Monday, March 3, 2014

Missed Sherlock Season Three and Blaming Your Olympic Obsession? He's Baaaack - Again

In Praise of Sherlock

Sherlock Season 3 -  Showcase Mondays at 10 pm starting March 3

If you were watching the Olympics and missed Season Three of the beloved Sherlock on BBC Canada, not to worry.  Canada’s Showcase has picked it up to air starting Monday nights at ten.  Sherlock is back and that’s the opening salvo.
                                        But ... he fell to his death                                                              

Sherlock is alive?  That’s news.  At the end of Season two he plunged off a rooftop onto a London Street, was declared dead and was buried.  Dr. Watson (Martin Freeman) mourned deeply for two years and can’t let go of his friend.  The episode The Empty Hearse details the incredible story behind Sherlock’s demise and resurrection.  And that’s just the beginning.  Their adventures are soon underway, writ even larger.
                                                    Sherlock Back from the Dead

It’s not often a show elicits the kind of rabid fandom of Benedict Cumberbatch’ Sherlock.   It has made a superstar of the English actor and won breathless acclaim for two seasons, based on the star, the writing, its tremendous style and modernity.  The latest incarnation of Arthur Conan Doyle’s detective is one of those rare entities that seduced audiences in its first episode and changed the TV landscape. 

Cinematography, attention to detail and big budgets aside, Sherlock’s reimagining via Cumberbatch has been nothing less than ground breaking.  Cumberbatch’s whirling movements match his radiating sweeping intelligence. The creative use of digital technology as a form of communication, information and as an additional camera is stellar.
Sherlock’s lack of social skills is fascinating and repellent at the same time, and when he does show some human trait, the payoff is doubled.   His mental agility coupled with deep interpersonal awkwardness is lots of fun to watch; he doesn’t confine himself to playing this contrast in a naturalistic way.  Like everything else about Cumberbatch’ Sherlock, it’s over the top, showy, jarring, and unfailingly interesting.                                                         
Watson Was Very Angry That Sherlock Faked His Death and Didn't Tell Him                            
Martin Freeman is a worthy foil for Sherlock.  His Doctor Watson is fussy, nervous, and suffers from panic disorders following a brutal stint in Afghanistan.  As a solider he relates to order which comes in handy when as Sherlock’s sidekick/manservant/bro, he must somehow interpret Sherlock to the world.  It’s a big job and Watson has a gift of understanding and translating.  Sherlock doesn’t just speak a different language, he is a different species.
He worries me, too


Sherlock’s relationship with his brother Mycroft is played up to great comedic effect. They appear to loathe each other but have found a place finally in which they can co-exist.  And that’s on the job.  Mycroft’s government ties certainly help Sherlock in a pinch and lead him to new and dangerous and stimulating cases.  Both are brilliant men of action.  
but, they're so ..ordinary

Sherlock's parents, whom we meet in the first episode of Season 3, are shockingly ordinary.  Let’s face, it just about everyone is ordinary compared to Sherlock except for his enemies and Watson for his superhuman patience.   Another season three tidbit - Mrs. Hudson, Sherlock adores but slightly dotty landlady once lived in Florida, married to the head of a drug cartel.

John and Mary
So many highpoints, but one of my faves is the wedding episode.  Watson is in love with the kind Mary, who proves to have a knack for deciphering Sherlock and for soothing Watson’s long suffering heart.  Sherlock is best man, and takes a strange interest in planning the nuptials and folding napkins, composing colour schemes and editing the guest list. 

                                                       ...... and the killer is

But when it’s time to address John, Mary and the guests, he launches into a lengthy and action packed speech and movement.  His mind is working at a breakneck speed, and he carries the guests along to resolution.  This is one of the greatest performances on TV in recent one of the most exciting actors on the horizon and one of TV's most fascinating characters.    Sure, Sherlock's been around a long while, but never like this.



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