The Mentalist

Season 3 Episode 18

The Red Mile

Aired Wednesday 8:00 PM Mar 31, 2011 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
254 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

A man who claims to have been abducted by aliens is murdered and his body is stolen from the coroner's van. Van Pelt moves ahead with her wedding plans.

Who was the Episode MVP ?

No results found.
No results found.
  • Powerful

    I am a viewer of The Mentalist, mostly for the casual and non provocative nature of the show. I am not expecting TV history in the making, and I'm not getting it.

    It's straight forward entertainment, with a dash of good overall storyline and good acting from the main character.

    That being said, this episode, and in particular the final scene, was one of the most powerful I've seen on TV in my entire life.

    It didn't over dramatize it, it didn't make it awkward or corny. On the contrary its power came from the cathartic nature of that scene. Rarely do I get that moved. The scene and its actors gets a 10, the episode a 9 - total 9.5moreless
  • Didn't care too

    much for the case and the caserelated characters but the view into the nowadays relationship between Grace Van Pelt and Wayne Rigsby was interesting and to see Patrick Jane feel compassion for Dr. Steiner and act on that compassion was moving and gripping.

    Didn't care too much for the case and the caserelated characters but the view into the nowadays relationship between Grace Van Pelt and Wayne Rigsby was interesting and to see Patrick Jane feel compassion for Dr. Steiner and act on that compassion was moving and gripping.

    Didn't care too much for the case and the caserelated characters but the view into the nowadays relationship between Grace Van Pelt and Wayne Rigsby was interesting and to see Patrick Jane feel compassion for Dr. Steiner and act on that compassion was moving and gripping.moreless
  • I man believes that he was kidnapped by aliens..... and is killed for it.

    This was a very interesting episode. I loved that Dr. Steiner and Jane hated each other in the beginning, but then they became friends.

    What I loved most about this episode was the relationship between them. Dr. Steiner was going to die, and Jane decided to make him happy by allowing him to be part of the investigation. It seemed that Jane cared about him. It was sad that the doctor decided to commit suicide at the end, but what really made this a great episode is that that Jane decided to stay with him while he did it. He stayed so Steiner wouldn't be alone. Not only that, but Jane did a coin trick for him so that he would have something to focus on other then dieing. I love Jane. The fact that he did that for someone (who at the beginning of the episode didn't like him) was beautiful.moreless
  • Amazing ending to what started out as an average episode.

    The only reason I didn't give this episode a complete 10 rating is because I didn't really care much for the case. Jane's character development consistently amazes me. We are constantly getting more and more insight into Jane without him becoming a parody of himself. Jane's behaviour around rich people is always fun to watch. In the episode where he was kidnapped Lisbon mentions that money doesn't really mean much to him (evidenced by sending Mashburn's Lambourghini over a cliff for the sake of one of his games). Therefore he does not feel intimidated by wealth but rather finds it a source of mockery and even a little contemptuous.

    The relationship between Jane and Steiner was brilliant. Steiner hates Jane, he finds him annoying and childish, but when Jane figured out that Steiner was dying all his tomfoolery fell away and his altruistic side came out - something which we rarely get to see.

    Jane is so used to living with pain and emotional torment which is why I think he is so in tune to it in others. His desire for revenge fuels his understanding of other people's needs and wants, which is why he allowed Steiner to help with the case. The ending was nothing short of amazing. Jane doesn't have a problem dealing with death - he does it on a daily basis, but when it comes to people he knows and is close to, it is a completely different story. He therefore could not accept Steiner's request of actually seeing him commit suicide, but still gave him his final wish of being laid to rest with dignity. Obviously, Jane can't become completely altruistic - he is motivated and driven by his desire for revenge (which makes me wonder what'll happen to him after Red John is caught and killed), and it is the flipside of those desires that gave him the compassion to do what he did for Steiner.moreless
  • The body of a murder victim who believed he was the victim of an alien abduction is stolen on its way to the morgue.

    I was ready to rate this episode a 10 until I realized there was no good reason for the CBI to be involved initially. If The Mentalist is generally (to quote Time magazine) the television equivalent of meat loaf, this episode was the fancy variety with tomato sauce baked on top and a side of mash potatoes. Marked by some innovative directorial choices by Law & Order alum Darnell Martin (check out the camera movement during Cho's interrogation of the victim's partner or Lisbon's slight smile as Jane needles the victim's imperius mother-in-law), "The Red Mile" was an unusually well-blended mixture of murder mystery, pathos, and character moments. The scene where Jane tells the coroner why he's allowed him to tag along was as much of a jolt as the sheriff being murdered in the middle of "Blood Red Moon." And as if that wasn't enough of a jolt, who could have seen the plot twist with O'Laughlin freezing up and Grigsby having to save Van Pelt coming? In fact, the scenes between Jane and returning guest star George Wyner were so well done that I wondered if Wyner the actor really was terminally ill. I was transfixed by the final scene of Jane comforting the dying man in his final moments, played without the customary background music. It was an even more affecting closing scene than the one where Christina Frye tells Jane his child wasn't awake when Red John killed him. Although the show would be a little less interesting if Jane became a complete altruist, this episode showed a rare moment of compassion on his part. This wasn't just the best episode of the season; it may have been one of the three or four best episodes of the series so far.moreless
George Wyner

George Wyner

Coroner Steiner

Guest Star

Frances Conroy

Frances Conroy

Elspeth Cook

Guest Star

Ian Vogt

Ian Vogt

Timothy Hartley

Guest Star

Eric Winter

Eric Winter

FBI Agent Craig O'Laughlin

Recurring Role

Rebecca Wisocky

Rebecca Wisocky

Brenda Shettrick

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (10)

    • Jane: (about Timothy Hartley) Crazy.
      Van Pelt: He sounds sincere to me.
      Jane: Sincerely cuckoo.

    • Jane: It wasn't your fault.

      Dr. Steiner: Excuse me?

      Jane: They had guns. Big, scary guns. There's nothing you could do.

      Dr. Steiner: The body is my responsibility, my reason for being here. Now I have no reason or responsibility. There's nothing for me to do. I don't expect you to understand why that feels like failure to me, but it does.

    • Rigsby: Good luck with the Cooks.

      Lisbon: Yeah, nothing like telling people their loved ones are dead, and oh, by the way, we lost the corpse.

    • (A body is stolen from the coroner's van.)

      Dr. Steiner: Jane, was this you? Another trick?

      Jane: Whoa!

      Lisbon: Jane had nothing to do with this, nothing at all. (after Dr. Steiner is out of earshot.) You didn't, did you?

      Jane: Of course not.

      Lisbon: Swear on your life?

      Jane: On your life, even.

      Lisbon: Damn it. Who steals a body?

    • Jane: Hell of a place you've got here. Where'd you get the money for it?

      Elspeth Cook: Excuse me?

      Jane: The moolah? The scratch? The shekels? The dollarinis?

      Elspeth Cook: What has that have to do with anything?

      Jane: Obviously something you're embarrased about.

      Mrs. Hartley: Sugar beets.

      Jane: Sugar beets?

      Mrs. Hartley: My, uh, grandfather grew them.

      Jane: I love sugar beets. There's no shame in sugar beets, Elspeth.

    • Lisbon: Okay, what's the game with Steiner?

      Jane: No game.

      Lisbon: What's he doing here then?

      Jane: What are any of us doing here?

      Lisbon: We don't bring guests on investigations.

      Jane: Maybe we should. A different mystery sleuth for each case.

      Lisbon: Well, if this is some gag...

      Jane: It's not. He asked if he could come along, and I said he could, all right? That's it. We're building bridges, mending fences...

      Lisbon: Okay.

      Jane: Planting seeds.

      Lisbon: Uh-huh.

      Jane: Laying foundations.

      Lisbon: Okay!

    • (The team is laying a trap to the murderer.)

      Lisbon: Are you sure about this?

      Jane: Are you ever gonna tire of asking me that?

      Lisbon: No.

    • Dr. Steiner: Guesses. You might as well say he's going to meet a tall, dark stranger.
      Jane: That's very unlikely, doctor. He's dead.

    • Dr. Steiner: Three steps back, please.

      Jane: What?

      Dr. Steiner: Please maintain a distance of at least three steps from the body.

      Jane: Why?

      Dr. Steiner: Because this body is a no-Jane zone. It will not be a playground for you. You will not touch it, or sniff it, or place playing cards on it, or borrow it for an interrogation. If you do, a deputy will remove you. Clear?

      Jane: Huh. That's a little harsh, no?

      Dr. Steiner: You have driven me to desperate measures.

    • Lisbon: Who do you think did it?

      Jane: Jabba the Hutt.

      Lisbon: Seriously.

      Jane: Ming the Merciless.

      Lisbon: Okay.

      Jane: Alf?

      Lisbon: When the aliens do come, I hope they eat you.

  • NOTES (3)

    • This episode had 14.27 million viewers when it originally aired.

    • International Episode Titles:
      Czech Republic: Rudá míle (Red Mile)
      Germany: Kleine graue männchen (Small gray man)

    • Original International Air Dates:
      Canada: March 31, 2011 on CTV
      Portugal: April 5, 2011 on RTP2
      The Netherlands: April 21, 2011 on SBS 6
      United Kingdom: April 29, 2011 on Channel 5/Channel 5 HD
      Australia: May 29, 2011 on Nine
      Germany: October 2, 2011 on SAT 1
      Czech Republic: May 2, 2012 on TV Nova


    • Art Vella: You need to talk to that UFO fruitcake that Tim met. They were friends about a week and then Tim wanted nothing more to do with him. I think he was trying to squeeze some money out of Tim.

      Cho: What's his name?

      Art Vella: Kirk. Can you believe that?

      This is a reference to Captain James T. Kirk from the original Star Trek series and movies. Also, Newsome Kirk is played by Ethan Phillips who played the alien Neelix in Star Trek: Voyager.

    • Lisbon: Who do you think did it?

      Jane: Jabba the Hutt.

      Lisbon: Seriously.

      Jane: Ming the Merciless.

      Lisbon: Okay.

      Jane: Alf?

      Jabba the Hutt, Ming the Merciless and Alf are all fictional extraterrestrial characters. Jabba the Hutt originates in the "Star Wars" Universe, Ming the Merciless appeared in the "Flash Gordon" comics and ALF is a TV series about the life of Melmac's Gordon Shumway on Earth, broadcasted from 1986-1990.

    • Jane: There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.

      These lines are a quote from Shakespeare's "Hamlet", more specifically from Act I, Scene 5.

    • The title "The Red Mile" could be an allusion to the novel, "The Green Mile" by Stephen King or its film adaptation of the same name.