Friday, November 1, 2013

CBS Elementary Season 2 Episode # 6 "An Unnatural Arrangement" - Review

Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu as Sherlock Holmes and Joan Watson in CBS Elementary Season 2 Episode 6 An Unnatural Arrangement

Sherlock takes Joan to a police station to observe cell inmates to sharpen her skills of observation and deduction. Joan protests that they can make better use of the limited number of Friday nights.

A NYPD detective, Craig Basken (Peter Hermann) approaches Joan with a request for assistance in solving a seemingly trivial case.

Captain Tommy Gregson's separated wife, Cheryl Gregson (Talia Balsam) encounters an masked man in her house. The intruder claims to be looking for her husband.

Cheryl shoots at him in self defense and wounds him. The unknown stranger makes his escape.

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James Monroe (Ted King), a neighbor gives his eye witness account of the intruder's escape on foot.

Captain Tommy Gregson (Aidan Quinn) gives access to all of his personal files to Sherlock and Joan, with the intention of catching his enemy.

Talia Balsam and Aidan Quinn as Captain Tommy Gregson and his separated estranged wife Cheryl Gregson in CBS Elementary Season 2 Episode 6 An Unnatural Arrangement

Sherlock notices that one Dustin Bishop has been persistently sending emails to Gregson. Sherlock and Joan break into Dustin's apartment and (surprise, surprise) Dustin has been shot.

Holmes and Joan's investigation leads them to one Jacob Esparza (Armando Riesco) and subsequently Elizabeth Roney (Sarah Wynter).

I recommend the readers to check out the episode for the resolution.

Canonical References
1. Miller's Sherlock deducing that a prison inmate's crime involves a litter of purebred Yorkshire Terriers - In The Hound of the Baskervilles, Sherlock Holmes deduces that Dr James Mortimer is “the possessor of a favourite dog, which I should describe roughly as being larger than a terrier and smaller than a mastiff.” 

2. Elementary Sherlock deducing that Sam Clennon had military experience in Afghanistan - Sherlock Holmes makes the famous deduction about Dr John Watson in A Study in Scarlet: “You have been in Afghanistan, I perceive.”

Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes in CBS Elementary Season 2 Episode 6 An Unnatural Arrangement

3. Miller's Sherlock expresses his disapproval of marriage as something that forces two participants into unhealthy monogamy - The Canonical Holmes too expressed his aversion to marriage, but for completely different reasons. He states in The Sign of the Four: “But love is an emotional thing, and whatever is emotional is opposed to that true cold reason which I place above all things. I should never marry myself, lest I bias my judgment.”

4. Joan's statement about Elementary Holmes: “You have been doing this since you were a kid. I have some catching to do” - Sherlock Holmes tells Dr John Watson in The Adventure of the Musgrave Ritual - “Yes, my boy, these were all done prematurely before my biographer had come to glorify me.”

5. Miller's Holmes brings Tibetan fried bread to Joan for her breakfast - Sherlock Holmes informs Dr John Watson in The Adventure of the Empty House: “I travelled for two years in Tibet, therefore, and amused myself by visiting Lhassa, and spending some days with the head lama.”

Lucy Liu as Joan Watson in CBS Elementary Season 2 Episode 6 An Unnatural Arrangement

6. A significant deduction involves the silence of Elizabeth's dog, Gotham - This reminded me of “the curious incident of the dog in the night-time” in The Silver Blaze.

The song "Heal" from Long Way Down by Tom Odell is played in the closing scenes of the episode, when Elementary Sherlock is observing Joan Watson.

This was another weak episode. I watch the show mainly to catch the nods to Arthur Conan Doyle's original stories.

Ted King as James Monroe with Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu as Sherlock Holmes and Joan Watson in CBS Elementary Season 2 Episode 6 An Unnatural Arrangement

Recommended only to die-hard fans of the show.

Click here to read all my posts about CBS Elementary. 

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Image Source: CBS 

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  1. Great catches, thanks for sharing.

  2. And I do agree about the main reason to watch it is the nods to Doyle. Although. . . I still like it a little(lot) more than you.

    1. Glad that we share the same motivation to watch the show.

      I understand and respect the fact that you enjoy it much more than I do.


  3. Excellent post! Was looking for the Tom Odell song, but found the reference bit interesting as well. Got the urge to read some of Doyle's novels...

    1. Thanks.

      I am glad that my blog post has been successful in arousing an interest in you to read Arthur Conan Doyle's original stories and novels.


  4. I don't completely agree w/you on it being weak. I too thought about 'the curious incident of the dog barking at night' at the end (though surprised they didn't mention it). While the Gregson stalker aspect didn't quite work I enjoyed delving into his life & thought well of the performances.

    1. Thanks Rick.

      I actually liked the subtle way the show referred to "the curious incident of the dog".

      As the saying goes: "To each his own".


  5. Your motivation for watching the show should not detract for the individuality of the performance. Just because the show is different than the originals does not detract from its value as a show. I think any show that can make you feel a real connection to its characters in something other than some mindless soap opera is something that should be valued. I think maybe you should look at the show as a separate entity and just enjoy alludes to the originals without comparing it to them.

    1. Unfortunately, the CBS show does not make me feel any sort of connection to the characters. In my humble opinion, Elementary itself has a few touches of the soap opera, considering all the sex between Sherlock and Mycroft's ex-fiancee as well as between Mycroft and Joan.

      Miller's Sherlock is addicted to drugs even in the midst of a case and also has frequent sexual encounters with random women. To me, this is a far cry from the Canonical Holmes who took drugs only as an artificial stimulant in the absence of cases and never was sexually involved with anyone.

      Arthur Conan Doyle is my favorite author and the Sherlock Holmes Canon is very close to my heart. I will try to follow your suggestion.

      Thanks for stopping by.


    2. there is a really simple solution to this, just stop watching it then. You could spend all the time you spend complaining about this show doing something productive.

    3. A most excellent advice. Coincidentally, I stopped watching the latest episode “The Hound of the Cancer Cells” midway, as it was becoming an unbearable chore.

      Thanks for stopping by.