A rare Virginian map is stolen form a library and a guard is found dead at the scene. Sherlock, Kitty and Joan pool their resources together to look into the whereabouts of the map and the reason for it’s abduction. The story takes Holmes and co across New York and down to Virginia. This forgotten map stands in the way of an elaborate casino being built which might disrupt a wealthy businesses, or their might be another game being played altogether. Meanwhile, Joan is upset with Sherlock for the way he is treating Kitty and the type of errands she is being sent on.
6 episodes in and Elementary has begun to dip. It continues to provide mild entertainment but it is lacking in thrills. You don’t watch with bated breath or feel shocked when revelations are made. Joan is back this episode and goes right back to nagging at everything Sherlock is doing without taking any time to understand why. She might be upset with Sherlock’s handle of Kitty but instead of going to him first she tries planting seeds into Kitty’s mind about the importance of ‘space’ between her and Sherlock. There doesn’t need to be emotional drama between our heroes but the show thinks it is important, but is Elementary taking things too far? The show has no clue what it is doing with the supporting characters. Nor does it have any clue what it’s doing with the Joan/Sherlock feud, are they still feuding? Why is she not working any of her own cases if she’s Ms Awesome PI now? I haven’t seen a single moment where Joan looks happy to be working with Sherlock again. This seems to go against the very importance of the Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson partnership. They need to get on! They need to be friends and they need to work together otherwise this iconic partnership is pointless.
As for the mystery, it served its purpose but overall left me underwhelmed. When you have a storyline about old maps, forgeries, potential high stake investments you’d think something a bit more dramatic could have ensued. A problem Elementary has is ‘hiding’ the bad guy. It always seems that the first people you meet is behind it all. Then your traipse through businessmen after businessmen of potential other suspects until you go back to first apparently innocent person. The formula is too standard. Every episode seems to end with the killer being ‘tricked’ or called back into the station for ‘questioning’ to have the evidence revealed to them. A a writer of crime fiction I can safely say there are plenty of more dramatic ways of end a story than being back in the boring station.
One element I have enjoyed has been the Sherlock/Kitty relationship. I enjoy when Kitty takes the lead on deductions because she does it in an authentic way, unlike Watson. Nevertheless, while Joan is whining about Sherlock’s interference in Kitty’s life, he dramatically tells Watson to step aside as his and Joan’s partnership was nothing like how his and Kitty’s is. Her prior circumstance back in London, the abuse she sustained, makes her case a night and day difference. Sherlock feels protective over her and in order to keep her out of the way of potential threats sent her on degrading errands. Sherlock admits this to Kitty for her to respond with gratitude, as she, too, was scared of getting close to another ‘man’. Sherlock kindly offers to allow this young man, who fancies her, to accompany them to an exhibit.
There’s some interesting aspects to season 3, mostly to do with Sherlock and Kitty. As a procedural show it falls into the habit of being too procedural. I’d like to see the show break free of that. Show’s like The Blacklist, Agents of Shield, and other ‘procedurals’ are able to utilise that 40 minutes per week so much better than Elementary. As this is America’s only Sherlock at the moment, it’s very disappointing. They desperately need to improve it.