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July 31, 2014

Psych totally disses The Mentalist

by Kona Gallagher, posted Jul 27th 2009 9:00PM
psych promo, usaI've been hearing about this for a couple of days, but today USA just posted Psych's new promo on the show's official Twitter feed. In it, they make the not-so-subtle point that The Mentalist kind of ripped them off.

To be fair, when I first heard of The Mentalist, the exact way it was described to me was, "It's like Psych, but a drama." So I can see where The Mentalist's ridiculously high ratings and Emmy noms may rub some people associated with Psych the wrong way.

However, Psych's assertion is kind of like Scrubs saying that Grey's Anatomy ripped them off because they're both shows that follow hospital interns who transition into residents. Granted, the "fake psychic" genre is slightly more specific, but other than that, Psych and The Mentalist don't have a whole lot in common. Regardless, the promo is pretty funny, and I've helpfully embedded it below.


PSYCH on USA Network - The Mentalist Spoof - Click here for funny video clips

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christine

While I think the mentalist was DEFINITELY ispired (at the very least) by Psych, I don't think Psych is really trying to insult them. They mention them all the time, typically in a positive manner. It's just one of their rolling jokes now, like the pineapple. If you really think Psych is trying to burn the Mentalist you obviously haven't watched enough of it to understand the humor, and that's fine.

August 14 2009 at 6:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sassyy2009

I think it is very likely that creators of both shows came up with similar premises simultaneously, without either ripping off the other. This happens all the time - great minds think alike. Remember Chicago Hope and ER, The Invasion, and the two other sci-fi series that year (brain freeze, forgot their names) etc. There are only a finite number of plots, it's what you do with the premise regarding characters, setting etc. that matters.

July 31 2009 at 3:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
C.A.

Wonder if some writers are bitter maybe?

July 29 2009 at 6:10 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Dan

In my opinion, people who claim that The Mentalist ripped off Psych aren't saying that the Mentalist has the same kind of tone, characters, or follows the same kind of procedure (a lot of detective shows have the same kind of procedural elements though). The criticism is that The Mentalist ripped off Psych's basic premise - that the main character is using his own personal skills in order to pretend to be a psychic and help solve crimes. Without this basic premise to start off with, I don't think The Mentalist happens.

July 28 2009 at 2:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
izikavazo

The Scrubs Grey's Anatomy thing, or better yet the ER Scrubs thing is totally different. Creating a comedy after a drama is understandible. Creating a drama after a comedy is just odd.
I think what really gets to me is that the Mentalist people/CBS fans were completely unaware of Psych. It's so far outside of their little world that they didn't know it existed. Plus it's on CBS, so I hate it anyways.

July 28 2009 at 2:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
lab2king

I thought the clip was hilarious. I love the humor that Psych displays on a regular basis, and this promo fits in well with the rest of the amazing promos for this show (ebony and ivory will go down in history as one of the best promos for a show ever)...

Also it's a joke everybody, both shows are great, doesn't need to be taken that seriously.

Stuff like this just makes me more excited about next friday's premiere.

July 28 2009 at 11:21 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Happy Steve

Funny ad. I love Psych, but really, wasn't it a love child of Monk and The Dead Zone to begin with? heh.

July 28 2009 at 10:14 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Happy Steve's comment
StillBash

That's what I said back in the day - it's Monk for Twens.

July 28 2009 at 2:17 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jake

Did the Mentalist "rip-off" the characters and format of Psych? No. Did they take the same concept and take it in a new direction? Absolutely. Anyone who thinks the concepts are not similar has not watched both. I don't think that makes them "exactly the same" or "carbon copy" (certainly not legally), but it is enough that some good natured ribbing from the Psych camp should be expected.

I actually think Scrubs has more of an argument with Greys. In that case, the "knock-off" elements are a little too derivative. "Hospital interns who transition into residents" isn't quite accurate. Closer is: "Hospital interns who transition into residents, first-person voice-over narration that attempts to draw larger moral or philosophical conclusions from the interns lives, heavy use of hip, emotive music during dramatic set pieces, and lots workplace-inappropriate sexual relationships." Make it surgeons instead of general internists, a female lead for a male, mostly drama and not comedy, and an hour instead of 30 minutes, and you've got Grey's Anatomy. Heck, even the stories sometimes overlap. There were a couple of episodes that I watched of Greys (I stopped watching 2 seasons ago) where I looked at my wife and said "Scrubs already did this."

July 28 2009 at 10:14 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Adam

But "The Mentalist" is different b/c Jane wears a VEST instead of a polo. See guys, that Bruno Heller is an original son of a gun. I can't believe this is even still being debated.....at the very least "The Mentalist" borrowed its concept from Psych, and occasionally improves on it. At worst, it completely rips "Psych" off and turned an original concept into CSI-lite. I've argued this before, and the dates back it up. If you combine Shawn Spencer and Charlie Crews you get Patrick Jane. "Life" premiered a year before "The Mentalist", and "Psych" two years before it. But, the nature of showbiz is taking a concept and attempting to improve on it, so I certainly don't begrudge "The Mentalist" for combining two shows I love. However, I'd like to hear their excuse for having a 2:1 bad-to-good show ratio. I imagine it doesn't matter to most people since they put Amanda Righetti in the tightest shirts imaginable.

July 28 2009 at 9:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
LC

Is that promo really considered a diss? I just took it as some good natured ribbing.

Don't both shows do this, with Shawn and his dad saying they watch the Mentalist on one episode and an episode of the Mentalist having a pineapple reference.

I think both shows mutually respect each other and are just having fun with it without any malicious intent.

July 28 2009 at 9:27 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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