Previously on Elementary: Déjà Vu All Over Again.
What do a pretend holding cell riot, a blizzard, a murder, and about 200 stolen smartphones have in common?
They’re all being pestered by two consulting detectives with things to do and places to be.
I don’t think I’ve had as much fun on this show as while watching Gregson organising his people into making enough noise for ten holding cells full of chuckleheads; that was some solid sound FX-ing. And I bet they had fun, too. As do Sherlock and Joan with their blood spatter lessons.
Also, poor Clyde (not in frame)…
The bigger news, however: meet Ms Hudson, a brilliant scholar, friend of Sherlock’s, and: a transgender woman, played by an actual transsexual actress, Candis Cayne. And her storyline wasn’t driven by her being transgender, but by her life choices as the person she chooses to be. She’s not shamed for her former kept-woman lifestyle, she merely realises that her priorities have changed since she was younger and that she expects different things from relationships now. She changed her mind, and she kept her agency, and she’ll be fine even if being on her own may be difficult for a while. Accurate representation among not just the lead, but the supporting cast goes a long way.
Another Good Thing™: Joan getting dressed. One, she demands Sherlock turn his back. Two, the camera doesn’t move from its position, zooms maybe once or twice, but only when Joan speaks and to show her reactions. She fixes her zipper herself — other narratives would use this for physical tension between the leads, Elementary doesn’t. Joan fixes her own shirt while mentally strangling Sherlock, and that’s it. The camera doesn’t sexualise her getting dressed, the male gaze stays firmly out of it. There are no panning angles, her body is not mapped for viewing pleasure. She’s just a person rudely woken and getting dressed on her terms. Sherlock doesn’t once break her rules on this, and neither does the show. (Not like a certain recent SciFi blockbuster did. Ugh.)
Apart from the discovery of Ms Hudson and Joan’s getting dressed, this episode was a bit bland, I must say, case-wise. I can’t exactly put my finger on why, but the case was just sort of… there. I did pay attention, but I didn’t really feel the suspense; everything else around it was more interesting than the continuing puzzle of breaking in there and then up there and then stealing a whole load of money out of the money-shredder… To be fair, I don’t talk about the cases much, anyway, but this one took the biscuit.
Next: Dead Man’s Switch.