No, I’m not crying. I just have Elementary in my eye.


(Wow, less than an hour after the season finale finished and I’ve already churned out meta.  I’m surprised I could stop weeping long enough to write this.  HOLMES BROTHERS, WHY MUST YOU TORTURE ME SO.)

(Also, spoilers abound.  Consider yourself warned.)

There are many things that make Elementary remarkable, but I think this is one of the most important things: in both season finales, the victory that we would expect Sherlock to have is taken from him.

Granted, the first season had a far more optimistic ending, once it was established that Sherlock didn’t actually OD (that part, if memory serves, had me screaming hysterically at the TV). Joan “Not Your F***ing Mascot” Watson got the last laugh over Moriarty, and the season closed on the note of a new species of hybrid bees named after Joan, the symbolism of which was blatantly obvious to us faithful viewers. But this season had a much darker ending. Joan’s going to move out, which maybe doesn’t kill the hybrid bee analogy but certainly weakens it. Sherlock (and Joan, too!) insisted he could fix Mycroft’s mole problem – and maybe he could have, who knows. But this time it was Mycroft who got the final decision, who basically chose to die. Yeah, he’s not actually dead, but he might as well be. Mycroft took matters out of Sherlock’s hands and fixed the problem himself.

Sherlock, as we’ve seen in the past few episodes, is unbelievably clingy. He has his people and his stuff and his ideas as to how all that should be sorted. His idea of loving someone (because now there should be no doubt in anyone’s mind that he loves Joan immensely, in his own way) is keeping them close, very close. When his world has what he perceives as order, he’s happy as a clam. But Joan and Mycroft are people, of course, not objects, so naturally they’ll screw with his order whether they mean to or not.

What I’m getting at is this: Sherlock can’t seem to recognize other people for what they really are, namely suns in their own right. Joan really nailed it with the astronomy metaphor. As far as Sherlock’s orderly brain is concerned, she orbits him. I think that’s what Sherlock was expecting from Mycroft too – orbiting. (Though why he still held out for that, even after Mycroft proved himself to be a force against Sherlock’s order multiple times, is beyond me.) Sherlock wanted Mycroft to wait for him to make everything right.

He didn’t hug Mycroft back, because how can you exert a gravitational pull on something that’s so wildly out of orbit?

That’s the brilliant thing about both these victories being stolen from Sherlock – they ultimately show how flawed his worldview is. I don’t know if Sherlock will ever get past this mental thing he has going, but I definitely think that would be a good direction for his character development to take. He said to Joan, after all, that he could change for her. Let’s see him change the way he views her. It’s too late for him to save his relationship with Mycroft, but if he means what he says, he can still make things work with Joan. He can still recognize her for the blazing sun she is, instead of simply seeing her as a constant satellite.*

In the meantime, though, I’m going to sob for ages about thAT HUG.  I DIDN’T NEED MY HEART ANYWAY.  IT’S FINE.  AUGH.

*The references are to Vienna Teng’s wonderful song “Gravity.”


3 thoughts on “No, I’m not crying. I just have Elementary in my eye.

  1. I completely agree with you Whitney. But then if we look at Sherlock’s previous experiences, it makes sense why he is so ‘clingy.’ He previously loved someone but she turned out to be a criminal mastermind, his father is a invisible figure in his life, Mycroft always takes matters into his own hands, and Joan, oh dear Joan, is such an important person in his life that he somehow thinks that on one day, she’ll realise that Sherlock Holmes is not good enough and leave. I think he fears that the most. Losing someone again, so he tries to keep her close; too scared of the future. Sherlock wants to insure the future and modify it to suit himself, and it does make sense why he is so clingy about the people in his life. On the other hand, he is most certainly a flawed character, and the writers have a massive potential to explore that option alongside Joan’s in Season Three. And not to mention, Joan is a bit too independent as well. She always tends to push people away, and hide in a corner when there’s a problem. (Remember the Gerald Castoro incident as well as the Aaron Colville part) She knows that it’s bad, but this arbitrary concept is settled in her brain that if she deals this by herself, everything is going to be fine. And we all know that doesn’t work. So yes, both the characters are flawed in their one way, and there’s no doubt why they belong with each other so much. They are two individuals, and they have their own orbits. But they both know that somewhere, both their orbits join together to form a strong universe. And sorry for this long rant I’ve gone onto! I absolutely adore Elementary, and discussing it with a person makes me happy. So yeah, nice to meet you. Have a great day!

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