Why “The Final Problem” being John’s version of “The Abominable Bride” makes absolute sense
Lots of others have mentioned this already. However, because a lot of us are upset over The Final Problem, no one wants to rewatch and write meta. But here are a few things for you all to consider.
1) John got shot at the end of The Lying Detective. He got shot with an actual bullet. We’ve been studying Sherlock’s subtext forever and we all knew John was going to get shot, we knew the Three Garridebs canon moment was coming, yet we ignored it when we saw it because we believed the narrative spoon-fed to us. John did not get hit with a tranquilizer – he actually got shot. He’s in his mind palace. Or, rather, his mind bungalow, as he’s referred to it before.
2) The Six Thatchers told us John knows a LOT about horror films. Probably why 20 of them were mentioned in The Final Problem. John also loves Bond movies, which is why this nightmare scenario is part Saw- part Bond.
3) If Moriarty was Sherlock’s inner demon in TAB, then Eurus is John’s inner demon in TFP. This is why young Eurus is wearing John’s sweater. This is why she’s shown as a mirror for him on multiple occasions. She’s bisexual, she’s kept behind glass (repression) because her family put her there at first but now because she chooses to be there as an adult. She hears Sherlock playing Irene’s theme on the violin and asks if he’s had sex – this is John’s inner demon right here, asking what John’s already asked on the surface. John’s demon can be saved only if Sherlock comes to the bedroom and helps land the plane. “Landing” is follow-through when it comes to “falling in love”. TFP is a direct mirror to TAB – Sherlock knew then that John would always be there when he’s falling, and now John knows Sherlock would be there when he’s landing. It’s a complete mirror, exactly the one we were certain of months ago. Why did we dismiss this when we saw it? Because we lost faith in the story. Like Sir Boast-a-lot. Like The Princess Bride. We’re right on schedule.
4) Everything happening in TFP is a nightmare for John. Sherlock neglecting Vatican Cameos, Sherlock leaving him to drown, Sherlock saying “I love you” to Molly, Sherlock actually loving Irene Adler, A John-sized coffin with “I Love You” written on it closed and smashed by Sherlock, Mary infiltrating their lives again to tell them how their relationship should be. John is so fucking repressed he doesn’t think Sherlock feels the same way about him that he does about Sherlock. He’s mirrored in Molly in real life – how awful for John to think “I love Sherlock, I’ve always loved Sherlock, but he thinks we’re friends, why is he making a fool of me?” – like, The Final Problem might be my new favorite episode because this is masterful.
5) Eurus does exist, but not as a crazy woman on Shutter Island. There was a reason she flirted with John, there’s a reason she’s been hovering around them for ages now. I wrote a meta about it here. It still fits 100%. The only thing I didn’t take into account was BBC Sherlock faking its own death by dropping a ludicrous red herring as a series finale.
You guys thought we couldn’t see anything gayer, anything more repressed than Sherlock’s mind in The Abominable Bride? Oh. Oh, no. Take another watch of The Final Problem and you’ll see what actually happens to a repressed bisexual with a high sex-drive and a crippling love obsession when their mind is allowed to play tricks on him.
Okay but seriously, The Six Thatchers begins with Mark Gatiss, the writer of the show, saying “We can doctor any film footage we want, we are unstoppable, we are the ultimate unreliable narrators and we’re gonna get away with it” like can everyone calm down for just one second and QUESTION what you see??
LESTRADE: So the whole thing was a fake. SHERLOCK: Yes. LESTRADE: Looked so promising. SHERLOCK: Facile. MOLLY: Why would someone go to all that trouble? SHERLOCK (offscreen): Why indeed, John?
Fun fact: When Clue was first released movie theaters played different versions so everyone was fighting about what the ending really was. My mom said that people kept on trying to reason their ending and how it made the most sense… Then it was released on dvd and everyone was finally able to see the TRUE ENDING
“GATISS: One of my favorite things is that amazing Orson Welles film, ‘F for Fake’ […] it’s fantastic, it’s all about the historyof con tricks.
And in the beginning, he says, ‘I absolutely swear to you for the next ninety minutes everything I tell you will be absolute and literal truth.’
And then right towards the end of the film, it spirals into this extraordinary story about this con man that you can’t believe – and then he just sort of checks his watch and says, […] ‘My time is up, the last ten minutes I’ve been lying my head off!’ [laughs]
It’s brilliant … it’s really what we sort of do in miniature. — Mark Gatiss, on being asked about plot secrets.
“If we pull this off, it will make television history.” “It’s kind of groundbreaking, they’ve done something that’s never been done before”
“An eminent scientist gets caught up in a highly damaging and compromising lie.”
“A doctor starts an affair with enigmatic stranger and begins to suspect more is at play”
“However, nothing is ever as it appears, and when she receives an unexpected proposition from an enigmatic stranger, Yvonne is shocked by the passion he awakens in her. But gradually she begins to realise that there is much more to her lover than meets the eye, and she could be playing a very dangerous game indeed.”
like seriously though (I know those are real people and real names, but… just so funny :D)
The dialogue included: “Can be wonderful, can be terrifying.” “What did you say?” “Something that drives you in and crushes you to nothing.” “We are going to have different versions of the same story.” “Do you want to hear the wildest story of them all?” “You’re starting to intrigue me.” “It’s all just one big performance.” “We are going to be busy, you and I”
One more miracle!
“Of course it’s not a trick, it’s a plan.”
and for all you Johnlockers and any other interested conspiracists, there you go: