The Mentalist Season 7 Episode 11 Review: “Byzantium”

The Mentalist

This week’s episode of The Mentalist begins with a young couple, Donnie and Megan, sitting in a car, talking about studying abroad when suddenly, Donnie hears footsteps coming up from behind the car and a mysterious hooded killer appears, shooting bullets through Megan’s side of the car. Donnie then floors it and the car swerves, tumbling down the hillside. The shooter then follows them down and shoots Megan in the chest as she pleads for mercy.

A week has passed since Vega’s funeral and our favorite mentalist is nowhere to be found because he did exactly what he told Lisbon he was going to do: he went some place nice. The Grand Canyon in Arizona to be exact. The Canyon is beautiful and majestic, but that moment of peace was interrupted by a phone call from Lisbon, which Patrick ignored.

I understand that he needed some time to figure things out, but he could’ve at least texted Lisbon and told her that he was fine and that he needed some space. Leaving her in the dark like that was just cruel on his part. Then again, Jane assumed that Lisbon should know that he would be returning to Austin given that he has always done so in the past, but sometimes it’s taken months or even years, so Lisbon had every right to be worried, angry, and hurt when her calls weren’t being answered.

As Cho, Teresa, and Abbott were trying to solve Donnie and Megan’s murder, there was a supposed psychic named Gabriel who said that he saw the murder in his mind and that the killer was likely to strike again. I have to admit that Gabriel was good, but I agree with what Lisbon had said when she and Abbott were questioning him, that everyone has doubts when they’re facing big changes in their lives. So there wasn’t anything that Gabriel couldn’t have come up with by doing some research into what he had said. Vega’s death would have made headlines in the news and so would Abbott’s wife’s new job in Washington D.C.

The information about the double homicide wasn’t made public yet so it was hard to determine whether or not if Gabriel’s psychic abilities were authentic when he said that he knew that the killer had removed the victim’s fingernails and about the white bones wrapped in red clay that turned out to be five more bodies; each had one of their fingernails removed. This would mean that he was either the killer or had some sort of connection to the killer. The plot, as they say, was beginning to thicken.

When Patrick Jane finally returned to Austin by way of being arrested by a highway patrol officer and met Gabriel after some coaxing from Abbott, he was impressed by Gabriel’s abilities when the latter said that Jane was not an FBI agent and asked if he knew that because he was a psychic or by the way that he was dressed, his posture, his haircut, or any number of things. Jane then told Gabriel that he was a fake to which Gabriel said that there was something inside Jane gnawing at him, but Jane said that was the human condition.

Gabriel then said that Jane will soon be cured of the gnawing feeling, and it would come with the number three and promised that Jane would know it when he saw it. However, Jane was right when he said that once you begin looking for a specific number, you tend to see it everywhere, from the three free games on the pinball machine at the tavern to the three-legged English Setter that popped out of nowhere when Jane woke up in a grassy field that earned Gabriel an irked, albeit indirect “Come on!” from Patrick Jane.

Meanwhile, Wiley was trying his hand at fieldwork which, in all honesty, is wrong for him. He’s better off as the tech guy because his experience in that area is invaluable to an investigation, but in lieu of Vega’s death, I guess that he wanted to push himself to try something new. However, as Cho pointed out to him while staking out Gabriel’s house, Wiley should be doing this because he wants to, not because of what happened to Vega.

Speaking of Cho, he was trying his hardest to control his emotional outbursts. When he and Park Ranger Jill went to apprehend a couple of poachers, he was a bit rough with one of them. It seemed that he needed an outlet for everything that he keeps bottled up inside, and I liked the way that Abbott handled the situation when he spoke to Cho about the incident with the poachers. He brought the issue to light, when he asked if the Army had assigned him a counselor when Cho left Special Forces. Cho said yes, and Abbott advised him to talk to the counselor. He offered advice but didn’t push too far. I’m certainly going to miss him when the series ends next week. Dennis Abbott truly is a great man and an awesome boss.

I found it amusing that Cho still seemed oblivious to Jane and Lisbon’s relationship when he pushed her to find Jane when they met up at the crime scene, while Abbott, on the other hand, let Lisbon know that he knew she and Jane were working out some issues but told her to get Jane back as soon as possible because they needed his insight with regards to the case. I also loved that Lisbon issued a warrant for Jane’s arrest on the highway in order to bring him back home. That’s what you get for ignoring Lisbon’s calls, Patrick Jane!

By the end, Jane decided to come back to work for the FBI. Was it that he simply needed to find a place where he could have some peace and quiet away from the chaos that is the FBI? Is that what the cabin at the lake that’s being put up for sale means? Does his return mean that he will continue to work with Lisbon? Lisbon has made her feelings clear that her job at the FBI is much too important to her, and she can’t just run away from it because Jane is uncomfortable with her being put in the line of fire.

As we head towards the two-hour series finale next week, which will consist of two episodes airing back to back, it appears that the team has one last serial killer to catch and turns out, it isn’t Gabriel, whose psychic abilities seemed to be on the fritz when it came to his own murder. Speaking of which, Gabriel’s murder looked so similar to the Red John murders that I half expected to see that infamous red sad smiley face on the wall next to him. Apparently, someone out there doesn’t like fake psychics, seeing as the killer carved the word “fake” onto Gabriel’s left arm. Maybe it’s a follower of Red John’s given that in the first few seasons, it was mentioned that Red John had many disciples and followers.

What did you think Mentalist fans? Are you happy now that Jane has returned to work for the FBI? Should Lisbon have forgiven him so quickly as she did, and what do you hope to see as the series takes it’s final bow after seven seasons? 

[Photo via CBS]

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