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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
If television proves anything, it's this: there's nothing new under the
sun--or at least in Hollywood.
"Every Rose Has Its Thorn" owes as much to Columbo writers Richard Levinson and William Link as it does to Mentalist writers Bruno Keller and Ken Woodruff. Why? Because the storyline for this episode of The Mentalist, written by Keller and Woodruff, is a carbon copy of a 1968 TV Columbo movie called Prescription: Murder, which Levinson and Link wrote. Here are some of the similarities: 1. In Prescription: Murder, a prominent psychiatrist murders his wife and enlists his lover to help him get away with it. In The Mentalist, a prominent matchmaker murders her husband and enlists her lover to help her get away with it.
2. In Prescription: Murder, Columbo can find no tangible evidence to charge the husband with murder, but he knows the husband did it. In The Mentalist, the CBI team can find no evidence to charge the wife with murder, but Patrick Jane knows she did it.
3. In both stories, the detectives must rely on the weaknesses of the lovers to catch the murderers. In Prescription: Murder and The Mentalist, the lovers fake their suicides as parts of ploys by the respective detectives to get the murderers to slip up. In both stories, the murderers deny having any feelings for the lovers, and the lovers then rat out the murderers.
While the approaches are different--we know who the killer is in Prescription: Murder while we don't in The Mentalist--the story is basically the same. I don't see any connection mentioned between the two on the episode's IMDb page. Is any acknowledgment given to Levinson and Link in the episode's credits? If not, there should be.
Finally caught this in reruns and kind of wish I hadn't. The episode
had a great build-up with Jane facing off with a suspect that also
makes her living analyzing personalities but the ending just fizzled.
She was intelligent, stoic, and organized right up to the finale. They
really cheated their way to a victory here plot-wise unnecessarily. Can
we not have a guaranteed collar every week? Knowing that the good guys
will always win takes the fun out of it. That may be fine for a CSI
crowd where all logic takes a leap out the window but this show is
better than that.
The B-plot with Rigsby was okay, if again more big doofus stuff from an actor that deserves better (check his biography). Good work from Cho who reluctantly if tartly offers dating advice.
Nice to see Morena Baccarin looking human as well.
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