Elementary 218-221

I’ve fallen behind as I’ve had to focus on my personal life for a while, but I’ve since caught up on my Elementary watching. I’m actually going to skip this week’s episode, since I feel it’ll tie into next week’s, but I still have four other episodes to catch up on.

Hound of the Cancer Cells (218)

Title: The title of the episode is, completely unsurprisingly, a reference to what is probably the most famous Sherlock Holmes novel, The Hound of the Baskervilles.

Waking Watson Up: One thing I haven’t mentioned yet is the running “gag” of Holmes waking up Watson early in the morning. I believe this comes from a scene in “The Speckled Band.”

It was early in April in the year ’83 that I woke one morning to find Sherlock Holmes standing, fully dressed, by the side of my bed. He was a late riser, as a rule, and as the clock on the mantelpiece showed me that it was only a quarter-past seven, I blinked up at him in some surprise, and perhaps just a little resentment, for I was myself regular in my habits.

The Many Mouths of Aaron Colville (219)

Fake Vampires: There’s a quick reference at the beginning to the episode about the killings resembling those of vampires. This is a nod to “The Sussex Vampire,” in which Holmes manages to show that an allegation of vampirism has a mundane (if unusual) solution.

Ms. Hudson: There’s a reference to Ms. Hudson and moving around his possessions. Canonically Holmes was very particular about his possessions, even if they looked unorganized to the eye.  As Watson says in “The Musgrave Ritual”:

An anomaly which often struck me in the character of my friend Sherlock Holmes was that, although in his methods of thought he was the neatest and most methodical of mankind, and although also he affected a certain quiet primness of dress, he was none the less in his personal habits one of the most untidy men that ever drove a fellow-lodger to distraction.

No Lack of Void (220)

Holmes’ accents:  Holmes’ mastery of disguise doesn’t come up often in Elementary, but his accents do.  The canonical Holmes not only mastered accents, but entire languages. He convincingly passed himself off as an Italian speaker in “The Final Problem:”

I returned to my carriage, where I found that the porter, in spite of the ticket, had given me my decrepit Italian friend as a traveling companion. It was useless for me to explain to him that his presence was an intrusion, for my Italian was even more limited than his English, so I shrugged my shoulders resignedly, and continued to look out anxiously for my friend. A chill of fear had come over me, as I thought that his absence might mean that some blow had fallen during the night. Already the doors had all been shut and the whistle blown, when–

“My dear Watson,” said a voice, “you have not even condescended to say good-morning.”

Holmes’ Friends: In this episode, we meet another old friend of Holmes’. It’s commonly believed that Watson is Holmes’ only friend, but he does have others (although many of them are before Watson’s time). The most explicit friendship in the canon is Victor Trevor, his friend and client in “The Adventure of the Gloria Scott.”

The Man with the Twisted Lip (221)

Title: Again, the title is from a canonical tale, and this time it isn’t even modified. The original story was about a man who portrayed a beggar for a newspaper article and ended up accidentally faking his own death.

Ms. Hudson: This episode has the first (season 2) appearance of Ms. Hudson, albeit briefly. She actually doesn’t show up many times in the original canon. In fact, our modern perception of her as a kindly old woman is largely from the various screen adaptations — the canon gives no indication of how young or old Mrs. Hudson is.

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