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Elementary - Folie a Deux - Review: "Teacher & Student"

Elementary Season 5 Episode Guide:

5.01 "Foile a Deux" - Review!
5.02 "Worth Several Cities - Airs October 16
5.03 "Render, and then Seize Her" - Airs October 23

Elementary 5.01 - Foile a Deux - Review:
Directed by Christine Moore, Written by Robert Doherty & Jeffrey Paul King

There's a serial bomber terrorizing New York City, and Sherlock and Joan join the NYPD in order to track down and stop the suspect in the brand new fifth season premiere of one of the most reliable and consistent police procedural dramas on television. It doesn't take us long to get into the thick of things, as we kick things off with a bomb disguised as a football/soccer ball blowing up a guy who has just brought some ice cream for his pregnant wife. This comes to Sherlock's attention in the middle of his latest case, where he's dealing with trying to talk a man (who has just killed his lover) out of committing suicide, or at the very least keep him occupied until Joan can use a taser on him and distract him. If one thing's for certain it's that I've missed having Johnny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu on my screen each week, and it's great to have them back as both actors are in fine form here.

Sherlock ends up chasing a mysterious onlooker from the scene but ends up getting hit by a car in the process, it's not a serious accident but it's still something that's worth noting, especially as Sherlock is able to get a print on the Taxi that the man touched in the process. This leads us to Nathan Resor who Scandal fans may recognize as Matthew Del Negro (who plays Michael Ambruso), who has also had roles in Teen Wolf and Chicago Fire. Despite Nathan having a firm alibi and denying everything that Sherlock has accused him of, the NYPD is forced to let the man go despite having a previous record in connections with a series of bombings that stopped when he was arrested. The signs aren't looking too great for him, and that's enough for Sherlock to warrant a break in to his apartment.

Sherlock ends up confronting Nathan about a fire on one of his properties that might have led him to believe that Nathan started the fire on purpose so he could get the money. He turns to Nathan's ex-wife Elizabeth for more answers who explains that even though they split up it was not because of prison, but because of how often Nathan spent working which damaged any chances they had at repairing a relationship. Sherlock learns from Elizabeth that Nathan worked on a land development deal but that was about all she knows, and Nathan was always claiming that it would be worth it if she stuck around in the long term.

Meanwhile, Joan goes to Shinwell Johnson, an old acquaintance who was in prison at the same time as Nathan who might be able to shed some light on the situation. Joan ends up finding out that although Johnson doesn't know Nathan directly, he does owe Joan a debt after saving his life when he was shot five times during her career as a Doctor. Johnson himself doesn't know Nathan's whereabouts, but might know somebody who does.

Johnson arrives at the apartment to find that Sherlock is there and not Joan, a situation that presents problems for Sherlock as Johnson used to deal drugs. Joan ends up arriving and finds out that Johnson used to know a man with the surname of Fielder who had connections to Nathan, but Fielder doesn't believe that Nathan is the man responsible and the next possible suspect is revealed to be Nathan's cellmate, Cray, who is brought in and questioned by the NYPD. Cray has nothing but good words to say about Nathan and explains that he even gave him a job when he got out of prison. It isn't long before another bombing hits New York and presents them with another problem in that Nathan has the perfect alibi for this one, he was being followed by the police at the same time who confirm that he wasn't responsible.

This leads Sherlock to the theory that Nathan must have a partner in crime and Cray is the number one suspect, which leads to a break in of his house and they discover the evidence that they need for his arrest. The question still remains who was responsible, and Sherlock wants to know who taught who. Was it Cray or Nathan who was the real expert? Cray himself is brought in and questioned again despite Sherlock's break-in being against the law.

Cray refuses to make a deal that could give him the chance to say goodbye to his family but he does hint that he couldn't wait to see what his partner, if he did have one, does in his absence. Cray hints that there are bombs all over one area and there are greater things to come, but Sherlock doesn't think that's the truth. He does eventually work out that all the bombings were happening around the same area at the construction site where Nathan works, and realizes that Nathan must be scaring away the competition in order to stand a better chance at securing the deal. This leads him to talk to the company that signed Nathan's deal, and they eventually pull out, which as a result means that Cray no longer has a big paycheck waiting for him. He decides to give up Nathan now that he knows there's nothing left for him, and that's enough evidence that they need to take down both Cray and Nathan in one go, wrapping up the case for this episode.

There are still however a few more elements to be taken care of. Sherlock inspires Joan who's having doubts about herself and missing the roles of helping people that her duties as a Doctor and a sober companion provided. It leads to her dropping by Johnson's place, and decides to help him out the same way that she helped out Sherlock at the start of the series. It'll be interesting to watch how Johnson gets involved in the series going forward because for now he's a promising addition to the Sherlock/Joan partnership, which as usual, is still very strong even if the episode itself is nothing particularly memorable at the same time. It's a solid case of the week episode that sets the audience back in familiar territory, leaving plenty of options to explore more material as the series progresses.

What did you think of Foile a Deux? Let me know in the comments below.

Overall Episode Verdict: B-
+Miller/Liu chemistry.
+Comedic moments.
+Strong case of the week.

About the Author - Milo MJ
Milo is an Arsenal FC supporter and loves TV shows like Battlestar Galactica, Justified, The 100, The Americans and Person of Interest. He reviews Black Sails, Elementary, Murder in the First, Narcos, Preacher, Star Trek Discovery, Star Wars Rebels, The Shannara Chronicles, Silicon Valley and Veep for Spoiler TV as well as books, films and games for his own blog The Fictional Hangout and contributes to comic reviews on a weekly basis for All-Comic.
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