Television: Elementary, "The One Percent Solution"

This episode sees the return of Gareth Lestrade, once of Scotland Yard but now acting as "security tsar" for CEO Richard Balsille. (Does this mean Lestrade lives in New York now? But hasn't bothered to come see Holmes?)

In any case, Lestrade is given access to a bomb investigation because one of the victims worked for Balsille's company. The episode ends up being less about whodunit—as ever, it's one of the people they introduce early and then hope you'll forget about until the end—as it is about Lestrade and Holmes getting tangled in each other's issues.

Holmes, for one, is a bit put out that Lestrade has managed to land such a gig, particularly after taking credit for Holmes's own work. Now it seems to Holmes that Lestrade is only continuing to fake it to make it. Still, Holmes does his best to marginalize Lestrade and focus on the case at hand.

Lestrade, on the other hand, has become a bit of a showoff (or really, he always was one). But what he's hiding is his boss' sexual perversions, and more than that, Lestrade's own hand in casting the line that reels in his boss' chosen playmates. He's ashamed of being what boils down to a high-paid pimp.

The case jumps through the usual hoops: there is the radical waiter who left work suspiciously early, the Unabomber-like "Aurelius" who tends to target people and places with whom he disagrees. And then Lestrade and his boss are suspects for that little while until it is revealed that Lestrade's reason for secrecy is his embarrassment. But when a blackmail note is delivered to Balsille, it takes very little time for Holmes to work out exactly who sent it and, by extension, who planted the bomb.

Of course the episode ends with Lestrade once again without a job. And it seems he was going to be staying with Holmes and Watson for a wee bit, as he "waited for a check to come through." It was certainly fun to have him back. He's just the right side of obnoxious so that one doesn't mind having him around. Though if he were on and acting that way in every episode, it would wear out pretty quickly. The writers would need to give him a solid character arc with some real development is what I'm saying. Occasional characters can remain static, but regulars need to make progress of one kind or another.

I do wish they'd played up Lestrade's assistant's conflict with Watson a tad more. What they had was nice, and I can see not wanting to overdo it, but I think it could have gone further with no detriment to the show.

A secondary plot involving Holmes teaching two roosters to live in harmony was just the right touch of humorous. Yes, the "cock" bit was juvenile but I'll admit I liked it. (I still have to bite my cheeks to keep from laughing whenever the Tube I'm on is going to Cockfosters. I can't help it. I mean, because it keeps announcing it and everything.) The fact Watson kept saying she wasn't going to feed them [the roosters] was funny, as was her saying she wasn't sure she wanted to see what was going to happen when Holmes finally allowed the two birds out of their crates—and then she peeked around the doorjamb. But what really made the moment was the fact that Holmes was so happy to have succeeded in training the two roosters so they didn't fight, he actually seemed to have tears in his eyes.

On the whole a good episode not for the plot so much as character play. Next week looks to be a take on Doyle's "The Cardboard Box."

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