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TV REVIEW: Elementary “For All You Know”

By on March 6, 2015

Lucy Liu as Joan Watson. Image © CBS

By Cindy Jackson

At the beginning of this week’s episode, Sherlock receives a call from Captain Gregson. He tells Sherlock that there are two detectives from a nearby precinct who want to speak with him regarding a homicide investigation. Shortly after his arrival, Sherlock realizes that he was not called in to consult on the case, but to be questioned as a suspect.

A woman named Maria Gutierrez was found dead after being missing for three years. In her possession was a note in Sherlock’s handwriting. The problem is, Maria went missing while Sherlock was actively and heavily using drugs and he has no recollection of even knowing her.  After a few more questions, Captain Gregson demands the officers leave. (Can I adopt him as my big brother, too?)

Sherlock has a conversation with Joan in which he confesses he is not entirely sure that he is innocent. As a suspect he cannot interfere in the investigation, so Joan steps up and looks into it.

Meanwhile Sherlock pays a visit to an old aquaintence of his, Oscar (and by acquaintence I mean he sold Sherlock drugs).

“I can’t believe it’s been three years.”

“Yes, well, time flies when you’re on heroin.”

Oscar told Sherlock he also has no recollection of Maria.

Upon researching Maria, Joan finds out that in addition to her cleaning job, Maria also volunteered at a local soup kitchen. Detective Bell offers to compile a list of people who frequent there and have criminal records.

Joan calls Sherlock to tell him the news, as he is making his way home. As he disconnects the call he is confronted by a man who, with an accomplice, beats the living snot out of him and takes off (which was very well done and horrible to watch). Sherlock manages to swipe one of their wallets during the melee. (Of course he does.) The wallet belongs to Maria’s brother.

Our duo visit the brother the following day (so much for staying out of the investigation, Holmes). He is not cooperative at first, but Sherlock offers to break his own hand with a wrench in exchange for answers. He doesn’t take Holmes up on his offer, but admits that his sister was being hit on by someone at one of the offices she was cleaning. It was being rented out by a councilman named Barkley.

Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes. Image © CBS

Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes. Image © CBS

Barkley admits to Joan and Sherlock that one of his employees did make unwanted advances on Maria, an offence for which he was fired. Barkley then offers all of his files for them to look at.

Joan finds Sherlock thinking about the case, as he tends to do, and looking at a photo of himself that he took around the time Maria was murdered. He calls himself a strong suspect. Joan refuses to believe that he killed Maria because she knows him so well.  In a passionate monologue, Sherlock insists that while that is true, Joan never met the man in that photograph because he was a completely different person. He said that even if he did not deliver the fatal blow, he may have missed something key that would have saved her life had he been sober. It is in this scene where he fervently delivers my favorite line of the night;

“The fact that I remember so little from that time has been nothing but a tremendous relief to me…until now.” (Lots of applause for Jonny Lee Miller).

Bell gives them the results of the soup kitchen list, and Sherlock immediately recognizes one of the names. Oscar.

Sherlock goes to Oscar’s apartment, breaks down the door, and roughs him up a bit. (All the remaining applause for Sherlock using brawn instead of brains for a change. I like it.) He demands Oscar tell him what he knows about Maria. Oscar, who was going through withdrawal at the moment, insists that Sherlock did kill her.

Next thing we see is Sherlock being arrested for the murder. Apparently, someone told the police that they overheard Sherlock threatening Maria a few days before she disappeared.

Joan assumes it was Oscar and goes to speak with him again. Oscar swears he did not give the statement that got Sherlock arrested.  He gives Joan bloody clothes he found at Sherlock’s place. Oscar thinks this evidence will nail Sherlock but Joan thinks it will exonerate him.

The clothes are not Sherlock’s size. Joan theorizes that Maria witnessed a murder and took the clothes. When the killer realized she took them, he killed her, too. She shows Sherlock the clothes and he tells her he has seen that exact shirt recently – on Mr. Barkley in a photo in his office.

Joan, Gregson and Bell go back to speak to Mr. Barkley.  They tell him that they know the person who said they heard Sherlock threaten Maria. His name is Eddie Beynon and he works for a company to which Barkley refers millions of dollars worth of business. Sounds like maybe he would be willing to lie for Barkley.

Barkley denies it, of course. However he turns fifty shades of pale when they mention a woman named Kelsey Pryor. She was the wife of a friend of his with whom he had an affair. She must have broken it off or threatened to go public. Whatever the case, Barkley killed her. He went to his office to change and dispose of his bloody clothes. Maria took them and when Barkley realized this, he killed her a few days later.

Joan tells Sherlock what happened. The note in Sherlock’s writing was simply to set a time to speak about what she had seen and done. However, he cannot stop dwelling on the fact that he is ashamed of that part of his life, and that he completely forgot someone who came to him for help.

The concluding scene is Sherlock approaching Oscar about the possibility of getting sober. I wouldn’t hold my breath, Holmes.

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