Friday, February 13, 2015

Elementary Season 3 Episode 14 "The Female of the Species" – Recap and Review

Gina Gershon Allison March Joan Watson Lucy Liu in Elementary Season 3 Episode 14 The Female of the Species

This post contains spoilers. Readers who are yet to see the episode are recommended to skip it, if they wish to avoid details.

After being subjected to hemlock poisoning, Andrew Mittal (Raza Jaffrey) has died. Joan Watson (Lucy Liu) investigates and discovers that Elana March (Gina Gershon) is responsible for her boyfriend's death.

As readers might remember, Joan had Elana arrested in the first episode of the third season, “Enough Nemesis To Go Around”. Elana had one of her assassins, Marion Desjardins mix the hemlock in Andrew's drink. During her meeting with Joan at the prison, she teases her about her impending breakup with Andrew. 

Sherlock Holmes (Jonny Lee Miller) receives his latest case from Vernon Joseph (Chandler Williams), the moderator of forum and Curator of Mammals at the local zoo. He needs Sherlock's help to track down two pregnant zebras who have been stolen recently.

Since Joan is still mourning Andrew's death, Detective Marcus Bell (Jon Michael Hill) teams up with Sherlock. Sherlock deduces that a truck belonging to the Axiom Parcel Delivery (APD) company was used in the theft.

Sherlock lists all the intended deliveries for the stolen truck and deduces that one of the recipients, Criterion Equine Services is a lead worth checking out. Sherlock and Bell discover the two zebras and the corpse of Dr. David Chang, one of the veterinarians.

Sherlock deduces that the thief wanted to steal the zebra foals. Working on Joan's advice, Sherlock and Bell track down one of the newborns, who turns out to be a quagga. Quaggas are an extinct species of Zebras. 

Sherlock deduces someone working at the zoo is working on “De-Extinction to bring back the Quagga species for their own monetary benefits.

Sherlock zeroes in on one of the zoo employees, Ben Reynolds (Louis Cancelmi) after deliberately falsely accusing another employee Donovan Gaines (Anthony Gaskins) for the theft.

Ben refuses to co-operate with the investigation. The NYPD assigns officers to keep him under surveillance escapes through hidden tunnel in his apartment. Sherlock lays a trap for Ben and has him apprehended successfully.

In the subplot, Joan apologizes to Santhosh Mittal (Brian George) for being responsible for his son's death. Santhosh expresses his wish that had Joan taken more proactive steps earlier, his son would still have been alive. Later, Elana sends a death threat via mail to Joan.

Joan receives a letter from Jamie Moriarty (Natalie Dormer) who claims responsibility for Elana's death in her cell. In the final scene, Joan decides to move back to brownstone and completely concentrate on her work as a detective.

Canonical References

1. Elementary Sherlock uses the nickname Sigerson to lure Ben into a trap. He claims to use that pseudonym occasionally - In The Adventure of the Empty House, Sherlock Holmes uses the alias Sigerson”, as he explains to Dr John Watson: “You may have read of the remarkable explorations of a Norwegian named Sigerson, but I am sure that it never occurred to you that you were receiving news of your friend.”

2. Ben escaping through a network of tunnels from beneath his apartment - This is a bit tenuous, but reminded of the plot element of the Arthur Conan Doyle's novel, The Valley of Fear, in which John Douglas hides inside his own house after killing Ted Baldwin. 
Elementary Sherlock Holmes deerstalker hat in Season 3 Episode 14 The Female of the Species

This was a good episode. The exchanges between Miller's Holmes and 's Detective Marcus Bell were genuinely funny. The episode focussed on how Sherlock's methods were different from that of Bell and his department.

Sherlock is not one to stick to a working schedule of certain number of hours a day. He just keeps working on the case till a solution is found.

I liked Sherlock's comment about Vernon's username BeeBeeking17” being offensive to both apiarists and musicians alike. I also liked his line: I am not against contemplative silence.”, while explaining his working style with Joan to Detective Bell.

When Detective Bell informs Sherlock that he does not eat red meat, Sherlock responds that he is a man of hidden depth. Miller's delivery was excellent and was very similar to the dry wit often practiced by the Canonical Holmes.

Elementary Quagga extinct zebra species Sherlock Holmes Season 3 Episode 14

An interesting point - Unlike Joan, Bell gets a decent wake-up call courtesy of an alarm clock.

Joan gets her own version of Moriarty in the form of Elana March. Gina Gershon is as devious in the role, just as Natalie Dormer was a Jamie Moriarty. Unfortunately, Gina's role came to an end today. Perhaps, we will see her in flashbacks in future episodes.

Her discussion with Sherlock, in which she confesses that she has always found it tough to separate her personal life from the detective work was executed well.

Lucy Liu has also directed this episode and deserves applause for delivering one of the best episodes of this season.

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Image Sources: CBS Broadcasting, Inc., Wikipedia

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Elementary Season 1 Review
Elementary - Cast Review