***I’m throwing in a bit of a spoiler warning here, because although I don’t actually intend to get deeply into any of the real plot points, there are certain things that will, I am sure, come up even if only by inference that those of you who have not yet seen the show will probably prefer to avoid. There’s simply no way to write coherently about the episode otherwise.***
Now that was fun! As a matter of fact, as I said just as I finished watching it, if it takes waiting longer between installments to get what was basically a feature-length Sherlock movie, then I’m willing to wait. Sure, I want more Sherlock sooner, but I’d rather get innovative episodes like The Abominable Bride than simple run of the mill churn ’em out because we’re on a set schedule episodes any day.
To say that The Abominable Bride turned out to be not quite what any of us were likely expecting based on the preview information we had been given would be an understatement, but that’s okay, because what we did receive was truly the best of both worlds.
As promised, we are given a take on a Victorian-era Sherlock which sees Benedict Cumberbatch seemingly channel Jeremy Brett at his best (and oh, how I wish Brett’s health had held up long enough for him to make it through the entirs Conan Doyle canon) while still bringing his own quirky interpretation to the character. Also, as usual, Martin Freeman is pitch perfect as Dr. Watson no matter what the era. We are even given treatments of characters such as Mycroft, Moriarty, Mary Watson, and even Mrs. Hudson reprising their roles in interesting new ways.
But oh, dear readers, there is so much more to the story than that, and though I am bursting to write about them, for now I shant (this is actually one of those times when I’m tempted to write two “musings” on something, one relatively spoiler free, and another that is chock full of them, but I shant, preferring to give you a chance to see the show for yourself, which I highly recommend that you do if you are a fan of the show itself, the Holmes character, or Cumberbatch.
As a matter of fact this is an episode that I think will reward multiple viewings, and even perhaps calls for a second watch once you have a full grasp of what writers Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat have done here. I have no doubt that there is going to be some online criticism as to how the episode plays out – as a matter of fact I have already seen quite a bit of it – and I’ll admit that the very nature of the episode does open it up to that, but if you’re looking for an episode of Sherlock that can be actually quite terrifying at times and quite convoluted at others while never really taking itself too seriously, then this will be the episode for you.