Elementary: Folie a Deux – Explosive Start to Season 5 (Review)

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Season five of Elementary got off to an explosive start on Sunday.  “Folie a Deux” (which roughly translates to the madness of two) could apply to the two suspects eventually arrested for being the Bensonhurst Bomber or Holmes and Watson.

Johnny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu continue to  knock it out of the park as the quirky crime fighting duo with brain power to spare. Miller’s Holmes, a prior drug user, as he tells Shinwell, the former drug dealer, and Liu’s Watson, former sober companion and surgeon, are both a bit outside the box although it has taken Watson some time to really get there.

The episode this week was all about the resurgence of a bomber who last stuck in 2010. The Bensonhurst Bomber quit for six years and just started up again but this time in Flushing.

At the crime scene, where a man picks up a loose soccer ball and it explodes killing him,  Holmes spots a man acting suspiciously. He gives chase but is hit by a car.

During the chase, the suspect puts his hand on a cab windscreen and his prints show up on the system.  The man is Nathan Resor and he just got out of prison. So too has Shinwell Johnson.

Watson has a word with Shinwell. They have a connection as she saved his life when he was shot five times. He gives her some information about Resor and his cellmate.

Holmes searches Nathan’s rubbish bins and finds bottles of bleach, a major ingredient of the bomber’s explosives.

The investigation centers on Resor and his good friend from prison. Shinwell meets Holmes and the two enter into awkward small talk. Holmes reveals that he too was shot five times, just not all at once.

Johnson passes on information about Cray Fielder, Nathan Resor’s pal in prison. The police talk to the recently paroled prisoner but come up empty.  Although, Resor is still connected to Cray as he gave him a job with his company.

Throughout the investigation, Holmes is fixated with Joan’s many career changes. He is concerned that she may make another change and stop being a detective.

Holmes never deviates from his belief that Resor is behind the bombings and is proven right.  The ex con is not the bomber but instead has hired Cray to do it for him.

It all boils down to money, as Resor was selling his land for an entertainment build; mall, movie theater and so on.  Nathan hired Fielder to blow up bombs in Flushing, the other area in the running for the new facility.

The subplot of this episode dealt with change. Shinwell, a former drug dealer who fired into a crowd of innocent bystanders when he was shot, wants to change. He asks Watson her secret to changing from doctor to detective. “You look,” he says, “happy.”

Clearly the ex con still has issues. When Joan comes to visit him, he answers the door with a gun in his hand. Watson cannot see it and Shinwell hides it before they go out for a walk.

There is something definitely going on with Johnson.  Elementary, as one critic remarked over at TV.com, always has a “special interest” character that lasts one season. Shinwell is obviously that character in this season.

Episode one of Elementary exhibited a good bit of humor.  The jumper at the start, Watson’s “Village People” joke, that  Holmes says he understands, Shinwell Johnson’s payback to the big mouthed boxer and the chewing gum were all amusing.

The chemistry between Miller and Liu is still spot on. Miller, after four seasons and the beginning of a fifth, still rocks it as Holmes and Lucy Liu fills the high heels of Joan Watson with aplomb.

Nelsan Ellis, who rocked as Lafayette Reynolds in True Blood, was excellent as Shinwell.

As “Folie a Deux”  shows, the series still has a lot of mileage left in it.

Elementary airs Sundays on CBS.


Guest starring  Matthew Del Negro as Nathan Resor, Nelsan Ellis as Shinwell Johnson and Lee Tergesen as Cray Fielder

Author: Mike's Film Talk

Former Actor, Former Writer, Former Journalist, USAF Veteran, http://MikesFilmTalk.com Former Member Nevada Film Critics Society

2 thoughts on “Elementary: Folie a Deux – Explosive Start to Season 5 (Review)”

  1. I knew it was going to happen, I expected it, I was waiting for it – still, I jumped when the soccer ball exploded.

    Agree regarding Shinwell.

    Aplomb? Hmmm. Yes, and she’s aging well.


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