As of season five, he is a student at Rockland University. In "Dead Air" he is a host of a radio show, and has cheated on his girlfriend TJ which he later regrets and apologizes for.
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He uses his knowledge to help Melinda and Eli solve the mystery of the Shadows and Shinies, also aiding them in crossing over spirits. Ned, Melinda, and Eli take turns keeping the Book of Changes. He is a widower; his wife, Kate, died in a crane accident before his first appearance in the series. At the beginning of season two, Melinda Gordon first seeks Rick Payne's help to save her deceased friend, Andrea Marino , who is being attacked by a dark spirit, Romano.
She finds him teaching an occult class at Rockland University. She continues to seek Rick's help for various paranormal occurrences throughout the rest of the season. Rick first meets Melinda's husband, Jim Clancy , when Melinda recommends Jim talk to him about a ghost. It is in "The Night We Met" that Rick first questions Melinda about whether or not she believes she has supernatural abilities, as well as meets Melinda's close friend and co-worker, Delia Banks. It is only in the episode "Cat's Claw" that Melinda finally informs Rick of her abilities. In the season finale, Rick and Melinda are seen working very closely trying to figure out who Gabriel Lawrence , a dark Ghost Whisperer, really is.
Rick, Jim, and Melinda go as far as breaking into Gabriel's home. It is also revealed Rick's wife, Kate, is a ghost who worked for the dark side but would later cross over into the Light after telling her husband a secret she had been keeping from him since she died. The character joins the main cast in season three. At the beginning of this season, Rick appears to be worried about Melinda after her near-death experience.
He also works a large deal more with Melinda on some things. Jim and Delia are aided by a ghost named Tessa, an ancestor of Melinda's, and locate the trapped Melinda. Rick also helps Melinda search town death records for information about Tessa, who at the time Melinda believed to be Gabriel's mother, though a group of ghosts attempt to stop them from finding anything.
In "Double Exposure", Rick's date and co-worker, Claudia, is haunted by a ghost who makes it so she cannot appear in any pictures. It seems Rick had somewhat of a crush on Melinda when they first met; he was clearly embarrassed by everything he said to her, afraid it might sound stupid.
The crush dissipated after he met Jim, Melinda's husband, but they remain very close friends. Abrasive at times, Professor Rick Payne is often perceived as obnoxious on first impression, but most of the time he means well. Sarcastic and sometimes insensitive, he has a tendency to shout randomly and hates to be awakened by late night telephone calls. Even though he does not appreciate the title, he is rather well known as a genius, and spouts useless information at times.
He has admitted that he talks a lot when he is nervous, but he talks a lot whether he is nervous or not. Professor Payne is quick-witted and highly intelligent, taking delight in annoying people and considers the reactions he gets from being rude amusing. He feels that he is taken for granted too often and likes to tell people so, though some believe it is only a technique to make others feel sorry for him. He has a certain charm, despite his ability to annoy even those with saintly amounts of patience, and he is a good friend to those who can stand to stick with him.
Eli James Jamie Kennedy was introduced in the first episode of season four. During a building fire on the Rockland University campus on October 3, , he died but was brought back, causing him to have a near death experience. It unlocked an ability which allows him to hear ghosts, but doesn't allow him to see them like Melinda.
Throughout the fourth season, he adjusts to his newfound ability and starts helping her cross ghosts over. Eli also helps Melinda when she needs information from the Police. Zoe, previous Guardian of the Book of Changes and Eli's ex-girlfriend, died after falling off the stairs in an attempt to stop a thief influenced by a Watcher.
At the end of Season 4, Zoe crossed into the light or so it seems after telling Eli he was the next Guardian of the Book of Changes. In Season 5, it is revealed Eli is one of Ned's university lecturers. Evelyn, Eli's mother, died 7 years ago, even though in "Stage Fright" he told Melinda and Jim he was getting an autograph for his mom who watches the show which was visiting Grandview. Eli and Melinda over time become very close friends. At first, Eli thought that Melinda was crazy as almost everyone always does when she shares about her gift until he realized he could do the same thing almost.
As he learns more about his gift, he becomes more and more willing to help Melinda with the hauntings and even enjoys it.
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Beth Gordon portrayed by Anne Archer , Melinda's mother and Aiden's grandmother, has the ability to communicate with ghosts, but chooses not to. She never came to terms with her mother or Melinda when it came to their gifts and prefers not to speak of anything that has to do with ghosts, or her husband Tom Gordon. Before she met Tom, she was in a relationship with a man named Paul Eastman, whom she was having a baby with when he went to jail.
Once he died, Beth married Tom and never told Melinda about her real father. She is then invited to watch the tall ships come into the harbor with Melinda, Jim and their friends, Rick, Delia, and Ned.
Mary Ann Patterson , played by June Squibb - Melinda's grandmother and Aiden's great grandmother, now deceased, was a person who spoke to ghosts. It was she who gave lost spirits the title "earthbound. Her gift was passed down to Melinda, the current "ghost whisperer. She helps Melinda bring ghosts to peace through dreams in two episodes: "Voices" and "The Gathering". It is later revealed, in Season 3, that Melinda's maternal great-great-great-grandmother, Tessa Amy Acker , could also communicate with ghosts and Melinda helps her cross over.
Her married name was Patterson, according to Melinda. Melinda was in high school when her grandmother died and Melinda did not realize it until her grandmother said something about presence and then it dawned on Melinda that her grandmother was talking about her death and Melinda's loss of her grandmother. Romano John Walcutt , also known as "Wide Brim" due to his outfit: black suit and black hat was an American evil cult leader who lived in Spain, and who committed suicide along with followers in The energy of the mass suicide made him powerful and strong, and he went to the Dark Side.
He can be considered Melinda's true archenemy.
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He started to trick souls to go with him, by making them refuse to "cross over" into The Light. When Romano first appeared on the show, his appearances were quick and mysterious, and he was usually attached to a laughing man who had, theretofore, never spoken.
He always seemed to be observing Melinda. When in the episode "The One", the final episode of season one, a plane crashes outside Grandview, he attempts to gather all of the lost souls from the accident. This is the first time he declares his hatred and rivalry to Melinda, and he says he would release all "his earthbound souls" in exchange for her one soul.
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Romano and Melinda confront each other verbally, each using persuasive speeches directed to the souls from the plane crash. Finally, Romano manages to get at least seven of the souls, including a stewardess who later does go into the Light in season two. Melinda gathers all her strength to make Andrea cross over, and she learns with the help of Professor Rick Payne the identity of Romano. Payne also warns Melinda about Romano's real purpose: to destroy good spirits the ones in charge of helping souls to "cross over" into The Light, such as Melinda in order to make the dead stronger than the living, and to be endlessly powerful.
According to Payne, Dark Spirit Romano would literally take over a weak soul in a weak body to make too much harm to humanity, until the last trace of joy and happiness vanished from earth. It is impossible for Romano to get closer when Melinda helps spirits to "cross over" into The Light, because there is too much love, and love is what Romano hates. Romano last appeared in season two, episode one, when he was unsuccessful in trying to possess Andrea's soul.
However, mid-season two, Melinda seems to foreshadow Romano's comeback, when Delia Banks tries on a black hat which resembles Romano's, although nothing arises from this. Melinda loosely references Romano in an episode of season five; when discussing the Shadows, she mentions that she's seen similar ghosts before, ones which didn't "cross over, so much as "cross under" much like Romano does with his followers.
This reference could tell viewers that Romano ultimately became a Shadow after Andrea crossed over, and this is why he does not appear to Melinda for the rest of the series. Delia was married to Charlie Banks Frederic Lehne until he died three years prior to Delia's first appearance on the show.
They had a loving relationship. After a fire at the place where Charlie worked, Charlie was said to be different and more of a family man. We also learn that it was Tim who saved Charlie's life. Together with Charlie, Delia had her twelve-year-old son, Ned. Charlie, Delia's dead husband, helps him by knocking over a pot of lavender roses Delia likes. Tim also buys a motorcycle exactly like the one Charlie used to have.
At the end of the episode, they are seen walking away hand in hand.