Welcome back, my fellow Sherlockians! After nearly a week of attempting to write this review, I’ve come up with two conclusions: I loved this episode so much, I can’t even put it into words to properly justify its awesomeness. Also, I should probably drink a bit less when I write reviews. That being said, “The Sign of Three” was jam-packed with squee-worthy hilarity that more than made up for the slight (VERY slight) disappointment left from the reconciliation (or lack thereof) between Sherlock and John in “The Empty Hearse.”
Sherlock Loves and Actually Respects John
“The Sign of Three” offered Sherlockians around the world quite a bit of character development, a few cases and some major laughter throughout Sherlock’s Best Man speech. Granted I wasn’t impressed with his treatment of Lestrade (though I rarely am) and there was a little rambling as he tied the cases into his best man speech, but ultimately they worked to illustrate his points and give some major insight into Sherlock: that he’s a ridiculous arsehole who loves John …and apparently can’t hold his liquor. Although the episode wasn’t full of action nor did it have any murder and the major focus revolved around Sherlock and John’s friendship, it was still one of the best episodes yet and it contained some detectivating that led to an arrest, Sherlock saving the day in his drama queen ways and in the ultimate fandom moment, Sherlock admitted he has feelings. Most importantly (at least for me), this episode really showed Sherlock’s true love and level of respect for John that is often merely hinted at in the show and definitely needed to be addressed with his return. This quote sums it all up quite nicely:
The point I’m trying to make is that I am the most unpleasant, rude, ignorant, and all-around obnoxious arsehole that anyone could possibly have the misfortune to meet. I am dismissive of the virtuous, unaware of the beautiful, and uncomprehending in the face of the unhappy. So if I didn’t understand I was being asked to be best man, it is because I never expected to be anyone’s best friend. Certainly not the best friend to the bravest and kindest and wisest human being I have ever had the good fortune of knowing. John, I am a ridiculous man. Redeemed only by the warmth and constancy of your friendship. But as I’m apparently your best friend, I cannot congratulate you on your choice of companion. Actually, now I can. Mary, when I say you deserve this man, it is the highest compliment of which I am capable. John, you have endured war, and injury, and tragic loss. So sorry again about that last one. So know this: today you sit between the woman you have made your wife and the man you have saved. In short, the two people who love you most in all this world. And I know I speak for Mary as well when I say we will never let you down, and we have a lifetime ahead to prove that. – Sherlock
Something About Mary
I must admit I love Mary and “The Sign of Three” just ties her into Sherlock and John’s relationship more than it had before. Admittedly, it is a bit curious that she can tell when Sherlock is lying while others can’t do that, I still love the woman. Sherlock and John seem to genuinely love and adore her as well and her ability to manipulate both of them is priceless (if a bit suspicious). Ultimately, knowing the books, I have been expecting something nefarious to happen to her, but seeing how well Mary has been written into the series accepting Sherlock as an extension to John and how well Amanda Abbington portrays her, I really hope that’s not the case. I am, however, not fond of the pregnancy happening so soon, I’d sooner do without that. If there’s any way to “end an era” of friendship, introducing a kid into it on top of everything else probably doesn’t help. That being said, let’s just hope nothing bad happens to Mary and we can still enjoy her for a few years to come!
Ah, where do I start? The entire episode was just one gigantic funny moment from beginning to end. Even with the evil foreshadowing of the end of their friendship, the bittersweet ending and his ominous last vow of always being there for the three of them, this episode was pure hilarity, so I’ve summed it up into a few of the best moments.
“The Stag Do”
From Sherlock’s meticulous planning, implicating Molly as a drunk, to investigating The Mayfly Man while completely wasted, the entire stag night had me in hysterics…and man these two are lightweights! “Hudders” coming to find the two at the bottom of the stairs after merely two hours of drinking was hilarious and that was only followed by the guessing game which led to some major fandom squeeing as drunken John grabbed Sherlock’s knee a bit in his attempt to steady himself before coming to the realization that Sherlock doesn’t know how to play the game, which was only broken up when they got a new client. Honestly, I’m surprised the client stayed and didn’t just return in the morning. They were obviously drunk and falling asleep during her story, even leading to Sherlock, of all people, admonishing John for being “Rude…RUDE!” Before declaring the case was interesting and “The game is something.” Why she took them to the apartment in that state, I will never understand, but she did and I’m eternally grateful to her for that.
Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman were hilarious at the apartment as Sherlock investigated the room coming up with such genius observations as “hi tech thing,” “deaded” and “egg chair sitty-thing.” Sherlock’s observations were as clever as my own here…and when he fell asleep while “cluing for looks” as John so adeptly put it, I couldn’t contain my laughter. It was at about this point that my mom had to check on me to make sure I was okay….I really wasn’t and I had this stag night to thank for it.
Sherlock Gets Jealous
Proving Sherlock does like to be considering John’s favorite, he was also obviously quite jealous about Major Sholto’s presence and the level of respect John has for Sholto, “his former commanding officer.” His jealousy combined with Mary’s ability to tease Sherlock in his moments of weakness were hilarious…and would have to be quite irresistible for anyone in her situation. I really do love the interaction between these two.
Vetting Wedding Guests and Wedding Planning
Obviously, somebody had to do this and who better than Sherlock? These were also some of my favorite moments as Sherlock convinced Archie to cooperate in the wedding while ensuring David would not be a future problem to the marriage. I loved the interaction between Archie and Sherlock, (who is surprisingly good with kids…or at least this one) while Sherlock’s smile at the end of his warning to David was just perfect. Aside from vetting guests, helping the happy couple out with the wedding planning was wrought with funny moments as he helped Mary figure out seating by informing her of who hates her to the napkin folding scene. Yup. “That just happened.” Sherlock should win wedding planner of the year for this.
“The Sign of Three” was a spectacular episode even if it did stray away from the cases and focused on the characters…or maybe because it did… ultimately, this video pretty much sums up all my feels about it.
- Who is CAM and why did his/her telegram affect Mary so much? Is it Charles Augustus Magnussen? Or was her reaction about something else?
- Is this really the “end of an era” as John marries and moves on with his new family? Will Sherlock get left behind? Or is there something more ominous to come?
- What do you think of Janine? Will she be back? Would you be happy to see her return? I personally loved her spunk.
Tell us what you think and be sure to tune in for the next episode of Sherlock on PBS at the strangely specific time of 9:58 PM ET on February 2! Yes, I know, that’s tonight. I’m a little behind.