daughter of mad scientists

Sherlock and Motherhood

Further to this conversation about gender and age in Sherlock, I started idly thinking about depictions of motherhood in Sherlock.  And I realized…  up until Sherlock’s mum shows up in series 3, there almost aren’t any.  We have a lot of women in their 30s and older, and we know nothing about their parental status, because it doesn’t matter in the context of the show. 

Can you imagine that?  A show full of women over the age of 27, and no one is defined by her status as a mother or her failure to become one.

Best of all, the one canon mother I can think of pre-series 3 is Dr Stapleton – a mad scientist who abducts her daughter’s pet to perform clandestine experiments to satisfy her own curiosity… 

and yet isn’t a villain.  And receives no narrative comeuppance. 

Not exactly the typical story arc for fictional mothers!