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Thursday 10:00 PM on CBS

Elementary: "The Many Mouths of Andrew Colville" (S02E19)

So we're back, and with a case you could really sink your teeth into! Sort of. I mostly just wanted more teeth wordplay.

"The Many Mouths of Andrew Colville" had an interesting enough premise in the search for men with identical dentures crafted in a prison dentistry and their connection to a spree of murders that happened five years ago that may have or may not have been committed by Mr. Colville following the apparent emergence of a copycat. Like I said, it's a neat idea, and it kept the issue of Colville's guilt and innocence in question long enough that there was some tension to that aspect of things, which was a nice shift away from being concerned with the other two corpses. If anything, Elementary has gotten better about at least making its homicide cases less about the corpses and more about some other aspect.

In this case, it was Joan's connection to the killer, but five years in the past. She was in the hospital when Colville was brought in, and her colleague, Fleming may have or may not have let Colville die on the assumption that he was a serial killer/biter. Turns out that Joan (plus a horrible horrible seriously horrible wig) had guilt for thinking that Colville did deserve to die if he had done these things, and ended up transferring that guilt over to Fleming and it's been weighing on her all this time.

Except, no. Not really all that interesting. I like Joan getting character development, truly, but this felt just all sorts of forced and I'm not sure we learned anything new about Joan, or was all that convinced that Joan had been bothered by this incident five years ago. Some groundwork in previous episodes would've gone a long away in making this a bigger deal, but as it stood here, it was just a bit of window dressing to give the procedural aspect a character beat, to make the case somehow personal.

Even how we ended up on the case felt kind of ridiculous, if still kind of funny. "Oh, this stoned mortician was bitten by a corpse, here's this possibly connected case we had with a similar MO. And there's a robber in the fridge." Cute, but still feeling oddly shoehorned. I'm not suggesting that the copycat needed to be established earlier in the season at all, but this just seemed like a narratively convoluted way to get to the main case instead of just starting us with the main case.

If there's one other knock to be made, it's that the case was resolved by the TV again. Like with "Ears to You", we received the solution by a news report. It was less subtle than the mention of the plastic surgeon in that episode considering Joan makes it a point of telling us she's watching it. It's a weird, convenient well for the show to go back to so quickly, so hopefully this isn't becoming habit forming.

On the less serious side, there were a couple of mentions of Ms. Hudson this week, and we got to see Clyde dressed as a shark cozy/turtle hybrid! Which is great as I love Clyde, and while I would've loved to have seen Ms. Hudson again, I appreciate the shout-outs to her.

Also on the less serious side, but also a pretty unacceptable move by the episode, we did not get to see Jonny Lee Miller in a giant pink prom dress singing songs from Frozen. While this would have been amazing -- perhaps he could've made "Fixer Upper" tolerable (probably not; that song is wretched) -- I understand why we didn't get to see it (rights issues, money, etc etc etc). It doesn't mean I don't even want to see it at some point, however. So, you know, get on that, show. Somehow.

What'd you think of the episode? Should I find a pink prom dress and record myself singing "For The First Time In Forever"? How much would you all pay me to do that?

Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 1/29/2015

Season 3 : Episode 12

Next Episode

AIRS ON 2/5/2015

Season 3 : Episode 13

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