In this week’s episode of Elementary, Joan and Sherlock hunt down a fugitive who has leaked national security secrets to the media. In the process, they’re targeted by a group of “cyber activists” intent on protecting the fugitive.
A man named Ezra Kleinfelter (Christian Campbell) is sitting in a taxi, writing an important email. He tries to pay the cab driver using his debit card, but it’s rejected. He sees a bunch of towncars drive up and men in suits and sunglasses getting out. Ezra realizes that “they” have frozen his bank account.
After he sends the email, Ezra jumps out of the taxi and runs off, while the cab driver honks his horn – getting the attention of the men in suits – and yells at him to come back.
Joan is at the park with her reporter friend Emily (Susan Pourfar), who we last saw in “Déjà Vu All Over Again”. Emily is watching her kids play, while Joan receives photos on her phone from Sherlock of dollhouses. Joan explains that he’s quizzing her using the dollhouse as pretend crime scenes. One of the photos is a family of dead dolls, and Joan texts Sherlock that they died from a gas leak.
Emily then surprises Joan, telling her that she’s signed Joan up for an online dating service called TrueRomantix. Joan insists that her life isn’t that weird, and that she does indeed meet people. Right after she she gets a photo message of a doll sticking its head in the oven. Oh, Joan.
When Joan arrives home, there’s an elderly man playing backgammon in the living room. Sherlock enters from the kitchen holding a tray and introduces the man as Mr. Mueller (Ronald Guttman) from Brussels.
Mr. Mueller talks about Ezra Kleinfelter, who turns out to be a civil contractor that leaked national secrets to the media. Sherlock is aware of Ezra, thanks to all the media coverage. Mr. Mueller is worried that someone might kill Ezra, so he wants Sherlock and Joan to find Ezra first and deliver him to Mr. Mueller and his associates. Mr. Mueller says he understands that Sherlock might want to take some time to think it over, but Sherlock quickly agrees to take the case. He then rushes Mr. Mueller out the door, using the excuse that Joan needs her mid-afternoon nap.
As soon as Mr. Mueller leaves, Joan voices her concern, saying it sounds like they’re aiding and abetting a fugitive. Meanwhile, Sherlock took a picture of Mr. Mueller with his phone while Mr. Mueller was distracted. He’s sent the picture to an associate who will analyze it using facial recognition technology.
Sherlock tells Joan that he only said he would take the case in order to put Mr. Mueller at ease. In actuality, Sherlock wants to follow Mr. Mueller and figure out what his nefarious plans really are. Sherlock believes that Mr. Mueller is a fake name. “No Belgium is that bad at backgammon,” Sherlock reasons.
Sherlock and Joan are trailing Mr. Mueller, when Sherlock receives information from his associate. Mr. Mueller’s real name is Elliot Honeycutt and he used to be in the army. He went on to work as a systems analyst for Everwood Communications, which was a CIA front. He’s now the VP for corporate counterintelligence at Redding Enterprises, the same contractor that – until recently – employed Ezra Kleinfelter.
Turns out Mr. Mueller/Elliot Honeycutt isn’t looking to bring Ezra to justice. He wants to kill Ezra.
At the police station, Joan and Sherlock are gathering as much data as they can on Ezra. While Joan is in the middle of looking at Ezra’s blog, she asks Sherlock what they plan to do with Ezra once they catch him. She wants to know where Sherlock stands – does he think Ezra is a hero or a villain? Sherlock explains that, at the very least, he knows that Ezra doesn’t deserve to be stalked and executed.
Sherlock mentions that Ezra dealt exclusively with one reporter, Celia Carroll, played by Broadway actress Laura Osnes (Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella).
Sherlock and Joan meet with Celia to ask her about Ezra. She tells them that Ezra planned to leave the country before Celia published her story, but his plans were completely botched when Redding found out what he was doing. When Sherlock asks if Ezra had a romantic interest in her (Celia is exactly Ezra’s type based on his blog posts), she completely denies it and claims she has no idea where he went into hiding. She says she’s the last person he would confide in.
As Joan and Sherlock walk away, Joan concludes that Celia is a terrible liar.
Sherlock and Joan wait outside Celia’s office building, watching her do TV interview after TV interview through the large windows up above.
Joan asks Sherlock if he thinks they’re cut off from the world, seeing as how neither of them get out much. Joan then awkwardly tells him that her friend has signed her up for an online dating service and Joan is going to go ahead and build her profile, so if she brings anyone around to the loft, he better be nice. Sherlock says it won’t be an issue, because she’ll probably never bring anyone around.
Sherlock gives his theory that romantic love is merely a delusion. Meeting Irene Adler forced Sherlock to re-examine his theory, but then Irene turned out to be Moriarty, who turned out to be a criminal. Joan says that they never really discussed how the Irene/Moriarty situation made Sherlock feel. Sherlock says he feels liberated; he’s now post-love, which allows him to pursue “a life of meaning”.
Meanwhile, Celia has wrapped up all her TV interviews. Sherlock and Joan watch as she switches bags with the security guard downstairs. Turns out the security guard is her way of communicating with Ezra.
Sherlock pickpockets the security guard’s phone and, back at the loft, ends up nuking the phone because it’s too dangerous. Sherlock is able to find out that the security guard, Hector, is a member of a cyber group called “Everyone”. Joan has heard about them from the news. Sherlock explains that “Everyone” prefer to call themselves “cyber activists” and it appears that they’re committed to keeping Ezra safe. Sherlock notes that a person with the username “Defenestrator” is most likely the one harboring Ezra.
Sherlock’s plan to expose “Defenestrator” is to argue on the Internet all night, according to Joan.
The next morning, Joan finds Clyde the turtle eating lettuce on her bed. Sherlock put him there to act as Joan’s alarm clock. In addition, Sherlock has managed to figure out “Defenestrator”‘s identity; “Defenestrator” is a woman named Vanessa Hiskie.
In the process of breaking into Vanessa’s apartment, Sherlock tells Joan that they’re about to accomplish something no one else has been able to do – finding Ezra. Sherlock is referencing their conversation from yesterday, when Joan asked him if they’re too cut off from the world.
Sherlock and Joan enter the apartment and find Vanessa’s body. She’s been murdered!
Captain Gregson and Detective Bell arrive on the scene, along with forensics and police. Ezra is now a person of interest in Vanessa’s murder, given Sherlock’s theory that he’s been hiding out in Vanessa’s apartment this whole time. Joan notices a book by Ayn Rand, Ezra’s favorite author, has been put out in the living room. Next to it is a box containing a map of NYC, a compass, and other materials. This means Ezra was definitely in the apartment at one point or another.
Back at the loft, Sherlock tells Joan – who’s browsing the online dating website TrueRomantix – that he needs a break from the Internet after getting into a heated debate about whether or not Ezra is part of a government frame-up. Things quickly get weird when Joan receives a call from a man saying that he received a message from her about a hook-up. Then, a pizza delivery guy shows up saying that they he has their 20+ pizzas.
The phones begin ringing, the computers are all being controlled… “Everyone” has hacked into Joan and Sherlock’s loft, after the security guard realized his phone was missing. “Everyone” traced the phone back to Joan and Sherlock’s loft, despite Sherlock’s best efforts to nuke the phone, and have deemed the two of them of being Ezra’s enemies. “Everyone” is on a mission to ruin Sherlock and Joan’s lives.
Sherlock and Joan go to the police station. Sherlock tells Bell that he wants to examine the contents of the box found in Vanessa’s apartment. Sherlock thinks Ezra went back to the first place he was hiding.
Sherlock and Joan figure out that Ezra is hiding out in a bunker established by the Office of Civil Defense somewhere in NYC.
They visit with the foremost expert on NYC’s geography. The expert tells them that those bunkers no longer exist, but Sherlock manages to figure out that one bunker still exists. Before they leave, the expert has Joan agree to read 5,000 pages of his manuscript for the book he hasn’t finished writing.
Since his phone isn’t working thanks to “Everyone”, Sherlock tells a police officer on a bicycle to deliver a message to Capt. Gregson; it’s the location of the bunker that Ezra is hiding in.
Sherlock then whistles for a taxi, but before they get in, U.S. Secret Service shows up and accuses Sherlock of writing a blog detailing plans to assassinate the president. Sherlock and Joan are promptly handcuffed and arrested.
Thankfully, Sherlock manages to talk himself and Joan out of this particular mess. The bunker, however, was empty when Gregson and the police showed. “Everyone” moved Ezra to another location because Sherlock figures they were monitoring police calls.
That night at the loft, Joan gets a visit from Jeff Heinz (Steve Kazee). The two exchanged messages on TrueRomantix. When Jeff started getting really weird messages from Joan, ones that included her home address, he decided to check to see if Joan was okay. He figured that Joan had been hacked.
Joan reassures Jeff that she’s fine, and is really touched that he took the time to check in on her.
Jeff tells Joan that he hopes to see her again soon and the two exchange goodbyes.
Meanwhile, Sherlock has been writing a heartfelt plea on the Jamaican Key website, where members of “Everyone” congregate, for the hacker group to end their cyber attacks on Sherlock and Joan. Joan brings up Irene/Moriarty. She says that what she did to Sherlock was cruel and Sherlock hasn’t properly dealt with it yet.
Sherlock shuts the conversation down, however. In the chatroom that Sherlock is on, after an anonymous user requests naked pictures that Sherlock is way too ready to dish out, Sherlock and Joan learn that Ezra has “gone far away.”
The next morning, Sherlock tells Joan that Ezra’s best option is to flee the country, get to foreign soil, and gain asylum. The best way to do that is to gain an ally who owns a private plane. Sherlock figures one of the users in the chat room last night owns a private plane – and that user’s name is Darragh O’Connor (David Hess). Darragh, a billionaire, is an advocate for freedom of information.
Apparently, Darragh’s plane is scheduled to land in NYC later that afternoon and take off for Venezuela shortly thereafter.
Joan, Sherlock, and Gregson wait for Ezra to show up. Sure enough, a car pulls up and Darragh gets out. Ezra is dressed as the driver.
The police quickly close in to arrest Ezra. Ezra, however, declares that he’s still getting on that plane no matter what. If the police arrest him, 14 innocent people will lose their lives.
There’s an envelope in Ezra’s bag. He has the names of 14 operatives working deep undercover, and Ezra will expose them if he’s arrested.
Backed into a corner, Gregson has no choice but to let Ezra go. Before he gets on the plane, Joan grabs Ezra’s hand and warns him that it doesn’t matter where he goes, they know he killed Vanessa Hiskie and they will prove it.
Later when the group watches the plane go, Joan reveals that she stole Ezra’s watch when she grabbed his hand. Sherlock is super proud. They can use the watch to prove that Ezra killed Vanessa, preventing Venezuela from giving Ezra asylum.
As for their other problem, Sherlock pays Elliot Honeycutt a visit. He tells Honeycutt about Ezra’s plan to release the names of 14 undercover operatives. Sherlock tells Honeycutt that he must release those names to the government so they can rescue the operatives, regardless of what it does to Redding Enterprises. Regardless, Ezra will be arrested and, if those operatives are killed, it won’t be on Sherlock’s conscious.
Later, Sherlock is watching the news report that the FBI has arrested Ezra for the murder of Vanessa. He tells Joan that as soon as Honeycutt turned over those names to the government, the 14 operatives were put in safehouses within the hour.
Joan tells Sherlock that she’s going out tonight. She needs a break from detective work to do some “real world” things.
Sherlock is reading a letter when Joan returns from her date. Sherlock figures it must have gone well since it ended with a goodnight kiss. Joan tries to downplay the date, but she’s clearly happy.
Before she goes to her room, she tells Sherlock that he shouldn’t give up on love. Sherlock has a lot to offer and Joan shouldn’t be the only one who gets to know him.
As we hear Natalie Dormer’s voice overlap Jonny Lee Miller’s, it’s finally revealed that the letter Sherlock is reading is from Moriarty – Jamie Moriarty.
Sherlock: Of course Mueller has nefarious plans for Kleinfelter. Why else the ruse?
Joan: I’m not arguing he’s a good guy. Can you just stop saying “nefarious”? It’s like 15 times in the last 10 minutes.