Sherlock (BBC)

I really enjoy Moffat’s take on the famous Baker Street detective; here Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch) is a pallid, arrogant “high functioning sociopath” in modern London, addicted to solving interesting cases, and looked upon as a freak by the constabulary. Watson is an ex-Afghanistan field medic (well, the original was too) perennially and vainly chasing women. Martin Freeman’s (Jim in the original Office and Bilbo in The Hobbit) long-suffering demeanour suits him well.

The explanations are what distinguish the series for me – Holmes runs through plausible chains of inference at lightspeed, visibly annoyed that no one already sees the obvious. Moriarty’s touch is seen every episode, and he’s also a very eccentric character.

There are three 90 minute episodes in each “season”; I found the very first episode the best, because you could puzzle through the mystery yourself – it drops many clues, and I worked it out before Holmes did. Plus the twist with Holmes’s nemesis was great. Each episode is harks back to one of the original tales, though the connection is usually very light. Be prepared, the production values are BBC, on the level of Doctor Who, rather than a lavish American production.


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