The Mentalist Season 5 Episode 13 significantly changed the "Who-is-Red-John" guessing game with the return of CBI supervising agent Ray Haffner and the "Red Barn" case.
Spoiler alert: This article contains spoilers for those who have not seen the "Red Barn" episode of The Mentalist Season 5. Read at your own risk.
Series creator Bruno Heller is clearly teasing the viewers with Patrick Jane's last few lines in the latest episode:
"I recalled all the names of the 2,164 people that I met and shook hands with since Red John murdered my family. I might have missed one or two, but not many." He went on to say that he has narrowed down his list to 408. The Red Barn case further narrowed down the list. And now it seems Jane is about to share to Lisbon (decidedly his partner) the Red John shortlist.
Jane only started listing down names of Red John suspects a couple of episodes ago. Oscar Ardiles, Ellis Mars, Brett Partridge and Virgil Minelli are some of his initial suspects (apparently numbering to over two thousand). Ray Haffner's name was not on the page shown to viewers, but it does not mean he couldn't be Red John. After all, Jane never liked him when he first appeared in Season 4. Fans would also remember that these two shook hands - the very important clue from Lorelei Martins.
It has been hinted a few times in the series that Visualize leader Bret Stiles has links to Red John. Now it's been revealed that Haffner joined Visualize as a teenager. In 1988, at the time of the Red Barn incident, he was 21, physically capable of committing murder. The way Teresa Lisbon casually fired questions at him point in the Red John direction. Could Haffner be Red John?
VIDEO: The Mentalist Season 5 Episode 13, 'Red Barn' Sneak Peek
"We make a quantum leap forward. Jane and the audience will learn something incredibly important about Red John that makes his hunt inches away instead of miles," Heller was quoted by Entertainment Weekly months ago. He certainly was not kidding.
"I'm getting close, Lisbon. I'm getting very close," says Patrick Jane.