- Moriarty explicitly said things that were queer. Eurus explicitly said things that were queer. No one else did so. This is called queercoding. It is insidious. It should not have happened.
- The plot holes were gaping all over the place. John climbs out of a well, somehow managing to escape his chains with a rope. Sherlock has water-related trauma, but he didn’t even know about the well until John told him he was trapped in one, so he couldn’t have even had repressed traumatic memories about it. John is a doctor but can’t identify a bone beyond “small”, even though it’s human.
- Characterisation was all over the place throughout the episode, most notably and frustratingly with Eurus. Her ‘fear factor’ was amped up by her inability to feel - or rather, demonstrate the emotions she was feeling - and she’s played as a quasi-deity throughout, omnipotent and emotionless. But at the end of the episode she snaps into being an emotional wreck. There was no lead-up or foreshadowing of this moment. It could have worked, but written as it was, it felt jarring and stupid. She felt suddenly stupid. The idea that Sherlock would hug her as anything more than a ploy to get John back is OOC. The idea that she wouldn’t see through any such ploy and despise it is OOC. It was lame and rushed and badly done.
- References were made to Freddie Mercury, to Oscar Wilde - queer icons, both. Given the aforementioned queercoding, this just felt like being laughed at, like a bully taking a favourite book and reading out your favourite lines in a silly mocking voice. Hands off.
- The Three Garridebs, the men dangling outside the window. This is the Holmes story which, in the Doylian canon, contains these lines from Watson, after he’s been shot and Holmes rushes to his side: “It was worth a wound — it was worth many wounds — to know the depth of loyalty and love which lay behind that cold mask. The clear, hard eyes were dimmed for a moment, and the firm lips were shaking. For the one and only time I caught a glimpse of a great heart as well as of a great brain. All my years of humble but single-minded service culminated in that moment of revelation.” This is well-known as one of the most explicitly queer moments in the original literary canon. The show literally dangled the possibility of this story in front of the viewers - dangled it, visible through glass but untouchable, there but not there - and then dropped it into the sea. For queercoded villains, glass disappears. For potential queer stories, the glass stays firmly in place. Three hooks were baited with the potential for queerness, and then the bait fell to a pointless death, not coming to mean anything more than just a little experimentation, a little shock value. Symbolically, for those who would understand the significance, it was just cruel.
- What infuriates me is that all of these slights and digs are in the tiny details; in the subtext. In short, in the places where queer people are used to looking: where the queer viewership finds its hope. The writers knew queer watchers would have their eyes on the references and on the details, and they twisted so many of those details into a decidedly upraised middle finger.
- “P.S. I know you two, and if I’m gone, I know what you could become.” This - this was the moment that could have changed everything. I admit I felt a little shocked leap of hope. I could even possibly have forgotten it all - the queercoding, the mocking references - if this final message from Mary had gone the way that I initially thought it would. But no. The message devolved into some overstated silliness about Holmes and Watson, the bros who solve crimes. I can’t remember a word of it. It was, frankly, some typically Moffat-esque self-insert self-love, and it only seems darkly appropriate that he was using a dead female character as his rhapsodising mouthpiece. “What a good job we’ve done with this story. How excellent these characters are. Look at this set. Look at them running. My god. We are good.” Enough. Give me something real and unpretentious or else leave Mary the hell alone.
I love how Greg only had like 30 seconds of screen time and yet was still the purest part of the episode. God if this is really the end I will miss him… he didn’t have any time to shine unlike Mrs. Hudson and Mycroft. Don’t even get me started on Molly.
So here’s the explaination to help clear your mind fuck up:
When the holmes family was young, mycroft was sort of the bully big brother, sherlock was the softie and he had a best friend, and euros was the lonely child with no friends. euros loved sherlock a lot which is why she sort of felt jealous of his best friend. that coupled with her lonliness and sort of crazy mind motivated her to kill him in the well.
after this, sherlock went through some extreme terrible trauma which sort of made him into his high functioning sociopath that he is today. euros started to draw pictures of sherlock dead, which is when mycroft stepped in and sent her to the island to be restrained.
sherlock was sort of brainwashed by mycroft into erasing his memory of euros and his best friend due to the trauma it was giving him. after repeatedly telling sherlock an alternate story, mycroft effectively completely wiped his memory.
during euros’ time in prison, mycroft kept visiting her and keeping a tab on her. he himself is the least clever out of the three. he is actually quite stupid - all the information he gives out now is from euros. he used eros to give him clever deductions in order to raise his reputation and seem like the clever man you all thought he was.
fast forward to christmas 5 years ago - 2012, a month before series 2 aired
yes, moriarty visited euros a month before he plotted the whole scheme on sherlock in season 2, which ended with him shooting himself. via the ‘treats’ that mycroft gave euros - the time on twitter with which she was able to predict the terrorist shootings, she also used to keep a tab on sherlock bc she loved him. her main purpose was to protect him. in that, she found moriarty and his intentions to kill her baby brother, which is why she asked for 5 minutes unsupervised with him. in that 5 minutes she reprogrammed moriarty as she had done to countless others in her time at the island prison. she made moriarty her bitch and told him exactly what to do. she told him to shoot himself.
she also asked him to make the recordings which would come in use later in ‘the final problem’ - the game
fast forward to present time - series 4
euros was essentially helping sherlock when she came to 221 baker street. she led him to the big serial killer (forgot his name) in order him save john watson (which would be via john saving sherlock)
okay now for the final problem. the whole point of the game was to test sherlock’s intelligent and to give emotional context. she was helping him in his relationships -> she forced the ‘i love you’s’ between him and molly etc. yes you can’t deny the fact that she is basically crazy because who wouldn’t be after all that time in an isolated prison on an island. she does have something mentally wrong with her, as evident from her childhood. when she saw sherlock was trying to shoot himself, her love for him overtook her crazy, thrill-hungry self and she saved sherlock.
so the bit at the end. throughout the whole episode, she herself was calling sherlock. she was calling for help. she had boarded a plane to crazy-world and it had taken off. she did not know how to land. yes, its one big metaphor woo edgy. she didn’t call mycroft bc he had been bullying and using her for the full duration of her stay in the prison. she called sherlock because she loved him and he loved her and she wanted him to save her. which is what sherlock did. and vice versa - euros saved sherlock.
at the end, we can see sherlock trying to mend and repair euros by regularly visiting her and playing her the violin. the parents join in because the whole family just want to rehabilitate her. we can see the love and the joy in the eyes and smiles of sherlock and euros because at the end of the day they love each other and they save each other.
Westley shrugs, his eyes lighting up at the sight of Madeleine’s beautiful, beaming face. “I thought I told you, Maddie. I’d like us to be friends.”
“Well good,” she grins and tucks her arm around Westley’s bicep. “Because as much as I hate to admit it, I’ve really missed you.”
He nods and takes a deep breath, desperately trying to quell the throbbing of his heart as it races through his chest. “So what is this place?” West asks in what he hopes sounds like a cool and collected tone of voice. “Some sort of carnival?”
Madeleine gasps and swivels around to face him. “How have you lived in Bridgeport this long and never been to the boardwalk?!”
“I didn’t know it was here?” he says, chuckling at the look of astonishment on her face. “What’s so great about it?”
Shaking her head, Madeleine grabs his hand and drags Westley forward. “So much to do!” she mutters. “So little time!”
I think I’ve realized why I haven’t been enjoying Sherlock nearly as much as I used to. All the build up, all the intensity, and all the drama derives from basic plot. Something blows up = it’s dramatic. Each series gets bigger and more elaborate.
Meanwhile, the characters remain stagnant. More than that, they’ve become predictable caricatures of themselves.
How have these characters changed since S2? Sherlock’s big gimmick is that he’s an unfeeling machine who only cares for John and maybe a handful of friends. Besides that his friend group is widening, that’s all there is. We learned bits and pieces about him, but nothing that’s evolved his character. We’re four seasons in, we know he cares about people! Why do they keep falling back on him being “unfeeling” – no one believes it anymore. John Watson’s only character development seems to be his reaction to loss, but after his losses, he bounces back to who he always is. He doesn’t grow from these experiences, he just recovers. His big character development this season was………… he cheated on his dead wife ??
SPEAKING OF HIS DEAD WIFE: what the hell? That’s bullshit. I don’t say this because I’m mad a good character was killed, I’m upset because it was ridiculous to the point of being irritating. I’ve speculated that Mary was alive, but whether or not that is true is irrelevant with this season’s ending. Mary Watson was removed so that Sherlock and John can continue solving crimes together. It was the show’s way of giving them a happily ever after. Ignoring the fact that her actions in the first episode of s4 were a completely unbelievable waste of time – a montage of her travelling the world in different disguises just for her to be found by gps?? Mary, a new mother, jumps in front of a bullet, acting against a mother’s instinct to care for their child?? – she was used as a tool for John to get back on his feet after Sherlock ‘died’, then once she had served her purpose, she was thrown aside. I won’t lie, I’m not disheartened because a female character was mistreated and used as a prop – I’m mainly peeved because of how lazy and sloppy the writing was. Fine, kill her off. But at least make it good.
I don’t write this to rain on anyone’s parade. You are allowed to have enjoyed this episode and this season. Sherlock is still a good show, it is visually stunning and very entertaining. I just have some beef with it.
Luna looked at the clock, it should have been about time for him to come home. She just kept reading in her bed for another couple of minutes, until she heard the door quietly shut. She straightened a bit but she didn’t stand up.
“Nyx? Is it you?”
“Yeah, just call my name like that, i’d be fun to hear what you would say if it was Ravus or Regis instead.” Luna smiled, watching him coming by after his usual guard duty of the day. Nyx looked clearly tired, but he was smiling too. He still had on his kingsglaive outfit, just with no jacket, which was in his hands. Seeing him in such an informal way had become a very pleasing habit in the last months. Their eyes playfully met for just one second, before he turned to delicately close the door behind him.
“Hi” Nyx said, getting closer and leaning down for a kiss. It was not really a passionate kiss, but certainly a kiss of relief. He was so glad that long day was finally over. “How are you?”
“Good.” His smile turned into a grimace.
“That’s not true but we’ll talk about it after I’ll take a shower. Coming right back.”
He knew where to go and what to look for, so he made himself at home. Which kinda was.
In the meantime, Luna stood up to prepare a tea for herself and to get a beer for him. She didn’t have to wait long, because he finished the shower pretty soon, just like he promised.
“So, how are you again?” he asked, coming closer with barely his trousers on and a towel around his neck. He sat on the bed, where she sat too.
“I’m fine. I’m just bored. All I did was waiting for you the all day.” He opened his mouth to say something but she immediately stop him, raising her hand: “And before you say it, yes, you were worth the wait, but this doesn’t change the fact that I’m bored. I need to find something to do as long as my duty as Oracle and Princess is suspended. That used to be my full time job and I miss it a bit since i came here in Insomnia.”
“Yeah, can’t wait to go back to you risking your life every fricking second of your day and to me desperately trying to make you reconsider your priorities.” Luna smiled, pinching his arm. Nyx tried to avoid it but he didn’t succeed. He took her hands in his instead: they were cold. That didn’t surprise him since she was barely covered by her white night gown, but he moved anyway until he touched Luna’s cheek with the back of his hand. “Are you cold?”
“No, you’re hot.” Nyx couldn’t help but facepalm.
“That was bad, really” he said, trying to hide a laugh. “Why are you even trying to flirt with me?”
“I’m not flirting with you. I hope I don’t need it. You’re my husband already.”
This episode was absolutely mind blowing. I’ve feel everything from joy to fury. From sorrow to tenderness. From anxiety to insanity. It was quite profound… heavy… intimate. I wasn’t able to speak. I couldn’t scream because my family was close and, well, they think I’m loony… sort of… but they respect what I watch and none of them wanted to watch the show with me so I internalized everything and respected their hearing. I have friends that love the show but they don’t understand English so they weren’t watching it with me. They will watch the last episode eventually but… until then… I can’t speak. So WHY did I not expressed myself here until now? I am not good at making people understand what I say or write. I can’t select quickly the right words.
Even in Spanish.
I’m not fast at it.
And I’m still trying to write English correctly. I’m not in my comfort zone right now. I couldn’t cry like I expected because… I don’t know. I’m still don’t know why. The episode was highly emotional and I was so moved deep in my heart. Maybe I didn’t want to show emotions with my family so close, maybe I was really expecting the worst. Maybe I was already depressed… and the episode wasn’t as dark as my thoughts. I mean, I really though before this episode that they killed off Molly and/or Mycroft (well… they DID torture Sherlock emotionally [oh wow no shit great deduction 5/7 yay *slow clap in the distance*]). Of course I’ve reacted adequately at the bits of awesomeness of this episode but my reactions were short lived. I kept reminding myself that if I feel good it will make me sadder in the end. I was anxious every time Molly’s and Mycroft’s lives were in jeopardy and then chuckled nervously relieved as hell. All the guilt in Mycroft’s eyes made me sad every freaking time. Watching Mycroft reactions in Euru’s gross experiment was hard. I had difficulty breathing since I saw the coffin because somehow I realized what was coming. And my heart hurt like someone physically punched me right in the chest repeatedly. I trembled when I saw Molly cry. I roared internally in victory when Sherlock said “I love you” the second time. I felt fucking relieved when Molly said it back. My fury was reflected by Sherlock when he broke down the damn coffin. Oh and Mycroft provoking Sherlock to shot him? Damn I was so mad. I was climbing walls internally. Sherlock’s suffering was stressing me out to the limit. And although I was smiling and sighing happily at the end of it all, my mind was having a battle. A very scary part of me wanted to rewind just the dark moments of this episode. And it was drowning me. I was like a zombie for almost one hour. But… (oh thank goodness THERE’S a but) the awesome/happy/funny moments warmed me bit by bit. Especially because they were blogged and reblogged over and over again here, reminding me of how wonderful the episode was. I was good. I loved it. (and thE I LOVE YOU MOMENT OMG I WANTED THIS FOR YEARS AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH) I’m at lost because it was a perfect ending and I think it IS really The End. FIN. The conclusion of BBC Sherlock. I wish there will be more but I have no hope.
They could not bring back Sherlock from this ending, I think it would be awkward. Thank you, lovely person that read it all. I am better now.
I just have the unexplainable and unachievable desire to have all of TFP focused on Jim Moriarty. I don’t give a damn about the plot, just give me my son in every possible way, dead, alive, mindpalace, flashback, I’m not picky. Just DO IT