An Elementary Community
CBS (ended 2019)
What. An. Episode.
In my opinion it speaks so powerfully for itself that no review can really do it justice.
I will still try to write down some thoughts because there was one scene that deeply impressed me for a number of reasons.
Nearly four years ago when John Noble joined Elementary as Sherlock’s estranged father, he said about his role as Morland Holmes:

„…fundamentally underneath, there is hopefully an unconditional love that will surface by the end.”
John Noble, New York ComicCon 2015
It took until the very last conversation between Sherlock and his father to finally happen what makes the events of this episode even more tragic.

I think I don’t have to say anything about the phenomenal acting of both Jonny Lee Miller and John Noble in this episode but especially in that specific scene in the library.
In the beginning there is nothing unusual about it.
The conversation starts like most conversations between the two representing Morlands general behaviour towards his son.

When Sherlock enters the house Morland doesn’t greet him.
The first thing he does is reprimanding him for being late. It is one of the reason why Sherlock’s self-esteem is so low and also for his feelings of guilt as we get shown shortly afterwards in the encounter with Gregson.
What happens next though is what changes everything.
Instead of reacting aggressively to the reproach as he did in similar situations, Sherlock answers in a rather friendly tone telling his father that his efforts seem to have been successful.
This obviously works as an „Open Sesame“ to Morland’s soul.
Suddenly his attitude changes completely and even his voice becomes soft and soothing. He reassures Sherlock that he will keep him and the people he cares about safe.

This gives Sherlock the courage to finally, after more than thirty years, confront his father with the fact that he had been neglected and ignored by him again and again, that he never knew if Morland would be there for him or not.

It was weighing on him for all those years. He spoke about it on several occasions during the entire series, the first time as early as Episode 3 of Season 1 and recently to Cassie.

It is remarkable how Sherlock manages to get the message through to his father.
He thanks him first for his help, opening the door a little bit more, and then reveals his fear of being abandoned by Morland.
He only talks about the recent event but Jonny Lee Miller’s superb acting expresses that he is referring to every single time his father kept him waiting because other things had been more important to him.
The wording of Morland’s answer doesn’t make entirely clear if Sherlock got through to him but his body language and the tone of his voice speak volumes. I have never heard Morland talk with more softness and love in his voice nor have I seen him standing any closer to his son than in that moment.
The message it transports is that he has always loved Sherlock deeply despite what had happened between them and that he would always be there for him no matter what.
That those were the last words exchanged between them is tragic and comforting at the same time.
The depth of this series is amazing.
Every additional word would be too much.
Until next week.
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