And I make my victorious return to the blog place, after a summer of depravity and corruption. Okay, so that’s a lie. I just liked the sound of it. In reality it was a summer of writing, resulting in a first draft of a screenplay for a rock opera and a first draft of a YA novel co-authored with my friend Nikki. The latter was completed in 72 hours over Labor Day weekend for the annual 3-Day Novel Contest, and I’ve spent the rest of September magically regenerating the brain cells that leaked out through my ears during that experience.
Now, don’t think this means that I have nothing to say about summer television. It wasn’t all pen and paper, or fingers and keyboard. I’ve watched my share of shows, and I look forward to discussing my experiences in great detail, regurgitating my disappointments and delights all over this laptop.
Today, however, is a day of anticipation. Last night was the season premiere of The Brainer (that’s The Mentalist, for the uninitiated). I haven’t watched yet, but that’s my plan for later this evening, and I’m interested to see how they keep Patrick Jane as a main character while he’s serving time for murdering a man in a shopping mall. (Or, more likely, what angle they play to plausibly keep him out of prison…)
Several issues come into play here, not the least of which is that someone is going to have to prove that the man that Jane shot is actually Red John. Considering how careful he’s been in the past, odds are low that they’ll cruise by his home/apartment/hotel room and find a big banner proclaiming his identity for all the world to see. There’s also the fact that Patrick Jane, who has never shown any interest in guns, just happened to be carrying one with him on this particular occasion. The jury ponders why he would do that, unless he suspected that he’d be meeting Red John that day.
Of course it’s possible that the CBI will have more luck working backward than they did working forward, and they may find links tying this stranger to the Red John case. It’s also possible that a prosecutor would be unable to prove that Jane didn’t carry a gun on other occasions. Then, there’s the remote possibility that Director Bertram is tied to Red John (he did quote William Blake last season, and could be the reason that Red John knew to go to the mall) and he’ll spill the beans and help with Jane’s exoneration… Hell, maybe the governor will grant a pardon. Who knows? Well, the people who watched the premiere last night do, I suppose. And the cast and crew of the show know. And a psychic who didn’t watch the show might know anyways…
Ahem. So, these are the things I’m thinking about as I wait patiently for the fateful moment to arrive. Part of me wants to see Jane in prison again. He’d totally rule the place, and the CBI would have to come visit him for help on cases. That’d be a good episode or two, but it would be a different show without his interaction with the suspects and victims.
Before I go hunt and forage for my dinner, let me just express my excitement about Bradley Whitford as Red John. Come on, you felt it too. That first moment when you noticed him in the foreground of a shot and went, ‘Holy crap – is that Bradley Whitford?!’ It takes me back to the ‘90s, and Profiler with Ally Walker. There was a similar story line, with a serial killer that had ties to the main character, who we never saw. There were hints – the partially obscured face, the phone message – but the big reveal was when they finally met face to face in confrontation. By the time it happened, I was part of an underground movement (I mean, a group of friends…) that was pretty sure that Dennis Christopher was the big bad guy. Boy, were we so right, and that was awesome. Now, there wasn’t any tease about who was playing Red John, but the reveal was just as satisfying. I bow down to Bradley Whitford.