun to watch the show.
I love the show, at least 1 season. Will see what will happen in the future (please don't spoil :D) But resemblance with the show like Profiler is extreme (the same serial killer trough the whole series, and hunting him, because he killed the main character's family, close and loyal team...). I just hope that this is all the resemblance that it will be.
Before seeing this show I didn't know anything about cold reading. Well I did enjoy Darren Brown and seeing how that knowledge could be used in chasing criminal is fun to see, even though, we all know "it wouldn't stick in court".
Acting is great. The characters are well developed and enjoyable. They are cool and taking life no matter how hard it easy in an humorous way.
Directing is great also, soundtrack is nothing special, and stories are interesting for now. I hope that this show will ended in a more logical way and not like the other hit shows.
When I read the synopsis for "The Mentalist" I thought it was a crazy idea. A hypnotist helping the FBI solve murders etc. Its one of the more unrealistic members of the FBI and [-insert here person with special abilities-] genre but it works. The episode storylines aren't huge arcs like that of Lost and Heroes apart from the hunt for "Red John" who killed the main characters (Patrick Jane's) family.
What sets this apart from others in this genre is the character dynamics. The characters are very well rounded and each ones mythology well established quickly. The dialog is witty and entertaining and drives the show along rather than the action sequences. Despite the show mostly having a sense of humour about itself at times it can be quite dark and dramatic. This creates a well rounded and well written show which is very compelling to watch.
The show is presented on 6 discs with all the usual extras featurettes and commentaries, including gag reel and some evidence from cases not shown in the episodes.