The Mentalist OAD 5/20/11 "Strawberries and Cream" SPOILERS

Discussion in 'Now Playing - TV Show Talk' started by Peter000, May 20, 2011.

  1. Peter000

    Peter000 Well-Known Member TCF Club

    Apr 15, 2002
    Red Wing, MN


    I thought that was a pretty satisfying conclusion to the Red John saga (I'm fairly certain we are meant to believe that was indeed Red John).

    Perfect casting of Bradley Whitford as Red John. Couldn't have asked for a better one shot.

    I wonder where it will go from here? Though I feel so satisfied right now I could just stop watching all together. I'd almost stopped watching anyway, the previous 5 episodes are sitting unwatched on my DVR. I was only interested in the Red John story.

    ETA: The title of this thread has the wrong air date... it should be 5/19/11, not 5/20. I watched it then looked at the date on my computer not realizing it was after midnight when I posted. :eek:
  2. rgr

    rgr Member

    Feb 21, 2003
    I'm not so sure the Red John Saga is over. Why was he there if he hadn't got a call from the CBI Boss? Are we so sure RJ didn't have a second mole? The assassin could have gone to the hotel room at the top and been willing to rappel down after verifying Hightower wasn't in that room (maybe having two or three rooms to check). And those names could have been a setup from Laroche.

    And Whitford could have just been the "public face" of RJ, there's been plenty of cutouts and red herrings before.

    It'd be easy enough for RJ to give some personal details to use to fool Jane.

    Of course I may be overthinking it, but that's what makes a good conspiracy.
  3. madscientist

    madscientist Deregistered Snoozer

    Nov 12, 2003
    Lexington, MA
    The thing that always felt completely ridiculous to me is how Red John seems to have all these "friends". Really? A serial killer and all these powerful people are lining up to help him out? I wonder if they're ever going to investigate that angle (he must have been, at the very least, incredibly rich) or if they'll just let it drop.Was that really RJ?

    I do enjoy this show, even the RJ plotline, though. And I did hoot to see Josh as RJ; I knew that guy at that table would be important since he was so prominently in the shot.

    I also liked how Jane did exactly what he's been saying he would do for the entire series, and how he didn't look shaken in any way: his voice cracking when he asked RJ to "wait" was obviously faked.
  4. secondclaw

    secondclaw Active Member

    Oct 3, 2004
    I for one am glad that Red John thread is over ... The whole idea of so many supposedly smart people perfectly willing to kill and die for him without a second thought smacked of a cult only ... Was a bit incredulous. I will admit though that casting was perfect, as was Jane calmly sitting down at the table and drinking tea.
  5. john4200

    john4200 Well-Known Member

    Oct 31, 2009


    Well, Jane has to prove that guy was Red John, otherwise Jane is going to have a very long prison sentence, although I suppose Jane can claim self defense, since the guy was armed and had pointed the gun at him. But if Jane tells the truth, the guy was going to walk away and leave Jane alone, so the self-defense plea is very thin.

    How did Red John know about the meeting at the mall? Did Grace mention it to O'Laughlin? I'll have to watch it again.

    Grace's necklace is obviously important. At first I thought it was a bug, either a listening device or a locator. But if so, why did O'Laughlin pull it off of her? Or was O'Laughlin having a change of heart (groan) and trying to tell her something about it? Did he mean to pull it off, or was he just trying to touch it and accidently pulled it?

    I thought it had been established that O'Laughlin did not love Grace when he did not risk his life to save her in that shoot out several episodes ago. And it looked like he was going kill Grace in this episode. So it is hard for me to believe that he was trying to help Grace when he grabbed the necklace.

    There is still the loose end of Kristina Frye, the psychic that Jane went on a date with and who later disappeared.
  6. john4200

    john4200 Well-Known Member

    Oct 31, 2009
    I wonder if the writers will try to provide an explanation. The only things I can think of are hypnosis (already covered in the show), or some sort of drug-assisted brainwashing (maybe RJ was a government scientist or ex-military?).

    Or maybe your cult idea could work. Maybe there is a whole cult of Red Johns, not just a single person. The guy Jane shot seems to be the guy who killed Jane's family, but maybe he is not responsible for all of the Red John murders. If credible new Red John murders start happening, Jane is going to be in a lot of trouble for the guy he shot.
  7. Idearat

    Idearat Active Member

    Nov 26, 2000
    RJ mentioned the trap, so as long as Van Pelt was being really stupid (like bringing her boyfriend to secret safe house ) she must have spilled it all. Knowing that the director was the suspect he came along to watch. He would have known it was a trap, but since the director couldn't finger him, he wanted to watch them fail.

    As to Van Pelt's stupidity, she really needs to just marry Rigsby. She can't be trusted to pick any man on her own after choosing two murderers in a row. Only my overriding lust for redheads keeps me from hating the character for being that dumb.

    The trap at the hotel was a little too contrived and flawed. They're trying to keep the whole thing secret, but getting multiple hotel rooms one on top of each other would have taken enough coordination that RJ and his people could too easily have found out something was fishy. They only did it as part of the setup for the rope and the wrong room.

    Complaints aside, this was my idea of a season finale. The whole Red John thing wasn't the overall motivation for the show so no need to drag it out. We got resolution ( or at least appears we have ). We got to see Jane smiling and at peace with himself. A cheesier show would have faded to black when we heard the gunshots and tried to make us wonder who shot whom.
  8. john4200

    john4200 Well-Known Member

    Oct 31, 2009
    Or perhaps there was more than one traitor in the house.

    I don't think Grace was stupid to bring her FBI agent fiance along as a partner. But it was idiotic that she did not object when he ignored Rigsby's call, and she did not immediately call Rigsby back. It is not like Rigsby frequently calls her for no good reason. And then for Lisbon to have her phone on vibrate and not on her person was just bizarre -- she is certainly not stupid. That was just an annoying contrivance of the writers to heighten the suspense.

    I cannot figure out O'Laughlin's plan. Was he going to kill Lisbon, Grace, Hightower, and two children, in addition to the two uniform cops? That's cold.
  9. Rob Helmerichs

    Rob Helmerichs I am Groot! TCF Club

    Oct 17, 2000
    Ironically, she's been portrayed as a complete idiot from the beginning...although maybe not deliberately. Remember in the early days, when she was the one who was always willing to accept supernatural explanations for things?

    I never did understand whether they were trying to portray her as a complete idiot, or just open-minded. If the latter, it reminds me of the joke "Be open-minded...but not so open that your brain falls out." Either way, I was very happy when they dropped that repulsive aspect of her character.
  10. madscientist

    madscientist Deregistered Snoozer

    Nov 12, 2003
    Lexington, MA
    I'm so-so on whether the trap was dumb (in hindsight having the rooms be completely parts of the hotel would have been smarter), but I definitely was yelling that they're not waiting long enough when they burst in. What's the rush? Wait and see what happens. Obviously I've watched enough TV to know that if you jump the gun like that you come up with the wrong conclusion 99% of the time :)

    It wasn't O'Laughlin's plan. RJ said he wanted to watch when Jane got the call the Lisben had been killed, to teach Jane another lesson. RJ ordered O'Laughlin to do it. It seems like a stupid move since it burns O'Laughlin completely and how useful is it to have a "friend" in the FBI office?!?! But hey, he's a serial killer so you have to expect some crazy. That whole speech about how he was going to give up and change his life was fantastic. Great writing there. The guy was nuttier than a fruitcake... but again to my (and others') point: how does a guy like that get so many high-powered "friends" he can control?

    I bet it is something like a cult.
  11. RGM1138

    RGM1138 I wanna Rock

    Oct 6, 1999
    Gulfport, MS
    I don't watch this show but I was channel hopping and saw Josh Lyman and had to stop. I noticed that Blondie was nonplussed about capping an unarmed Lyman. Does he have a double-0 status or just diplomatic immunity?
  12. Kylep

    Kylep Doomed! (DOOMED!)

    Feb 13, 2003
    Des Moines, IA
    heh, interesting point to jump in at. The dead guy killed the blond guy's wife and daughter before the series started. The blond guy had been working for this moment every minute since and had clearly stated if he finds the guy, he's killing him without a doubt.

    I think most viewers are satisfied that he did just what he said he was going to do with no regret.

    edit: Oh, and Lyman did have a gun. It was rolled up in a newspaper.
  13. markz

    markz Well-Known Member

    Oct 22, 2002
    I loved that Josh Lyman was RJ! Great role!
  14. Rob Helmerichs

    Rob Helmerichs I am Groot! TCF Club

    Oct 17, 2000
    And he had openly threatened Jane with the gun...i.e., taken it out of the newspaper for a moment, so the security cameras could no doubt see it. Since the cameras won't have audio, they'll see Red John walking away, then turning back towards Jane (holding the gun in the newspaper in front of him), then Jane shooting Red John. All Jane has to do is claim that Red John threatened him, and voila, self-defense.

    The video won't be conclusive, of course, but it won't be conclusive either way. And given who the "victim" was and what he did to Jane, even if a prosecutor tried the case would any jury convict Jane?
  15. madscientist

    madscientist Deregistered Snoozer

    Nov 12, 2003
    Lexington, MA
    Did he ever take the gun out? I don't remember that. He pointed it at Jane while it was still inside the newspaper, so Jane could see it, but I don't think he took it out.

    However, there is definitely a gun in the newspaper next to the body and the cameras will show no one planted it, so it doesn't matter if it showed up on the cameras while they were sitting together. As you rightly point out, Jane can pretty much make up anything he likes about what RJ said since no one can hear.
  16. matt@thehickmans

    matt@thehickmans Hemo_jr

    Jan 8, 2008
    There are a lot or parallels between 'Red John' here and 'Jack of all Trades' in "Profiler," You'd think they were recycling ideas.

    Anyway, in 'Profiler' a fake 'Jack of all Trades' was captured a year or two into the series, only to be later determined the the original Jack had manipulated a follower into posing as him. So this case may be analogous. A real RJ might still be out there.

    Besides, early in the first season the series creater was asked it RJ would be dealt with in the season finale. The creatorr said getting RJ would be more of a series' ender, rather than a season's ender.
  17. secondclaw

    secondclaw Active Member

    Oct 3, 2004
    I hope next season's mini-thread would be to piece together RJ's organization and his methods - the Who and the How ... after all with the show being about the Mentalist, it may truly turn out that RJ was just as gifted (if not better) than Jane and that's how he was able to manipulate so many people.

    I do really hope that this was real RJ - and with the second hour written by show creator I don't really doubt it - especially with such a perfect casting for RJ's role (would be a shame to waste that on a fake). And assuming it was real RJ - this was a very satisfying conclusion to Jane's hunt - which hopefully will allow this character to change and evolve in a new direction.

    As far as Jane's troubles after shooting RJ - unlikely that anything will happen. With a gun loaded with hollow-points (assuming this was no lie) and the trail of blood left behind by his associates the shooting is easy to justify - and Jane did make sure RJ turned around so he didn't have to shoot him in the back.
  18. Thom

    Thom Unemployed and loving it !!

    Jun 5, 2000
    Southern Calif.
    I, also, think there might be bug in the necklace. As O'Loughlin was about to shoot everyone, he said to Grace something along the line of "I am fond of you, but...". Since they were already planning the wedding, and he wasn't in love with Grace, there was no reason for him to give her the necklace without some other ulterior motive. As he lay there dying, he saw the necklace when she leaned over him, and he grabbed it to draw her attention to it hoping she would discover Red John's bug in it. He was dying, and he was fond of her, after all.

    As to why Red John had all these "friends," I suspect he had been blackmailing and/or threatening families to coerce people. And he probably exaggerated how many "friends" he had. His periodic splashy killings were partially to make these "friends" know he was deadly serious with his threats.

    In a previous episode, they laid the groundwork for Jane to stay with CBI after Red John was dealt with. I seem to remember Lisben having a brief conversation with Jane about what comes after. Jane saying his CBI involvement would be over, Lisben saying she didn't think so...
  19. robojerk

    robojerk Well-Known Member

    Jun 13, 2006
    Laguna Hills CA
    I'm not a big fan of the show (my wife likes it), in fact many of the past episodes I hated.

    I will say this was a pretty awesome finale, very well done. I did call the fiance as the mole earlier, and as soon as I saw the cops guarding Hightower for some reason I knew they were dead men, but I still found it surprisingly suspenseful.

    Now is the Red John story arc over? If they keep it going I'm afraid the bad guy is going to become such a powerful villain that if/when they do end it it will probably be a let down, but then again was this guy really dead (three bullets seems like it would do the trick) or was he even the real Big John?
  20. rambler

    rambler Member

    Dec 3, 2005
    What's in Laroshe's tupperware container?

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