I sometimes share reviews of popular movies, both dramas and action films. I am not a serious film critic but do have an “eye” for credible films, or so I think. I have also done a review or two about a television series, e.g. MI-5 and Foyle’s War both come to mind (Both are BBC productions.). In the spirit of sharing my viewing interests, and perhaps prompting a few friends to enjoy a television series with me, I confess that I am “hooked” on the current series, The Mentalist, which stars Simon Baker as California Bureau of Investigation (CBI) consultant Patrick Jane. My brother got me into this series and now I have finished, earlier this week, the last episode of Season Four. Season Five is airing currently on CBS so I am now in the rhythm of using my DVD to watch each week’s episode. It is rare that I do this with a TV series and the only other one that I currently watch in real time (DVR) is “Justified.” (It is a haunting and gripping series that features a number of religious themes!)

The character Patrick Jane (Simon Baker) is an infamous “psychic” who abandoned his public persona, outing himself as a fake. He did this, as you will see in Season One, in order to focus on his work as a consultant for the California Bureau of Investigation. His goal is to find “Red John,” the madman who killed his wife and daughter. Because of this continual pursuit revenge is a major theme in the series and references to “Red John” are frequent. One season even ends with the still unseen “Red John” uttering the final words of the year: “Roll Tide.” I promise you I was hooked long before the serial killer made a reference to my favorite football team.

Why do I like The Mentalist? It is engaging and fun. It is a modern version of an Agatha Christie story with a great lead character and some twists and turns that intrigue me. Each episode stands alone yet you would be best served to start watching from Season One if you really want to understand the lead characters and what makes them who they are in the script.

I am not generally a television series guy but The Mentalist is my current “must watch” TV series. Check it out, but if you really want to get into this flow start with Season One. I’d love to know if any of you love this series and why.

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