Who is Red John?

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Ray Haffner

Ray Haffner
Suspected in 875 theories


Since the The Mentalist is over and there will be no more theories about Red John, I was thinking that site can be turned into a general Mentalist forum with an emphasis on Red John. And not just theories about who he is, but discussions on favorite scenes, what happened to Kristina Frye, what his intentions toward Jane were, etc. 
Please let me know whether you agree or disagree by clicking the green or red button.
Thank you!

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Remember, despite being pressured by CBS and Warner Brothers to wrap up the saga prematurely, it was Bruno Heller who decided to lay down meaningless 'clues' and acted, in the truest sense of the word, coy in front of the camera when queried about the identity of Red John so as to give the impression that he did not merely pluck Red John's name out of a hat at the last possible moment, when he did. In fact, as one user on here pointed out, he went so far as to make the script of 6x08 applicable to any character in the entire fucking show, because the "details are meaningless", only to end the series in the most lackluster, uninspired way imaginable.

It is quite clear from the very first episode, that first letter Red John posted on Jane's bedroom door was Heller's own subconscious mental projection. Heller is the "dishonest little worm". Heller is the "Money-grubbing fraud". Heller is the Red John to his own series, having killed it off in record time following a staggering series of poor choices that were bound to catch up to him eventually, yet he still has a smile on his face. And now The Mentalist is officially over.

Let's really put this into perspective:

If you can't keep a show on the air that maintains upwards of 8 to 10 million viewers per episode, making so much money on a yearly basis that you can drop THIRTY MILLION DOLLARS for Simon Baker, acclaimed to be the highest paid actor on TV, something is very wrong.

I wish Baker had more pull on the matter. He could
smell Heller's bullshit from miles away. During interviews around the time Red John was 'revealed', he was clearly not pleased
with how it was handled.

They say sunlight is the best disinfectant, but even after shedding
light on these underhanded scheming practices, I still feel ravaged from head to toe
by the virulent disease that is Heller's
sheer idiocy.

For this, Bruno Heller I confer to you, and only you, a warm, heartfelt, resounding:

Fuck. You.

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Why does it say at the end of the episode that watch for sneak peaks of our next episode?

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There's NO reason to support Mcallister as Red John. This is why we will never have an explanation or revisit Red John, even if we were to confront Heller for answers, because the writers themselves can't come up with enough evidence to support it. It's not 'clever' or 'good writing' to make the one person who could not possibly have been Red John suddenly be Red John this whole time; Thomas Mcallister has had the least fans theorize him as Red John for good reasons.

1. It actually takes longer to get to Tijuana, Mexico from Napa County than it does to get to Tijuana, Mexico from Sacramento. If Red John is supposedly the Sheriff, who would have to be working at this time in Napa County, Jane and co. should have arrived at least minutes before Red John could get to Jared Renfrew and kill him, since they left right away. The only explanation for this is that the oh so convenient Blake Association had corrupt officers at the Mexicali border to kill Jared Renfrew and plant 'He Is Mar' on the wall above him. Is that so hard to explain, writers of The Mentalist?

2. Despite the above, the man who calls Jane whilst in Jared Renfrew's hotel room laughs into the phone, and it sounds undeniably British a la Brett Stiles.


It's obvious this is Red John, and it's not the Sheriff. At this point in the series, Bret Stiles and Ray Haffner are far more likely candidates than Mcallister ever was.

3. "Red John and Jane are very much alike"; "relentless manipulation" according to Lorelei Martins
and Jane about what Lorelei said, and we see this; they both have powers
of mentalism. They both enjoy tea. They both don crisp, clean suits as casual wear. When they say "someone like Jane" and "relentless manipulation", what comes to mind?
The first thing that comes to my mind is Visualize and its countless manipulated
followers, the doing of Bret Stiles. In what possible way is Thomas Mcallister like Patrick Jane? None. Period.

4. Later, when recalling the names of everyone he has shook hands with since his incident, Patrick Jane rules out people who he never saw or heard from again...This, in turn, immediately rules out Thomas Mcallister, who Jane never saw or heard from again after Red Hair and Silver Tape.

5. How does Red John glean Jane's final list of suspects before he could narrow it down himself, and learn of his happy memory in his past? Because he is a real psychic? HAHAHA. NO. One glaringly obvious explanation for this is that Red John, using his own skills of hypnosis he used on Rosalind Harker and Kristina Frye to make her catatonic, plants these name suggestions along with his own so that they can meet eventually, and fishes Jane's memories for something of use to freak him out, if for no other reason than to stroke his own ego. Sweet and simple. This is also how Red John could have been able to plan all of his next moves out perfectly by using these people on the list as pawns over the course of two months prior to Jane seeing the video. I can buy that, after all we have seen Jane capable of. HOWEVER, Mcallister does not fit this role at ALL. Once again, Brett Stiles or a Visualize apprentice, Ray Haffner, are plausible.

In regard to all the analyses of Red John throughout the series: Red John is like Jane, well spoken, listens to classical music, reads classical texts, drinks tea, wears suits, has short, straight hair. He has powers of mentalism, hypnotizing Rosalind Harker as well as Kristina Frye into a catatonic state, possibly implanting the final list of suspects into Jane's mind, and if not this, at the very least we know he extracted a memory from Jane's psyche. The Sheriff, even amongst people not associated with Jane, does not once demonstrate he fits this description. In fact, in the only episode he appears (Red Hair and Silver Tape) before he is nonsensically plugged into season six as unnecessarily creepy going completely against how he is portrayed in the episode he debuts, he is literally a balding small time hick. Incompetent in speech. Incompetent in manner. Incompetent in duty. Poor imitation of Red John's voice. No suits. No tea. No hair. No tricks. No mask. No linoleum knife. Jane did not see or hear from him again after Red Hair and Silver Tape.


Fuck you, Heller, for not honoring your own art. Fuck Warner Brothers and fuck Peter Roth for forcing Heller to kiss his ass and prematurely ruin the show. May their shitty careers come to a swift and well-deserved end.

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Heller...Sure, okay, let Jane & Lisbon start their newer life together. Yep we could've lived with that...IF...yes, IF...you'd had them drive away in the Airstream after the wedding all happy with their bundle of joy on the way...la de freaking da...okay fine...:)
BUT THEN show this end scene to only the viewers: Ray Haffner is following behind them in his car...
Now that would've been STUNNING.
(and the end credits roll...the last smiley face he leaves that we see is the one of him smiling as he drives behind them. ; )
that way it leaves it open-ended yet satisfying to more viewers. 
(WIRJ fans, please insert your own personal RJ where mine is)
I wish RJ would paint a smiley face on a certain someone. (most of us know exactly who i mean) haha
Laughter is still the best medicine. Or close to it. 

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All Heller had to do was make Lazarus the Real Red John--instead of that actor/character, plug in Haffner/Reed D. (Man I would have been so elated!)  And/or plug in Styles...Rigsby or anyone else you guys here @ WIRJ thought would work. Plug in Red John's son (whomever that may have been), show a few flashbacks and have Jane kill him or RJ. That would have been such a thrilling surprise and would've given RJ'ers their satisfying and well-deserved finale. It would've given Jisbon'ers their happy E too with the wedding and baby-on-the-way. That's all he had to freaking do. Yeah, we will all hold onto our own theories and endings because almost anything else would've been better than how he ended S6.8. And now with how he ended the series finale, we will all hold our own and each others much better theories even dearer and closer to our hearts. Part I could've been the RJ reveal and flashbacks, and half of Part II could've been catch him and kill him...and the end half of Part II could've been the wedding/baby reveal. Why was that so hard for you, Heller?! Why was it so freaking hard for you to give answers to your own clues? I'm estimating probably half of us have already become better writers than he is. What sucks is that the first 5 1/2 years were fantastic and then he wimped out with the last ones. Now we all just have to join together, form a writing group, get a network to sign us and we can show him how it's supposed to be done! lol Wishful thinking? Probably...but maybe not. I mean hey, if he can end the series like this and get away with it, then anything is possible. ;-P 

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Hi Friends, Well, the time has come. Will he or won't he? Will he or won't he put us out of our misery? Or will he redeem himself? ;-P As we watch the last episode of The Mentalist series tonight, I just some thoughts before the finale. Of course, they might not be part of the writer’s ideas but they came to me anyways. ;-) Just having some fun with all of it instead of getting really upset like I was and many of us were (and still are) from the Red John episode till this very day...

From Byzantium episode: APJ were the initials on the video game at the bar Jane went to and normally we don’t see Jane drinking beer at bars. When and why did they show him there alone with only the bartender there? We normally see him drinking his tea alone, at a crime scene or with a colleague. Well, then we watch the bartender try to take his keys because he’s had too much to drink. She tells him he can sleep it off there and even says he can have coffee in the morning. But Jane wants to leave and he does leave. But we don’t see him driving or anything like that. Then all of a sudden they go to him laying in a field in his suit. It mad me wonder...if all along an accident is what caused his wife and daughter to die and he was ejected from the car into the field. That’s why he doesn’t know where he is when “Abbott” asks him. It could have been him driving or his wife driving. Either way, that could be why he ended up in the mental institution--because maybe he was driving and he couldn’t take the guilt. So part of his psyche created “Red John” to have some way to process the traumatic occurrence. Just a thought...Maybe that’s why in “Devil’s Cherry” Charlotte says she’s sick of hearing about Red John because she knows that Jane is just making up Red John and he doesn’t actually exist...it’s just a device to process his family’s deaths.

Also, when Jane is reading the book “The Daughter of Time” in the beginning of Season 7, that book has the main character in the hospital and this could symbolize that Jane is in the hospital either after the possible car accident OR after he possibly overdoses on Belladonna tea at the end of “Devil’s Cherry” OR after the explosion at his house in Malibu during season 6.
Human faces are of interest to the main character in this book--(it could symbolize the RJ smiley face?) and it says in wikipedia that the main character “prides himself on being able to read a person’s character from their appearance.” It also says that with this help of other friends and acquaintances (could be Lisbon, Rigsby, Cho..etc...) he investigates historical characters like King Richard III who seems kind, gentle and wise to him, but everyone else seems certain that he’s a murderer.” That could symbolize Jane. It says in the book that the main character tests out his theories on the doctors and nurses in the hospital who attend to him. This reminded me of the feel to the episode “Devil’s Cherry” where Lisbon, Cho, Jane and Charlotte are in the diamond cutter’s place and how the characters interact there. For example: When Lisbon says to Charlotte it’s nice to meet you and Jane lashes out with My daughter is dead! and then Cho and LIsbon say, Here he goes again. (or something to that effect). It’s almost as if Charlotte is alive and Jane doesn’t realize it. Anyways, the nurses and doctors in the book, could be the characters in The Mentalist and how Jane figures out all the cases. But he’s really in the hospital. Wikipedia basically says, At the end of the book, the main character with the help of an American researcher (working in the British museum) come to the conclusion that Richard III being a murderer was a “fabrication of propoganda” and it was all not true.
And the notes we saw written by “Red John” and Jane seemed to have similarities. Jane’s list written in CAPS in his little notebook compared with the yellow post it note left on Sophie’s refrigerator looked very similar to me. I mean knowing how Bruno Heller loves to screw with his audience, he could be Red John! Just tricking the viewers the whole time about Jane even losing his family! That’s how psychO not psychiC, I think Heller is. 

Could symbolize that there was no Red John in The Mentalist and that maybe even the smiley face was just something Jane remembered from his daughter’s drawings. At this point, who knows. Even tonight however they choose to “end” The Mentalist, we will probably never really know.

Hey I always thought Red John was Ray Haffner...and I still do, based on how well I think Reed Diamond was at being a fantastic and exciting Red John. I thought he made a fantastic Red John! And even how when Craig O’Laughlin shot Lisbon and then said to VanPelt, “Sorry about this Grace” it reminded me of how in Lisbon’s dream where the CBI office was filled with dead bodies and smiley faces...when Haffner said to Lisbon, “Sorry about this Teresa.” That gave me the chills and made me think Haffner was RJ. 

I always found it intriguing about the Ray Haffner connection, Bret Styles, Visualize & RJ. 
And also the "Blind" connection to the story. Bach music being Red John’s theme and Bach being blind. Then Rosalind being blind and being Red John’s girlfriend. And also how the German writer “Raimund Pretzel” having the “Sebastian Haffner” pen name and that making up Raymond Haffner...could be an indication to Ray being Red John. And also Mozart’s Symphony No. 35 also know as Haffner’s symphony could be some kind of clue.  Not sure how, but it was fun thinking about it.

But, if Heller really wanted to pull a “Keyser Soze” on us, then from my perspective, Rigsby would have been Red John. Rigsby was there from the very beginning which would make a great RJ to have worked with Jane from the beginning. And they wrote Rigsby as being the last person you’d expect while still being a main character. If Heller ended it on that note it would be so awesome. But I don’t know if he has the guts. Based on the excellence of the first 5 seasons, I think he could do it, but will he? Eh...probably not. Then again, he could surprise us. Funny thing is I had dream last night that Rigsby was Red John. I rewatched the Mentalist from the perspective of purposely watching it as each different character being Red John. Rigsby was the most exciting for me anyways, to think of as being Red John because he’s so unlikely to be such a sadistic killer and he’s so likable as a character, almost nerdy and naive at times in a lovable way. But to watch it thinking it’s all an act...that is pretty creepy and very Red John-ish. And my dream last night was SO REAL.

Anyways, just some last thoughts before the finale. It sure has been a fun and thought-provoking 7 years of The Mentalist. It’s been an honor to share theories with you guys on the WIRJ board. Thank you. Hope it’s an amazing ending and if it’s not...we still have our fan fiction to comfort us and give us the endings we each wanted. We deserve to have an exciting ending to this fantastic series! But I'm sure we've all gotten used to disappointment. Then again, is there a glimmer of hope? 

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