Elementary – On the Line

by Alan Rapp on November 24, 2013

in Television Reviews 

  • Title: Elementary – On the Line
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Elementary - On the Line

Sherlock Holmes (Jonny Lee Miller) and Watson (Lucy Liu) investigate a skillfully managed suicide by a young woman attempting to frame the man (Troy Garity) she believes mutilated and killed her sister (but who never seriously considered a suspect in the case) for her own staged murder. Although Holmes’ quick deductions at the scene prove the man’s innocence for the previous night’s killing, the consulting detective suspects that the suspect may have indeed killed the young woman’s sister (and possibly several others).

Talking with the detective (Chris Bauer) who worked the original case proves of no help, but when the serial killer stops by late at night to their home for a friendly chat, Holmes is positive his initial suspicions are true and further digging by both he and Watson discover two other probable victims. As Watson and Holmes each separately interview the other victim’s families, Captain Gregson (Aidan Quinn) has a talk with the miffed detective over Holmes attitude to him personally and preferential position within the department (which he implies other police officers share – something Watson can confirm and partially holds Holmes’ contempt for others to blame).

The killer continues to play both Holmes and Watson by first sending them the grieving mother of a fake victim and later riling up Holmes enough to get a judge to grant a restraining order against the detective and his partner after Holmes punches the man in the face. Although Elementary has gotten away from Holmes’ impulse control issues, “On the Line” does a good job of bringing them back into play with both the guilt Holmes feels about destroying the well-deserved frame-job a woman gave her life for and the enjoyment their killer takes in his various games including frequenting the same chat rooms used by the families of his victims under a variety of aliases.

After being thrown-off the case by Gregson and taunted once again by the killer after he takes another victim, Holmes decides the suicidal woman who brought the entire situation to his attention might have had the right idea. After Watson convinces her partner that framing the man for murder isn’t an option, the pair turn their attention not to the man’s victims but where and how he must be housing them secretly before killing them. This leads Holmes back into the good graces of the NYPD by helping Gregson catch their killer and recover not one but two women being kept against their will.

Aside from presenting a perplexing case for Holmes in the manner of a suspect he knows, but can’t prove, to be guilty, “On the Line” also has several interesting plot threads including the discussion of Watson and Holmes over the effort to be nice and the beginning of possibly ongoing issues between the detective and various members of the NYPD. The episode ends on a nice note where Holmes admits, but doesn’t apologize, for his demeanor and warns Watson that their continue friendship will, from time to time, most likely create trying circumstances for her.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

CoosCoos November 25, 2013 at 10:11 am

I always enjoy the quiet scenes of Holmes and Watson talking, as they did here with the discussion about being “nice”. Holmes always starts off sounding like he’s going to apologize for something and commit to changing himself, but then winds up explaining why he is that way and why he won’t change. Always well done.

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