I like to "try on" a lot of new TV shows every September. Except for reality shows. Then I see what sticks, if any. They have to be pretty good for me to keep them going.
I started recording The Mentalist this season and I have to admit, by a few weeks into the season, I'm hooked. There are some things about it that make it irresistible, mostly the star, Simon Baker. Ok, I'll admit - he's really cute! So here's the plot - Patrick Jane (Simon Baker) is a consultant to the California Bureau of Investigation, headed by Theresa Lisbon (Robin Tunney). He is a former fake TV psychic whose family was murdered. So wouldn't you think he'd have a certain persona - oily, self-assured, cynical, etc.? No - he is smiling all the time, naive, boyish, blunt - almost like he is from Mars. His social skills seem like that of a ten year old boy. Compared with the people he works with, who never smile, he really sticks out.
For instance, in a recent episode, he is in a casino in Nevada investigating the murder of the boss. He sits down at multiple tables, each time saying to the dealer, Hi, I'm Patrick. He wins $250,000 and then comes back to the office with expensive jewels and watches for his colleagues. Like a little kid giving Christmas presents.
The other thing is the way he dresses. It is just kind of "off". Who wears 3 piece suits anymore, especially for a non-formal occasion? He wears them EVERY DAY. And this is California, mind you. And, he also has his hands in his suit pockets, which adds to the strangeness. Men just don't do that. The net result, however, is very endearing.
I hope this show lasts because now I find myself really looking forward to it - that and The Office.