Sherlockians rejoice! The third season is coming and I’ve seen the proof. Earlier today executive producers Steven Moffat, Mark Gatiss, and Sue Vertue presented Sherlock’s Comic-Con debut to a crowd of frenzied fans. Last we saw Sherlock and Watson was a long 18 months ago when Sherlock faked his own death, leaving John to mourn the loss of his best friend. Fans have been eagerly awaiting both intellectual and emotional satisfaction since the season 2 finale, desperate to know how Sherlock pulled off the amazing stunt and how John will respond to seeing his friend alive and well. Naturally, the tight-lipped team did not answer all the questions tossed their way, but they did clear a few things up and give a glimpse at an absolutely delightful scene from the second episode of season three, “The Sign of Three”. Check out the panel recap after the jump.
The panel kicked off with recorded intros from both Martin Freeman and Benedict Cumberbatch. Freeman appeared in full Hobbit gear, offering a warm hello and saying that he would be off to film the season 3 finale this month as soon as he wrapped on Hobbit. Next up was Cumberbatch’s video in which he said that between Star Trek and Sherlock he was tired of keeping secrets and re-enacted his staged death via two stuffed monkeys until the video cut out with “signal lost”. Very cute, very fun, and the audience went crazy for it.
First on everybody’s minds was, of course, how the hell Sherlock survived his skyscraper fall. All involved kept mum, but Gatiss did say, “There are only so many ways that one can survive a fall off the roof. There is no black magic.” When asked if the audience could figure it out from clues dropped in “The Reichenbach Fall”, Moffat shouted, “Of course! What’s taking you so long?” They declined to answer if any of the online theories are correct.
It was made clear that the logistics of Sherlock’s fall were planned in advance
Moffat, known for his slightly sadistic fondness for trolling his own fans, said of the season 2 finale, “I thought, ‘people are going to be so cross,’ and that’s when it started to get fun.”
Everybody was keen to point out that while the mystery of Sherlock’s fall will be solved “that’s just an answer”, and it is really the emotional impact of John and Sherlock’s reunion that will have the greatest effect on viewers.
They also said that we can expect quite a lot of Mycroft in the third season they aim to explore the impact of Sherlock’s faked suicide on all his friends and family.
All three producers were quick to confirm that Andrew Scott’s Moriarty is d-e-a-d, dead. No questions about it. “He shot himself in the face! What more do you want?” said Moffat. In response to the people who say it was faked because we never saw the back of his head Moffat said that that is simply not something you can show “half past 8 on BBC1” and that Sherlock and Moriarty “faking suicides at each other” would be a “waste of a scene”.
They were also keen to point out that in respect for Holmesian tradition they do not intend to kill of either of the main duo saying that it’s nice to think that they’re always there on Baker Street.
When the subject of a 4th season came up it was clear that everybody involved wants it to happen. In regards to Cumberbatch confirming that bit too early they said that he was the biggest “yes” they would need to secure, so if he’s in then it’s almost a sure thing. Vertue confirmed that both actors are optioned for a 4th season.
Then they discussed the recently revealed tease words for Season 3: rat, wedding, and bow (bow rhyming with “ow”) They said that the season’s first episode will be based off The Empty House, but with a different plot.
Wedding is the most obvious of the words as John Watson will be getting married. No surprise here, it’s been in Holmesian lore for 100 years.
We were then given a look at a scene from “The Sign of Three”, 2nd episode from the 3rd season, they asked us not to give too much away, but I will say that the scene features Sherlock as John’s best man and deftly maneuvers between humour and sentimentality. It hits all the right notes and left the crowd (and this Sherlock fan) hugely satisfied, laughing and “awww”-ing in exactly the right spots.
Moffat said that he doesn’t believe that Sherlock is a “high functioning sociopath”, just that he finds it easier to operate under that label.
As for their favorite Arthur Conan Doyle stories? Gatiss said he’d love to do “The Red-Headed Wig” Moffat raved about “The Speckled Band” saying that it makes no sense, but is absolutely brilliant. They also advised fans of the show to watch The Secret Life of Sherlock Holmes by Billy Wilder
They’re favorite Sherlock moments so far? Moffat said the last 20 minutes of both season finales, but pegs “A Scandal in Belgravia” as his favorite full episode. Gatiss agreed saying, “It has a complete sense of its own drive. I think it’s really, really good.”
On Molly and Sherlock they their relationship is “touching” and that, as was made evident in “Reichenbach”, she is one of the few people that he actually trusts. He went on to say that excepting their first scene together she always comes out on top with him. She makes him apologize and own up to his behavior. They never had any intention of adding characters to the Sherlock mythology, but Molly was too good of a character to ignore. They were keen to clarify that Molly and Sherlock are not headed in a romantic direction I don’t think they’re going to end up dating…two sociopaths in one relationship would not be good. it’s a proper friendship.” Vertue joked, “It’s not going to go the way Tumblr thinks it’s going to go,”
Moffat was clear that there are no plans for a romance in Sherlock’s future saying that for Sherlock sex is all in the mind and what he had with Irene Addler is a very unique relationship based on the intellectual stimulation of trying to get each other killed.
All in all it was a great panel. I was already dying for season 3 and now that I’ve had a taste, boy do I want more!