TV Review - Elementary: Season 3

Lucy Liu (middle) and Jonny Lee Miller (right)
in Season 3 of 'Elementary'
I really enjoyed the first season of CBS' Elementary, but the second season was a bit of a down turn. The first half of this third season had an interesting storyline that actually separated Sherlock Holmes, played by Jonny Lee Miller, and Joan Watson, played by Lucy Liu. The storyline starting with Episode 13 entitled "Hemlock" has brought the two back together and I don't like it.

This version of a modern-day Sherlock Holmes is set in New York City. Joan Watson was a medical doctor who became Sherlock's sober companion to help him get past his substance abuse. Holmes is obviously a detective with highly-trained skills and amazing intuition and deductive abilities. Watson was impressed, so she decided to learn from him and become a detective in her own right.

The beginning of Season 3 had Watson working on her own, as Holmes had returned to London. He came back with another partner whom he was also training. Needless to say, all that's over and the two are back. They're even living together again. This was particularly after Watson's boyfriend Andrew, played by Raza Jeffrey, was killed.

The first, red flag was when Sherlock started commenting on Joan's relationship with Andrew and the writers were clearly taking his side. The series had done a great job of building up Joan Watson as an independent detective fully capable of deducing and solving things by herself. Yet, this deconstruction by Sherlock of Joan's relationship and her romantic life or lack thereof undermines all that building up.

To me, every time Sherlock commented on Joan's romantic life, especially her sex life, it was creepy. Particularly, when Joan would walk into a room and Sherlock would bluntly start pointing out specific sexual behavior or habits or occurrences of her, I felt it was off and wrong. The series had a tendency of having Sherlock do things that were meant to be endearing or comically indicative of his lack of social graces or brutal frankness, but now it's getting offensive and horrible.

For example, I don't want to see Joan wake up and find Sherlock in her bedroom hovering over her. Enough! I don't want Sherlock to tell Joan about her personal life, or interfere with her romantic life. Sherlock can wake up naked with two naked women beside him and Watson would never comment or judge or care. It's not right for Sherlock to comment or judge or care about Joan's romantic life. Enough! I'd like to see her have a romantic life that isn't fodder for Sherlock.

The cases, aside from one recently in Episode 15, have been boring. The brilliance of Moriarty in the first season has yet to be matched. The series has rather devolved into a lame, police procedural program. The show is also a reversion from Joan rising to an equal of Sherlock into again just the second fiddle or worse just mainly a sounding board.

Two Stars out of Five.
Rated TV-14-LV.
Running Time: 1 hr.
Thursdays at 10PM on CBS.


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