Saturday, April 17, 2010

Revamping Sherlock

Got to hand it to the writers and creators. A Sherlock Holmes or Hercule Poirot reborn in the form of a vengeful, arrogant, playful "Mentalist" Patrick Jane (Simon Baker). The CBS show has an eclectic mix of fun characters and follows the old school practice of solving crimes by logic and human nature rather than science alone. Stripping down suspects by relationships and superhuman mental agility, "Jane" as he's called, reads people like a book. One step ahead of everyone else, his self assured behaviour manages to piss off fellow officers and suspects, leaving poor Agent Lisbon (Robin Tunney) to clean up the mess. Former con-man Psychic genius Patrick Jane and Agent Teresa Lisbon fulfill the classic duo of Watson and Holmes or Poirot and Hastings. Add in a bit of sexual tension, three strong supporting characters Kimbal Cho (Tim Kang), Wayne Rigsby (Owain Yeoman) and Grace Van Pelt (Amanda Righetti), creative scenarios and you have a hit show.

The show titles maintain the mysterious presence of serial killer "Red John" , the Professor Moriarty so to speak. Bleeding heart, Red Menace, Red Johns Footsteps, Seeing Red, Paint It Red, Crimson Casanova... etc. all leave a bloody trail. Similar to Sherlock the viewer always wonders if "Jane" will be driven over the edge. "Red John" his elusive nemesis pushes him to further acts of recklessness as his sadistic taunts continue.