Today, I watched episode three of Series 2 of Sherlock. This was “The Reichenbach Fall.” If I wasn’t already a fan of this show, this would have made me one.
But, I’m getting ahead of myself, aren’t I?
This is a review of all of Series 2, three 90-minute episodes of just excellent television. There wasn’t a miss here. I’ll talk about the episodes one at a time.
Episode 1 of the series was “A Scandal in Belgravia,” which was based—liberally, of course—on the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle story “A Scandal in Bohemia.” This is the episode in which we, and Sherlock, meet “The Woman” Irene Adler. In this updated, modern version of Sherlock, Miss Adler is a high-paid dominatrix who trades in classified secrets. She is intrigued by Sherlock, and the feeling seems mutual. In Irene Adler, Sherlock meets his match. Female match, I guess I should qualify the statement, since Moriarty will always be Sherlock’s arch-nemesis. Adler isn’t a nemesis, not exactly; but, she’s something…
Episode 2, “The Hounds of Baskerville,” was another brilliant take on a famous Sherlock story. This time, the hound (or hounds), in question seem to be the product of a top-secret base that does genetic manipulation. There are twists, And the ending is a satisfying one.
I want to point out that I caught one major clue without even knowing it. I wondered why an Englishman would call it a “cell” instead of a “mobile.” I’ve watched enough British television to know that “cell phone” is American English. Even when I had this thought, I didn’t know it would be a clue for Sherlock later, and it didn’t ruin the episode for me. I hope it doesn’t for you either.
Episode 3 was “The Reichenbach Fall.” Any Sherlockian worth their salt knows which short story this was based upon. The only things it really has in common with the story, however, are the name, and the ending, the presumed deaths of both Moriarty and Holmes. Most fans of the Doyle stories know that the author had intended this story to represent the true death of his creation. Public outcry had forced him to find a way to revive the sleuth. I’m not sure how the BBC will pull this off, considering the way in which Sherlock “died,” but we know that there are other series to follow. The ending of this episode makes it a foregone conclusion anyway. It also is in keeping with Sherlock’s characterization as an unfeeling dick.
Loved Series 2, and will begin Series 3 next week.