Let’s say from the outset that I think that this season’s keywords, ‘Rat,’ ‘Wedding’ and ‘Bow’ refer to the giant rat of Sumatra, The Sign of Four and pretty much any of the stories in His Last Bow (please let it be The Adventure of the Devil’s Foot please let it be The Adventure of the Devil’s Foot please let it be The Adventure of the Devil’s Foot). However, since I don’t for a second presume to have an inkling of what’s going on inside the heads of Moffat the Magnificent and Gatiss the Great, this post isn’t really going to talk about that: I’ll just talk about an idealistic, rather whimsical bunch of stuff based on the canons of Sherlock and of Holmes that I would seriously love to see happen in Season 3, but probably never will. And since both Sherlock and Jim love to play, I suppose it’s okay if I do too.
When Sherlock turns out to be alive, John either faints (this would be beautiful and moving) or punches Sherlock in the face (this would be extremely funny).
This one’s being flying around my head for ages, more than the question of how Sherlock actually survived in the first place. In the stories, Watson faints from shock because Holmes appears in disguise as a garrulous old bookseller – this subsequently causes Holmes some concern, because he had no idea Watson would be ‘so affected.’ Because of the high emotion and tragedy of the last few minutes of The Reichenbach Fall, I honestly can’t see Sherlock adopting this strategy – it trivializes that intense openness of their last few moments together that had most fans crying miserably into their pillows for hours afterwards. On the other hand, that same intensity seems sufficient for said fainting to take place without a disguise being necessary, and would make for gorgeous continuity of that same emotion, before they inevitably snap out of it and resume their former state of spending most of their time quarrelling like an old married couple. The punching Sherlock in the face option would work just as well for snapping out of Reichenbach emotion, the usual state of the friendship being resumed as soon as they meet. While this would simultaneously be funny and put things back to some semblance of normality, it carries the same risk of triviality as a disguise would. I also have a strong suspicion that John will not be as quick to forgive as he is in the stories, which would no doubt create a very nice tension in the first episode. No problems there.
John’s limp comes back when he believes Sherlock to be dead
Let’s remember two things: John’s rather nightmarish life before he meets Sherlock and his heartbreaking words over his friend’s grave – ‘I was…so alone. I owe you so much.’ Losing Sherlock is no doubt going to put him right back where he started, and making his limp come back would be a more powerful symbol of the loss he feels than anything you could accomplish with dialogue or acting (not that Martin Freeman wouldn’t be more than equal to the task).
The entire world understands that Moriarty was fucking real
Sherlock coming back from the dead isn’t going to create much of a change if everyone still believes him to be a pathological liar. SO, Sherlock and John need to make sure that everyone recognizes the terrifying, insane, narcissistic, devastatingly sexy little shit for what he was and blow up Richard Brook in alphabetical order. This running parallel to whatever crime has been committed, together with Sherlock and John re-establishing their friendship would make for a first episode so chockablock full of awesome that it would make most of us collapse in a heap afterwards from our brains being unable to handle it.
Get a couple of people fired for sticking by Sherlock
Here I’m thinking Molly and Lestrade, though something tells me it’s most likely to be Molly. As ridiculous as she can be, her belief in Sherlock really is quite profound, and I think she’s the kind of person who would never give up on him, even if it got her fired. She could be the Connie Sachs of the Sherlock universe. I’m not entirely convinced that Lestrade wouldn’t turn his back on Sherlock because he trusts Andersen and Donavan’s judgment, but after this whole disaster he’s likely to get suspended, demoted or fired anyway.
John meets Mary
Let’s assume for argument’s sake that I’m right about episode two being The Sign of Four and that John does actually end up falling in love and getting married. As we’ve seen from previous episodes, Sherlock’s attitude to John’s girlfriends ranges from tolerance tinged with coolness and boredom (Sarah) to blatant nastiness (‘Sarah was the doctor and then there was the one with the spots and the one with the nose and who was after the boring teacher?’ ‘Nobody.’ ‘Jeanette!’). Thinking about his reaction to John getting married frankly terrifies me. In the story The Blanched Soldier, Holmes’ description of Watson’s marriage could either be described as rather sweet or rather autistic, depending on how you look at it: ‘the good Watson had at that time deserted me for a wife, the only selfish action which I can recall in our association.’ So, if this happens in an episode, it could happen in a number of ways. One: John meets Mary while he believes Sherlock is dead, Sherlock comes back, hilarity ensues. Two: the producers use the Downey Jnr. movies as a template and have a horribly rocky start between Sherlock and Mary that eventually develops to a kind of respect. Three: make Mary so unbelievably incredible that Sherlock takes to her right away (unlikely). The good thing about all three of these is that while Mary is an absolute wimp in the books, this is a golden opportunity to introduce a permanent strong female character, something the show has rather lacked, as much as we love poor Molly.
Violet Hunter shows up
Natasha Richardson as Violet Hunter in the Grenada TV adaptation of The Adventure of the Copper Beeches
Yes. I’m fully aware that after the disaster with Irene, Sherlock is staying as far away from girls as is humanly possible, plus it’s high time that poor John got some action. So who’s Violet Hunter?
She’s the client in the story The Adventure of the Copper Beeches, and is usually ignored because of the entirely unjustified hysteria surrounding A Scandal in Bohemia (Holmes and Irene don’t even MEET, for God’s sake, so what’s all this lovey-dovey crap for? Anyway…). She first approaches Holmes for advice as to whether she should accept a post as a governess with a creepy employer and Holmes is instantly impressed by her. It eventually turns out that she’s determined to accept but would appreciate it if Holmes would help her out if her employer turned out to be creepy in a disagreeable way. Holmes spends much of the next two weeks worrying himself sick about her and muttering to himself that he’d never allow any sister of his to accept such a situation. Inevitably, Violet’s employer turns out to be creepy in a disagreeable way and though when Holmes and Watson join her, she admits to being terrified, she tells her story in detail and with flawless composure, and they find that she’s acted like a total badass in attempting to get down to the bottom of her employer’s strange behavior; Holmes subsequently informing her that she’s fucking awesome (‘I should not ask it of you if I did not think you a quite exceptional woman’). She then fearlessly assists Holmes and Watson in apprehending her employer. Holmes then typically forgets all about her awesomeness the minute she isn’t his client any more (sigh).
Holmes and Violet is one of my many pet ships, and it’s sufficient to type her name into Google to find people who think so too: ‘where’s the love for Violet Hunter, Sherlock Holmes fans?’, ‘Violet Hunter: Another Young Woman of Holmes’ Interest’ and ‘Violet Hunter: the best character that nobody cares about’ are among my favourite headings. She was beautifully portrayed by a young Natasha Richardson in the Grenada TV adaptation, boasting positively volcanic chemistry with Jeremy Brett’s iconic Holmes. It would be absolutely awesome to see her in Season 3, but after Irene, I don’t think we will.
Work more on Sherlock’s relationship with Mycroft
We’ve been dancing around the edges of this one for the last two seasons, but after giving a ton of personal information about Sherlock to Moriarty just to make him talk is directly responsible for the death of his own brother, I think it’s time for Mycroft to let us know what all this incomprehensible sibling rivalry is about.
Sherlock and John end up in the sack
Oh come on! JUST once!