Television: Elementary, "The Leviathan"

In a twist on the typical Holmes portrayal, Elementary has opted to make the protagonist far more sexual. Maybe this is to play better for American audiences? After all, Americans can't always detect sexual tension if they aren't clear that sex is an option. Meanwhile, Brits like to rely on repression as a way for building that tension.

Watson, on the other hand, is perhaps more ascetic, though it's been made clear she's had relationships, so she's not entirely asexual. While this flips the usual Watson-and-Holmes dynamic (Watson normally being the womanizer), it plays old-school in that here the woman is monogamous while the leading man proves his attractiveness by rotating through bedmates.

As for the story: Holmes is hired to find out how someone managed to get through a top-of-the-line security system (the titular Leviathan) and, via some convoluted plotting, ends up on the trail of a group of jurors who became a den of thieves. And since we've more or less discovered Elementary can't do anything more than murders, one of the jurors begins killing the others.

B Story? Watson's family insists she attend a get-together when her brother and his girlfriend come to town. She pleads having to take care of her client, but Holmes goes behind her back and breaks into her phone to text Watson's brother that she'll be there—and will be bringing Holmes with her. Watson accuses Holmes of wanting to put her family under a microscope, but I'd say it's more likely he wants to observe her "in her natural habitat" or some such.

Holmes does a nice turn for Watson by winning her family's respect not only for himself but for Watson, but of course demurs when Watson attempts to thank him. The dinner and cab scenes sum up everything I really enjoy about this show.

Meanwhile, the jury members must wonder why some British dude is thanking them for doing their civic duties; after all, he wouldn't be eligible to sit on a jury himself. Via a process of elimination that mostly has to do with which jurors died and which didn't, plus Watson noticing that a blood sample leading back to a completely unrelated person is connected to a marrow transplant, Holmes & Co. finally figure out who dunnit.

Watson's mother comes to visit to urge her to stick with Holmes even after her time as his sober companion is up. After all, Watson has never seemed happier than when helping Holmes solve cases. (Really? What's she like when she's unhappy, I wonder?) It's certainly nice to see some progress in this arena. Though I wouldn't want things to move too fast, and they've done a nice job of slowly growing the relationship between Holmes and Watson, there's also a danger of being too subtle for too long. This episode's hints were pitch perfect, and the complexity of the relationship is a wonderful seasoning over what would be relatively bland procedural plots.

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