The Mentalist

The Mentalist is an American crime procedural television series which debuted on September 23, 2008 on CBS. On May 20, 2009, CBS renewed The Mentalist for a second season. CBS will also move it to Thursdays at 10pm ET, following CSI. The first episode of the second season will air on September 24, 2009 in the US.

The Mentalist plot

The Mentalist follows Simon Baker as Patrick Jane, an independent consultant with the now-fictional California Bureau of Investigation (CBI) based in Sacramento, California (the real-life CBI merged with another agency to become the Bureau of Investigation and Intelligence in 2007, before the show debuted). He has a remarkable track record for solving serious crimes by using his amazing skills of observation. Jane also makes frequent use of his mentalist abilities and his semi-celebrity past as a psychic medium using paranormal abilities he now admits he feigned. He abandoned his pretense out of remorse when his attention-seeking behavior attracted the attention of a serial killer who killed his wife and daughter. “The Mentalist” argues forcefully that self-proclaimed seers (and you know who you are, Jonathan Edwards and Allison DuBois) are as supernaturally gifted as pet rocks.

As Patrick, Mr. Baker turns on the charm and insouciance. He glides in to people’s houses and riffles through their secrets with a con man’s ease and rascally assurance, quite a bit like Pierce Brosnan in “Remington Steele.” Patrick also has a pretty but more earnest and prosaic counterpart, Senior Agent Teresa Lisbon (Robin Tunney), who resents his special status and cockiness but also relies on his insights.

The Mentalist ratings

The show had an audience of 15.6 million viewers in its first airing, and 7.8 million in a re-airing three days later. It also introduced some of Jane’s back-story, indicating that his wife and daughter had been murdered five years before the series began by a serial killer known as “Red John”.
On October 15, 2008, CBS ordered a full season of The Mentalist. 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.

The Mentalist awards

On January 7, 2009, the show won the award for “Favorite New TV Drama” at the 35th People’s Choice Awards.
2009 Emmy Awards Simon Baker received a nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series.
“The Mentalist” has an appealing low-tech approach to crime-solving. Jane’s unit, the California Department of Investigation, might get a few facts from an autopsy, but Jane invariably carries the day by spotting clues and applying logic. At the same time, the show benefits from the lively direction of executive producer David Nutter, who time and again makes even ordinary scenes jump off the printed page.