THE MENTALIST “Strawberries and Cream Parts 1 and 2” Season 3 Finale Review

The Mentalist (CBS) Strawberries and Cream

THE MENTALIST “Strawberries and Cream Parts 1 and 2” Season 3 Finale – Unlike last night’s episode of Bones, I knew from get go that this 2-hour finale was going in some heavy places. So the fact that most of the first hour seemed like just a regular, everyday sort of case, I was not fooled. In fact I was so sure of it that I kept waiting for something bad to happen, so that Jane would know something had gone very wrong.

I guess that happened when he found Lisbon unconscious with a bomb strapped to her chest. Yep, that was a definite sign that things had changed. Even then, when that was all over, I figured they were going to move on to another case. But no, the original case led them directly back to LaRoche, Hightower, Red John, and Red John’s unknown friend in the CBI.

During the sting I started getting suspicious of Craig and it occurred to me that having him as Red John’s friend would make a lot of sense. After all, what better way to feed the killer info on Jane and the team but to be that close to the inside. Also, breaking his cover would mean his death and an end to him standing in the way of Rigsby. Though I still haven’t decided if that’s a good or bad thing.

Finally there was the end. Wow. That I didn’t see any of that coming is an understatement, because I’m pretty sure I screamed out loud when I saw that Jane had been sitting across from his sworn enemy the whole time he’d been on the phone. Bradley Whitford nailed it and I found myself looking forward to the two of them sparring next season.

That is, up until Patrick shot him. That was the second time I screamed at my TV set, just out of pure shock.

After those gunshots faded, I was left to wonder, what will happen with Jane now? Will we see him as a whole new man next season? He told Red John that killing him would end his suffering and he certainly seemed calm and collected afterwards, but what if he finds that killing the monster didn’t quite fix everything as much as he thought it would. Also, will he go to jail? Actually, scratch that, I know he’s going to jail. The question is for how long. Finally, I’m wondering who will be the next Enemy Number One on Jane’s list. After all, we’ve had three seasons of him focused on one man, will there be another?

Once again, the only way to know the answers is to wait until next season. I’m going to use the summer to catch up on episodes from earlier seasons that I missed, how about you?

My favorite bits..

Jane calling a man using a bomb to rob a bank “Baroque”.

Lisbon saying if Director Bertram wanted her and the CBI presence to jump off a cliff, she’d consider it if there was overtime involved.

“Sir, that’s a restricted area.” “Ooh, let’s sing that.”

Jane locking the guy in the vault.

Jane peeking his head around while Lisbon was talking to LaRoche.

Wait. Is there a reason why they’re not waiting for the bomb squad? Jane working on that thing scared the living daylights out of me, as did the phone ringing out of the blue.

Lisbon praying.

Knowing that Jane was opening the door to the room where the guy was sitting.

Jane telling Lisbon that she looked like an angry little princess.

Cho finding a picture of Hightower in the dead guy’s apartment.

Jane’s got a point, if Red John wanted him, he could have had him at any time.

“Are you alone?” “Yes, just me and my demons, and they’re not going to hurt you.”

Thinking Hightower had a good point when she asked Jane how he was going to do in 48 hours what he couldn’t do in months.

Jane finally admitting what Red John said to him when he kidnapped him.

Oooh.Jane using the little Tupperware box to get LaRoche to give him the list. Awesome.

Whoa, Van Pelt’s fiancé Craig is on the list? Interesting.

Sitting on the edge of my seat as they set up each of the suspects to find out who was going to go after Hightower.

Suddenly I’m becoming very suspicious of Craig.

Oh crap! Jane figuring out that they had the wrong guy and AHA! I KNEW it was Craig!

Groaning when Van Pelt turned off her phone. Dammit!

Gasping out loud when Craig shot Lisbon. Holy crap!

Cheering when Hightower and Van Pelt shot Craig.

OH MY GOD!! IS THAT BRADLEY WHITFORD??? I thought I recognized that voice before! Holy crap! Holy crap! Holy crap!

Practically losing it when Jane stopped in front of Red John while he sat and read his paper.

Is it totally wrong to think that Whitford looks great? I liked the mustache he had in The Good Guys for it’s hilarity factor, but he looks SO much better without it.

Finding Red John scarier and scarier the more he tried to claim he was a regular guy.

“You put that gun away and I’ll show you what I can do.” (a part of my really wanted to see that)

Jane’s face dropping when Red John went into details about his wife and daughter.

Jane calmly sitting down to sip his tea and ask for the check after blowing Red John away. Gimme a second, I think it’s gonna take me a minute to pick my jaw up off the floor.

What did you think of the season 3 finale of The Mentalist? Got any favorite bits or least favorite bits of your own? I’d love to hear from you!

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  • Best season finale ever. Bradley Whitford as Red John was just perfect. I am not 100% sure it was him though but I hope it is.

  • Chancock6

    Wow.  First Castle, now The Mentalist.  Two really intense (and awesome) finales.  But how is the show going to work with Jane in jail?  My favorite line was also when Jane called Lisbon an “angry little princess”.  The look on her face while wearing that dress was priceless. 

  • Hugo

    Good review, although you might want to review this:
    “(a part of my really wanted to see that)”

  • MaryR

    Agree on everything except Whitford’s mustache.  I know few people liked it, the actor included, but I thought it was hot–and so was Dan Stark.

  • Blueballoons

    That was just too good – agreed, this is one of the greatest ways the season could have ended.

    • Blueballoons

      *the best

  • Jackie

     Insane ending! Loved the twist of Jane meeting Red John, or was it Red John? I’m getting more and more suspicious

  • Anonymous

    Surely Patrick could claim it was self defense seeing as John did have a gun, and they could probably match up that he was the one who was phoning Craig.

  • Spoily McSpoilerton

     Whitford as Red John was sheer casting genius. That voice. The taunting intelligence in his eyes. It was balls out creepy. I found him more creepy than Anthony Hopkins’ Hannibal Lector and Kevin Spacey’s serial killer in Se7en. The country club hair, suit jacket, arty glasses signifying understated wealth, and his slightly reddish eyes at once met and defied my expectations of what Red John would look like at his reveal. He was as evil as I expected him to look; what I did not expect was that “wealthy chic” could look quite so evil.

  • Anneliese Meier

    My favourite bits:
    – Jane telling Lisbon she was beautiful and looked like an angry princess  🙂
    – Robin Tunnys facial expressions (as always)
    – Lisbon praying
    – Jane and Lisbon on the phone
    – RJ first pretending not to know Jane and then saying ” Kidding”- I laughed !
    – Jane saying he’d find someone to love after RJ’s death
    -> Yes.I’m an hopless Jisbon fan 😉

    Surprises:
     – a cute looking Red John
     – Jane shooting Red John ( When I saw RJ shot I thought it was “another RJ” who shot him from afar- Well just for about 5 seconds…)
    – Hightower and VanPelt not caring about wounded Lisbon at all.
    – Jane asking for the cheque

  • Josh Zancan

     Great finale.  There was a camera shot earlier in the shopping mall where Whitford was the frontmost person in the shot.  I didn’t recognize it was Whitford, but the character was slightly normal looking yet slightly eccentric looking at the same time, I assumed it was Red John.  

    Jane may go to jail, but I don’t know how obvious it is.  A few things:

    1) He shot and killed an armed and dangerous serial killer.  This seems like it would be easy to work himself out of.  Granted, as Red John said, they “got nothing on him” or something to that affect, but the conversation with Jane may make rectify that a bit.  Afterall, he is a CBI employee who’s caught several criminals.  This may be a stretch, but still.

    2)  Even if they prosecute him, who says they can contain him.  He’s escaped prison before.

    • Elisa Mueller

      Yup he can escape. But then still can’t work with the CBI. He might indeed plead self-defense. Though…. Actually no. He planed to kill RJ and then did in cold blood. It WAS murder. Can’t see how he’s going to weasel himself out of that.
      I am also curious about how Lisbon will react. I was always sure she’d be there to prevent Jane from killing RJ.
      That’s The Mentalist. Always good for a surprise.

  • Wmtblke

    I would like to know how Red John knew to be in the food court. Wasn’t part of Jane’s plan to have to “mole” lead RJ to the “meet” in order to kill Hightower. They hadthe wrong mole. He didn’t tell RJ. Who did. Craig wasn’t told about the mall, was he?

  • Moe

    It tooootally was not red john at all, come on. And it was clear from the first episode that craig was red john’s accomplice.

    • Yuri89

      At least the voice of “Red John” in “Red Sky in the Morning”, when RJ cites the poem and the voice of “Red John” in “Strawberries &  Cream” are identical.
      So I guess it was really RJ…

  • Safaa

    I really loved this end… I was quite shocked too, but I agree to say it the best finale ‘ve ever seen..

    I live in France and I couldn’t wait till the season was in French, I watched in English and it was GREAT ! =D

    Now waiting to the next season to answer all our questions. And I think it was really RJ because if he wasn’t, Jane would have killed him, and I quite sad for Grace ^^’

    • Safoufa77

      *Jane wouldn’t have killed him
      *waiting for the next season
      *I’m quite sad

      (I’m so shocked that i make lots of mistakes ^^’)