‘Elementary’ episode recap – “The Long Fuse”

By Sari N. Kent,

We open as Holmes is watching three televisions at one time. Watson comes in and asks Holmes to shut them off so they can finish their discussion from last night. He won’t and instead tells Watson to talk. She tells him that he needs to talk about a sponsor. Holmes replies that why should he get a sponsor when he has her. But, then Watson says that she’ll only be with him for a few more weeks while a sponsor is “permanent, someone who is going to give you lifelong support and advice, which is what you need.” Holmes then replies, “The drugs I took seemed to light up my brain. Suddenly I realized the power I held, the power to rule, to make the world grovel at my feet.”

Then, Holmes rewound a tape on the television and a bandaged man said the exact same thing Holmes just said. Watson then tells Holmes that she knows someone who would be a good sponsor for him, she’s worked with him before and she wants to meet him for coffee with Holmes. Holmes insists that he doesn’t need a sponsor but Watson interjects saying how he “didn’t need rehab, drug rehabilitation. It’s just coffee.” Holmes agrees to go if it will give him some “peace and quiet around here.”

Shoot to a guy talking on the phone to a client about designing his company’s web page. He hangs up and tells his partner that the guy has no clue about real web design and that he’s a “real dinosaur. I think he’s like 45 or something.” Then, they hear something beeping and realize that it’s coming from inside the vent in their office. One of the guys looks in the vent and they think one of the repair guys dropped their phone. One of them says they’ll call maintenance. Meanwhile, we see inside the vent that the beeping is coming from a bomb. Then it explodes, bringing fire into the office, which slams into the two men.

Shoot to cops carrying the bodies of the two guys out as Gregson tells Holmes and Watson about the bomb killing the two men, Dave Preston and Royce Maltz and injured 11 others. Holmes then asks Gregson about the chemical composition of the bomb. Gregson replies that the bomb squad’s working on it and all they know for sure is that the bomb was stashed in the vent. Holmes then asks if the two dead men were employees of the company. “Parabolic Web industries, they design and maintain corporate web sites. We’re looking into anybody who might have had a beef with the firm,” Bell tells Holmes. As Holmes surveys the bomb riddled scene, he goes on about how Watson won’t miss seeing all the death and destruction she has having him as a client and that she’ll soon be off to her next client and only worrying about running out of coffee at the next support group meeting. Watson then tells Holmes that she doesn’t have a “next client” but that he is right that she won’t miss seeing all of this death and destruction. Holmes finds a strip of “packing paper” amongst the rubble. He tells Watson that it’s used to “fill the gap between the fuel and the blast cap on a pipe bomb. When the bomb detonates, this paper is ejected from the barrel before it has time to fully combust. Weapons-grade munitions use pulp filler not newspaper.” Gregson then interrupts and says the bomb squad said the same thing. He then says they are going to check if there have been any burglaries where there has been any flammable chemicals or gunpowder stolen. Holmes then finds something else, a piece of a pager but it has no transmitter. “So, what is it doing here? Pre-explosion, this place looked like the bridge of a starship, who would use technology as antiquated as a pager?” Bell then asks Holmes if was part of the bomb and Holmes replies that it might have been the bomb’s detonator. He adds that it isn’t too badly damaged so they’ll be able to trace the account. Gregson wants the piece to go to the tech guys right away. Watson then asks Holmes how long it would take for them to get a number on the pager. “Two, three hours, why?” Holmes asks Watson.

Shoot to Watson and Holmes at a coffeehouse waiting for the sponsor. Watson tells Holmes that the sponsor is a banker, is affiliated with the SEC and “spent four years at the London School of Economics so he knows your old stomping grounds.” Then, she spots the sponsor, Adrian. He introduces himself and holds out his hand to Holmes to shake, which he doesn’t. Watson then says she’ll leave them to talk. Holmes then gives Adrian a hypothetical sponsor situation and asks how he would respond if he called him in the middle of the night saying he wanted to die. Adrian tries to reply but then Holmes throws him another hypothetical sponsor situation. He doesn’t like Adrian’s answer then gets up and goes to yell at Watson for picking “Peter Platitude.” Watson then tells Holmes that they can look for other potential sponsors at the group meeting that evening, “but know this, we are going to find you a sponsor before my stint is up.”

Shoot to the motherboard gives them the number of the call that set off the bomb. It traces to a guy who essentially dialed the wrong number.

Shoot to Holmes looking at the bomb parts and he notices it has a four year old battery and that the newspaper bits were also from 2008. So, he deduces that they found the man who set it off accidentally in 2012 and must find the person who meant to set it off intentionally in 2008.

Shoot to Holmes and Watson going to investigate a high-powered PR company that used to occupy the same office space 2008. They meet with the owners, including the company boss Helen, a crossword puzzle enthusiast like Sherlock who solves a few clues on the puzzle on her computer while talking to her. They then tell Holmes about an eco-terrorist group that sent them threatening letters back in 2008.

Shoot to an AA meeting. Sherlock reads about the organization and ignores woman sharing. He discovers it wasn't really an organization but just one man. Watson presses him to look around for a sponsor. He replies that they're not his kind of addicts and the search will take longer. Then, a reformed addict and carjacker named Alfredo begins to share and Sherlock says he wants him to be his sponsor.

Shoot back to Holmes’ brownstone. He’s fixates on a repeated phrase in the threatening emails and he knows that he's heard it recently. He realizes it was on television and he stands in front of his 7 TVs and jogs his memory. He recalls he heard it on a talk show. He finds the clip of the man using the phrase on the show and they track him down. His name is Edgar Knowles.

Shoot to Knowles being called in to come to the precinct. Of course, at first he denies being a bomber or eco-terrorist but then Holmes gets his fingerprint from the elevator button and matches it to a bomb that went off in Utica. Knowles admits to Utica bomb and the threatening letters but he promises he didn't set off this bomb, the one that killed two people.

Shoot to Holmes setting off several mini-tennis-ball-bombs on his roof to do research. Knowles admitting to using nitrate based bombs and Holmes says this would be consistent with an eco-terrorist using organic materials but the bomb at the PR firm was petroleum, gas, and bleach-based so he knows Knowles is telling the truth.

Shoot to Gregson being annoyed that Holmes first served this guy up on a platter as the bomber but now doesn't think he did it. But, Holmes has also pieced together the newspaper page and discovered handwriting imprinted on it, the word "Novocain." He tells Gregson that he now believes a disgruntled employee-- with the cover of the eco-terrorist threat-- framed Knowles.

Shoot to Watson waiting with Alfredo but Holmes cancels. She apologizes and chats with him a little and finds that she likes him. He then talks about needing to be patient and tells Watson that he’s never been a sponsor but says he had a great one and is looking forward to it.

Shoot to Holmes going to the PR firm and begins his search in the personnel files. Helen, the boss, IDs him as a fellow addict... of crosswords. She starts hitting on him. He realizes that she wants to sleep with him and while he's totally willing since he finds her tantalizing, he's busy now and suggests they schedule an appointment and then she should not expect a relationship because that's not how he rolls. Then, Watson arrives and Helen bolts. Holmes tells Watson that he’s found a suspect, one Pradeep Singh, an upwardly mobile creative director. Although Singh was good he was also arrogant and after a fight with the male boss he just disappeared.

Shoot to Holmes and Watson going to see Singh’s wife, who says he's dead because he wouldn't run away because he loved her so much. Singh’s wife thinks he was murdered but the police cleared men at office. Holmes then asks about renovating the room they're sitting in. She says she hasn't. He asks to look in backyard. But this is a trick, while Watson and Singh’s wife go outside, he goes to look at a moldy wall. He takes the pictures off of it, runs his hands over it and listens. He then meets them outside and tells Watson that he believes Singh was murdered and then buried in his own wall: hence the mold. He could tell because the pictures on the wall were in slightly different places then they were in a picture on a nearby table. She asks if he's sure. He says fairly sure.

Shoot to where Holmes has ripped the wall open and revealed the decomposing body.

Shoot back to the precinct. They realize the bomb probably wasn't set by Singh because it was right near his office and he never missed a day of work. He was the target. In the dead man's pockets they find a safety deposit box key. Inside the box they find a Cheech and Chong video. They take the video to Holmes’ brownstone because he has a VCR. While Bell takes a call in the other room, Watson presses Holmes on bailing on Alfredo. She theorizes that he has separation anxiety about her leaving and once she said she liked Alfredo he turned him down to extend her stay. He scoffs at this. Bell returns and they watch the tape. It's a recording of a very young Singh meeting a prostitute. When she turns toward the camera we see it's his boss at the PR firm, Helen, also much younger.

Shoot to Helen being brought in. They show her the video. At first she tries to pretend it isn't her as Holmes goes on about what happened—Singh recognized Helen, threatened her. She planted the bomb but didn't realize there wasn't a signal tower close enough to the office to set it off. Since she came from modest means with a laborer dad she killed Singh, rehung the drywall while his wife was in Mumbai, moved the office and voila, problem solved. She was a prostitute to help put herself through business school and then to seed her company. Helen thinks Holmes has no evidence but then he plays the trump card: Novocain, which was imprinted on one of the newspaper pages and the answer to a clue to a crossword puzzle in the paper. They matched her handwriting sample. Boom, they arrest her.

Shoot to Alfredo showing up at Holmes’ brownstone. He has an incredibly fancy car parked out front. He explains that as a reformed car jacker, dealers and manufactures hire him to try and break their car security systems. He says he knows Holmes likes to pick locks. In an aside to Watson he says he knows this was her idea. She says that whether he is dreading her leaving or counting the seconds to when he is free of her she wants him to be taken care of. It was a smart move daring him to beat the new security system and he can't resist. He tells her it doesn't mean he's assenting to Alfredo's sponsorship. Holmes starts to work it out and asks Alfredo for clues. He won't give any. Holmes says that it's quite alright; he'll work it out and says "I'm entirely self-sufficient you know."

Image Credit: CBS

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