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Over the last two years I have been writing reviews for this platform, it occurred very rarely that I found it hard to find an approach.
This is one of those occasions.

It is not because "Be My Guest" was a bad episode ( in fact I liked it a lot) but because it was an episode that you can view and review from different angles and I am not sure if the one that I choose is one you share.

So what now?

I think you will have to live with my decision.
If you can't, feel free to throw your computer, laptop or whatever device you are reading this on, out of the window. I don't take any responsibility for it though because you can't say I didn't warn you. ;-)

Let's go.

Usually an episode of Elementary has got a "Case of the Week" with twists and turns and a subplot dealing with the regular characters of the show.
This time there was only one straightforward storyline where the perpetrator was known from the beginning and if you watched closely you could even deduce early who was the accomplice.

"Be My Guest" was still compelling.

First because of the different angles you could view the episode from,
second because you didn't know if Preeda was still alive and
third: SHERLOCK or Sherlock's emotions to be precise.

As you may have noticed I entitled this episode "Demons". For a good reason. In my opinion "Be my Guest" made the demons that are haunting Sherlock more obvious than ever.
He has not been in a good place nearly the whole Season, now he starts to come apart at the seams.
It runs like a thread through the entire episode.
It starts with Sherlock sitting slumped in a chair next to Captain Gregson insulting the suspect Mr. Charles every time he addresses him. It is not the first time that he treats people very rudely, especially employees of high ranks in companies, but the intensity with which he does it this time is unusual even for Sherlock.

When he deduces that Ryan Decker is holding a woman captive by reading his body language and lips he starts acting very weirdly.
Instead of starting a proper investigation to prove his suspicions he runs out of the room, steals Decker's phone and breaks into it.
What happens next is even weirder. When Decker wants to get his phone back, Sherlock gets extremely aggressive and when Gregson interferes he only stammers that it was his mistake and leaves without any further explanation. You can see in his face that he is very upset and confused.
You might say that it was because he was shocked by the video on the phone but I think that that's only part of the reason. His outburst came from somewhere inside him, a beast he wasn't able to control anymore what shocked him as much as what he saw.
This event is the first piece in a jigsaw puzzle that gets completed by what Sherlock says to Carrie Traub in the end. I will collect all the pieces that I discovered and then try to describe what I see on the picture.
When Sherlock comes home he is still very upset. He is so full of adrenaline that he doesn't even notice that he is bleeding.
Joan and Shinwell both try to calm him down and bring him to his senses but aren't able to get through to him.
In front of Decker's house Joan starts another attempt to make him ask the police for help but it seems like Sherlock is driven by some invisible force that prevents him from thinking rationally.

There is a darkness around Sherlock that hasn't been there before.

He is in such a depressive state that he is only able to see the worst possible outcome and believes he is responsible for it.

When a pool of blood is found at the beach he immediately assumes that it is Preeda's and that she has been killed by Decker and his accomplice without taking any other possibility into account.
Every attempt to build him up, first by Watson and then by Gregson who tries to make him see that the other woman would never have been found without him, fails completely.

And do you remember the situation in front of Darnell Langston's hideout?
When Langston storms out of the house and shouts at Sherlock to get out of his way, Sherlock answers:

"I-I-I can't do that. I-I-I can't."

I think he really means what he says. He can't. He is not able to move. What makes me believe that is the fact that he suffers a panic attack after the two policemen have arrested Darnell. It is so severe that Bell turns around and asks Sherlock if he is alright.

I stated earlier that I consider Sherlock's last words in this episode important for the whole picture. Here they are:

" No, Ms. Traub, Ryan Decker's miserable life is over. He can rot where he is. And the same goes for you."

I can't remember having heard Sherlock say something like that in a tone like that before and I believe Ryan Decker and Carrie Traub were only the recipients of those words, although I can't say that they didn't deserve them.
The people who Sherlock's rage is really directed to will never be brought to justice for what they have done: His classmates.
They are probably all respected members of society by now.

At one point of the episode Gregson asks Joan if the victim they just found will be OK. Joan answers:

"Physically, yeah."

Comments (5)
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Jan 14, 2017
First of all, thank you nullnull2654 for your insightful reviews. I read them every week. They always enrich my Elementary experience and show me characters from new angles I am unable to see for myself.

Tell me, do you remember If Sherlock or Joan ever said anything if the evil they see during their work affects them? This case of the week was particullary hard for me to watch. I don't think I would be able to sleep peacefully after working on this.
Jan 14, 2017
Sherlock said in Season 3 to Agatha that his life hurt , all the conclusions he was able to draw and the ugliness he saw. He said his work helped because it focused him. So work is his therapy. It probably doesn't affect his sleep as he can't sleep anyway. He doesn't even own a bed.
Jan 11, 2017
I picked up what you were saying from the get go on this episode. Your insight from your reviews has opened me up a bit more to what is going on and this episode Sherlock was way of out character from what you normally see but you also have seen enough glimpses over the years (as well as other formats of the character - but not getting into that) that Sherlock is a person that walks a fine line and if he ever fully crossed it you could not be sure he could completely return and if he did make it back over how he would really be. You wonder just a little that if Preeda had died how it would have really ended for Sherlock.

One little note and it just struck me was a scene where he is carrying two coffees and tells Bell that both are for himself, he didn't sleep but when he puts the coffee down at the end of the scene, Bell picks it up and begins to drink it. Don't know if this was a mistake or maybe how it was supposed to go like a hidden rapport between the two characters.

I like his line at the end and I think he meant it to be directed only at the criminal but I can see what you mean with it being part of his problems and while I do not think the writers will put him back on the drugs this season, I wonder where it will go. Also and I do not recall you mentioning this but last season ended with Sherlock's father running the criminal organization in the hopes of bringing it down and while Sherlock does not get along with his father, part of his issues, the hidden anger he can barely keep bottled up can also be stemming from seeing a side of his father he never saw before and what his father is doing for him, to stop criminals and putting himself in danger.

Great review and look forward to the next and your insights.
Jan 11, 2017
The Ex struck me as involved pretty early on too, but I wouldn't say I was 100% sure more like 90%
Jan 14, 2017
I was 100% sure. I watch so many TV shows, that I immediately recognise familiar faces of very often guest starring actors. In 99 out of 100 cases those familiar faces are ALWAYS the culprit. Creators would not waste a good talent on a someone who is not important. The scene in which she theatrically pours the milk to her coffee only made me even more sure. It was too theatrical so it must have been important.
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