The Mentalist s6 ep 22

FINALLY.

Or “finale”, to put it another way – as season six comes to a close, Lisbon is getting ready to leave Jane and move to DC and everybody believes it’s going to happen except Jane himself. And the audience who have been watching for SIX EFFING YEARS and may riot if he doesn’t quit faffing around and STOP her.

As unpopculter Olive pointed out on last week’s thread, though, our man is in deep denial. So it falls to Cho to rouse him from his stupor – I love Cho – and it, as they say, is ON.

Sort of. Before that, Jane manages to solve a murder in seconds, set up an audacious but obvious – Teresa, girl, seriously, you bought that “you did it! ” stuff on the beach? – scam, solve another murder, shoot himself in the foot (okay, sprain himself but close enough) and give us his own version of the traditional romcom dash to the airport. Because apparently SIX EFFING YEARS hasn’t given him sufficient time, so suddenly we’re up against the clock and holding up aeroplanes.

*Shakes head. Then breaks out into giant grin.*

Oh, who am I kidding? “The Blue Bird” might have been obvious and it might have been cliched, but it was very funny, very sweet and very entertaining too. It’s not been a good season overall – only a handful of decent episodes, and the only decent thing about the move to Austin has been fellow shipper Abbott, who was particularly awesome this ep – but at least it ended on a high note. And a snog. Let’s not forget the snog. Since I’ve come this far, I’ll be back in the autumn to review the final seventh season, but for now, let me just say this one more time: SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!

The Mentalist s6 ep 21

After Cho and Abbott’s chilling discovery at the end of last week’s ep, Jane and Fischer are summoned to Wheatondale so that Simon Baker can do that great Jane thing I love of barely-suppressed rage and determination at a particularly horrendous crime, and so Cho can give Fischer orders. Much as I applaud the recent reduction in Fischer’s screen time, is she not the senior agent on the team? When did Cho get promoted?

It’s just one of a number of jarring things about “Black Hearts.” It’s obviously “ideas above his station” week for Cho as he also telephones the Colombian Ambassador directly – presumably bypassing several levels of FBI and State Department diplomacy – and successfully threatens him into doing what he wants, which involves facilitating a full-scale FBI operation on Colombian soil. Big Bad Ridley, meanwhile, the billionaire owner of numerous companies with fiendishly complicated legal structures, a man who is photographed with Presidents, apparently runs his apparently global human trafficking and organ-harvesting operation personally; you’d think he’d have layers of minions between him and the frontline traffickers/ harvesters and his personal contract killer, but no. He meets with them at his own house. He phones them on his own phone. He keeps the victim’s records on his own laptop. Which means it’s absurdly easy for Jane to zero in on him: this global network of terror seems to have less than ten members of staff and an “untouchable” boss who leaves evidence all over the place.

Despite this, there isn’t really any mention of search warrants or surveillance or whatnot. When the principal witnesses against Ridley are all bumped off, the Federal Bureau of Investigation more or less shrugs its shoulders in an “oh well, that’s that” kind of way and gives up investigating. So Jane – having none of that, obviously – launches one of his cons, and if it’s the most ridiculous one I’ve seen in perhaps ever and it turns what started off as a dark, potentially powerful story into a silly farce, then I suppose at least the show acknowledges that its result would never stand up in court in a trillion years. And in having Jane trust Lisbon with the full extent of it and Lisbon in turn lie about it with him, uses it to underline how far their relationship has come. It might have come even further this week, mind you, if stupid Fischer hadn’t interrupted the deep talk they were going to have by stupid phoning, but I suppose they’re saving the deep talk for next week’s finale.

As far as this week goes, however, I was hugely disappointed at how rushed the Ridley arc ended up being; paced more slowly and more seriously, it could have been something special, but instead it was wrapped up too quickly and too stupidly, just to get it out of the way. At least Cho and Lisbon had an absolutely lovely moment, though, and Abbott’s sulky shipper face as he listened to Lisbon’s potential new boss talking up the DC job to her was hilarious.

The Mentalist s6 ep 20

This episode begins in perhaps the most annoying way possible, with a piece of nonsense about Jane being dragged before a grand jury which is so embarrassingly over-done and stupid that I wanted to switch it off then and there.

It improves, thankfully, as they rein that story in considerably but any grand jury-related shenanigans are always going to remind me of and fail to come anywhere close to the gold standard for that so save us both the mortification and don’t ever try it again, Mentalist, thank you.

The rest of the ep is so-so. The murder mystery is ok if no more than sketched out, possibly because the focus of the episode is split between that, Cho’s continuing investigation into the trafficking ring which is actually quite interesting and Jane and Lisbon exchanging significant looks at each other which is lovely but way overdue. The pair of them are idiots. Good-looking idiots who are seriously into each other, but idiots anyway. As for Marcus, he can naff off soon as he likes. He’s even more of a Gary Stu than ever this week – Casablanca? Really? – which makes me wonder, in the words of fellow Jisbon enthusiast Abbott, “How long (is Jane) going to let that go on?” The answer being, presumably, “till the season finale in two weeks.” We shall see.

The Mentalist s6 ep 19

Lisbon is on a date with walking plot device Marcus, who tries to convince us he was once in a band before he took up his current full-time job of Jane Jealousy Generator. Nobody cares, Marcus. Luckily, Jane is too busy detecting serious crime to bother with such flummery, and interrupts the date to alert Lisbon to it, much to her chagrin. Does she apologise when he turns out to be right, just like he always is? Not that I recall.

No matter. Jane’s discovery is both tragic and chilling, launching us into a terrific episode with a different type of mystery from the standard Mentalist ones, a story I really, properly cared about, a joyous appearance from “Big Pete” (Heh) and a casting coup in the form of the Man in Black himself, Titus Welliver, aka the most menacing guy on tv.

On the shipping front, meantime, things are definitely shifting up, er, half a gear. It appears that Abbott (who has mellowed into a much better character over the past few weeks than the shouty cliche we first met) is also Team Jisbon, but I’m not convinced that Jane didn’t know about Lisbon considering a DC move, since Jane knows everything about everybody, whether he happens to be in love with them or not. But that’s all by the by. He definitely knows now, she’s given him the green light to say and/or do something about it, he remains resolutely at Red. For the moment. Given her blatantly stricken looks at him in the trailer, and his equally blatant discomfiture at the idea of her leaving, he’s going to make his move, soon, right? RIGHT?

The Mentalist s6 ep 18

After last week’s unexpectedly awesome episode, we go right on back to bland for this one as Jane and his FBI minions investigate the murder of a young woman at an exclusive male-only country retreat.

The mystery and its resolution are both utterly perfunctory with the best moment being Cho’s deadpan expression at Wylie’s tech talk, although I have no idea why he and Wylie were acting like doing “something shady for Jane” might get them into any kind of trouble. Like Red in The Blacklist, Jane now seems to be running the FBI – yes, Jane? A helicopter, Jane? No problem, Jane – so the only thing he actually wants but can’t/won’t/is choosing not to get at the moment is Lisbon.

The Jisbon factor’s a little lower than last week, of course – down a notch to DEFCON 3 now, I’d say – but Jane’s jealousy is still palpable and about to get, er, more palpable since Marcus (who does have the look of an acolyte about him, as unpopculter Capt Dobey pointed out last week), having already made considerable headway with Lisbon, is now raising the stakes by suggesting she move away with him. Will she decide to go? Will Jane stop faffing around and beg her to stay? Or will I just write my own fanfic resolving the issue to my satisfaction once and for all? Come on, writers, get them together so I don’t have to, eh?

The Mentalist s6 ep 17

The FBI investigation of an explosion at a bus shelter leads to an old murder and a man on Death Row about to be executed for a crime he may not have committed…. Can Jane “come up with something” to solve the murder and save the man’s life?

Well, HELLO show I love – where have you been the past few weeks?!?!

Smart, fast-moving and compelling, “Silver Wings of Time” was The Mentalist on close to top form and best of all – squee! – there was Jisbon Jisbon Jisbon everywhere you looked.

Last week’s episode put me in somewhat of a huff, but gosh this one made up for it. The case of the week was terrific for a start: yes, the logistics and the legalities wouldn’t bear close examination and you wouldn’t have to look too hard for plot holes, but I found myself genuinely caring about the outcome. And I felt like the new characters were properly, interestingly used for the first time, instead of just being there to cut down everybody else’s screen time. Abbott in particular had a brilliant episode; his scenes with Cruz were genuinely moving and even little moments like his “just keep letting us know what time it is” to Wylie had unexpected punch. Wylie’s tech-y tics – the speaking clock, the fire alarm – could have been stupendously annoying but were beautifully integrated into the plot instead, and even Agent Fischer… well, even Agent Fischer was tolerable (let’s quit while we’re ahead).

And the case of the week might have been enough, but the shippers among us got much more than that as Lisbon dating Marcus Pike finally cracked Jane’s composure and gave us something solid to squee about: his “that’s great, excellent” at news Lisbon’s date went well was completely at odds with the expression on his face, his obvious annoyance when she made another date with Marcus on the phone and his “nothing” when she asked what was wrong were both riven with tired frustration, and the moment between them at the end when he told her she looked beautiful… Well. We’ve not had signs this blatant since “love you” all those episodes ago (when he, er, shot her) and while Jane and the show pulled back from that, suddenly there’s hope that we might actually be moving forward again. Based on past experience, I probably shouldn’t get my hopes up – as the magnificent Cho pointed out, wondering what Jane thinks about Lisbon may well “make my head explode” – but I can’t help it, so I might as well enjoy it while it lasts even if it is only for an episode. What the hell. SQUEE!

The Mentalist s6 ep 16

OMG – Jane and Lisbon are going undercover as a couple! OMG – they have to spend a night alone in the same house! OMG – it’s the time-honoured, trope-tastic way to push two characters in a will-they/won’t-they holding pattern together! Will they lock eyes or lips? Will one accidentally walk in on the other in a state of undress/uncharacteristically vulnerability? Will the air crackle with the tension between them? Oh, the excitement, the anticipation, the…. total indifference of every character involved?

Huh?

Given the lack of any actual movement on the Jisbon front since this season started, I probably shouldn’t have got my hopes up: the idea of the new team going after art thieves didn’t fill me with much enthusiasm, but Jane’s plan was cute enough and in picking Lisbon instead of Fischer as his fake-girlfriend, a) poor Teresa finally got out of the office (HURRAH!) and b) the possibility was there that we might finally make some progress, especially since these two faux-moving in together only to real-move in on each other is the kind of cliche that has launched a thousand fanfics.

But no. Apart from the baddie telling us he sees “the way (Jane) looks at her,” what we actually got was a defiantly chemistry-free operation, the sole function of which seemed to be the introduction of a new love interest for Lisbon in the shape of new pal Marcus. FFS. The Mentalist is about to be cancelled. How many more new characters to get between the old ones do we need?

The main plot was ok, I suppose, and probably one of the better Mentalist 2.0 ones – I even smiled once or twice – but, more than anything, it was a missed opportunity to actually do something, anything, with the relationship between these two characters – who used to be so close and now seem to spend as much time apart as possible – and yet another step along the road to ennui that the post-Red John show has insisted on taking us down. I don’t care about any of these new people. I don’t care about this new set-up. And, at this rate, if there actually were to be a seventh season, I doubt even I’d care enough to watch it.