Monday, February 1, 2016

Elementary - Alma Matters

Two weeks after a murder mistakenly believed to be the work of a home robbery crew, Holmes (Jonny Lee Miller) and Watson (Lucy Liu) begin an investigation into the case not brought to them through the NYPD but by a social worker who believes there's far more to the dead man's story than meets the eye. A whistleblower against a private college with questionable practices, the victim was killed on the eve of testimony that could have cost the university millions. When the social worker turns up dead, and an innocent man seems willing to take the fall for the murder, the detectives know there's certainly mischief afoot.

While the main storyline doesn't offer any big reveals in turns of unmasking a murderer, it does showcase the process of Holmes and Watson working the case to eventually tie the university to the murders. The episode's B-story features Sherlock discovering that his father (John Noble), for however short a time, once believed he was the one responsible for the attempted murder of Morland. Given what we've already seen of the man's manipulative nature it's hard to tell how much of his attempted apology to his son are real and how much are still in his own best interest (after all, by the end of the episode he's worked the situation to enlist Sherlock's help on the matter without ever having asked for it).

"Alma Matters" is one of the few episodes of the series where the B-story almost completely overshadows the murder of the week. Holmes tumultuous relationship with his father offers a pair of memorable scenes between the pair as Sherlock confronts his father with his suspicions and Morland apologizes for his mistake. Although it doesn't close the book on the ongoing subplot between the pair it ends one chapter while allowing Holmes to continue to investigate the attack on his father's life over the remainder of the season.

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