"The Mentalist" Red Menace (TV Episode 2009) - Plot Summary Poster

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  • The team investigates a dangerous biker gang in order to gather information about the death of the attorney who represented the gang.

  • Well-groomed Gordon Hodge is found by joggers, robbed and killed in the Deerfield woods. He was the Sinner Saints motor-biker gang's full-time lawyer, who masterly prevented their contraband and other crimes leading to convictions. The team finds he cheated inscrutable gang leader Vaughn McBride with his biker lover, Constance. His wife Nina Hodge knew, but chose to ignore his infidelity to avoid further embarrassment, especially their gentle adolescent son Lucas. Furthermore Felicia Gutherie, whose brother was killed by the gang, wanted revenge. Jane unravels the truth and sees to justice for as many as possible.


The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • Deerfield, California.

    Jane enjoys the crime scenery. A well dressed man is beaten dead on the side of the road, his watch and wedding band are gone. One motorcycle wheel cufflink remains. Police think it's a carjacking.

    But you don't beat someone to steal from them, they decide. It's personal.

    Jane thinks he can figure out who the guy is by using his Bluetooth. They don't have the phone, but Jane thinks he can use the voice activation by guessing the one listing a guy like that would have. He tells it to dial "home." A woman answers. Jane describes the man. It's her husband, Gordon Hodges. When she asks if something's wrong, Jane passes the device off to Lisbon.

    They head to the victim's house. It's a fancy mansion with a motorcycle out front. Greg was a criminal defense attorney for a motorcycle gang called the Sinner Saints. They were his only client. His wife isn't surprised he's dead, she always worried about the gang.

    She says Gordon used to meet his clients at all hours and he'd been more on edge the last week. His wife and teenage son Lucas don't know why. He didn't even have a secretary, he didn't trust anyone. His wife thinks he might have learned something he shouldn't.

    Jane thinks they must be torn, living with such nice things while he defended gang members. The wife gets huffy, saying Gordon thought everyone had a right to a defense.

    Cho reports Hodges' car was found in a nearby lake. He was recently busted with coke and meth, but the charges were dropped. They think he made a deal with the D.A., which certainly would have been reason for the gang to kill him.

    Jane and Lisbon visit the gang. Cho calls, saying the D.A. didn't make a deal, the case wasn't solid. The D.A. told them to stay away from the gang, they've beaten every charge in the last few years.

    Jane and Lisbon walk into the biker bar, a dark dingy dive full of leather-clad tough guys. They're looking for Vonn McBride, but no one feels like helping.

    Jane sees someone in the back listening to them. Jane figures it's McBride and walks over to him. It is. He doesn't want to talk, until Jane asks them if they want to know who the informant is. They try to decide whether or not to buy his bluff.

    A biker dude walks up on Jane and he takes him apart psychologically, telling him he's hiding behind a broodish character.

    McBride offers Lisbon and Jane a drink. They accept. He knew Hodges liked drugs and wasn't worried. As his hot biker chick hangs on him, McBride says the guys loved Gordon, even though he couldn't ride worth a damn. He thinks another club trying to put them out of business might have killed him.

    Outside a woman (Molly Price) starts screaming for someone to get their hands off her. Libson rushes outside to see a woman screaming as two bikers drag her away from the club. They let her go and she runs off, calling them murderers as she hops in her truck and drives away.

    Inside McBride tells Jane he's never seen that woman before and Jane compliments him on his good lying skills, seeming actually impressed as he describes such keen ability as resembling a psychopath.

    In the office, Rigsby says there's no gang that would cross the Sinner Saints. They found nothing on the woman's truck license plate. Jane looks over their merchandise, apparently the gang has expanded a lot in the last few years.

    Hodges' last call the night he was killed came from Constance Hoyt with an unknown address. Three months ago there were a ton of calls between them. They find a bunch of calls between McBride and Constance Hoyt, too.

    Back at the bar, Lisbon tries to intercept Hoyt, McBride's hot biker chick girlfriend, but she hops on her bike and speeds off. Back in the car, Van Pelt races after her. Lisbon thinks the bike is too fast, but Van Pelt goes offroad and races through a field next to her. She cuts her off and Constance dumps her bike. They arrest her.

    Outside Hodges office, Rigsby explains he hates bikers because his dad was one. Rigsby and Cho find the door jimmied. They go inside, guns drawn. It's been ransacked, but is empty.

    "Burn in Hell" is spray painted on the door.

    In the interview room, Constance says she ran because she'd be dead if they saw her talking to cops. She says she wasn't sleeping with Gordon, but Jane doesn't buy it. Then she admits it was going on for a few months. She says it was OK because her boyfriend cheats on her.

    She says she called that night to break it off, but the line went dead. She says she doesn't know who the woman in the parking lot was, but she's come by a few times recently.

    Constance says only one other person knew about the affair.

    Cut to Hodges' wife admitting she knew about it after finding a hotel valet receipt and following her husband there. She says he promised to stop seeing her, but she didn't believe him. She says she knew about the drugs, but didn't tell CBI because they deserve to grieve without shame and scandal.

    At the office, Jane doesn't think the wife did it.

    They have security footage from previous break-in attempts at Hodges' office. It shows the woman from the parking lot.

    Back at the biker bar, Jane and Lisbon breeze in. They show McBride a photo of the woman from the parking lot. McBride asks if the woman found anything she shouldn't have. She didn't. Lisbon says the sooner they help, the sooner the CBI will be gone.

    McBride says her last name is Guthrie. She's the sister of a man he was recently acquitted of murdering. Jane asks McBride again who he thinks their informant is. McBride says there isn't one.

    After Jane leaves, McBride's guys wonder nervously why Jane brought up the informant. McBride brushes it off.

    Cho talks to Felicia Guthrie. She's sure McBride killed her brother. She says Hodges lied about her brother, saying he was unstable and used drugs.

    She admits to trashing his office. She wanted Hodge to understand what he'd done to their family. She admits going by his house the day he was killed, but leaving when she ran into his son, saying her problem wasn't with him. She says she was home when Hodges was killed.

    She was arrested in a road rage incident a few months ago. Cho calls her an angry person. He thinks she went for Hodge because she couldn't get to McBride.

    Cho, Lisbon and Jane discuss Guthrie. Jane suggests they let her go and wait for her to do something impulsive to cover her tracks.

    Jane announces he's going for fresh air. He goes to Hodges house and finds his son Lucas practicing driving in the driveway.

    Jane asks him about Felicia Guthrie coming to the house. He says he saw her hop the gate and stopped her, but didn't tell his parents because he felt bad for her.

    Jane sees him struggling to drive and offers to help him learn, telling him to trust his instincts.

    Out on the road, Jane guesses that Hodges' was always on the phone and busy around his son. He works his way up to asking if he minded his dad doing drugs and cheating on his mom. He says his dad's gang job made him cooler than he was at school and, besides, his dad promised to stop doing those things.

    Jane asks what Felicia was saying. He says it was ranting.

    Back at the house, Jane reminds Hodges' son to trust his instincts, they're always right.

    Cho and Rigsby sit surveillance at Felicia's house. It's late at night and she doesn't seem to be going anywhere. Then they hear motorcycles in the distance - a lot of them.

    They call for back-up and grab guns as the bikes pull up. Rigsby, with his badge out and gun drawn, tells them to do the smart thing and leave. Cho reinforces the point by aiming his shotgun at them. The dozens of bikers drive away.

    The next day, Lisbon asks Felicia to stay away from the gang. When she asks what Cho and Rigsby were doing outside, Jane says they thought she killed Hodges and were waiting for her to cover her tracks.

    She notices Jane has a cup from her house. He admits going through her laundry. But he tells Cho and Rigsby he couldn't find any evidence. He looked everywhere but the garbage. Because it's garbage.

    Rigsby takes Jane's cup and goes to the garbage. He opens it and calls Lisbon over. They find Hodges' missing cufflink and sleeve inside.

    At the office, Felicia Guthrie insists she didn't kill him and thinks she was set up. Jane has asked Hodges' wife and son Lucas to come down.

    Jane tells the Hodges that Guthrie killed Gordon, they just need Lucas to confirm he saw Felicia at the house. Lucas hesitates and says she wasn't the one. They take Guthrie away and Jane reminds Lucas to follow his instincts. Lucas seems like he wants to say something and when his mom says the "bitch" killed his dad, he finally does.

    Lucas tells his mom it couldn't have been her. Finally he shouts that it was him.

    They talk to him in interview. He describes being out for a drive with his distracted dad and him feeling bad about Felicia and her dead brother.

    Finally, the next time his dad's phone rang, he grabbed it from him and heard Constance calling him "Gordon baby." So he pulled over and tossed the phone into the woods. Then, thinking of the drugs and the cheating, he beat the crap out of his dad. He called his mom and she told him what to do, but he couldn't get the cufflink out.

    He said his mom told him not to go to the police and said it would be OK. Jane says it might be, someday. He apologizes to his mom as they arrest him.

    Later, Lisbon wonders how the missing cufflink ended up in Felicia's trash. She guesses if she checked evidence she wouldn't find the one they had. Jane says he needed Lucas to see Felicia get arrested and he needed something to arrest her for, so he made it happen.

    Lisbon isn't too upset, but wonders about the emotional toll of letting Felicia think she was going to prison. Jane agrees she needs justice.

    At the biker bar, McBride gets a call. His guys watch him get up and go outside. He calls to someone in the dark and walks over to see Jane in a fedora in the shadows. Jane tells him conspiratorially that they found Hodges' killer. McBride wonders what's with the get up and covert meeting. Jane says he didn't think he was welcome inside.

    Jane gives him an envelope and says if he opens it the rat in his gang will be revealed. As Jane walks away he tells McBride to turn around and try not to look too guilty.

    McBride turns to see all of his guys in his face. They take the envelope - it's full of cash. They drag him inside as he yells that he was set up.

    In the shadows, Jane tips his hat to Felicia Guthrie, who saw the whole thing from her car.

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