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Character Development: CBI Agent Wayne Rigsby, The Mentalist “Bloodsport” 

Photo Credit: Cliff Lipson/CBS

Owain Yeoman as Wayne Rigsby has been one of my favorite characters on The Mentalist, even when we had to deal with the love story between Rigsby and Van Pelt. That part is over, thank goodness (hopefully they keep these two apart). In “Bloodsport”, we started off the episode with Rigsby on a date with a woman who clearly had some aggression issues; she seemed to be getting too into the MMA tournament she was viewing. It was clear Rigsby wasn’t feeling the same about the woman. After all, her turn-ons included loving the fact her date was in law enforcement because he gets to beat up people all the time. Awkward.

The real character development came when Rigsby was called in for an interview with J.J. LaRoche, who put him on the grill from the beginning by introducing the fact that his father is a known felon. LaRoche insinuated the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. As he was being confronted with his past, Yeoman did a stellar job of portraying the discomfort at being uncovered by this man. He quickly distanced himself from his father by stating unequivocally that he hasn’t had any contact with him in several years. As the plot progressed, it was clear LaRoche had done his homework and Rigsby was caught in a lie.

Another development occurred between partners Rigsby and Cho, played with perfect deadpan by Tim Kang. These two have always been tight as partners but when Rigsby revealed he involved Cho when providing an alibi for his father, that relationship was called into question. Although Cho backed him during the interview with LaRoche, there was definitely a change in the tone between the two. I look forward to seeing the direction The Mentalist will take with this breach between partners.

I also want to know how Rigsby ended up becoming a CBI agent considering his background. This calls for an origin story, don’t you think?

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1 Comment

  1. clare patterson

    Can anyone tell me what happened with the storyline about Rigsby getting married and having a baby? I missed some episodes and now all of the sudden he is thinking about Van Pelt, not wearing a wedding ring – if he did indeed get married to the girl he got pregnant. I am lost with that whole story line!

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