While Benedict Cumberbatch makes his Marvel Cinematic Universe debut this November with Doctor Strange, he’s also reprising the role that launched him into the mainstream: Sherlock Holmes. The BBC series Sherlock broke out in a huge way when it launched in 2010, but the longevity of the series was called into question given the growing popularity of its stars Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. They make three 90-minute episodes per season, which usually takes around four to six months to film, so their willingness to come back is a testament to the quality of the series.
After last December’s divisive Christmas special Sherlock: The Abominable Bride, the series returns in earnest this year with Sherlock Season 4, and the episode titles have now been revealed. Well, almost all of the episode titles—the title of the third and final episode of Sherlock Season 4 is being kept under wraps for the time being, presumably because it’s a spoiler for one of the episodes that precedes it.
The first episode out of the gate is called “The Six Thatchers”, which is likely based on the Arthur Conan Doyle story “The Adventure of the Six Napoleons” that revolved around the identity of a man who had been shattering busts of Napoleon. The episode was helmed by Tank Girl director Rachel Talalay who makes her Sherlock debut after directing episodes of Doctor Who.
The second episode is titled “The Lying Detective,” which is probably based on the Doyle story “The Adventure of the Dying Detective.” That story revolved around a deathly ill Holmes while Watson attempted to discover what was ailing him. Nick Hurran, who helmed the Season 3 episode “His Last Vow” directs. The mysterious third episode is directed by Benjamin Caron, whose credits include Skins, Wallander, and the cinematic broadcast of Kenneth Branagh’s staging of The Winter’s Tale.
Cumberbatch has already revealed that he’s signed on for a fifth season of the show, and given the quality (and pure entertainment factor) of the series thus far, I’m more than willing to keep watching for however long they want to keep making it. Sherlock Season 4 premieres in the UK on January 1, 2017.
— Sherlock (@Sherlock221B) September 25, 2016