Friday, September 28, 2018

The most unexpected Elementary cliffhanger of all

Well, it's been a little while since the end of season six of CBS's Elementary, and I'm finding that the unintentional cliffhanger they've left us with quite a puzzler, for a few reasons. Spoilers ahead, if you're one of those "wait until the season is done to start watching" folks.

So . . . that happy ending. That very happy ending.

Jonny Lee Miller's character finds himself in a London office, hearing the details of an actual Conan Doyle based Sherlock Holmes mystery, yet plagued by noises from his next door neighbor. Eventually, he goes out his front door, we discover his office is 221B Baker Street and the door right beside is 221A Baker Street, which Joan Watson comes out of. And they do a sort of "walk off into the sunset" moment talking about how they're "two people who love each other."

It's a happy ending, not a cliffhanger setting up the next season. And taken altogether, it's almost like a dream . . . in fact, that's my strongest theory for the start of the seventh season: Jonny Lee Miller wakes up from a dream and finds himself back in the New York brownstone. As much as we all hate the "it was all a dream" twist, that five minutes of the final episode of season six felt like a dream when placed next to the rest of the series. (I swear that was a different 221 Baker Street from the last time they were in London.)

But the biggest loss for me, the biggest part of that dream that throws it off kilter, is that Joan Watson resides in 221A Baker Street. Because we all know who belongs there. And actually, it's someone who belonged in a lot more Elementary episodes: Ms. Hudson.

Remember Ms. Hudson from "Snow Angels," one of my favorite episodes of Elementary, back in the first season? Ms. Hudson, who returned for two more appearances over the course of six seasons?

Finding 221 Baker Street with a suddenly side-by-side first floor A and B doesn't seem to leave a place for that classic downstairs resident, the lady named Hudson, a bit like the tight four-person main cast of Elementary never really left room for anyone else to last more than a season or so.  But then, we always looking sentimentally at what might have been. Clyde the turtle really could have used more character development, fan favorite and all.

Had Elementary ended its season with a mere threat to the lives of one of its characters, or one more schism in their relationships, one might have wondered a little bit, as one does. But this happy ending in lovely London? Something that looks entirely different from the previous six seasons of the show and give a bright and sunny outlook for the future of the two consulting detectives?

This is a turn that makes one wonder most of all, I think.

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