Sherlock: Series 4 – Binge Breakdown


We’ve been anticipating the fourth batch of Sherlock episodes for around three years. Finally our favorite crime-solving duo returned, anxious to get to the bottom of Moriarty’s possible return. Now, with the shocking finale over, I decided to recap my favorite moments from each episode.

1: “The Six Thatchers”

  • OMG!: 1) John Watson… cheating? So not him. 2) While many saw it coming, it was still surprising to see Mary taking a bullet. Fans had come to love her, but her demise makes sense. As showrunner Steven Moffat put it, “Sherlock Holmes is about Sherlock and Dr. Watson and it’s always going to come back to that — always always always. They had fun making it a trio but it doesn’t work long term.”
  • Top Source Material References: The titular case is based on The Adventure of The Six Napoleons. Toby the hound makes a cameo appearance, in which the dog is comically unhelpful. Mary’s death is canon in the books, albeit a passing remark. Be on the lookout for more shoutouts to “Sherrinford,” the possible third Holmes brother.
  • Funniest Moment: The scene where Sherlock scares a client by claiming that his wife is a spy who plans to start World War III under the orders of Moriarty was hilarious.
  • Non-Johnlock MVP: We learned the details of Mary’s secret past. She had some standout moments, so I’m giving her the title.
  • I Got Some Theories: The mid-credits cutback to Mary’s video message, in which she says “Go to hell Sherlock,” set the internet ablaze with theories as to what that might mean. As revealed in the very next episode, the intention was pretty simple.
  • Overall Thoughts: I was surprised to read so many negative reviews of the episode. It was enjoyable! In my opinion, the wait was worth it.

2: “The Lying Detective”

  • OMG!: Whether for good or bad, when we look back on this episode in a few years, no one will remember Toby Jones’ turn as the villain. This hour and a half will be remembered for that shocking reveal at the end: Sherlock’s secret brother is actually a sister! Eurus, as she calls herself, seems to have ties to Moriarty. I’d say this is Sherlock‘s biggest cliffhanger ever, but Series 2 literally ended with it’s main character dead on pavement.
  • Top Source Material References: This episode is an adaptation of The Adventure of the Dying Detective. Plus we got a great callback to Irene Adler.
  • Funniest Moment: Mrs. Hudson stepping out of that car was pure gold.
  • Non-Johnlock MVP: Mrs. Hudson stole the show this installment. For the last time, she’s not your housekeeper.
  • Overall Thoughts: I enjoyed the premiere a lot more. I found the first half of The Lying Detective quite boring, to be honest. The whole drug trip sequence didn’t amuse me. Heading into the finale, my expectations are high. Can everything really be tied up?

3: “The Final Problem”

  • OMG!: My jaw actually dropped at Moriarty’s return. Yes, it turned out to be a flashback, but how great were those three minutes of pure shock? Also, damn Mycroft ruining everything. You were supposed to be the smart one!
  • Top Source Material References: Redbeard is revealed to be Victor Trevor, who in the books was Sherlock’s college friend. The episode is named after the Holmes story The Adventure of the Final Problem, in which Sherlock is actually killed off.
  • Funniest Moment: Not a lot of humor in this episode, unsurprisingly. The moment that stands out in my mind is the opening scene where the break-in in Mycroft’s home is revealed to be Sherlock.
  • Non-Johnlock MVP: While the obvious choice here is Mycroft, let’s choose Molly instead. In her one and only scene, she gets to tell Sherlock she loves him, and with such spectacular emotion. I’m not crying, you’re crying.
  • I Got Some Theories: Due to the possibility of this being the series finale, every loose end was dealt with. Eurus controlling Moriarty was a nice twist and way to tie all four seasons together.
  • Overall Thoughts: This episode lands square in the middle for me. It was certainly satisfying, but I was annoyed the majority of it took place in Sherrinford. As a potential series closer, it works well, especially with Mary’s epilogue speech essentially saying that if the Sherlock does return for another round, it will be reset to the basic premise of Holmes and Watson solving crimes. The Baker Street boys can’t get here fast enough.