ELEMENTARY Recap: Dirty Laundry
In a laundry room that looks like part of hotel two maids are conversing in Spanish. They notice an unbalanced load in one of the industrial size washing machines. When they go to check it out they find a woman inside, a very dead woman.
Turns out her name is Terri Purcell, general manager of the hotel. The Captain is telling Detective Bell and Sherlock she died of blunt force trauma and was then shoved in the washing machine. Thanks to the washing machine there is very little evidence left. There was a fountain pen in the washer with her but no ink on her clothes. Sherlock finds that odd. He also finds drag marks leading back to the victim’s office where they find blood.
Detective Bell suggests they talk to the husband. Can I say how ridiculously out of place Sherlock looks in suburbia? He is clearly a city dweller. He also does some mocking of Watson and her need for organizing. He goes a step farther and offers her an apprenticeship. She can come by once a week to do light housework in exchange for sharing some of his wisdom. She seems less than impressed by the idea.
Inside the Purcell’s they question the husband, who is played by Mark Moses. He’s attractive and not playing creepy at all but something about him gives me the willies. He says everything was fine, great even. Sherlock of course has a different picture of what is going on. He calls the husband out for lying saying he sleeps on the couch, uses the guest bathroom as his own and is unemployed. Suddenly the husband feels the need to come clean about the stress in their marriage.
Watson takes their high school age daughter into the kitchen. She notices the daughter is a great student (already accepted to Georgetown and Michigan) and a soccer player (pictures on the fridge).
The daughter makes some recovery like comments, “This too shall pass. Tough times don’t last, tough people do.” Watson comments and the daughter says a few years ago she hurt her knee and got hooked on the pain pills. She is clean now, but Watson gives the daughter her phone number just in case.
Outside the house Sherlock is bemoaning what a waste this trip has been. Watson sees an older woman across the street and says she is the lady to talk to. They go talk to her and she is clearly the neighborhood gossip. She says she thinks the victim was having an affair, a handsome man stopped by quite often when her husband was at work, before he was unemployed. The gossip is good at her “job” because she even has a picture of him she took on her cell phone. I hate to nitpick but that woman is probably about my parents age and there is no way either of them could have gotten a clear shot with a camera phone all while being stealthy but it’s a little nitpick and I’m now done.
Did I mention she even got the front of handsome man’s car, which clearly shows the license plate? Okay…now I’m done.
Handsome man turns out to be played by lovely Jake Weber, good casting call. Handsome Man is actually named Mr. Silver and he is stunned by the news of Terri’s death. She was a volunteer at his company/charity; they collect and destroy land mines.
Outside the office Sherlock is lamenting the lack of suspects since Mr. Silver alibied out and Detective Bell says they may have a lead. Apparently the hotel had a prostitution problem lately, guest being solicited, etc…When Terri cleared out the working girls she got threatening calls. Detective Bell is going to talk to Vice. He asks Sherlock if he and Watson want to come along but Sherlock says no, he and Watson have a “thing”. Watson looks confused since obviously they have nowhere to be.
Sherlock’s “thing” is actually going to the source instead of going to Vice. He asks Watson if she has ever been whore fishing. He is so eloquent, isn’t he?
Back at the hotel in the lobby Sherlock and Watson are looking for a working girl. He spots a girl he thinks fits the bill. Sherlock approaches a girl at the bar and asks a few questions. According to the call girl Terri wanted them there. She even helped them keep a low profile letting them use the service elevators, etc…The call girls “managers” had no reason to get rid of Terri.
Back at the precinct the Captain relays the other call girls are all saying the same thing. Terri helped them arrange dates with rich business men. The weird part, as far as the Captain is concerned, is Terri did all of this for free. A volunteer madam if you will.
Watson can’t get why she would risk her career to run a non-profit brothel out of her hotel. Sherlock says they need to check out Terri’s office again.
At Terri’s office Sherlock is poking around and mentions that if Watson is going to become his apprentice she should really start taking notes. She rolls her eyes and says she isn’t becoming his apprentice. He says of course not, not officially anyway. Sherlock figures she will make up a story for his father about how he isn’t ready yet so she can stay on with Sherlock. Watson assures him she isn’t staying.
In one of the drawers Sherlock is going through he finds a compact hiding a wireless connector that would allow Terri to sign into a private network. Sherlock plugs it in and nine rooms come up on the screen via hidden security cameras.
Sherlock goes back to the precinct to tell the Captain that is why she never took a cut of the money. She had the video to use as blackmail. At home Sherlock is sitting in front of a number of screens watching all of the video feed at once when Watson’s phone rings. It is Terri’s daughter, Carly. She is crying and says she needs to talk to someone. Carly doesn’t say much before she is interrupted by her Dad so she tells Watson she has to go.
The next morning Sherlock tells Watson that the video feed wasn’t nearly as exciting as the pictures Terri had on her laptop. Watson assume they are dirty pictures but really they are pictures of Terri’s husband and daughter. Sherlock says they aren’t just pictures; they contain a gig of information each. There is content hidden in the pictures. Sherlock installs a decryption program to find out what is on them. The content is video of men speaking I think French and some other language. Sherlock immediately calls the Captain. Whatever they are saying is alarming to Holmes.
Lights and sirens blaring they get to the Purcell’s home. Mr. Purcell is outside and Holmes says he was almost fooled. The accent, or lack of one, the attire, furnishings, they scream American but really they are Russian spies aren’t they? Holmes says the prostitutes at the hotel drew some heavy hitting international guests. It wasn’t their bad behavior Terri was trying to get on tape it was their information. And it also turns out Mr. Purcell didn’t get laid off or fired, he resigned when the company he worked for got a contract with the DOD and he would have had to get a thorough background check done. Something he wouldn’t have passed. The husband says he wants a lawyer.
Watson shows up and says she can’t find the daughter Carly and she is very worried. Holmes says all spies have handlers.
Next scene he is back at Mr. Silver’s offices. Holmes accuses Mr. Silver of being the handler, something he denies.
A call from the Captain sends them back to the precinct to sit in on the interrogation of Mr. Purcell. He admits they were spies but never a real couple, just two agents who worked well together. When questioned about whether Carly was their biological child Mr. Purcell says yes but it was an assignment, so they basically had sex until Terri conceived and then went back to just living together/pretending to be married.
Sherlock wants to know when Carly was initiated into the spy craft. He says he didn’t want Carly to be a spy but Terri did. Mr. Purcell even threatened to go public with what they were doing if Terri and their handler, Mr. Silver didn’t let Carly just be a kid. Mr. Purcell says he doesn’t know who killed Terri but he will tell them anything they want to know as long as they leave Carly out of it.
Watson phone rings and it is Carly. She sounds scared and wants to know what is going on. Watson agrees to meet Carly. She asks Carly if she knew her parents were spies. Carly nods her head, her Mom told her a few days ago. Carly goes a little further and says she is the one that killed her Mother.
In the Captains office Carly is explaining that she got her acceptance letter to Michigan and she was so happy she called her Mom. Her Mom wasn’t as happy and told her to get down to the hotel as soon as possible. At the hotel Terri was insistent she go to Georgetown and then told her why exactly. Terri told her she couldn’t tell her Dad that she knew and it was important to do exactly what she said.
Except Carly said no, she wasn’t going to go to Georgetown, she was going to go to Michigan and she wasn’t going to be a spy. She even threatened to go to the police if her Mom tried to stop her. Terri grabbed her as she was leaving and when Carly pushed her Terri hit her head on the desk. Conveniently that is when Mr. Silver showed up, he said she was in a lot of trouble and if she didn’t go home right away she was going to never see her Dad again.
In custody Mr. Silver says he doesn’t recognize their authority, he is no longer pretending to be American I see. When the Captain says he is going away for a long time he says no, he isn’t. He will probably be traded back to Russia in under a week.
Back at home Watson is in her room going over the evidence again. She doesn’t like the way the case turned out.
In the evidence is Terri Purcell’s autopsy report. There is a break on the finger that doesn’t add up and then Holmes remembers the pen that was found in the laundry with Terri.
The next morning they go down to interrogation to talk to Mr. Silver again. Sherlock says he is there to mess up whatever deal is being worked out right now to get him back to Russia. Stupidly Mr. Silver says that would be impressive. He has never heard of Sherlock Holmes I take it.
Holmes lays out what happened the night of Terri’s death. Terri wasn’t dead when her daughter left like he told Carly she was. In fact he says Mr. Silver killed her after Carly died to leverage Carly into becoming a spy.
Turns out the pen didn’t leave ink around because it was invisible ink. Holmes pulls out a UV Light and shines it on Mr. Silver’s shirt highlighting the ink. Holmes says the US will not trade a spy under these circumstances. Understandably Mr. Silver doesn’t seem amused.
Watson and Carly are talking in the hallway about how her and her Dad will be put in witness protection and they will be okay.
Outside Holmes is waiting for Watson; he says he is proud of her for continuing to look at the evidence. He reiterates how she can tell his father he hit a rough patch so she can stay on as his assistant. Watson says she took a job this morning. She was referred to another client when they wrap up next week.
Elementary airs Thursday 10/9c on CBS