elementary the one percent solution

Sherlock’s (Jonny Lee Miller) annoyance level is raised to the highest degree thanks to the arrival of his former colleague Lestrade (Sean Pertwee) in “The One Percent Solution.” This episode of Elementary lends itself to a few twists and turns, but the dynamic between Miller and Pertwee is what makes it top-notch.

The Players:

  • Director: Guy Ferland
  • Writer: Bob Goodman, Craig Sweeny
  • Cast: Jonny Lee Miller, Lucy Liu, Aidan Quinn, Jon Michael Hill, Sean Pertwee

Episode Title: “The One Percent Solution”

A bomb goes off in the middle of a restaurant and a few lives are lost. It’s up to Sherlock and Watson (Liu) to figure out who was the culprit behind the strategic attack. Unfortunately, there’s one person who might beat them to the punch. Lestrade (Pertwee), Sherlock’s former partner, is also on the case and doesn’t make life any easier for the detectives. Sherlock continues to butt heads with Lestrade which gets in the way of his deductive prowess.

The Good:

  • Miller/Pertwee: The energy and charisma emanating off the actors was overly visible, mainly because they work so well together, which works given the story for this episode. Sherlock isn’t too pleased to see that Lestrade’s taken all the credit for his cases and transformed himself into a celebrity. He sashays around, flaunting his new power and it’s getting under Sherlock’s skin. Each scene between them of them is filled with unspoken tension and evident irritation from the actors that makes the episode much sweeter. It’s nice that the writers decided against turning Lestrade into a possible villain. There’s a moment in the episode where Sherlcok uncovers shady information about Lestrade that could pin him as an accomplice, but the character’s ultimately innocent.
  • More Blatant/Necessary Symbolism: At the beginning of the episode, Sherlock brought home two fighting roosters, each in their own cages. They have to be separated or else they’ll attack each other, so Sherlock decided to do an experiment to see whether or not he can rehabilitate. Once Lestrade comes in, Sherlock has to deal with not only the roosters but of his own relationship with his former partner. The symbolism is pretty obvious, but still works.
  • Lestrade’s Connection: We find out Lestrade’s big connection with the CEO currently under investigation by Sherlock and Watson. He’s tied up in some questionable business, helping the CEO get his hands on information for potential women he may be romantically and fiscally involved with. Sherlock doesn’t give him a way out, but his sympathy and forgiveness for Lestrade is enough to get them back on the right track. It’s interesting to see how this version of Sherlock reaches out to help those he knows a lot more than previous incarnations. It’s refreshing.

The So-So:

  • Our Main Murder Mystery: After a certain point the focus of the murder case gets dull, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. We become more focused on the tension between Lestrade and Sherlock, one that quickly takes center stage within the first few minutes of the episode. Yes, we want to see the mystery solved but their friendship, or lack thereof, is what’s pulling us in. There’s a moment where we almost forgot they were still working a case. When they intertwined Lestrade’s recent past with the prime suspect, the loose ends tied up nice and neat.
  • Direction: There was nothing particularly bad, or spectacular, about the direction for “The One Percent Solution.” Guy Ferland got the job done and helped tell the story in a clear, concise manner that never irritated us.

The Bad:

  • Watson’s Wardrobe: Is it us or was the person in charge of Watson’s wardrobe asleep behind the wheel during this episode? She made the slim Lucy Liu look a messy, and in a couple of moments, slightly bloated by the clothing choices they made. Liu is a gorgeous woman, and normally we envy the outfits she wears, but not this week.


We would be happy to see Lestrade come back in some form for another episode. The dynamic between he and Sherlock is just as comical as the friendship between Sherlock and Watson. It makes us want to see even more.

Rating: 8.5/10

Elementary airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on CBS.

What did you think of this week’s episode?