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This review is from: The Mentalist Season 2 [DVD] (DVD)
After the dramatic close of Season 1, it would be understandable if 'The Mentalist''s second season struggled to maintain the excitement of it's predecessor, but thankfully there are enough brilliantly plotted murders, intriguing CBI subplots, and, of course, Red John murders, to make Season 2 more than equal to the climax it followed. For the uninitiated (I'd suggest beginning by watching Season 1), the show centers around Patrick Jane (Simon Baker), a former TV 'psychic' regretful of his former career, who joins the California Bureau of Investigation (CBI) after the murder of his wife and son by the serial killer Red John, an event which precedes Season 1 of the show. Jane's brilliant nouse for spotting clues, hints, and body-language giveaways make him an indispensable member of the team, but his erratic, gung-ho interviewing style, and interrogative questioning make him a frustration for his work colleagues - the no-nonsense Chief Inspector, Teresa Lisbon (Tunney), the quiet, brilliantly sarcastic Kimball Cho (Tim Kang), and the younger members of the team, Rigsby (Yeoman) and van Pelt (Righetti), whose first-season friendship, is interestingly developed, here.
Season 2 contains some of the very best episodes yet, from a Red John backed murder slew close to home ('His Red Right Hand'), to 'Aingavite Baa', a brilliant study of amnesia, fear and monetary greed, and on to another Red John-based thriller ('Red Sky in the Morning') to close the season off, even more dramatically than the first. The acting is top-notch, as well, with Baker the standout, though all the CBI figures, and most of the bit parts also put in good turns; especially Robin Tunney as the exasperated, but charming, Lisbon. Equally, the often dark and/or deadpan wit of the first season, largely provided by Jane and Cho is back in full force, and blends well with the bloodiness and the tragedy, of some of the cases the CBI are involved in. Though it's very rare I say this about a series, there seemed to be no real weak points in Season 2 of 'The Mentalist'. The one thing I found a little unrealistic, is that there seemed to be no characters who claimed innocence when interviewed within the CBI offices, and also few cases seemed to end with uncertainty (as is often the case in real murder trials) - but the fact that that's the only issue of note with this superb show, is a testament to how well written, well cast, and well plotted 'The Mentalist' is. You'd be mad not to watch.