Television: Elementary, "Rekt in Real Life"

My kids all watch these YouTube videos of other people playing video games while keeping up a running commentary. That's, like, a thing apparently. And someone who writes for Elementary probably has kids like mine, because they decided to do a story about these famous YouTube video gamers.

(Seriously, my two youngest were playing Mario Kart and "commentating" as though they were YouTubers. They're seven and eight.)

Anyway, Elementary's latest MO has been to see how far from the original incident they can possibly get as far as plot goes. So while this episode began as YouTube-gamer-is-murdered, it went on to be about human trafficking, seal hunting, and global warming. Not necessarily in that order. But maybe. I don't really remember. Once we got away from the murder, I began to lose interest. The suspect-turned-victim was someone we never really met, so it was difficult to feel anything for him or care what happened.

I'd like to see an episode where you really are made to sympathize with someone only to discover they're horrific.

Speaking of horrific, there was more Shinwell plot this episode, too. Look, I want to like Shinwell as a character, but he's kind of one-note and his side plots are just so much padding. They don't contribute meaningfully to the show as a whole. In this case, his estranged daughter contacts him as a last resort because a gang boy won't leave her alone. After Shinwell clears that up, the daughter tells him she only came to him because she had no other choice and that she doesn't want him to be part of her life. That's pretty awful, actually, and so I do feel bad for Shinwell and want to slap his daughter. Using people is not okay. But that isn't enough to make me want to sit through anymore Shinwell storylines. Because ugh.

So there's been a lot of starting out interesting and then going off the rails in recent episodes. Maybe for once they should start with something small and go big? (They probably have done, but clearly not enough to make it memorable for me.)

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