Elementary “Render, Then Seize Her” Review (Season 5 Episode 3)

Render, And Then Seize Her

On the latest episode of “Elementary,” Holmes tackled two cases for the price of one: one involving the Captain’s girlfriend, Paige (Virginia Madsen, who’s been busy lately, between this and “American Gothic” and “Designated Survivor”), and insurance fraud; and another involving a murder outside a nudist camp involving an apparent kidnap victim, in “Render, Then Seize Her.”

As Paige checked in with Gregson before another round of tests for her MS, she pulled Holmes aside to investigate something on the down low, afraid that if she took it to Gregson he’d over-react. It seems that she suspected that there was someone perpetrating insurance fraud at her doctor’s office, and needed Holmes to prove her suspicions.

Ultimately, it turned out that no less than three people were involved with the crime, which Holmes easily solved. Thankfully, one of them wasn’t Paige’s doctor, who she trusted implicitly. Unfortunately for her, Holmes also turned up the fact that Paige’s finances were dwindling, which was going to make it tough for her to handle the future charges headed her way for her treatments, as insurance wasn’t going to cover it.

Render, And Then Seize Her

To that end, Holmes suggested that she and Gregson get married, which he had always been amenable to, but she was dead set against, not wanting him to think she was taking advantage of him to allow her to benefit from the insurance and tax cuts that would be afforded to her if she were a married woman. Remarkably, despite Holmes’ decidedly dim view of marriage, he not only talked both parties into it, he provided Gregson with a choice of rings to propose with!

Meanwhile, in case number two, a naked man was murdered outside a woman’s house, seemingly spying on her and filming her without her consent, a la a Peeping Tom. Only the murder happened just outside a nudist camp, and the reason the man was filming was that he had spotted a woman that was allegedly kidnapped recently and wanted proof of it.

The husband of the woman in question, who had frantically been trying to get her back, confirmed it, but refused to cooperate, as the person or people holding her said if he talked to the cops they’d kill her. All he would volunteer was that they wanted $3 million for her safe return and he was scrambling to get it somehow, despite his business, a post-production house, failing at the moment.

Render, And Then Seize Her

However, he said that he and a co-worker had patented a CGI effect that was going to make them millions, thus solving his money problems once and for all- he just had to complete the sale to get the money. To that end, he and his best friend, who had done all the heavy lifting on the effects, went to a local mafia type and put together an effects reel for him to show to others in hopes of getting them to sign on and invest.

However, a guy who used the post-production house overhears the husband arguing with someone over what sounded like blackmail material, so Holmes steals a hard drive from there to inspect and finds the video in question, mistaking it for real footage of the mafia guy killing someone. Confronting the man in question, he laughs it off, saying that it’s a fake, staged for his amusement to show to others, as well as to advertise how solid the FX was with the CGI program they were trying to sell to him.

Holmes realizes that if that footage was faked, so might be the kidnapping footage of the husband’s wife being taken. Sure enough, a closer look reveals just that, at which point Holmes begins to suspect that the partner was the one behind the staging, and possibly in on it with the wife, given how decidedly not struggling she looked in the video the nudist took.

Render, And Then Seize Her

Shortly thereafter, the wife miraculously “escapes” her captors, claiming she was tied up and held in a tent in the woods, describing her kidnappers as Pakistani. A look into her story proves it to be dubious, as no evidence can be found in the woods to that end to corroborate her story.

Holmes has her and the partner brought in to be questioned, suspecting that they are in it together, especially when it turns out that there’s a clause in her prenup that will give her half of her husband’s business if they stay married a certain amount of time- ten years to be exact. As the two were about to get divorced, she was looking to prolong them getting one until the ten year mark was passed so that she could benefit from the CGI sale.

To that end, she recruited the resentful partner, saying she’d cut him in on more of the sale if he helped her stage her own kidnapping, so as to elicit sympathy from her husband, knowing there was no way he could possibly pay the ransom they set. Then, when she somehow escaped, the incident would be enough to bring them closer in the short term, so as to run out the clock on the ten-year prenup deal.

Render, And Then Seize Her

Once that milestone was passed, then she could leave him after all, reaping the benefits in the process. One problem: in addition to there being no evidence of her kidnapping aside from the fake footage of it, which was already being proven, she also had signs of a different kind of evidence- a sunburn on her breasts, which could only be the result of her laying out in the sun.

Not exactly the kind of thing a kidnapper was likely to let his victim do on the fly. Busted- literally. “Busted” totally should have been the title of this episode, as cute as the real one was. Anyway, this was a decent enough episode, with the side plot given just enough time to be effective without taking away from the main case at hand.

As such, it was probably the best balance of the two so far this season, though ultimately, I liked the last episode’s case better than this one. Still, this one managed to serve both to develop supporting characters (Gregson and Paige) and show a new wrinkle in Holmes’ own personal development, as even he allowed there were cases in which marriage maybe wasn’t a bad thing after all, to the point of wholeheartedly supporting it, and not only that, donating a ring to the cause, no less.

Render, And Then Seize Her

That’s real progress, for him. Might it also be enough for him to consider it as well? Probably not anytime soon, but give it time. Fiona and him are still a thing, right? It’s possible I might have blinked and missed something, as we haven’t seen hide nor hair of her this season as of yet, but I don’t think so. Regardless, still a big step forward for Holmes overall, and I loved Watson’s stunned reaction to it as well.

What did you think of the overall episode of “Elementary”? Did you like the main case? How about the one involving Paige? Are you glad that she and Gregson got a happy ending? (For now, at least- lest we forget, she still has MS, so things could still get messy for them.) Do you think Holmes’ new attitude towards marriage indicates good things in store for him and Fiona, assuming they are still together? If so, might Moriarty use that against him? Sound off on this and more down below, and see you next week!