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The Mentalist - Pretty Red Balloon - recap

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Written by : published Saturday 3rd March 2012

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Lisbon collects nods for the mandatory meeting for the next day's staff lunch. Jane refuses to go. They report a missing child in Marin County. She says to Jane, Good thing we’re back.

On the way Lisbon backgrounds the case. The bus stop was where he was grabbed and not seen again. A custody kidnapping is not possible because the other parent died. Jane asks what is the parent’s name. He has a bad look.

They ask for Jane by name. He says "Hello Beth". He says "I am not a psychic anymore." She says she knows that he is. She says that Jane has a connection to the missing son.

The spiritual advisor arrives and he says Beth is expecting him. Jane says on second thought he will stick around. The agencies check the bus stops with search dogs. Rigsby and Cho search the scene. They find a balloon toy. Lisbon and Van Pelt discuss why no ransom. A strangling killer M.O. nearby means Connor has about eight hours.

Beth repeats that she taught Connor safety after her husband passed over and says he feels like he watched him grow up. Her bother thought that the bus stop would do Connor good. Beth has a grown stepson who actually owns the house. He lets them live there.

Beth says that Jane and her spiritualist Mr. Glass can work together. Lisbon ask for time alone. Jane confesses that he took her money and told her lies. Jane says that he is not a psychic. As Jane stands here unmoving Jane stands there until she realizes he cannot help. She is stunned.

Cho and Van Pelt decide to work all three strangling cases together. One electrical worker saw a black SUV hanging around to service road near the bus stop.

Jane meets the stepbrother of the kidnapped kid. They live in a large affluent home. Jane asks how he felt about Beth being married to his father. He says he cares very deeply.

Uncle Deak appears and calls Jane a sleaze-bag. He says Jane sucked money out of Beth when Jane asks why the stepbrother allowing the psychic around. Jane calls him an addict for gambling with purple thumb for racetrack ticket. He says the stepbrother is an addict to antidepressants because glossy skin and dyspepsia. They are both offended and Lisbon struggles to focus on the case.

In a flashback Jane recalls the psychic telling he gave Beth. He foretold a baby boy named Connor. He names the hidden nickname "Momo" Connor called her. Beth and Jane discuss his own lost child. He says the odds were good his guesses would come true.

Mr. Glass struggles into the room. He says he had a flash. Beth demands to know. He says he needs a vessel. Connor’s favorite from when he was boy. He grabs the small toy that was Connor’s favorite. Glass says Connor is asleep and call out his name as if he is in front of Beth. Jane watches cynically.

Glass sits outside on a chair outside the mansion by the pool. He says all the trees are a national forest immediately beyond them. Jane says he stepped over a line, this is police business. "Get out of here right now or you’re going to regret it." Glass laughs him off. Lisbon comes up and says he doesn’t have time to have a feud with this guy.

Van Pelt trolls the chat rooms and tracks chat about the missing boys. Lisbon asks Jane to review the case files. He says the second boy is bothering him. The bus stop is not visible from the road. They track a balloon man who stops at the bus stop and distracts the child by twisting balloons. they ask how he would have seen a small child access the bus stop for mere seconds.

Lisbon looks at the tree-line and sees an electrical pole, figuring the electrical man Walton could see the child arrive and drive and get him quickly. Lisbon says Walton is the balloon man and calls a sting attack.

Lisbon arrives with the team and directs the information of the attack to the squad. They jump between old cars and he lays down fire. Lisbon approaches the killer and calls for Van Pelt. The man screams he won’t go to jail. Lisbon calls for Van Pelt over and over and she does not respond.

Lisbon approaches the truck and from above the man aims a weapon at Lisbon and screams "screw you" and fires. But he falls, shot, and Van Pelt is revealed to have crept up behind him. He is hurt badly and they search the house for Connor. He is not there.

Lisbon demands of the wounded man Walton to hang in there and tell them where the kid is. He says "How would I know?"

Lisbon calls Jane and says that Connor is not there. Jane says for Rigsby to take a note out of his left pocket and hangs up. Rigsby takes out a note that says "Walton is not the balloon man". Lisbon scowls as Rigsby asks how could he do that.

They find videotape that clears Walton of the Connor’s murder. He was in a convenience store when Connor was kidnapped. They have a copycat who grabbed Connor, using the Walton modus operandi. Lisbon asks Jane about his suspicions. Jane says that this has a whiff of something more tangled.

Rigsby watches Van Pelt to see the effect of her shooting. She denies any negative effect.

Lisbon examines money as a motive. She calls in Beth. If Connor dies she gets everything. Lisbon outlines her motive. Mrs. Flynt needs money and she says that she is $120,000 in credit card debt. Beth says her world would end if Connor died. She says she doesn’t know what she is doing in this room.

She says it is very embarrassing she couldn’t even tell Deak. Jane watches Beth tell the psychic. He alibied out for the first two abductions but not Connor. Glass and the stepson are there for her in the police headquarters for support.

The labs on the school bus stop come back. White fir pollen traces were found. (Glass told Jane that the woods were all public forest just beyond the Flynt property line). Jane fakes a "seeing" when he grabs her hand. Glass says "What are you doing?"

Jane feints weirdly. He steps back and cowers, and says there is a light dancing on the water a pungent smell like trees and a cabin but it is not a cabin. Glass says "This is crap". Beth listens attentively. He fakes sensing where Connor is while Glass watches sourly.

He calls out for Lisbon. He says"I don’t like this, I don’t like this, his, he’s there, someone is there" then he falls and Lisbon says "wake up wake up".

He says "What happened". Lisbon says "I was about to ask you."

Lisbon orders a search of the woods bordering the Flynt estate. In the woods the team closes in and the stepson Jonathan carries a knife and wears a hoodie. They catch him. Lisbon says "You couldn’t bear to do it. You left him in that duck blind. With no food or water." Lisbon says that he was in love with Beth.

"So what was he knife for." The stepson planned to unify his relationship with Beth and build feelings when her son was gone. Lisbon advises him. "Reality is harder than planning. Better to just make a clean break."

They remember Jane seeing the stepson hug Beth at the station. "Love is weird". Jane explains how he tricked the psychic with the fake seeing.

They return Connor to Beth at the mansion. The man Glass comes out says he is ruining his action. Jane provokes him into revealing he is a charlatan and records him mocking Beth. He takes out the recorder and plays it back, them he runs up the steps into the mansion where Beth is.

Glass stares after him and scowls. Jane says he is disgrace to the profession and his reading was weak. Later he apologies again to Beth after she puts her son to bed and she says Jane gave her hope.

About the author tvqueen


I like to watch TV shows from classic eras as well as contemporary drama and comedy. Science Fiction is fun, and shows like the Cape and Fringe keep hope alive that the medium that produced Space 1999 is alive. Comedy such as 30 Rock is usually, good, but not always. I like Survivor but it has so little to do with survivor skills I am disappointed. Appointment viewing is Grey's Anatomy, NCIS LA, The CSI series for New York and Las Vegas and Miami, with a special shout out for the new Hawaii Five O. Gordon Ramsay's Hells Kitchen and Kitchen Nightmares are top of the line viewing for the drama comedy Gordon's character and the business lessons they teach.

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