Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live. Through reviews, articles and discussions, we want to spark intellectual thought, spiritual growth and a desire to follow the command of Colossians 2:8: "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ."


Family uses Plugged In as a ‘significant compass’

"I am at a loss for words to adequately express how much it means to my husband and me to know that there is an organization like Focus that is rooting for us. Just today I was reading Psalm 37 and thinking about how your ministry provides ways to 'dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.' We have two teenagers and an 8-year-old in our household...Plugged In has become a significant compass for our family. All three of our kids are dedicated to their walk with Christ but they still encounter challenges. Thanks for all of your research and persistence in helping us navigate through stormy waters."

Plugged In helps college student stand-up for his belief

"Thanks for the great job you do in posting movie and television reviews online. I’m a college freshman and I recently had a confrontational disagreement with my English professor regarding an R-rated film. It is her favorite movie and she wanted to show it in class. I went to your Web site to research the film’s content. Although I had not seen the movie myself, I was able to make an educated argument against it based on the concerns you outlined. The prof said that she was impressed by my stand and decided to poll the whole class and give us a choice. We overwhelmingly voted to watch a G-rated movie instead! I’ve learned that I can trust your site and I will be using it a lot in the future.”

Plugged In brings ‘Sanity and Order’ to Non-believer

“Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I find your Plugged In Web site useful and thought-provoking. No one reviews movies like you do. Instead of being judgmental, you put entertainment ‘on trial.’ After presenting the evidence, you allow the jury of your readers to decide for themselves what they should do. In my opinion, you bring sanity and order to the wild world of modern day entertainment. Keep up the good work!”

Mom thinks Plugged In is the ‘BEST Christian media review site’

"Our family doesn't go to the movies until we go online and check out your assessment of a given film. I think this is the BEST Christian media review website that I've found, and I recommend it to my family and friends. Keep up the good work!"


Our hope is that whether you're a parent, youth leader or teen, the information and tools at Plugged In will help you and your family make appropriate media decisions. We are privileged to do the work we do, and are continually thankful for the generosity and support from you, our loyal readers, listeners and friends.

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

TV Series Review

Patrick Jane used to be a phony psychic. His heightened sensitivity to detail, manipulation skills and ability to read people helped him make a killing, financially. But ever since a psycho-serial killer murdered his wife and daughter, Jane's been using his not-so-mystical powers to solve crimes and catch bad 'uns—first as part of the California Bureau of Investigation and then for the big boys at the FBI, mostly partnering with Det. Teresa Lisbon and her homicide squad.

In his seventh season of CBS crime-fighting (at the time of this review update), Jane is more at peace, it would seem. He's managed to bring his family's killer to terminal justice. His partnership with Lisbon has become something more than a business relationship, and the two are talking about riding off into the sunset together.

If Jane can, that is. After learning the tics and tells of serial killers, settling in to be a beekeeper just doesn't have the same thrill.

Cut from the same cloth as Monk, The Mentalist features another smug-yet-likable San Francisco savant tormented by his wife's murder and committed to bringing evildoers to justice. Such men are 21st-century superheroes for people who'd rather TiVo CSI than pick up a comic book. No masks. No capes. No secret identities. Their powers are cerebral and their weaknesses are, well, far more common than a fatal kryptonite allergy.

Speaking of weaknesses, Jane is a pragmatist who'll lie, cheat or pick a man's pocket to solve a case. Old habits die hard for this ex-charlatan. But since he now scams only bad people, the show's creators approve of his ethical relativism.

Edgier than the aforementioned Monk but less graphic than CSI, The Mentalist can feature gory crime scenes and violent flashbacks. Characters can be verbally abusive and profane, and they often engage in frank sexual banter. In the show's tangled whodunits, the motives and red herrings frequently involve adulterous affairs or deviant behavior. Drugs and alcohol often play a supporting role.

The Mentalist is intriguing but frustrating at a spiritual level, as conversations about supernatural phenomena pit skepticism against faith. Jane doesn't buy into "real" psychics, but he also scoffs at the very notion of an afterlife. Conversely, a sweetly naive colleague at one point says she believes in heaven, but she's also open to metaphysics.

Still, smart and taut describe this CBS procedural. If it sought less shock value and acknowledged a rational spiritual middle ground, it could achieve (if you'll pardon the pun) a happy (if still fake) medium.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements


Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles



Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews

Mentalist: 12-28-2014
Mentalist: 11-17-2013
Mentalist: 11-4-2010



Readability Age Range



Simon Baker as Patrick Jane; Robin Tunney as Teresa Lisbon; Tim Kang as Kimball Cho; Owain Yeoman as Wayne Rigsby; Amanda Righetti as Grace Van Pelt






Record Label




On Video

Year Published



Paul Asay Bob Smithouser

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Get weekly e-news, Culture Clips & more!