BBC’s ‘Sherlock’ returns for series three
By Cazzy Lewchuk, Staff Writer
Even though it’s been two years since the BBC’s modern-day revival of Sherlock concluded its second season, the fan base has never been stronger as season three premieres this January, hopefully giving fans at least a few of the answers they’ve been looking for.
The show was created by Doctor Who show-runner Steven Moffat and stars Benedict Cumberbatch (Star Trek into Darkness) as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman (The Hobbit) as Dr. Watson. The first season aired in 2010, ending with a shocking cliff-hanger that picked up where it left off in the second season in 2012. The third season also airs two years later—except this time the show acknowledges the long hiatus by explaining what Sherlock did for the last two years without Watson in his life.
Each season consists of three 90-minute episodes, so the show is more like a trilogy of movies than a standard 22-episode TV show. Season three, or “series three” as it’s referred to in the UK, aired from January 1-14, but Canadian and American audiences had to wait until January 19 before their favourite detective was back on the air on PBS. The final episode is on February 2.
Here is a quick recap of the season to prepare you for the finale:
Episode one, “The Empty Hearse,” sees the return of Sherlock to society. An emotional and hilarious public reunion with Watson occurs when Sherlock tries to “surprise” him with his return. Sherlock and Watson struggle to become friends again during the episode, but set aside their differences to solve a mystery together. A couple of new characters are introduced, including Watson’s fiancée, Mary (played by Freeman’s partner, Amanda Abbington), and the show’s next villain. Answers to the characters’ pasts are revealed and a few new questions are raised. A couple of the scenes that are mostly humorous in nature seem designed for the fans to gush over, such as the Empty Hearse club that features Sherlock-obsessed characters who mirror fans of the show. It’s definitely a great welcome back after a long two years of waiting, both to the show’s characters and its fans.
Episode two, “The Sign of Three,” is the light-hearted episode of the season. There’s character development and lots of chemistry between Watson and Sherlock. The main plot takes place over one day—John and Mary’s wedding day—but there are also lots of lengthy flashbacks, which include recounts of previous mysteries. Sherlock’s important—and in many scenes, hilarious—character development is shown and it all makes for a rather touching episode. Although the plot may be a bit weak—much like the second episodes in seasons one and two—it leaves the viewer with enough questions to want to know what’s in store for the finale.
What to expect is that episode three, “His Last Vow,” will be a complex, dark, and astounding finale. It’s hard to describe without spoilers, but it wraps the season up nicely while at the same time leaving the viewer wanting more and desperately begging for season four. It answers most of the questions raised in the season, while also raising some mysteries for viewers to ponder over until next season.
Season three of Sherlock will leave both new and old fans alike begging for more. The complex and superb writing, along with the schedules of A-List actors and writers prevent the series from airing frequently—hence the two-year hiatuses. However, it’s hopeful and likely that we’ll see the confirmed series four in less than two years this time, especially with the show’s explosive popularity. It’s truly a pleasure to see the inhabitants of 221B Baker Street return.