New Year, New Sherlock

The wait is almost over: Sherlock returns to our screens this New Year’s Day. Now Jenny Cooke speculates over the latest offerings from Gatiss and Moffat, and the imminent and terrifying Return of the Moustache.

14th December 2015

First and foremost; who is super excited for this Sherlock special? Judging by the trailer, it’s looking action packed and full of the same brand of humour and genius that we know and love from the show.
Trailers and promotional images for special, airing on New Years Day, show our favourite characters transformed, with this episode set entirely in Holmes’ original stomping ground of nineteenth century London. While I’m not entirely sure how the whole ‘in the past’ aspect will work, I have full faith in the writers, who have been systematically ripping my heart out through many different seasons.

"We're in for a lot of waiting (and waiting, and waiting) until things become clear."

This is only the first episode of three, and we’ve got to take a look at the implications might be for the season that’s to follow. Will the past timeline still hold in the future one? Is the future one scrapped and now we’re entirely in the past for Season Four? We’re in for a lot of waiting (and waiting, and waiting) until things start to become clear.
For those of us not waiting so patiently, I think we can safely assume that the following episodes will take place in the established universe of the previous seasons of the show, if only because of Moriarty’s return at the end of season three. It seems unlikely that they would abandon such a potentially riveting plot point.
For this episode, though, I am personally very excited for the return of the trademark deerstalker. It’ll also be interesting to see how the characters will fit into their nineteenth century roles, especially how Sherlock’s impressive deductions unfold without the aid of the Internet.
There is one blemish on the trailer I would really have preferred not to see: the Return of the Moustache (yes, it has to be capitalised). I am hoping Watson shaves the bloody thing at some point in the episode; it was hard enough to put up with it for half an episode last season.
What is very exciting is the potential appearance of a new ‘big bad’ at some point in this special- assuming Moriarty will be left to the normal timeline, we can all but rule him out. The question is, which villain from the Sherlock Holmes canon will be used? I wouldn’t put it past Gatiss and Moffat to surprise us with an entirely new villain. Now that The Hound of the Baskervilles has been used, as well as some other notorious story-lines, we’ll simply have to wait and see what comes out of the woodwork.

“Maybe that’s what makes the hiatus’ so long - not the BBC’s dedication to Doctor Who over Sherlock, but the sheer brain-power that goes into each episode.”

Even if the newest villain to hit our screens is going to be a canon character, there’s no use pretending that we know what to expect: sticking to the original story that would be far too easy for Gatiss and Moffat. It would also be completely against what we have come to expect from the show. Maybe that’s what makes the hiatus’ so long - not the BBC’s dedication to Doctor Who over Sherlock, but the sheer brain-power that goes into each and every episode. Well, that and Martin Freeman going off and being a hobbit.
Honestly, I’m just glad that the wait is shorter for this new season than for the last one; maybe they’re picking up the production process when it comes to Sherlock? God knows it deserves it. At this point I can’t tell if the new series will be worth it or whether it’ll be a relief just because it’s happening.
So have a good Christmas, everyone! I’ll be clutching a tea and a blanket come the first of January. Nothing helps the New Years hangover more than clutching a tea and a blanket and watching genius run round London with cheekbones that could cut glass.

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