Jamie Moriarty is Sherlock Holmes' nemesis. After Sherlock interrupted several of her plans when he worked for Scotland Yard, she tricked him into falling in love with her so she could study him, knowing her as Irene Adler. Even after her arrest and imprisonment, she continues to have a great impact on him, and he writes her letters because she is the only person he can relate to.
|When Holmes interrupted several of her assassination plans in London, Moriarty at first considered killing him. Intrigued by his deductive abilities, which she compared to her own, she created the identity of Irene Adler and arranged for him to visit her. As Irene, she was an American in London who restored historic paintings, stealing some so that she could properly preserve them, which Holmes chose not to report her for. Moriarty's passion for art is one of the few characteristics she retained as Irene. She seduced Sherlock so she could study him and finding he wasn't a threat to her other operations, she staged Irene's death (leaving a pool of her blood and a note signed "M", the modus operandi of her primary assassin Sebastian Moran), and resumed her business as Moriarty. Moriarty was unaware of Sherlock's subsequent descent into drug addiction and showed genuine regret when she found out about it.
|Before she met Sherlock, Moriarty had a brief affair with Joshua Vikner and became pregnant. After giving birth, she gave the baby (Kayden) for adoption to the Fullers, a wealthy infertile English couple who later moved to New York. Despite her extremely ruthless nature, Moriarty kept close track of her daughter and clearly cared about her. Sherlock notes that Moriarty seldom involves herself directly in her operations, since she is the head of her crime syndicate and it poses a risk. However, she is perfectly capable of operating alone as she hunts down and kills her various rogue agents single-handedly.
|Moriarty is first mentioned when Sherlock captures the assassin Sebastian Moran who was killing on behalf of Moriarty using a serial killer's M.O. Sherlock interrogates Moran, believing he killed Irene Adler because the scene of her "death" had the same M.O. Moran knows he was in prison when Irene's murder happened, and concludes Moriarty "killed" her and framed him, having never met Moriarty. He offers to give Holmes as much information on Moriarty as possible to get revenge for the betrayal. Sherlock vows to bring down Moriarty and avenge Irene. ("M.") Moriarty leads Sherlock and Joan Watson to a mansion in Brooklyn, where they find her as Irene, alive. ("Risk Management")
|Appearing as if she has been held captive, and very convincingly faking symptoms of PTSD, she is checked into a hospital and eventually moves in with Sherlock under his care. When someone breaks into his house and leaves a flower at her bed as a supposed threat, Sherlock takes her to a safe house and plans to elope with her. After Sherlock sees a mole missing on her back, he figures out that she may have been faking her death to begin with and suspects her of working for Moriarty, causing Irene to angrily abandon him. Later, when one of her assassins, Isaac Proctor, who has gone rogue attacks Sherlock, Irene saves him by killing Proctor. ("The Woman")|
|She reveals herself to be Moriarty and details how she tricked him back in London. Holmes has interfered with a plot she has in NYC and tells him to let her win, or she will hurt him. Moriarty's plot involves kidnapping the daughter of a Greek businessman nicknamed the "Narwhal". Holmes deduces that Moriarty is forcing the Narwhal to assassinate a Macedonian diplomat, thus damaging the likelihood of Macedonia joining the European Union (which is obstructed due to a spat with Greece) and switching its currency to the Euro. Moriarty has bought huge quantities of Macedonian currency and stands to make a billion dollars if the plot succeeds. Moriarty meets Watson for lunch to figure her out and insults her. Despite Holmes warning the NYPD, the Narwhal is able to kill the diplomat and the plot appears to succeed. He's dismayed at Moriarty being one step ahead of him.|
|Holmes is next seen in the hospital having overdosed and is visited by Moriarty. Holmes asks questions which she answers that give details about the plot which includes multiple murders. She offers to take him away with her and heal him. Holmes reveals that he didn't overdose and that another person has figured her out - Watson. Watson hatched her own plot to let it appear that Moriarty has won, knowing that her love for Holmes would bring her to his rescue. Holmes has recorded her admission and Watson, Captain Gregson and Detective Bell arrive. Moriarty is arrested and the Macedonian money she has acquired is frozen. ("Heroine")
|Sherlock is seen writing a letter wondering if he believes in the possibility of truly knowing another person and claiming "yours is the only opinion I trust". He receives a reply, ending with a hope that he will continue writing. The letter was sent from Newgate Prison is from Moriarty. ("We Are Everyone") When a seven-year-old girl named Kayden Fuller is kidnapped and her father shot, Holmes and Watson hear the ransom demand. Holmes quickly recognizes the voice as that of the man who previously pretended to be Moriarty, who Moriarty herself described as one of her subordinates. Assuming Moriarty gave the order for the kidnapping, Holmes and Watson visit her at a prison black site. She's made a large painting of Watson's face in perfect detail. Moriarty denies being involved in the kidnapping, but offers to give information in exchange for prison favors. Holmes refuses, but shortly afterwards discovers she has been recruited as a consulting agent by her FBI handler, Ramses Mattoo, who bring her to work with the NYPD.
|Despite numerous anti-escape measures, Holmes believes she will escape. Moriarty provides information on the kidnappers and is accompanied to the kidnapping scene by Watson. Moriarty admits she finds Watson more intelligent and interesting than at first, and that part of the reason that she and Sherlock write to one another is because they are the only ones who can understand and relate to the other. When the kidnappers ambush and kill two policemen, Holmes believes Moriarty is somehow responsible. Devon Gasper, one of the kidnappers and a former Moriarty lieutenant calls and puts a frightened Kayden on the phone. Watson notices that Moriarty is angry when listening to the call. Moriarty is returned to her prison cell. Holmes discovers code in the sketches Moriarty made of the kidnappers but is surprised to find that Moriarty isn't behind the kidnapping she's a victim as Kayden is her daughter.
|Moriarty escapes her prison using glass shards of her paint jars to neutralize her stun bracelets (cutting her wrists badly) and strangles Mattoo unconscious. She tracks Gasper and the kidnappers down in an old building she owns and kills them all. She calls the police and demands that Sherlock be the only one sent into for her. She tells Sherlock that Kayden has been re-situated and she placed her for adoption knowing that knowledge of Kayden's existence would make her vulnerable. Moriarty believes she will soon be free and thanks Sherlock for his letters. She begins to pass out from blood loss so Sherlock carries her outside for treatment where Watson believes she will recover. ("The Diabolical Kind")
|Moriarty writes a letter to Watson expressing her admiration for Watson's career and her displeasure at the attempt on Watson's life. She then arranges the death of Elana March to protect Watson. She also hints at an "unfolding game between Sherlock and herself", of which she says Watson is a player. ("The Female of the Species")
|After Morland Holmes became head of her organization in 2016 to dismantle it, Morland tells to Sherlock that Moriarty has escaped custody and is targeting him in order to regain control of her organization. ("The Adventures of Ersatz Sobekneferu") In 2018, Sherlock brokers a truce between Moriarty and Morland via one of her lieutenants, Ellory. Moriarty agrees to let Morland remain the head of her organization until he dies of old age. Sherlock threatens that if Morland is killed by her, that he'll become the head of her organization. ("You've Come a Long Way, Baby")
- The episodes featuring Moriarty were written with Natalie Dormer in mind. She was cast before the episodes were written.
- The name that her supposed kidnapper was called by, Mr. Stapleton, is a reference to a character by the same name in the Conan Doyle book, The Hound of the Baskervilles.
- A letter she sent to Sherlock shows her return address as Anemoonstraat 86, 5271 GS Sint-Michielsgestel, The Netherlands. ("One Way to Get Off")
- Moriarty mentions having a mentor who shared the same enthusiasm as her. ("The Diabolical Kind")
- The painting Moriarty is restoring when Holmes first meets her is Peter Paul Rubens "The Incredulity of St Thomas".
- While waiting at a prison to see former Escarra drug cartel member Zuniga, Holmes mentions to Watson that he still writes to Moriarty. ("The Past Is Parent")
- Arthur Conan Doyle's Moriarty on Wikipedia, which Elementary's Moriarty is based on.
- Arthur Conan Doyle's Irene Adler on Wikipedia, which Elementary's Irene Adler is based on.