tl;dr - How does the bullet get into the gun? How does it fire backwards?
The opening sequence to Elementary is a brilliant metaphor using a Rube Goldberg type apparatus to illustrate the methodical (and often convoluted) steps Sherlock takes to ultimately catch the perpetrator.
The whole contraption is very well thought out and uses an increasing depth of ingenuity coupled with a score that demands urgency to a solution.
The opening title sequence for CBS’ updated Sherlock Holmes series Elementary reflects the show’s contemporary take on a classic character. Prologue Creative Director Simon Clowes employs a Rube Goldberg contraption to represent the manic detective’s unorthodox, sometimes convoluted and often aggressive approach to crime solving.
A large, transparent marble finds itself in the elaborate apparatus, setting off a chain reaction of increasingly violent events that culminate in the caging of a helpless figurine. Like the mind of the great detective, the invention works at a dizzying pace, with only parts of it revealed while others remain a mystery. A steadily intensifying score composed by Sean Callery adds a sense of impending danger and urgency to the marble’s iconoclastic course.
I can envision how almost all of the individual sub-operations are constructed and how they contribute to the initiation of the subsequent sub-operations.
The part I don't get is how the revolver cartridge flies in from 'house left' apparently into the front of the open revolver cylinder¹ then spins and locks the revolver's cylinder into a firing position a la russian roulette. If it were even possible for the cartridge's trajectory to take a 90° turn as it passed in front of an open chamber then restart the left-to-right momentum that was temporarily suspended to spin the cylinder and lock it into a firing position, firing the revolver at that point would at best do nothing at all and at worst, fire the bullet back into the trigger mechanism.
I possess neither the video tools nor a high enough FPS copy of the opening sequence to determine exactly what is happening here. Can anyone shed some light?
Should I simply accept 'poetic license' and/or 'suspension of disbelief' in the pursuit of what is otherwise one of the best opening sequences ever?
This is the only part of the opening prologue that doesn't seem reproducible IRL
¹ Freeze framing shows from the trigger orientation you are viewing the sequence from the point of the one holding the revolver. This supposition is confirmed by the ratcheting gear around the cylinder's central axis which is activated by the trigger/hammer action to rotate the cylinder. The cartridge or 'bullet' also appears to be loaded backwards.