Elementary: Crowned Clown, Downtown Brown – Big Bad Bug (Review)

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Sunday night, regardless of whichever network one landed on, was clown night. The Mick featured a clown and Elementary “Crowned Clown, Downtown Brown” had two. One very much alive and the other was very, very dead. Marcus had a run-in with a different sort of clown, his new girlfriend’s ex, Ray Booker.

Chantal Milner, Marcus’ new flame, is the ADA and she is working on a high profile murder case where the accused, a woman, is claiming self defense. Booker forces a fight with Marcus and then makes a scene in Chantal’s office.

The idea is to have her thrown off the case.

Holmes and Watson have a different sort of case. As two small township safety patrol members chase a clown through the woods, they loose him only to find another very dead one half-buried in the dry forest leaves.

Sherlock and Joan investigate and find that the man in the clown suit stumbled over some nefarious goings on with the NYC water supply. Apparently the dead costumed man caught someone pumping toxic sludge into the water feed.

Later, after some analysis, they discover that the sludge held a “super bug” which would poison all the inhabitants of New York City. Luckily they catch the incident in time and the city’s water is shut off.

As the two consultants chase down the perpetrator, who has fled the country, they learn that the bug was not lethal. It would have, had it gone on to contaminate the water system, given all those who drank it severe diarrhea.

Joan, who is somewhat paranoid about the recent attack, buys a home filtration device that is costly and Holmes is not happy. “I’m not using that to make a cup of tea,” he shouts.

As the show progresses Marcus, with some help from Joan, learns why Ray picked a fight with him and Sherlock works out why the water was contaminated. Initially he believes it was to force the city to build a new water filtration plant.

Later, after the purchase of the home filtration system, Holmes traces the filter in the machine, via the patent number, and finds that Wendell Hecht, the New York City water board head, holds the patent and he stands to make a fortune as the city approved his device as a stopgap measure for the public.

At first Hecht denies this but Special Agent Breslin, who was quite off putting earlier in the episode, joins Joan and Sherlock in the man’s “un-masking.”  Meanwhile, Marcus blackmails Ray Booker into dropping the assault charges and forces him to leave his ex Chantal alone.

The comedy quotient in this episode was filled by Holmes’ purchasing a electronically powered calliope that played circus music at top volume. Joan rips the cord out of the machine much to Sherlock’s annoyance. It was, he explains, helping him to get into a clown state of mind.

Elementary featuring a clown theme at the same time as The Mick was purely, it seems, coincidence. The idea was clearly spawned by all those clown sightings in rural areas near a  wood.  In this episode, the reason for the clown’s presence was advance publicity for an upcoming horror film.

This was one of the cleverer episodes, although it was all too easy to figure out that Hecht was behind the whole thing. The many layers that needed to be pulled back to find the brains behind the water bug attack was, however, interesting.

Elementary airs Sundays on CBS.


Guest starring Chasten Harmon as Chantal Milner, Robert Christopher Riley as Ray Booker, Barry Shabaka Henley as Wendell Hecht and Damian Young as Special Agent Breslin.

Author: Mike's Film Talk

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

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