So as some of you know, I’ve been asking for a subtextual clue (because a textual one would be a) too much and b) impossible to find before S4? TAB?) of Mycroft’s knowledge/frankly nonsensical inaction about “Mary Morstan/AGRA” past activities. Or a symbol, a subtextual breadcrumb left for us to rely on something “tangible (i.e. left for the writers for us to see) besides logic.
So I think I found it. The breadcrumb. The subtextual proof.
What do we have on that painting? Peacocks, obviously. The African grey crowned crane (the big white bird with the red head). A squirrel. A turkey. Also a spider monkey. And what is that, flying free? A MAGPIE.
Please notice the birds he almost exclusively painted. This guy knew his market. He knew where the money was, so he mastered his themes catering to his clients’ taste. His repertoire was limited. If you see a bird flying on a Melchior painting, chances are that is a magpie you’re seeing.
And pray tell, what on earth has that painting to do with the show? Well, since you’re asking…
That painting is hanging on the walls of Mycroft’s house.
Mycroft has a painting of a magpie mastering the skies.
Shown on the same episode “Mary Morstan” marries John Watson, breaks Sherlock’s heart metaphorically, while Mycroft, knowing who she is (ok, who she definetely isn’t, for sure) does nothing to stop her/tells anyone the truth.
Mycroft is shown running while going nowhere. Watched by a magpie.
Is that the same painting? It is.
If you read my last meta M for mutant (and let’s face it, even if you didn’t), you know magpies are a symbol for the villain “Mary Morstan”. So there it is. The breadcrumb I was referring to. An arrow to the link (or the lack of).