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THE MENTALIST:
THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON

Back for a second season of mysteries, THE MENTALIST is definitely one of the more unorthodox and unconventional police procedurals currently airing on television. THE MENTALIST is also a highly addictive television show that this reviewer finds completely entertaining. For those who have never seen THE MENTALIST, the series follows in the best traditions of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s master sleuth, Sherlock Holmes, as its central character also uses his uncanny set of observational skills to solve crimes. Of course, the fact that the television series’ central character is a consulting detective, with an uncanny set of observational skills, is where the similarities with the Conan Doyle character come to an end. Instead, THE MENTALIST drops its brilliant, but playful and somewhat mischievous central character into a standard police procedural lineup… just to watch it fizz.

THE MENTALIST stars Simon Baker as Patrick Jane, a former "celebrity psychic" who used his talents of observation to feign paranormal abilities for personal gain… that is, until he attracted the attention of a serial killer dubbed Red John, who murdered his wife and daughter. Now, trying to redeem himself, Jane works as an independent consultant for the California Bureau of Investigation, where he assists in its more difficult investigations. Of course, being a consultant, Jane isn’t bound to the more established methods of law enforcement, and isn’t above using the theatricality and chicanery of his previous profession to catch a killer. Teresa Lisbon (Robin Tunney) leads the CBI team to which Jane is attached, and while she is a no-nonsense agent, she does give her consultant a bit more latitude than she would another agent. Kimball Cho (Tim Kang) is the CBI team member who offers Jane the most direct assistance and often looks the other way, when the consultant fails to follow the rulebook. Wayne Rigsby (Owain Yeoman) and Grace Van Pelt (Amanda Righetti) are the remaining team members, who displayed a mutual attraction to one another all throughout season one, and finally decide to act upon said attraction during season two.

THE MENTALIST: THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON ($60) comes to DVD in a five-disc set that features the following twenty-three episodes that were aired during year two: Redemption, The Scarlet Letter, Red Badge, Red Menace, Red Scare, Black Gold And Red Blood, Red Bulls, His Red Right Hand, A Price Above Rubies, Throwing Fire, Rose-Colored Glasses, Bleeding Heart, Redline, Blood In, Blood Out, Red Herring, Code Red, The Red Box, Aingavite Baa, Blood Money, Red All Over, 18-5-4, Red Letter and Red Sky In The Morning. Season two of THE MENTALIST throws something of a roadblock in Patrick Jane’s path to catching the serial killer, as the Red John investigation is turned over to another CBI team, lead by Sam Bosco (Terry Kinney). Ultimately, this doesn’t sit well with the serial killer, as it interferes with the ongoing game of cat & mouse that Red John continues to play with Jane.

Warner Home Video has made all twenty-three episodes from THE MENTALIST: THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON available on DVD in a 1.78:1 wide screen presentations that features the anamorphic enhancement for 16:9 displays. Like the season one set, the episodes contained here look quite good for standard definition, but I remain interested in seeing what THE MENTALIST would look like on Blu-ray. For a television series produced for high definition broadcast, the SD iterations of the episodes appear relatively crisp and produce respectable definition. Colors look nice and are reproduced with a good level of saturation. Blacks appear deep, while the whites are crisp. Contrast is about average for a television level production rendered in standard definition. Shadow detail is more than adequate. The episodes generally appear clean and grain is fairly minimal. Digital compression artifacts tend to fly below the radar.

All of the episodes that constitute THE MENTALIST: THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON come with Dolby Digital 5.1 channel soundtracks. Like the image, this is more of the same in comparison to season one. THE MENTALIST episodes feature an effective, but unremarkable sound design. The episodes are mixed so you can hear dialogue above everything else, with much of the sound locked front and center. There are occasional channel separations across the front, but the surround channels don’t see too much activity beyond ambient sounds and musical fill. Fidelity is more than acceptable, as the material rarely makes any significant demands. Dialogue is crisp and easy to understand, as it should be. No other language tracks have been included on the disc, but English, French and Spanish subtitles are provided.

The interactive menus allow one access to the standard episode selection and set up features, as well as, as well as some extras. Featurettes and other programs include the following: Art Of A Mentalist and Mentalism: A Subliminal Art, which is broken up into eleven smaller pods: The Art Of Mind Reading With Simon Baker, The Art Of Suggestive Imagery With Robin Tunney, Secrets Of Cognitive Persuasion With Luke Jermay, The Art Of Knowing Secrets With Owain Yeoman, The Art Of Hidden Objects With Amanda Righetti, Secrets Of The Pendulum With Luke Jermay, The Art Of Suggestive Imagery With Tim Kang, The Art Of Intuitive Deduction With Bruno Heller, Secrets Of Interactive Mind Control With Luke Jermay, The Art Of Muscle Reading With Amanda Righetti and Secrets Of Ideomotor Manipulation With Luke Jermay. Ten Unaired Scenes close out the extras.

THE MENTALIST is a highly addictive and completely entertaining police procedural. While it remains easy to recommend the series on DVD, I am still interested in seeing THE MENTALIST make its long overdue debut on Blu-ray.

 
THE MENTALIST: THE COMPLETE SECOND SEASON 


The Mentalist: The Complete Second Season (2009)

ENHANCED FOR 16:9 TELEVISIONS 

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DVD & Blu-ray Disc reviews are Copyright 2010 THE CINEMA LASER and may not be copied or reprinted without the written consent of the publisher.
THE CINEMA LASER is written, edited and published by Derek M. Germano.


 

 

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