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Red John's Friends is the eleventh episode of season one of The Mentalist. It aired on January 6th 2009 in the US and June 4th 2009 in the UK.



Jared Renfrew in prison

Jared Renfrew has been convicted of murdering his housekeeper's daughter (Undine) and has been in prison for a year. He contacts Jane and tells him that he has information about Red John which he will give him if Jane helps clear him of the murder conviction. At first Jane is not convinced that Jared knows anything, but Jared tells him that he knows that Red John painted Mrs. Jane's toenails with her own blood - something that he only did in her case, and which was not released to the media. Jared says that Red John is a friend of a friend of his. Jane agrees to help Jared.

Minelli tells Jane that Jared's case can't be re-opened, but Jane is determined to look into it anyway. He goes to Jared's family home where Jared's brother, Gardiner Renfrew, and his mother still live. Jane rubs Gardiner up the wrong way and almost gets himself arrested, but Jared's mother talks with Jane and gives him background on Jared's troubled past. She also shows Jane the room where the murder took place and gives him an address for the housekeeper, who left their employment after her daughter's death.

Gardiner complains to the CBI about Jane, and Minelli tells Jane that he has to stay away from the Renfrews or he will have to fire him, which he doesn't want to do. Jane resigns instead. The team is really upset and want to help Jane, even though they have been told to stay away from the case. They find a link between an old cell-mate of Renfrew's (Orville Tanner) and Red John. Tanner claimed in his 1998 trial for murder that he was only an accomplice and that Red John was the real killer, but no-one believed him. He had since died in prison, but Van Pelt finds his victim's autopsy report and this confirms his story. Minelli catches the team working on the case and suspends them all when they say they can't stop helping Jane. However, he then tells Teresa that he is going away for a week and gives them unofficial permission to work on the case in his absence.

Jane has been unable to find Undine's mother, but Van Pelt gets an IM which enables her to find that the woman changed her name to Vanna Clooney and bought a condo. The person who sent the IM is a civilian, so shouldn't have been able to access their system - and his name is an anagram for Red John. He tells Jane to keep up the good work and then logs off before they can trace him. They realise that he's been somehow spying on them on their secure network. Jane realises that Renfrew really must have information on Red John, which is why Red John wants them to get Renfrew out of jail so he can kill him. 


Having a conversation with Vanna Clooney

Patrick and Teresa visit Vanna Clooney and discover that she was paid to lie about Renfrew's relationship with her daughter. She had claimed at his trial that he was stalking Undine, when in fact the two were lovers. She didn't know who had paid her off, as she only dealt with an intermediary, who they discover has since died (hit by a bus). Patrick takes Teresa and Rigsby to the Renfrew's house and they pretend that they are going to go public with the whole story if they are not paid off. He shows them how someone other than Renfrew could have got into the locked room and killed Undine, so framing Renfrew (this scene is similar to an Malorie Blackman story - Hostage - with the key getting knocked onto paper on the floor and pulled under the door, etc.). They give the Renfew's until 4 to call with an offer. In the end, it's Mrs. Renfrew who calls, to Patrick's surprise.

Patrick goes and has tea with Mrs. Renfrew who gives him a vial of Undine's blood to prove that she killed her. It turns out that she had found out that Undine was Renfrew's half-sister and so had tried to get him to break up with her (without telling him why). When he wouldn't listen to her, telling her that he was in love with Undine, she killed Undine and framed her son to teach him a lesson. She kept the blood so that she could confess when she chose.


He is mar...

Two weeks later, Patrick, Rigsby and Cho collect Renfrew from jail to take him to a safe house where he can talk to Jane, but he manages to escape from them. He calls Jane from a hooker's phone and apologises for breaking his promise, but he says he doesn't want to cross Red John. They trace the call to Tijuana, Mexico and rush down there, only to find that Red John got there first and has killed both Renfrew and the hooker. Some words have been written on the wall in blood (presumably by Renfrew before he died) - "He is ma"[1] could mean "He is married", "He is man", "He is many"..., but they don't know what Renfrew was trying to tell them. The episode ends with the hooker's phone ringing and Patrick answering it, to hear Red John himself laughing on the other end.


Main Cast[]

Recurring Cast[]

Guest Cast[]


Transcript to "Red John's Friends"

Season 1 Episodes
Pilot  · Red Hair and Silver Tape  · Red Tide  · Ladies in Red  · Redwood  · Red Handed  · Seeing Red  · The Thin Red Line  · Flame Red  · Red Brick and Ivy  · Red John's Friends  · Red Rum  · Paint It Red  · Crimson Casanova  · Scarlett Fever  · Bloodshot  · Carnelian, Inc.  · Russet Potatoes  · A Dozen Red Roses  · Red Sauce  · Miss Red  · Blood Brothers  · Red John's Footsteps