Monday, November 11, 2013

The Mentalist - Insider's Blog "Fire And Brimstone"

This week's The Mentalist Insider's Blog is written by Co-Executive Producer Ken Woodruff, about last night's "Fire And Brimstone".
"Fire and Brimstone" is our sixth episode of the season. We're leading up to Patrick Jane finally learning Red John's true identity and having the chance to confront him face to face. So hold on. This is going to be one intense ride. 
"Fire and Brimstone" picks up right where "The Red Tattoo" (Episode 605) left off. Just before her death, Red John victim Kira Tinsley, gave Jane a message. More than a message, a clue. With her last dying breath, she told Jane that her killer, Red John, has a tattoo on his left arm. A tattoo of three dots. Armed with this information, Jane is now closer than he's ever been to identifying Red John. Problem is, there are still five suspects in contention. CBI Director Gale Bertram. Sheriff Thomas McAllister. FBI Agent Reed Smith. Former CBI Agent and Visualize crony, Ray Haffner. And of course, the one and only Brett Stiles. Jane's plan is to gather all five suspects together at the same time and in the same place, and check them for the tattoo. But doing so is easier said than done. And more than one suspect will be a formidable obstacle to Jane's plan. In the end of this episode, we will be much, much closer to knowing just who Red John is. The closest we have ever been. But this knowledge will come at a price. And for some, it's the highest price of all. 
This episode was so much fun to write and be a part of. I was lucky enough to work with John Showalter, a veteran director and go-to-guy on THE MENTALIST. He did a truly amazing job with some very difficult material and sequences. I also got to write for all five Red John suspects - Malcolm McDowell, Michael Gaston, Reed Diamond, Xander Berkeley, and Drew Powell. Having all five fine actors in the same episode was a coup. And they definitely kept the set lively. Simon Baker gives, in my opinion, one of his best performances of the series. And we get to see a darker side of him we've only glimpsed in the past. Even after all these years, he continues to surprise and impress me. And Robin Tunney's scene in Malibu at sunset - not only is it beautifully shot, but Robin absolutely breaks your heart. Her performance kills me every time I watch it. 
Filming this episode took us all over Los Angeles, and to some pretty incredible places. We shot a number of scenes at the Park Plaza Hotel, a historic building in the heart of downtown Los Angeles originally built by members of the Elks Club. And we had some pretty amazing days at Leo Carrillo State Beach in Malibu. The weather was perfect and the waves were even better. Our crew took full advantage of the location and went surfing at lunch. 
Written by
Co-Executive Producer Ken Woodruff

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