Thursday, November 29, 2012

'Elementary' Review - 1.08 The Long Fuse

        On the newest episode of CBS' Elementary, Sherlock investigates an explosion that kills two people at a high-end PR firm and discovers a crime that's been lying dormant for years; and Watson encourages Sherlock to finally pick a sponsor.

        Lisa Edelstein is perhaps the biggest name guest star the show has brought on for a case-of-the-week story. Sure, other big TV names like Anika Noni Rose or Callie Thorne have also appeared. But in those two instances, those characters were separate from the intricate details and were more or less employed to highlight new characters nuances and add depth to the backstories of Lucy Liu's Watson and Aidan Quinn's Captain Gregson. This episode instead used Edelstein as the predominate focus of the main case which made the closing reveal of her being the murderer seem inevitable, predictable and too lackadaisical. The concept of casting noticeable character actors in the guilty roles is one very common throughout the whole police procedural genre. If the first person the detective interviews isn't the killer, then it surely will be the guest star with the biggest name. Earlier episodes - like "Rat Race" and "Lesser Evils" - the show already used this plotting of casting recognizable character actors from cable series in small or trivial roles who, in the final act are revealed to be the true culprit. Unfortunately, the series has fallen into this rut and made it very predictable to determine who the killer is before Sherlock actually deduces it.
        The show over the course of these first few episodes has made it point to show that Sherlock and Watson are together for only a limited time. This was especially highlighted in this episode as Watson urged and forced Sherlock to choose a sponsor. On one hand, this made me happy because it allowed Lucy Liu to once again be a part of the main investigation instead of off during her own side stuff in the past few weeks. However, the message and theme used in this episode came across as too heavy handled. It was perfectly clear that she is leaving soon in the first few minutes but the episode decided to make that small idea into an episode's entire plot. It wasn't bad but it felt too bland and drawn-out with no real payoff. It does make the inevitable episode where she intends to leave very interesting because I want to know how the show will justify keeping the pairing intact.

So what did everyone think of the episode? How disappointed were you that Lisa Edelstein was the killer? Share your thoughts in the comments.