Last week on "The Mentalist," we got the "Who is Red John?" list down to five, as Reede Smith put a clip full of bullets into Robert Kirkland's back and outed himself as the first official member of the Tyger Tyger conspiracy that also killed Partridge. How is Tyger Tyger tied in with Red John? Is he working with them? Are they hunting him like Kirkland was? Or is he their leader?
Reede certainly put himself in contention for Red John, since killing people that make him look bad (like, say, people suspected of being him) is definitely his thing. But that was last week. This week, Ray Haffner is in the hot seat, teamed up with the CBI to investigate the mysterious death of a Visualize member.
Like everyone on the list, Ray's super-creepy. “There's a comeuppance headed your way,” he says to Jane. But then he tells Lisbon and Van Pelt, “There's a lot of powerful people that Jane's pissed off; not just Red John. You should get out of the way — both of you — before something happens.” That all sounds like conspiracy talk, very “X-Files.”
But also, we discover that Ray has a very real fear of spiders. According to the dead psychiatrist Sophie, Red John has a phobia — she suspected his fear of heights wasn't real, but he's irrationally afraid of something.
So is he Red John with the arachnophobia? Is he part of Tyger Tyger, getting ready to spring some elaborate trap on Patrick Jane because he's getting too close to them? Maybe Visualize is connected to the conspiracy? Or is Ray Haffner just a huge jerk? At this point, there are five men who could be serial killers or just huge jerks, and being a jerk is not a convictable offense. Smith is our frontrunner for now, but there are still two suspects Jane hasn't taken a close look at yet: Bertram and Stiles.
One last tidbit: The investigator hired by Red John to bug the CBI was killed by Red John (which is a shame, because it would have been nice to see her and Cho get together), and she revealed he has three dots tattooed on his left shoulder. Who's ready for a peeping tom episode as Jane tries to sneak a peek at all the suspects while they're in the shower?
Leave your Red John theories in the comments below, so you can lord it over everybody when it turns out you're right in a few weeks.
"The Mentalist" airs Sundays at 10 p.m. on CBS.
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