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Red Carpet Treatment is the fourth episode of Season 3 of The Mentalist


Patrick Jane and the CBI team are called in to investigate the murder of a convict who served nine years for rape and murder, but was recently released on DNA evidence.


As a matter of friendship, Lisbon tells Jane that it’s a little worrying that he sleeps upstairs in the office in his new "club house." He waves her off and they head to a hotel where a man has been shot in the face eight or ten times in the head — or as Lisbon says, “What head?”

Jane dismisses the dead man, Henry Dahl, as a sociopath who should have been in prison and further more says he doesn’t care who killed this creep. Outside he is accosted by Karen Cross, whom he rebuffs in order to go sleep in the van. She gets her revenge, catching his nap on camera and putting it on is national television.

Things get really detailed when we learn more about Karen and her connection to Dahl. Not only was he to appear on her talk show following his name being cleared by DNA evidence, but she was also the state prosecutor who put him away. Her perfect conviction record was ruined with his release. When she and Lisbon go head to head on the set of her show, Lisbon insinuates that she left the prosecutor’s office before she could be fired for an ethical breach.

Jane has snuck off to find tea in the green room, and Karen’s two guests: Henry’s mother, Judy Dahl, and the widower of Dahl’s victim Max Winter. His wife, Jenny, was raped and had her throat cut by Dahl. Max has at peace about the whole thing, which revenge-obsessed Jane finds fascinating. He asks if the peace comes from shooting his wife’s killer. At least he isn’t alone — Karen doesn’t buy his “reconciliation” bit either.

At a halfway house, Cho and Rigsby are checking out Dahl’s residence. The manager said a girl visited him there, and when they are let in, the place is in shambles. Rigsby is sullen because the FBI agent, Craig O'Laughlin is romancing Grace, and he has to watch. When they find someone hiding under the bed and he runs, he lets Cho chase after him while he goes for an aerial attack, jumping off the balcony.

The man is Artie Mock, who ran a drug business with Dahl when they were both in junior college and is owed twenty-two thousand dollars. Dahl had said the money was gone because the drugs had been confiscated, but when he talked about taking his girlfriend to Jamaica, Artie thought he’d been lying.

Jane goes to see Max at the shooting range. Max describes the act of shooting a gun as pain relief, and entices Jane to try it. He refuses, noting his pain is “nothing a gun will fix.”

Dahl’s girlfriend in question is Betsy Meyers, who is actually married to Sean Meyers. She insists that she’d been writing him as friends, but the e-mails are a little racy for “just friends” conversation. Jane performs one trick — handing off Rigsby’s gun to them — to determine they are not the killers, either of them. They can’t handle a gun.

Outside while waiting for the van and Lisbon, Karen Cross “serves” Jane to perform his mojo in front of a studio audience. He accepts, although Lisbon is not amused. He brings candles in for the audience and derails Karen quickly before she can show a clip of his last talk show experience — the one that ended in the deaths of his wife and daughter. But he puts on the show in true, cynical Jane fashion, calling on Henry’s spirit to light the candle of his killer. Max's son, Jackson Winter’s candle lights up, but it’s only to ferret out Max — who then confesses to shooting Dahl, but not killing him.

Max’s real estate company came to own a warehouse where police evidence was kept, so he swapped the DNA evidence out and freed Dahl from prison, spending eight years planning his revenge. He says when he got to the hotel to do the deed, Dahl was already dead from a blow to the head. He shot him in the face anyway.

After a brief scene with Betsy and Sean on the supports of a bridge, ready to jump, Sean is arrested for the murder of Henry Dahl. He offered to pay Dahl to stay away from Betsy, and when Dahl threatened Betsy’s life, he brained him using what seems to be a liquor bottle. Jane points out to the attorney that it’s likely both will walk for the murder, and indeed, the attempted murder charges against Max are dropped.

Agent O'Laughlin picks up Grace for lunch, but he's also figured out the secret of Jane’s candle lighting trick.

Max brings him a gift, and Jane asks him if it was worth it — that the man who killed his wife no longer exists. He tells Jane, “Yes it was.” Jane opens his gift once he’s alone again, and takes it out of its box — a new shiny pistol in his hand.


Main Cast[]

Recurring Cast[]

Guest Cast[]


  • O'laughlin knew Jane's Trick with the Candle, wich reveals how McAllister Tells his Subordinate things about Patrick.
  • SPOILER - The following section contains spoilers. Select the text to read it: When Van Pelt asks O'Laughlin where will they going for lunch, he says they'll go to Napa. Napa is where Thomas McAllister, one of the seven final Red John's suspects in Season 5, resides; and O'Lauglin was revealed as an accomplice of Red John at the end of Season 3.
  • SPOILER - The following section contains spoilers. Select the text to read it: The gun that Max Winter gives to Jane is the one which will eventually be used to kill Red John.
Season 3 Episodes
Red Sky At Night  · Cackle-bladder Blood  · The Blood On His Hands  · Red Carpet Treatment  · The Red Ponies  · Pink Chanel Suit · Red Hot · Ball of Fire · Red Moon · Jolly Red Elf · Bloodsport · Bloodhounds · Red Alert · Blood for Blood · Red Gold · Red Queen · Bloodstream · The Red Mile · Every Rose Has Its Thorn · Redacted · Like a Redheaded Stepchild · Rhapsody in Red · Strawberries and Cream