The Mentalist came to an exciting conclusion on Sunday, with the episode settling once and for all whether there will be a future for Patrick Jane and Teresa Lisbon.
This season of The Mentalist was one of the most eventful in the show’s six seasons, with the Red John saga coming to an explosive conclusion back in November during sweeps month, and the drama between Jane and Lisbon carrying through to the finale.
[WARNING: Spoilers ahead]
In Sunday’s finale, Lisbon had two choices — she could move to Washington, D.C., with Agent Pike, who had popped the question, or she could stay behind and hope that Jane reciprocated the feeling she has toward him.
In the episode, Jane got involved in a case of murder and a killer who wrote a letter promising to kill again. While Lisbon is following through on plans to fly to Washington, Patrick ended up in a standoff between confused characters, keeping him from chasing after her.
The situation is resolved just in time, and Jane raced to a plane that was taking Lisbon away. He forgot his identification in his car, and had to sprint back to the tarmac, where he climbed the stairs and got onto the plane just in time to find Lisbon taking her seat.
She told Jane to go away, but he admitted that he plays games and tricks people to hide the way he feels and is terrified to let people close to him. But he said he is even more terrified of waking up not to see Teresa, saying the truth is that he loves her.
“It’s too late Jane,” she responded. “It’s too late.”
Just then an armed guard comes to take away Jane, who said he was happy just to be able to tell Lisbon that he loves her.
Later, as Jane was sitting in an airport interrogation room, a door opened and Lisbon sat across from him at the table. She told him that she chose not to go to Washington, and asked Jane if he meant what he said on the airplane.
“I meant what I said, every word of it,” he said.
“Good, because I feel the same way,” she replied.
The episode ended with Jane leaning over the table to kiss Lisbon.
Simon Baker, who plays Jane, said the conclusion was a good way to tie the series back to the Red John storyline. The manipulative serial killer, who turned out to be Napa County sheriff Thomas McAllister, had killed Jane’s wife and daughter and pushed him into a career of crime fighting.
Jane finally killed Red John — strangling him to death in one of the most satisfying deaths in television — and throughout the rest of the season slowly purged the lingering hatred and started feeling like a human again.
“The most effective way to illustrate the idea of getting back into being a human again, is giving yourself to another person, or making yourself vulnerable to another person,” he told TV Guide. “And I think [Jane’s] obviously really afraid of doing that. He’s had this kind of relationship with Lisbon — you could call it a flirtation of sorts over the years, and a comfort and a confidence. But to actually declare himself to her is a major step of getting back into the real world and being human again. I think that’s the problem. He’s afraid of, what does that mean? Does everything change?”
The Mentalist finale now sets up viewers for the seventh and possible final season. The show got a renewal order from CBS last week, setting up what show creator Bruno Heller called an “encore.”