'The Mentalist' Recap: Best of 'Pretty Red Balloon'
'The Mentalist' Recap: Best of 'Pretty Red Balloon'
This week on The Mentalist, Jane and the team has to find a missing boy whose family has ties with Jane's con man past. Grab a glass of tea and some balloon animals to get ready to solve another mystery.

Old Friends

The team has another case to follow, and this one involves missing 9 year old Connor Flint. He was taken from his bus stop where Cho and Rigsby dig for clues while Jane and Lisbon go to talk to the family. Connor's mother is an old client of Jane's.

She still believes in his psychic powers even though he keeps trying to tell her he stole her money. She now has a new psychic named Glass who is like a cheaper Jane knock off that you would find in the psychic bargain bin. At the bus stop, Cho finds a red balloon animal that somehow was not popped despite being buried near sharp sticks and leaves.

My first guess was that Pennywise the Clown was the bad guy and that the show was taking on an entirely new genre, but like always I was wrong.

The Balloon Man

It turns out that there were two previous unsolved cases where children disappeared from bus stops and only balloon animals remained. The bad news is that the kids showed up 12 hours later dead. Cho decides to investigate all three cases to help find Connor.

Back with the family, Jane and Lisbon meet Deke, Connor's Uncle, and Jonathan, Connor's much older step brother. Jonathan owns the palatial estate that the Flint's live in and has let Beth and Connor stay there after Beth's husband died two years earlier. Jane talks to Beth who wants Jane to touch something to get a sense of where Connor is.

Again, Jane nicely calls her an idiot for believing him before, and tells her that Glass is doing the same thing. Again, she acts like an idiot and doesn't believe him.

Old Suspects

Back in the office, Van Pelt and Rigsby are busy interviewing suspects from the previous two missing boy cases. Rigsby is talking to a skeevy horn dog which yields nothing, but Van Pelt talks to Walton, an electric company worker. He points them towards a black SUV that he saw at one of the crime scenes. I'm guessing since we know the character's name that he'll be showing up later.

At the house, Glass claims to have a vision and that Connor is okay. Jane corner's him outside and calls him a "pretty good" but not great con man and insinuates that he may be the kidnapper. Lisbon says that his alibis check out for the other kids disappearances so he is clean.

In the office, Van Pelt says she found a pedophile chat room that may help them, which seems awfully convenient to me. What was she really doing in that chat room? They soon find out that Walton was the guy who took the other kids because he spied on them from power lines and leave to confront him.

Shoot Out

Rigsby, Lisbon, Cho, and Van Pelt head to Walt's place and are met with oncoming AK-47 fire. That's not suspicious at all. Eventually, Van Pelt shoots the pervert out of the windows and kills him. They search for Connor but can't find them when Jane calls and says that Walt wasn't the Balloon Man, and that Connor's case is a copy cat crime.

Lisbon interviews Beth back at the office and finds out that Connor has a trust fund worth $10 million and that Beth was the next in line to receive it if he died. Beth also has a hundred grand in credit card debt. Lisbon prods her more and soon feels that she didn't do it. Jane then puts on an overly dramatic farce of a vision saying that he sees Connor in the woods, so the team searches the area.

Case Closed

It turns out that Jonathan fake kidnapped Connor and hid him in the woods at a hunting shed. He had the hots for his step mom who looks to be the same exact age as him so it's not too weird. Jonathan admits to Cho and Lisbon that he was going to go back and kill Connor because he thought Jane was really a psychic and that he would be found out. This just goes to show that stupid people seem to find each other in clusters.

But all hope in human reasoning is not lost because Beth finally gets it through her thick skull that Jane was lying to her and there is no such thing as a psychic.

On next week's episode of 'The Mentalist,' it appears that the team goes to a tea party rally and try to stop a murder before it takes place, just like in Minority Report. Before they can do that though, they'll have to deal with their new boss.

Chase Gamradt
Contributing Writer

(Image courtesy of CBS)