Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Sherlock: The Empty Hearse

BEWARE SPOILERS! DO NOT ENTER if you have not seen Sherlock season 3, episode 1 (or, do not enter if you want to be spoiled).

He's back.

Sunday was a good day. The Seahawks are going to the Superbowl, Sherlock returned, and church was great.
Sherlock had been in the back of my mind for about a week... and the hour before the premier I got more and more antsy, waiting for the clock to strike 9:58. It finally did, and there I sat, huddled under the quilt.
My excitement peaked in the first few minutes and then I was able to watch the rest of the episode like a sane person.
Here are my thoughts:

I loved how the focus was on John and Sherlock's relationship, and not on the actual plotline. This is what Sir Arthur Conan Doyle does in The Empty House story as well. The plot is a nice side story... but it's really only stuck in there so the story doesn't look like plotless fluff.
However... I did feel like some things could have been explained better/shot with more clarity. I felt like a lot of scenes catered right to the fangirl's heart. And while that's all good and stuff... this is a professional TV show. It shouldn't play out like a fanfiction.
Some examples of confusing things... at the beginning someone is running through the woods and he's surrounded. We cut to a shot of someone being beaten in an underground prison. I've read that the running person is Sherlock, and we all know that he's the one getting beat up, but for me, there wasn't enough point A to point B to connect the two scenes.
Similarly, at the end, when John and Sherlock are in the subway car, we suddenly go straight into a shot of Sherlock telling Anderson how he survived the Fall. Seemingly, this is the real answer... But then Sherlock walks away as Anderson is pointing out all the faults.
Huh? How does that fit into the near-death situation that John and Sherlock were in at that moment? (Except, of course, to make the watcher think that Moffat's not going to resolve the situation in this episode.) Was that something that Sherlock was remembering (if so, odd time to remember it), or something that John was imagining? Or was it happening at the same time? Did it even happen at all, or was it a fantasy?

Speaking of all the scenes where Sherlock "survived"...
Wasn't that BRILLIANT?
I think it was absolutely a brilliant scheme of the writers to write all the fan plots into the story!
Anyone remember THIS POST?
Well, you can guess how excited I was at the beginning. I was like, "They used my idea! I can't believe it's in there!"
Now I'm afraid that Moffat will never tell us how he actually fell. Someone said that the last one, where Sherlock is telling Anderson, is the real story... but somehow I just don't believe it.

I had several favorite parts. One was at the beginning, when John is about to propose to Mary, and Sherlock stealing people's things so he can pretend to be a waiter. That was so hilarious.

And all the moustache jokes that he made about John! "He has to lose that. He looks ancient! I can't be seen wandering around with an old man." "Does yours wipe off too?" "Seriously, are you going to keep that?" and all the while, you can just see the confusion and anger building up in John until he finally just has to tackle Sherlock. 

My other favorite part was when Sherlock and Mycroft were playing "deductions."
That was a bit of amazing writing (and acting! All those lines!). Mycroft is my favorite Sherlock Holmes character anyway... But that scene was so cool. And right out of the book. Maybe in the book they weren't necessarily deducting a pom-pom hat... but they were certainly trying to out-deduce each other! I've been waiting for a scene like that.
Speaking of Sherlock's family life...

And those were Benedict Cumberbatch's real parents too! Isn't that cool? I hope they show up again. That would be cool. If they're so normal, how come their kids are such super-geniuses? "He's adopted."

I loved the introduction of Mary Morstan.

I loved her character and it will be sad if/when she dies, which I'm afraid is imminent. She makes such a good addition to the team! And her and John make such a great pair. Plus she's played by Martin Freeman's real-life partner, which is pretty cool.

Molly was nice in this episode too, though she's always nice. It was cute when she was Sherlock's "John" for a day. One of their cases was a story from the books (the one about the step-father pretending to be his daughter's online boyfriend)! And it was great when she was telling Sherlock about her boyfriend and she said "I didn't meet him at work." Haha, after Moriarty, that will never happen again. I loved how her boyfriend dresses like Sherlock.

And did you hear that song near the end?? They were playing 'Do you hear the people sing, singing the songs of angry men...' from Les Miserables. We're singing that in my choir this year! All Saturday evening I was listening to that song because I've never seen Les Mis and I wanted to hear how the song went and then I just couldn't stop listening to it because it was so catchy and then it showed up in Sherlock! Crazy.

There were, of course, parts that could have been skipped/left out... The whole scene where John is working at the hospital I'm gonna skip if I ever watch the episode again. There was a whole bunch of stuff in there that is not suitable for any eyes.
Also, near the beginning, there's that scene where Mrs. Hudson and John are talking about Mary and Mrs. Hudson thinks that John's new 'somebody' is a guy and John replies that he's "not gay!" That joke is starting to feel overused. Even a reporter in his review of the episode felt it.
And the roof scene (another theory by one of Anderson's minions) where Sherlock and Moriarty lean in for a kiss... Thankfully Anderson interrupts the girl before she can go into detail.

Anyway, there are my thoughts. I'm looking forward to next week's episode and I'm wondering what's going to happen. I'm guessing that there will be another attempt on John's life by the new baddy (is it Augustus Milverton? I can't remember) amidst all the wedding-y stuff. Poor Sherlock, having to be best man. And he can't get out of it by an "engagement" either this time  (like the birthday video).

Live long and prosper!


  1. Becca and I watched this episode last night, and I share your thoughts exactly. I loved when Sherlock interrupted John's engagement with Mary, that was a very fun scene! And then the hospital stuff....yeah...not good... I caught the things from the original stories too, and it did seem really confusing whether or not they told us the real way Sherlock faked his death (probably not).

    We somehow managed to watch the episode backwards, or sort of. When we started watching, John was tied up and stuck in that burn pile, and then we kept waiting for it to flash back or something, and before we knew it, the episode was over! So, we pushed play again and watched from the beginning onward. :P I have no idea how it got messed up, but things made much more sense after we figured it out. ;)

    1. Haha, oh dear! Glad you could watch it from the beginning all the way through, though.
      I agree, they probably didn't tell us... do you think they ever will?

  2. I doubt they'll ever tell us how he survived. It adds to the mystery of the character. It was an overall good episode (and the shot of Parliament exploding was phenomenal special effects) in my opinion, though you made some good points. Still, I loved Mary's character. I'm glad that the writers wrote her the way they did.

    1. NOOOOOOOOOO *Darth Vaderly scream*
      Oh I forgot about Parliament exploding! That was wonderful. I love Mary too.