And that felicitation I extend to the entire cast and crew of this fantastic series.
I settled into my comfy chair yesterday eve and dialed up the Beeb, knowing I would be delighted by yet another excursion with my favorite detective (well, there’s Magnum and Rockford too).
The episode finds Sherlock in a shocking way, covered in blood, harpoon in hand, craving a nicotine fix as well as a case.
One presents itself rather quickly. There are rumors about something prowling Dartmoor, and it’s nearby military installation Baskerville. One victim, who claims to have seen a monstrous hound kill his father in Dewar’s Hollow twenty years ago, has been haunted, and had nightmare filled nights ever since. He’s spurred on to visit Holmes after finding the footprints of a gigantic hound the night before.
And let me just say that if Russell Tovey, who’s survived an intergalactic trip aboard the S.S. Titanic with The Doctor, and has been a werewolf himself in Being Human, is frightened, he’s probably got good cause.
Intrigued by the archaic use of the phrase hound, Sherlock senses there’s something more to this than he first suspected, so he and John head out to the moors!
The writing, and update of this classic Holmes story, as the rest before them, is top-notch. It also allows these new incarnations of Holmes and Watson (brilliantly played as always by Cumberbatch and Freeman) to venture into a mystery that is a little scarier than the ones that go before.
Especially when Holmes himself sees the beast.
This case puts the greatest strain on the friendship between Holmes and Watson, both of them snapping at each other as they both try to deal with their fears in different ways.
As always there are some fantastic sequences, including when Holmes and Watson break into Baskerville with some stolen identification, and when Watson is stalked through an empty lab by the hound.
There are just some brilliant laugh out loud moments as well, that to me make the show that much more enjoyable. Holmes spattered in blood stalking about with a harpoon, a glowing rabbit (you read that right), the banter, the need for a cigarette, chasing down the source of the morse code, the yard lights constantly turning on, Watson calling Holmes on his popping his collar up.
The show, for me, is a wonderful incarnation of the Holmes I love. Yes, it’s been updated for today’s age, but the characters and spirit are true to the original creation.
Benedict’s Sherlock is as cold and calculating as he ever was in the original stories, and Watson is a wonderfully human counterpoint to him. They really are the perfect duo, and I know I will be very upset when we get to the end of next week’s ep, because despite the fact Freeman is for a third series, Mark Gatiss has hinted that we’ll have to see if they all survive!!
Which is not a surprise, as the episode is called The Reichenbach Fall, and anyone who knows the original story… well, you know… Holmes… Moriarty…
I guess we’ll have to see.
You know I will!