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The Mentalist

 

The Mentalist

The Mentalist
Genre Drama
Mystery[1]
Created by Bruno Heller
Directed by Simon Baker
Starring Simon Baker
Robin Tunney
Tim Kang
Owain Yeoman
Amanda Righetti
Rockmond Dunbar
Emily Swallow
Joe Adler
Josie Loren
Composer(s) Blake Neely
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 7
No. of episodes 151 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s) Bruno Heller
Chris Long (2009–2015)
Daniel Cerone (2010–14)
Eoghan Mahony (2013–14)
Tom Szentgyorgyi (2010–15)
Ashley Gable (2010–12)
Producer(s) Charlie Goldstein (2008–10)
Ken Woodruff (2010–14)
Simon Baker (2012–15)
Erika Green Swafford (2012–14)
Michael Weiss (2012–14)
Matthew Carlisle (2010-15)
Alex Berger (2014-15)
Running time 40–44 minutes
Production company(s) Primrose Hill Productions
Warner Bros. Television
Distributor Warner Bros. Television Distribution
Release
Original channel CBS
Original release September 23, 2008 (2008-09-23) – February 18, 2015 (2015-02-18)
External links
Website

The Mentalist is an American police procedural television series that ran from September 23, 2008 until February 18, 2015, broadcasting 151 episodes over seven seasons, on CBS.[2] The show was created by Bruno Heller, who is also its executive producer. The show follows former "psychic" Patrick Jane (Simon Baker), who is a consultant to the California Bureau of Investigation (CBI), using the highly developed observational skills he previously employed to "read" people's minds.

On May 10, 2014, CBS renewed[3][4] the series for a 13-episode seventh season which premiered on November 30, 2014 and later announced it as the final season.[5]

Synopsis

The series follows Patrick Jane, an independent consultant for the California Bureau of Investigation (CBI) based in Sacramento, California. Although not an officer of the law, he uses skills from his former career as a successful, yet admittedly fraudulent, psychic medium to help a team of CBI agents solve murders. The real reason for Patrick Jane's involvement with law enforcement is to track down the serial killer known as Red John, who was responsible for the brutal murders of his wife and his daughter.

Before the murders, Jane had a lucrative career as a con man, successfully posing as a psychic medium and enjoying near-celebrity status. Five years before the events in the show's pilot episode, he appeared on television to claim that his paranormal abilities helped the police profile a serial killer named Red John. Red John, angered by the perceived slight, murdered Jane's wife and his young daughter in revenge.

Jane subsequently abandoned his career and teamed with the CBI, using his skills to help them solve various crimes. His main focus is on the cases involving Red John or Red John copycats. He admits to faking the supernatural aspects of his skills, often asserting that "there's no such thing as psychics", yet he has finely honed skills in cold reading, hypnosis, and picking pockets, as well as powerful observational skill and a deep insight into the human psyche and behavior.

Production and distribution

The show often sets episodes in fictional locales with names like Salinger Mill and Rancho Rosa. Like the majority of American television shows, The Mentalist is mostly filmed within the studio zone in Los Angeles County, but occasionally films a few scenes on location in Sacramento. The structure used to represent the CBI headquarters in Sacramento is the back of the Pico House in downtown Los Angeles. On October 15, 2008, CBS ordered the first season of The Mentalist[6] and the show has subsequently been renewed annually since 2010 both in the domestic market and overseas.[7][8][9]

TNT began syndicating The Mentalist in the fall of 2011.[10] In the interregnum period between the end of Late Show with David Letterman and Late Show with Stephen Colbert in the summer of 2015, The Mentalist was carried weeknights on CBS in full as part of the network's temporary late night lineup.

In November 2013, it was confirmed that Amanda Righetti (Van Pelt) and Owain Yeoman (Rigsby) would be leaving after season six concluded.[11]

In the season 7 episode "Orange Blossom Ice Cream", scenes set in Beirut were filmed in Los Angeles and supplemented by freelance footage of Beirut by Michael Timney.[12]

Cast and characters

Lead actor Simon Baker in 2013
Actor Character Seasons Episode
count
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Simon Baker Patrick Jane Main 151
Robin Tunney Teresa Lisbon Main 151
Tim Kang Kimball Cho Main 151
Owain Yeoman Wayne Rigsby Main Guest 130
Amanda Righetti Grace Van Pelt Main Guest 126
Rockmond Dunbar Dennis Abbott Main 29
Emily Swallow Kim Fischer Main 14
Joe Adler Jason Wylie Recurring Main 26
Josie Loren Michelle Vega Main 10

Note 1: Amanda Righetti and Owain Yeoman left the series in episode 15 of Season 6. They returned in the series finale (episode 13) of Season 7.

Note 2: Josie Loren's character was killed off in episode 10 of Season 7.

Episodes

Season Episodes Originally aired
First aired Last aired
1 23 September 23, 2008 (2008-09-23) May 19, 2009 (2009-05-19)
2 23 September 24, 2009 (2009-09-24) May 20, 2010 (2010-05-20)
3 24 September 23, 2010 (2010-09-23) May 19, 2011 (2011-05-19)
4 24 September 22, 2011 (2011-09-22) May 17, 2012 (2012-05-17)
5 22 September 30, 2012 (2012-09-30) May 5, 2013 (2013-05-05)
6 22 September 29, 2013 (2013-09-29) May 18, 2014 (2014-05-18)
7 13 November 30, 2014 (2014-11-30) February 18, 2015 (2015-02-18)

Reception

Critical reception

The first season of The Mentalist received mostly positive reviews, with critics being divided on the procedural format but praising the performance of Simon Baker. On Rotten Tomatoes, season 1 had an overall rating of 59% from 17 critics, and 76% from audiences, with the consensus saying "The setup and episodic storytelling is far from original, but The Mentalist distinguishes itself from other procedurals mostly due to the talents of Simon Baker."[13] On Metacritic, season one has a score of 65/100, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[14] Robert Bianco of USA Today felt the pilot episode lacked in originality but praised Baker, saying "The Mentalist may be a copy, but it's a well-done copy sparked by an actor who has come into his own as a TV star."[15] Matthew Gilbert of The Boston Globe said "the CBS show has very little dramatic heft or distinction, but it's wily and brisk enough to engage you for an hour." Gilbert also praised the chemistry between Baker and Tunney, but criticized the crime cases, feeling they were predictable and at times uninteresting.[16] Mary McNamara of The Los Angeles Times praised Baker as "virtually irresistible" and said "...psychological sleight of hand can't fill an hour every week. For that you need complicated, interesting crimes and complicated, interesting characters solving them. "The Mentalist" seems prepared to deliver just that."[17]

The pilot episode had an audience of 15.6 million viewers in its first airing, and 7.8 million in a re-airing three days later.[18] The December 2, 2008 episode, "Flame Red", was the highest-rated television show of the week, marking the first time a program in its first season had achieved that distinction since Desperate Housewives four years earlier.[19]

U.S. ratings

Season Time slot (ET) # Ep. Premiered Ended TV season Rank Viewers
(in millions)
Date Premiere
viewers
(in millions)
Date Finale
viewers
(in millions)
1
Tuesday 9:00 pm
23
September 23, 2008
15.60[20]
May 19, 2009
16.82[21] 2008–09 6 17.52[22]
2
Thursday 10:00 pm
23
September 24, 2009
15.07[23]
May 20, 2010
15.22[24] 2009–10 10 15.37[25]
3 24
September 23, 2010
15.50[26]
May 19, 2011
14.11[27] 2010–11 9 15.24[28]
4 24
September 22, 2011
13.56[29]
May 17, 2012
13.09[30] 2011–12 12 14.57[31]
5
Sunday 10:00 pm
22
September 30, 2012
11.06[32]
May 5, 2013
9.17[33] 2012–13 24 11.82[34]
6 22
September 29, 2013
9.70[35]
May 18, 2014
9.69[36] 2013–14 26 11.27[37]
7
Sunday 9:00 pm (2014)
Wednesday 8:00 pm (2015)
13
November 30, 2014
10.89[38]
February 18, 2015
10.10[39] 2014–15 25 11.81[40]

Awards and nominations

Director of Center for Inquiry West & IIG West, James Underdown presents editor Jimm Gadd with award August 21, 2010

References

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  2. ^ Michael Schneider, "CBS sets premieres after debates," Variety June 26, 2008
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  11. ^ http://www.tvguide.com/News/Amanda-Righetti-Mentalist-Exit-1073822.aspx?rss=breakingnews
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External links

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