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The Desert Rose is the first episode and the season premiere of the sixth season of The Mentalist.


Jane and Lisbon secretly continue their dangerous mission to narrow down the list of seven Red John suspects as they investigate the murder of a man who was missing for two years.


Following the events of the Season 5 finale, Lisbon and Jane are called to a crime scene, where a woman is found dead by her baseball player fiancé, Cody Benbow. Jane quickly deduces that the husband was the killer and tricks him into taking him hostage. Jane had secretly disabled the man's gun. He casually invites SacPD Officers to come and arrest the man. However, the athlete pulls out a second weapon, shooting an officer when they let their guard down. SacPD is understandably enraged with the display of arrogance that made a bad situation worse.

Gale Bertram tells Lisbon that the officer didn’t die but this incident has caused some resentment in SacPD. He tells Lisbon that she and Jane should leave the city for a while, and he gives them a case at the Salton Sea State Recreation Area where a body has been found buried in the desert. Lisbon believes this is a ploy by Bertram to get them away from the city; Jane is not as worried which leads Lisbon to think he is overwhelmed and unsure what to do next. In an effort to do something constructive, Lisbon shares Jane's list with Van Pelt, instructing her to place tracking bugs on the phones of the seven suspects. The revelation and the order upsets Van Pelt. Rigsby asks her what's going on and is suspicious of her evasive answer. Later, while waiting to interview the wife of their current case victim, Cho is bothered by Rigsby's awkward behavior and asks what's bothering him.  It's later revealed that the whole team is aware of the list of suspects and that Red John knows about it too. Lisbon and Jane argue over this and she leaves, heading back to Sacramento. The case is solved with Jane's usual prowess, as he quickly deduces that the three employees of the diner had killed the man for money.

Following an anonymous tip about a state officer in danger, Lisbon realizes that the address provided in the tip is the same address where Van Pelt's tracking program shows Brett Partridge is. This leads her to a closed-up, condemned house where she calls for backup from SacPD. Before anyone else arrives, she hears a noise in the house and goes inside. The house appears abandoned but further exploration leads her to a bedroom where she finds Partridge near death. Shortly before dying, the forensics tech whispers "Tyger, Tyger" to Lisbon, an allusion to the poem recited to Jane by Red John at the end of Season 2. After turning around, she sees an open door that had been closed moments earlier. As the scene fades, Lisbon is seen being jerked backwards by an off-screen assailant. Back at the station, Jane gets a call, presumably from Lisbon, but "Red John's voice" tells Jane that Lisbon "Can't come to the phone." The caller is shown wiping blood from a linoleum knife, Red John's preferred implement for cutting and killing. The last scene is a shot of Lisbon lying down, status unknown, as a Red John smiley is drawn with blood upon Lisbon's pale face.


Main Cast[]

Recurring Cast[]

Guest Cast[]


  • Production error: when Lisbon and Jane are driving to the desert crime scene (Salton Sea), Lisbon tells Jane that they "could, at least, keep Bertram and the other seven suspects under surveillance if the rest of the team is involved". The list has seven suspects, therefore, the correct phrase would be "Bertram and the other six suspects".
  • Jane, Lisbon, Van Pelt, Rigsby, and Cho all now know about the list of seven Red John suspects.
  • The list is narrowed to six names, as Brett Partridge is dead, having been murdered by Red John.
  • Bruno Heller had announced there was a 'big' clue left in the room where Lisbon had been taken by Red John. 
  • The Borrego Gap Diner location is the "Ski Inn" located in Bombay Beach, CA (9596 Avenue A - Niland, Califórnia).

Production Information[]

Season 6 of the procedural drama airs on September 29th, 2013.

By the end of the episode, the suspect list is narrowed down to six.

It is planned to be a serialized season, with more 'to be continued' after the credits, and less 'murder of the week' cases as we draw closer to nabbing the elusive Red John.

According to Bruno Heller, "Jane and Lisbon are hot on the trail of Red John in the season premiere, but a disagreement on how to handle the situation may leave one of them in danger before the episode is over." (Turns out to be Lisbon)

Season 6 Episodes
The Desert Rose  · Black-Winged Redbird  · Wedding in Red  · Red Listed  · The Red Tattoo  · Fire and Brimstone  · The Great Red Dragon  · Red John  · My Blue Heaven  · Green Thumb  · White Lines  · Golden Hammer  · Black Helicopters  · Grey Water  · White as the Driven Snow  · Violets  · Silver Wings of Time  · Forest Green  · Brown Eyed Girls  · Il Tavolo Bianco  · Black Hearts  · Blue Bird