Starring: Robert Downey Jr, Jude Law, Rachamy McAdams (I'll figure it
out), Mark Strong
Directed by: Guy Ritchie
Welcome. For those of you who haven't been reading my recaps for the last
few years, sometime around 2014 I lost whatever marbles I may have had left
and decided to recap a little known BBC show called "Sherlock".
Chrissy: It seemed like a good idea
at the time. Also, for those of you who HAVE been reading these recaps:
dear God WHY?
Ahem. Thank you. Anyway. When the show started to slide into insanity and my
recaps became less fun and more exasperated venting, Chrissy and I decided
to add the MCU movies to the mix.
Chrissy: Also seemed like a good
idea at the time.
Now that I'm finding the mere prospect of doing "Endgame" depressing -
especially as the pandemic is forcing us to do recaps from our own separate
homes via video chat as a distraction from the shitshow that is America
right now - we decided the most promising alternative might just be to come
full circle and do another version of Sherlock Holmes.
Diandra: Yes, if you will just let me finish.
There are two things you should know before we begin. The first is that this
is my first time seeing these movies since they first came out, like, a
decade ago. I remember thinking they were fun, but at the time I had very
little knowledge of Sherlock Holmes. Now, I will be approaching these movies
for the first time as a Sherlockian/Holmesian. The second thing is that
Chrissy and I spent pretty much all 13 episodes of the BBC series role
playing John and Sherlock respectively. But when we did movies in the MCU,
Chrissy played Tony Stark, so I anticipate some confusion at some point
Chrissy: We could always switch.
Diandra: How would that be any less confusing?
Chrissy: Right. Probably not. Okay, well, are you ready to act like
a raving slut then?
Diandra: Yeah, I guess. I mean, I haven't been recapping stuff with
you for over a decade to not have learned SOMETHING.
Chrissy: You know you're going to pay for that, right?
Diandra: Eh. You're a couple cities away and I have a mute button.
I figured I could risk it.
Chrissy: You really are embracing the idea that you are Sherlock,
We open with the studio logos as cobblestones on a very wet road. So we're
obviously already setting the atmosphere to "London". What will quickly
become recognizable as the theme for these movies plays on what sounds like
an out of tune piano in an old west saloon. We pan up as horses pull a
carriage down the dark street and the music switches to frantic sawing at a
violin. We push into the carriage where Jude Law and a couple other shady
looking guys are loading pistols and rifles.
And then Robert Downey Jr. is running through the streets but it's not at
all clear who is chasing whom. He runs up some steps and dives over a ledge,
somersaulting on the ground. He pauses so the camera can get a good look at
his face and we can understand that he's doing a lot of his own stunts
before kicking open a door and running into a dark building.
He peeks around a corner to see a shady looking guy with a lantern who seems
to be looking for something and scrunches back down out of sight. Then he
runs through an analysis of the best way to disable the guy with slow-motion
play-by- plays for the benefit of the audience. The guy is cocking his head
in a way that suggests he is partially deaf in one ear, so his first blow
should be to the ear, followed by a blow to the throat to cut off any scream
of pain. The third blow will be to the rib that connects to the liver
because the guy is probably a heavy drinker. And because he's dragging his
left leg a bit, the fourth and final blow will be to that knee. All of this
should knock him out fully for a short while, hobble him for a little while
longer and result in him probably never fully recovering. But he's obviously
a bad guy, so who cares?
He throws his coat over his face as the thug passes him, then leaps out and
runs through all the steps he described in a couple seconds, taking the
guy's hat and lantern as he slumps to the ground.
Chrissy: Basically this is what
Kareem Abdul Jabbar was describing when he talked about applying Sherlock
Holmes' reasoning on the court. Except, you know...he was using it for
game playing strategy and hopefully not trying to permanently disable
Diandra: Hopefully, yes.
Elsewhere in the building, a woman is lying on a concrete slab with a guy in
a black robe performing a ritual over her and it all looks like a nod to
that one Spielberg movie from the 80s where Holmes was a child and Watson
was the prototype for Harry Potter. Holmes is up on a balcony overlooking
this, counting the number of henchmen hovering around the room and probably
trying to come up with another play. Another thug appears suddenly behind
him and Holmes is just starting to fend him off when Watson arrives and puts
him in a headlock. Holmes pinches the guy's nose and covers his mouth and
they casually discuss the hat Holmes stole from the last thug while this one
loses consciousness or possibly asphyxiates. Watson asks if he remembered
his revolver. "Knew I forgot something," Holmes mutters. "Thought I'd left
the stove on." Watson says he did also leave the stove on, actually.
Chrissy: And the gas lamp.
Honestly, if it wasn't for me you would probably have burned the place
down ages ago.
Diandra: Why do you think I keep you around?
Chrissy: For the eye candy?
Diandra: Well...okay, that too.
The thug loses consciousness and Holmes tells Watson he should probably stop
before he actually kills him. Watson checks for a pulse half heartedly
before dropping the guy. Holmes asks where the inspector is. Watson,
removing his jacket, says he's "getting his troops lined up."
Chrissy: Love your version of dirty
talk. Where is the general? Is he standing at attention yet?
Holmes grumbles that that could take all day and throws a walking stick at
Watson before heading down the stairs.
Diandra: And you've already forgotten which one you are.
Chrissy: Sorry. I can't help my response when Jude Law is taking
his clothes off and saying something suggestive.
Down on the ground level, they split up and each take on two goons on either
side of the...I'm going to say alter. Another guy shows up and takes a shot
at Holmes, which distracts Watson for a few moments while he checks to make
sure his partner wasn't hit. Holmes gets what looks like two billy clubs and
wields them with a bunch of martial arts flourishes.
Meanwhile, the woman on the table is seizing like she's in a trance and
picking up a dagger laid out by her hand. Watson pulls his revolver and goes
to fire at the guy chanting over her. Holmes just runs over and grabs her
wrist, yanking the dagger out of her hand. He still has the clubs under his
arm and waves one threateningly at the guy, who identifies him and his
"loyal dog" back there.
Chrissy: Sigh. Once again, everyone
insists on calling me the dog despite the fact that I am clearly the one
holding the leash.
Diandra: In private, dear. Remember that in public I am the one
calling the shots.
And even though his face is still hidden under priests' robes, the voice is
obviously Mark Strong's, so I will be referring to him thusly until somebody
says his character's name. Mark calls over his shoulder to Watson to ask if
- as a doctor - he has "enjoyed" his work. Watson mutters that he'll show
him how much he "enjoyed" it and goes to lunge at him. Holmes stops him
bodily a second before he impales himself on the thin glass spike protruding
from Mark's hands. Watson marvels that he could see that. Holmes shatters it
with the billy clubs and pushes back Mark's hood. Watson identifies him as
Lord Blackwood. Holmes reminds Watson that there is a woman that he should
probably be attending to just now.
Watson gives Blackwood one last pistol whip and goes to check on the woman.
The inspector arrives just then with a bunch of armed officers who train
their weapons on the goons who are mostly unconscious already. Holmes
identifies him as Lestrade and congratulates him on his "impeccable timing"
before identifying the woman and Blackwood as "for the doctor" and "for the
rope" respectively. One officer goes to pick up the still pretty insensate
woman while another cuffs Blackwood. Lestrade chastises Holmes for not
waiting like he was SUPPOSED to. Holmes is like 'yeah, and obviously we
would have been too late if I'd waited for YOU to be ready, wouldn't we?' He
reminds Lestrade that he was hired by the woman's parents, not Scotland
Yard, so...you know...you're not the boss of me.
And then Watson congratulates Lestrade on the successful arrest and Holmes
hands him a cigar and a photographer appears to take a picture of them all.
Holmes goes to futz with his hair so his arm is covering his face at the
exact moment the flash bulb goes off. And we see this picture on the front
page of a newspaper under the headline "Scotland Yard Catches Killer!" The
subheading admits that Sherlock Holmes helped.
And we're on Baker Street, panning away from the street sign and revealing
the street itself in what looks like a homage to the opening credits of
Jeremy Brett's version of Sherlock Holmes. Nice. We push in on the door to
221b while Watson is talking to what sounds like a patient. They are
discussing "Cavendish Place" and how Watson should be moving in within the
week and how nice it will be to be in a place with a "woman's touch". They
are interrupted by gunshots. They duck and the guy is like 'what the fuck is
someone shooting at?' Watson says no, that wasn't gunshots. It was
just...really loud hammering. Sherlock is probably just putting up a
painting or something. He offers to go...check on that. The guy is like
'your friend won't be moving into the new place with you, will he?'
Chrissy: No, but he might
occasionally spend the night.
He finds Mrs. Hudson standing outside in the hall. She says she is NOT going
in there alone while he is armed. Watson says he'll take the paper she's
holding in to him. She moans that the place will go straight to pot when he
moves out. Watson insists Holmes is just bored and needs another case to
work on. The patient comes out and says he DEFINITELY smells gunpowder now
and this is just NOT DECENT to be shooting firearms in a domestic
environment and...another shot and they all flinch. Watson identifies him as
"Captain Phillips" and placates him by offering to have Mrs. Hudson get him
some tea. Mrs. Hudson takes the cue and goes to herd him downstairs, her
progress momentarily delayed by Watson asking if she can maybe bring
something to cheer Sherlock up when she's done with that.
Watson steels himself and sticks his head in the room, sarcastically
requesting permission to enter "the armory". Sherlock is like 'yeah, sure,
whatever,' and puts one last bullet in the VR he's been shooting into the
wall. He rambles that he's inventing a device that muffles the sound of
gunshots. Watson says yeah, well, it's not working so far. He throws open
the curtains and Holmes yelps as the bright light pours in. Watson takes the
pistol with a polite "can I see that?" and makes sure it's unloaded before
dumping it on the desk that he proceeds to straighten up a little. The tea
kettle on the fire whistles and he goes to kick the arm so it moves off the
flame while noting that it's been three months since Sherlock's last case.
He sniffs at the contents of a glass to make sure it's just water before
throwing it on the fire. "Yes, yes. Gently, gently Watson. Be gentle with
Chrissy: Oh, since when?
Watson throws open another curtain and Holmes yells and falls dramatically
on the floor. Watson kind of sighs like 'drama queen' and finishes his
sentence with "don't you think it's time you found another one?" Holmes
crawls around on the floor, reciting the line about his mind rebelling at
stagnation and yes, he definitely needs a new case. Watson waves the
newspaper in front of his nose.
Chrissy: Yes, what was that before
about me being the dog here?
Diandra: Yes, I believe we said that is dependent on whether we are
in public or not, so...
Holmes takes the paper and sits looking at that front page article with
their picture while Watson reads a letter from Mrs. Ramsey of Queen's Park.
Her husband has disappeared and...Sherlock says he ran off to Belgium with
the maid, then expresses surprise that it's already November. Watson sighs
and moves on to Lady Radford, whose bracelet has gone missing. Holmes says
that one is just an insurance scam. "Lord Radford likes fast women and slow
ponies." He notes that the paper says Watson will be the attending physician
at Blackwood's hanging. Watson says yes, he wanted to see that last case of
theirs through all the way to the end.
Mrs. Hudson arrives with a tea tray as Watson tries to read the next letter
and Holmes interrupts that he's only interested in the case of the
"absentee" landlady at the moment. "I've been studying her comings and
goings. They appear most sinister." She just sighs like 'I should have
kicked you out long ago' and sets the tray down. Holmes asks if it's
Chrissy: Don't give her ideas.
She fires back that she doesn't need to poison him any further since he's
ingested so much already without her help and goes to pick up something. He
yelps at her not to touch anything because he has it all just where he wants
it. She nods at the bulldog laying on his side on the floor and notes that
Sherlock has "killed the dog. Again." Watson, noticing this for the first
time, kneels down to check on the dog, asking what the hell Sherlock did to
Gladstone. Holmes says he's just testing a new anesthetic. He'll be fine.
Diandra: Oh, like she hasn't thought of that before?
Watson turns on him and snaps that as his DOCTOR and FRIEND, he really must
insist that Holmes get the hell out of the room he's been holed up in for
two weeks. Holmes mutters that there's "nothing of interest" to him out
there. Anywhere. Then they have a very rapid fire exchange in the general
direction of each other.
Watson: So you're free this
Watson says no, he is MEETING her, damnit. Holmes asks if he's proposed yet.
Watson mutters that he hasn't found the right ring yet, but he WILL and this
wedding will eventually happen whether Sherlock likes it or not. And he will
show up at dinner tonight. "Wear a jacket," he orders as he goes out the
door. "You wear a jacket," Holmes snottily mutters at his retreating back.
Watson: The Royals?
Holmes: My favorite.
Watson: Mary's coming.
Holmes: ...not available.
Chrissy: Keep acting like a
petulant child and I WILL spank you.
So we cut right to an upscale place where everyone is dressed like they are
definitely among society's elite class. Holmes is sitting at a table alone,
looking at his watch like 'how much longer do I have to stay here before
excusing myself would be considered socially acceptable?' He looks around at
various dramas happening around the room. A man is getting upset with a
woman about some men outside his house. A waiter is stealing silverware. The
maitre'd is fixing another waiter's tie. He closes his eyes and only opens
them when Watson appears in front of him, a woman hanging on his arm. Watson
notes that he arrived early. So maybe I was wrong about the watch thing. He
introduces Mary and Holmes kisses her hand and gushes about how he doesn't
know WHY it has taken so long for Watson to properly introduce them to each
Watson pulls her chair out for her and, when they are all seated, she gushes
about how she's been eager to meet him because she's heard SO MUCH about
him. She looks at Watson as she says this, but he seems to be looking at
Chrissy: I forget, which of us is
Diandra: Does it matter what we did before? Aside from the two
obvious ones, I mean?
Chrissy: Right. Okay then, I'll take this one. Continue.
She says she has a whole pile of "detective novels" at home, mostly Collins
Chrissy: But John here assures me
that the stories he plans to write about you one day will be far better.
He insists they will feature a far more handsome and brilliant detective.
With impressive strength and considerable charm and sexual appeal. He
really has a lot of quite flattering adjectives he uses to describe you. I
would find it alarming, but he's always especially affectionate with me
when he comes home after a full day spent chasing a suspect with you.
Though he does keep closing his eyes and asking me to stop talking. Oh,
well. Just one of his quirks. I'm sure we will be very happy together when
he finally gets around to proposing.
Diandra: [slow clap]
Mary starts rambling about how very far-fetched some of those novels are
because they make it look like you can come up with the grandest assumptions
based on the tiniest of details. Holmes' eyes have wandered to the ceiling
and he interrupts that the details are very important, actually. Often the
most important. "Take Watson..." "I intend to," she quips at the same time
Chrissy loudly blurts "yes, please." He kind of smiles briefly at her like
'ha. That's...cute. Yes. Only if I don't get there first. Anywho...' His
walking stick is made of a rare African snakewood. He reaches for it,
lifting it a bit and pulls a hidden sword from the shaft of it, which he
says is high tensile steel.
Chrissy: I will ask you to kindly
not unsheathe my sword in front of my future wife.
Diandra: You afraid she'll realize I've clearly handled it before?
Watson just stares at his face as he re-sheathes the sword and explains that
"a few" of these were awarded to veterans of the Afghan war, ergo, he is a
decorated soldier. "Strong, brave, born to be a man of action." Watson
visibly puffs his chest a little at this and is slow to respond when Holmes
reaches over and just pulls a piece of paper from his pocket. It's the stub
of a ticket from a boxing match, which Holmes uses to deduce that he's a
gambler. Watson is less thrilled about this and he grumbles that his
gambling days are over. "Right behind you," Holmes says, then tells Mary
he's gambled their rent money away more than once.
Chrissy: Shall we go into what YOU
spend all your money on, Sherlock?
Diandra: Cocaine. Yes, we know.
Mary is like 'impressive parlor trick, but you already know John so let's
see you try it on a stranger.' She offers herself as volunteer/human
sacrifice. Watson is like 'bad idea! NO!' She insists. Holmes is like 'oh,
well...if you INSIST...' "You remember we discussed this," Watson says
warningly. Holmes is like 'SHE INSISTS JOHN. Don't you respect the wishes of
your future bride?' He scoots his chair closer to her, stares at her for a
couple seconds and announces that she is a governess. Watson is like 'okay,
good enough, let's order our food now!' Holmes continues that her charge is
an eight year old boy. She says he's seven. Holmes says he's tall for his
age then. Also, he flicked ink at her today. She asks John if she has ink on
her face. He says there's nothing wrong with her face.
Chrissy: That's...not what I asked,
but then why does it seem to pain you to look at it sometimes?
Holmes says the drops are on her ear. Watson takes a big gulp of wine as
Holmes says the boy was being "impetuous", but she is too experienced to
respond with anything but patience and this leads to the deduction that his
mother, her employer, lent her the necklace she's wearing, which has far too
many precious stones for her to have bought it herself. The smile is
starting to slide from her face. "However, the jewels you're not wearing
tell us rather more." Watson tries to cut him off, but he WILL NOT be
stopped now. Apparently she has a band of lighter skin on her ring finger
that suggests she was engaged and wore it somewhere abroad where there is
more sun than can be found in England. She broke off the engagement when she
found out just how unimpressive the engagement ring really was and came back
to England to find a better fish. Like...say...a doctor. He grins at Watson
and she throws her glass of wine in his face.
Watson just sort of glares silently like a man who knew full well that was
going to happen and could do nothing to stop it. Mary says he's right about
all of it except for the part about her leaving the man because he didn't
make enough money. He died. She and John sort of nod understandingly at each
other and she stomps off. John follows, but not before throwing a bitter
"well done, old boy," at Holmes. The food Holmes obviously ordered before
they showed up is delivered to the table and he sniffs, tucks his napkin
into his collar and starts eating.
And then we're in a boxing ring. Holmes is dodging and occasionally judo
chopping a big, beefy guy while spectators yell and a Gaelic song plays on
the soundtrack. He pauses to take a sip from someone's glass, which may or
may not have been offered, then makes a few showman gestures before getting
pinned to the wall.
Chrissy: And not in a fun way.
Diandra: I knew you would say that and I still walked right into
He gets thrown to the ground and pulls himself up, hesitating when he sees a
handkerchief embroidered with the initials IA thrown over the wall. He is
scanning the crowd for its owner when his opponent punches him so hard he
falls. He slowly drags himself back up while the guy jeers and spots Irene
through the crowd on the other side of the ring.
Chrissy: How convenient that you
can use your knowledge of canon to avoid referring to her by anything
other than her character's proper name.
Diandra: Well, I could probably have called her Christine.
Chrissy: Or Lynne Cheney?
Diandra: Ugh. I forgot about that. No, I'd rather stick to the
Diandra: You just tricked me into confusing her with Amy Adams
again, didn't you?
Chrissy: You say that like it's a difficult thing to do.
She winks at him and he announces to his opponent that they are finished now
and congratulates him on winning. The guy is like 'the fuck we're done GET
BACK OVER HERE'. Holmes stops walking, possibly because the guy spit at the
back of his head or possibly because he just spotted the guy Irene is
flirting with instead of paying the slightest attention to the fight. He
voiceovers something about not registering anything on an "emotional level",
then pulls the same trick he did back at that church. Running through the
steps he will need to win the fight. If he throws the handkerchief in the
bear's face, he won't be able to see what he's punching at for a moment,
giving Sherlock a chance to sucker punch him from the side before smacking
him on both ears to disorient him. At which point he will attempt a "wild
haymaker", which Sherlock can block with an elbow while punching him in the
gut, then elbowing and punching him in the face, breaking his ribs that are
already cracked, knocking the wind out of him and dislocating his jaw before
ending with a kick to the chest. He summarizes that it will take the guy
about six weeks to recover from all those injuries. "Full psychological
recovery, six months." More importantly, he will think twice before spitting
at the back of a guy's head again. Sherlock grabs the handkerchief to wipe
the spit away, runs through the fight he outlined in about five seconds and
the crowd goes silent while everyone tries to figure out what just happened.
He picks up the handkerchief and swaggers out of the ring, takes some papers
from the guy Irene was talking to, grabs a beer bottle that he opens with
his teeth and disappears up some wooden stairs.
Outside, it's raining. In London. Shocker.
In a prison, one of the guards has called what I'm guessing is the warden
because Lord Blackwood has put another guard under some sort of "spell".
"It's like he's burning from the inside out!" The guard in question is
rolling around on the ground outside the cells, gagging. The warden orders
the other guards to take him to the infirmary and turns to Blackwood to ask
what is going on. Blackwood presses close to the bars and smarms that he
wants to see somebody.
Day. Watson arrives at the place where the fight was being held in that last
scene. He climbs the stairs and finds Holmes in a room plucking a violin in
front of some bugs in a vial. He babbles about how he was conducting an
experiment and he has made a MAJOR DISCOVERY that he can get the bugs to fly
in a specific pattern if he plays clusters of atonal notes. Watson checks
the label on a nearby bottle and notes that he's drinking something that is
meant to be used in eye surgery. Aside: apparently this was one of the many
medical uses for cocaine in those days. Because of course it was. Holmes is
like NEVER MIND THAT "I, using musical theory have created order out of
chaos!" Watson finally looks at what he's doing and asks how he lured them
into that container. Holmes is like 'one at a time, patiently, over the
course of several hours, which is why I'm drinking liquid crack and looking
particularly wild eyed right now.' Watson is like 'oh, did you? So it would
really be spectacularly annoying if I were to do this...' He uncovers the
vial and taps the glass with his cane so they all fly out. Heh. He tells
Holmes to go clean himself up because Blackwood has "requested" him.
Chrissy: I tried to tell him you
don't do conjugal visits, but he was very insistent.
Diandra: [sigh] Fine. If I could handle that sadistic Baron...
Chrissy: Oh, god, don't bring that into this version of Sherlock
Diandra: I see absolutely no reason not to. Especially since YOU
just declared yourself my pimp apparently.
Chrissy: Well, somebody has to make sure you don't get yourself
killed doing something stupid and it's obviously not going to be you.
Diandra: It's starting to scare me how easily we fell back into
this after two years.
Chrissy: I'm just even more confused about why we didn't do this
In the carriage, Holmes points out some "towering structures" that will one
day be the Tower Bridge as they drive past. He describes it as "the first
combination of bascule and suspension bridge" and marvels at what an
industrious empire they are living in. Watson is like 'yeah, sure...mighty
impressive erection. You're still high as a kite, aren't you?' Holmes
settles back in his seat, then suddenly remembers he placed a bet on the
fight last night on Watson's behalf and he has to give him his winnings. He
starts to hand the money over, then pulls it back and says "you're right.
I'll keep it with your checkbook, locked safely away in my drawer." Watson
grimaces, but doesn't comment. Holmes starts rambling about how the opera
house is playing Don Giovanni and offers to "procure" a couple tickets if he
is "culturally inclined" to take in a show this evening.
Chrissy: You can stop looking at me
like that and saying things in suggestive tones because I am not inclined
to "take in" anything right now.
Watson just sighs. Holmes notes that he has a great gift of silence, which
honestly is his best feature as a companion. This apparently being finally
the straw to break the camel's back, Watson punches him in the face.
Chrissy: Do you suppose it's things
like this that caused people to conclude that the problem with season four
of "Sherlock" was that they started looking like these movies?
Diandra: Well, that was just Emilio's interpretation as far as I
know. Some people seem to have been most upset by the fact that Robert
Downey Jr. doesn't match the physical description of Sherlock Holmes,
which honestly is such a trivial hill to die on.
Chrissy: Especially when you're making that argument after an
adaptation did the whole magic superpowered sister who caused all of
Sherlock's trauma by killing his childhood friend thing.
Diandra: Ugh. Don't remind me.
"So that's a no to the opera," Holmes asks after verifying his nose isn't
bleeding. Watson is still upset over the whole dinner debacle. Instead of
reminding him that he didn't even WANT to be there in the first place,
Holmes just reaches down and snatches his waistcoat. Watson goes to grab it
back and they argue for a bit, with Holmes snipping that they AGREED it was
too small for Watson.
Chrissy: That's...not what we were
talking about and you know it.
Watson successfully wrests it from Holmes and promptly throws it out the
carriage window where it is picked up by a random passer-by.
Diandra: Yes, but this is Victorian England so we have to speak in
Cut to some looney doomesday cult waving signs about Satan and "these
difficult times" in front of the prison as they pull up. Because some things
never change. Watson notes that Blackwood has whipped people into a frenzy.
The guard is like 'nah, this always happens during a full moon.' Just
kidding. Holmes asks if Watson wants to join him. Watson calls him "you old
cock" before declining the offer and Holmes calls him "mother hen".
Chrissy: Such adorable pet names we
have for each other.
The guard leads Holmes past a bunch of empty jail cells. When Holmes notes
that there's an awful lot of vacancies in here, he says they had to move
them before there was a riot. Blackwood has this sort of...effect on the
others...like he can psychically manipulate them or something.
Chrissy: He's a witch. Burn him.
Holmes looks at the guard in amusement as he stops walking suddenly when
Blackwood's voice can be heard a few cells away. He excuses the guard from
having the escort him the ENTIRE way and the guard thanks him and runs off.
In the cell, Blackwood seems to be reading out loud from...I'm going to say
the Bible. The walls of his cell are covered in symbols, images and possibly
random letters and words. Holmes announces his presence by complimenting the
decor. Then he rambles about how he was drawn to the cases not just because
he felt sympathy for the families of the victims, but because of the
"criminal mastery in the stroke of your brush."
Chrissy: Look, I know this sort of
thing really gets your engine going, but we should probably save something
Before Blackwood can really preen at the compliment though, he says that
that last one in the crypt though was like a childlike copy of his previous
works done with finger paints. Blackwood turns and, unruffled, concludes
that Holmes thinks there's "a larger game afoot."
Diandra: Way to step on my line
Blackwood bemoans Holmes' assumption that this has all been so pedestrian -
that he was even the one holding the brush at all. Well...technically, but
he is just a VESSEL.
Chrissy: Yeah, I don't think "the
devil made me do it" worked well as a defense, like...ever.
Holmes is like whatever, I just wish I'd solved it before five people had
died. Blackwood insists those five people were completely meaningless before
being offered up as human sacrifice. Holmes is like 'yeah...speaking of
that...maybe Watson and I can dissect your brain after you're dead because
it might provide useful insight into what causes mental derangement.' He
turns and puts his back to the cell bars like a cocky moron and Blackwood
jumps up behind him - not to reach through the bars and attempt to strangle
him or anything - but to growl that he needs to "widen" his "gaze" because
he has NO idea what is coming and how serious it will be. "You and I are
bound together on a journey that will twist the very fabric of nature" and
he's worried about that "fragility" he can sense beneath Holmes' cold,
logical exterior because "I need you."
Holmes is like 'oooooookay, so I'm leaving now.' Blackwood snaps at him to
listen and prophesizes that three more people will die and he will be
helpless to stop it. If he doesn't accept that this is "beyond" him, then
"by the time you realize you made all of this possible, it'll be the last
sane thought in your head."
Chrissy: Bold of you to think he
had any sane thoughts to begin with.
Holmes lights the pipe he's been chewing on for the last few lines and
swaggers out of the jail wing. All the guards are collected just out of
range with Lestrade, who asks what Blackwood wanted. Holmes isn't sure, but
says "Father" isn't needed. Presumably referring to a priest and not just
using some sort of snarky nickname for Lestrade.
Chrissy: If he's going to call
anyone daddy, it is definitely not going to be Lestrade.
So we go right to the hanging, where the judge reiterates that Blackwood has
been sentenced for practicing Black Magic, and five murders and one
attempted murder. In that order, probably. Blackwood, stylistically shot
through the hanging noose, intones his last words: "death is only the
beginning." We move quickly through the hanging and Watson checking his
pulse and officially declaring him dead.
Back to 221b Baker Street. Holmes wakes to the sound of Irene Adler cracking
walnuts somewhere nearby with her BARE HANDS.
Chrissy: I would point out the
symbolism there, but frankly it's so obvious that it hardly needs to be
She sighs about how London is so dreary this time of year, but it honestly
beats staying home in New Jersey, so... Yes, they made her American. She
plops the bowl of half shelled walnuts on the floor in front of him and says
she brought them back from Syria for him. Also dates and olives from other
places. He stares at her like 'what the fuck are you doing in my house?'
while she keeps talking about how she was setting the table so they could
have tea with all these snacks when she found this file full of articles he
left laying around that has her name on it. Something about a Bulgarian
prime minister resigning over some missing documents. So we're starting this
after "A Scandal in Bohemia" then? Isn't it interesting which stories each
version of Sherlock Holmes deems important enough to tell in full? He checks
to make sure the wall safe hidden behind a painting is still locked and
barely reaches the picture frame of her on his desk before she turns toward
it so she sees it as he is knocking it over in a blatant effort to hide it.
He jams some walnuts in his mouth and pretends that didn't happen.
Chrissy: Her story isn't important,
but the romance that was never actually canon is.
Diandra: Yeah, I've determined that literally everyone suffers this
same delusion, so it can't even really be considered a mistake anymore.
The only version that EVER depicted their relationship as it really was in
Doyle's story was Jeremy Brett's.
"I was simply studying your methods should the authorities ask me to hunt
you down," he says with a sniff. She notes that her name doesn't actually
appear in any of the articles. He says no, but it's obvious it was her
anyway. He delicately pulls up the diamond that has slipped between her
breasts by the back of the necklace and asks if it's the one the maharajah
declared missing. She stuffs it back between her breasts and says they
shouldn't "dwell on the past". She directs him to the table she set and
notes that he is obviously between jobs right now. He immediately quips that
she is just as obviously between husbands. She groans that the last one was
"boring" and "jealous" and "snored".
Chrissy: So I obviously had to kill
him. Oops, did I say kill? I meant divorce.
Her announcement that she is back to her original last name of Adler is
punctuated by a tiny farting noise. Before we can think either of them did
it, we see the bulldog on the floor, very much alive and looking shifty.
Chrissy: Yes, Gladstone, I agree.
Sherlock clears his throat and gives him a look like 'must you embarrass me
He pours them both tea, then hesitates before drinking, sniffing at it like
maybe it's poisoned or drugged.
Chrissy: Poisoned maybe, but you
were passed out on the floor when I got here, so what would I need to drug
Diandra: Okay, while it's great that we're finding it so easy to
fall back into the sort of banter we had with the other Sherlock, you
should probably avoid making your characterizations exactly the same.
Chrissy: Who says that's what I was doing?
She brushes off this blatant distrust, drinks her own cup and gets down to
business. She needs him to help her find someone. She reaches into her
bustier and he lunges to grab her arm, his other hand briefly forming a half
ass fist like the instilled idea that he must not hit a woman is warring
with the instinct to defend himself from a likely attack. She smirks and
asks why he's always so suspicious. "Shall I answer chronologically or
alphabetically," he fires back. She pulls out an envelop and warns him to be
careful he doesn't cut himself on it, setting it down in front of him. She
says it has all the information he needs. He asks who she is working for
and, when she just smirks, grumbles that he'll have to figure it out himself
the hard way.
Chrissy: Hmm, yes. I expect you'll
do a very thorough job working me over. Might take all night.
She plops a purse full of money on the table and he protests that he never
said he would take the case.
Chrissy: What case? Oh, right. I
thought we were still talking about the other thing.
Irene is betting he will take the case. He flips over the envelope she put
on the table and looks at the logo for the Grand Hotel in Picadilly
emblazoned on it. She asks if he remembers that hotel and says they gave her
"our old room". He just pulls out his violin and plucks at it, ignoring her
as she flips the picture back upright and stalks from the flat.
Diandra: Which you are paying me for because...?
Chrissy: Watson insisted.
Diandra: So we're really going with the Watson-as-pimp thing, are
Chrissy: Need to make rent somehow, old cock.
She passes Watson coming in off the street and he holds the door for her,
seeming not to recognize her until she's already gone.
Outside, she rounds the street corner and gets into a waiting carriage,
telling somebody waiting for her that he'll do it. From the shadows, a man
smarmily compliments her on a job well done. She says it should only take
Holmes a day to find the guy. Smarmy guy exposits that Reordan is the key to
whatever Blackwood was doing and they NEED him, so Sherlock had better come
through. The carriage jolts suddenly and the driver yells at a bum with
strangely nice trousers they seem to have practically run over. The "bum"
jumps up and hits up Smarmy for cash. He is wearing a large hat an eye patch
on the side facing in and speaking in a very low class accent and I would
just like to note that this is one advantage these movies have over the BBC
series because if I didn't already know this was Robert Downey Jr. I would
totally have fallen for this like I did the first time I saw this movie.
Chrissy: You fell for it the one
time they tried it with Benedict too. You admitted as much when we
recapped the scene.
Diandra: Only because they took even greater pains to hide his
face. They knew what they were working with.
Smarmy produces a gun that he shoves in TotallyNotSherlock's face and
TotallyNotSherlock backs away muttering "God save the Queen".
Back at the flat, Sherlock is wiping what is totally not splashed mud from
his face while Watson berates him for choosing IRENE ADLER as the only woman
he cares about. "Are you a masochist?"
Chrissy: Don't answer that. It was
He reminds Sherlock that she is the only foe who ever outsmarted him and she
did it TWICE at that. Sherlock is like 'are you done mocking me yet?'
John asks what she's after.
Chrissy: Have you seen his ass?
Diandra: .............what the fuck, dude?
Chrissy: What? You were the one who was noticing the state of his
pants like that doesn't imply where your eyes were drawn while he was bent
Diandra: I don't know whether to be offended by that accusation or
impressed that you came up with that logical deduction. My Boswell is
Chrissy: Okay, now I KNOW you are taking the idea that you really
are Sherlock Holmes too far.
Holmes tries to change the subject, but Watson keeps going. "What could she
possibly need? An alibi? A beard? A human canoe? She could sit on your back
and paddle you up the river Thames."
Chrissy: Of course, I'd have to
charge her extra for that, but...
Holmes snits that it shouldn't matter to him since "we've done OUR last case
Chrissy: So that's what this is? I
stop paying attention to you for two minutes and you throw yourself at
her? God, you're so needy.
He tries to pick up the stuff Irene left while Watson is distracted reading
his paper and Watson calls over his paper that he already read all that. He
rattles off statistics on Luke Reordan (red hair and no front teeth) and
proclaims the case solved already, returning to the previous topic: "You're
obviously not her type. She likes ginger dwarves." Holmes says the correct
term is "midgets", actually. Watson frowns like 'I was joking, but as long
as you are agreeing with me...' Holmes says no, he just objects to the
improper wording. They bicker a little bit as Watson steers them away from a
debate about the proper labels for the vertically challenged until Holmes
finally offers to "explain".
We flash quickly through Irene's hands cracking walnuts, setting the purse
down and righting the photo. Then we stop at the moment she left the flat
and, instead of following her down the street, we focus on Sherlock rushing
to the window to watch her exit, then running to a mirror to put on a fake
nose that he apparently just had lying around for some reason. As Watson is
coming up the stairs, he is running down and climbing through a window on
the landing. Watson asks what the hell he's doing. Holmes is like 'who me?
Nothing!' Watson asks why he's wearing a ridiculous fake nose suddenly.
Holmes is like 'where?', grabs the coat Watson is carrying and jumps out the
window as Watson begins to ask if that was who he thinks it was down at the
door. There's a loud crash as he falls through the roof of what might be a
coal shed. This proves to work in his favor as he emerges from it dirty.
Watson slams the window shut with a sigh like 'I don't even want to know.'
Holmes fixes the overly large coat around him as he follows Irene through
back alleys. This time we see a little interlude we skipped from her
perspective. A couple skeevy guys try to feel her up and she beats the shit
out of them and steals a wallet off one of them while cooing mockingly.
"That's the Irene I know," Sherlock mutters. Yes. Yes, it is.
Chrissy: You know, it's probably
possible to overlook the whole romance thing in this case since in a more
broad sense they seem to have gotten everything else about her right.
She starts off again and he follows her past a circus troop, stealing a
scarf, a hat, an eye patch and some bread. He jams a wad of bread in his
mouth, cocks the hat and steps out in front of the carriage and we flash
quickly through the rest of this scene with the realization that the random
bum really was, in fact, Sherlock.
Chrissy: Yeah, except his bum
clearly isn't so random.
Diandra: I would just like to remind you that I have a mute button
and I know how to use it.
Back in the present in 221b, Sherlock says the man Adler was with
"intrigues" him because who could possibly intimidate her like that? Watson
agrees that he must really be something to strike fear in her and motivate
her to do his bidding, but says it doesn't concern him and he would suggest
Holmes not touch the case with a ten foot pole. Holmes thinks he may not
have a choice what with Watson moving out and forcing him to pay ALL the
rent soon. He points the violin bow in accusation and Watson snarls at him
to "get that out of my face." Holmes snarks that it isn't in his face "it's
in my hand." Watson just calmly tells him to get what's in his hand out of
his face then.
Chrissy: [cough cough] That's not
what you said last time.
Diandra: Are we forgetting who we're playing again?
Chrissy: Well, you weren't saying anything!
Diandra: Because I felt that exchange was juvenile enough without
us making it worse.
A constable arrives before Watson can throw another punch or something and
Holmes greets him as "Clarkie". Clark says Lestrade has sent him to bring
"you" at once. Sherlock asks if he's forgotten the way to Scotland Yard
again. Watson snorts and Holmes prompts him to join them because "you means
us." Watson says it doesn't actually and Holmes looks at him like 'why don't
you love me anymore?' Clark decides he should just come out with it: Lord
Blackwood seems to have come back from the dead. Holmes perks up. Watson
rubs his eye like he can feel a headache coming on and reminds Clark that he
pronounced Blackwood dead himself. Clark is like 'uh...yeah, well...' Holmes
prompts him for more details. Clark says the groundskeeper saw him wandering
the graveyard this morning. Watson rolls his eyes and goes to leave, saying
he will leave this nonsense to Holmes. "It's not my reputation that's at
stake here," Holmes snots. Watson snaps at him that THAT isn't going to
work. Holmes asks Clark if anything has reached the news media yet. Clark
says no and they're trying to keep it that way because if this were to hit
the papers it would create "sheer bloody panic." Watson is like 'I'm sorry,
are we seriously entertaining this?' Holmes theatrically says that yes, we
are because this is about your integrity and what girl would ever want to
marry a doctor so incompetent he can't even properly pronounce a man dead?
Watson makes a face like Jude Law is fighting to not break character and
Chrissy: Forgive me, I'm not used
to playing the straight man.
Diandra: ...been waiting for the opportunity to use that, haven't
Chrissy: Your brother says hi, by the way.
Diandra: I'm pretty sure that will only make sense once we get to
the second movie, but okay.
Graveyard. Watson points to some markings in the dirt and asks Clarkie who
won the rugby match that was apparently played here. He commends the boys
under his command for the thorough job they did of destroying any possible
evidence. Holmes chuckles like 'that's my boy' and agrees that they "never
miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity." They reach the crypt where
Blackwood was buried, which has been totally blasted open and Holmes intones
"and on the third day..." Lestrade doesn't think this is funny, nor does he
understand how it is possible for these half-ton slabs of marble to have
been "smashed open from the inside". Holmes asks after the coffin. Lestrade
says they're bringing it up now. Holmes looks at all the bobbies standing
around and jokes that they really look like they're hard at work on that
front. He asks about the witness and Lestrade points him out, but says he's
catasomething. Catatonic. Yeah, that's it. He goes over to reprimand the
officers for acting like "quivering milkmaids" afraid to go near the coffin
and get to work. Watson goes over to check on the witness. Holmes goes to
sit on part of the rubble pile and lick one of the broken rocks because of
course he does.
Chrissy: I would bemoan your habit
of always putting things in your mouth, but frankly it's one of your least
Diandra: Yes, and you would certainly be the last one to complain
Watson proclaims the witness to be in shock and just needing some time to
recover. Lestrade says his initial statement was that he saw Blackwood "rise
from the grave" and how exactly does Watson explain THAT given that he
pronounced him dead. Watson insists the man had no pulse. The bobbies pull
the coffin out just then and mostly back away immediately. Watson grabs the
crowbar and pries open the lid. There is a body inside, along with more dirt
than should probably be INSIDE the coffin, but it isn't Blackwood, a fact
that Lestrade immediately confirms. Holmes congratulates him on stating the
obvious and pops open some sort of tool kit he keeps on his belt. Watson
measures something on the corpse's face and proclaims his time of death to
be somewhere between ten and twelve hours ago. Holmes, instead of using
literally any of the shit he carries on his belt, asks to borrow Lestrade's
pen (which Lestrade was just licking the nib of and preparing to write with)
and uses it to pry open the guy's mouth and look at his teeth. Or lack
thereof. Watson identifies him as Adler's dwarf. "Midget," Holmes corrects
reflexively, handing the pen back to Lestrade. Lestrade uses a handkerchief
to take it with an expression that makes it clear he will be burning the pen
Holmes sees a watch tucked beneath the dead man's jacket and throws his hat
over it. The groundskeeper, now recovered apparently, ambles over at this
moment to insist that he DEFINITELY saw Blackwood. "And when the dead walk,
the living will fill these coffins," he intones.
Chrissy: So...Blackwood is a
zombie? Or a vampire?
Diandra: Probably the latter.
Chrissy: Ooo, I have an idea for a fic!
Diandra: NO! Stop doing this in every recap!
Diandra: I am not writing a crossover with the new MCU Blade or
"Only Lovers Left Alive" or "Interview with the Vampire" or whatever
insane plot bunny is running through your head right now.
Chrissy: How about a crossover with that immortal character
Benedict Cumberbatch may or may not be playing at some point? In fact, you
could even bring the BBC series into it if you...[continues talking for
five minutes, not realizing I have put her on mute] ...actually, the
strap-on has a history that goes a lot further back than the Victorian
Era. I could send you some stuff if you're interested.
Diandra: No, I'm good, thanks. Moving on.
While everyone is distracted listening to the groundskeeper, Sherlock takes
back his hat, snagging the watch. He stands and fills the silence following
the proclomation with "well...uh..." then he just adjusts his belt and walks
away, Watson at his side. Watson asks if he really believes this
resurrection story. Holmes says it isn't really a question of "if" he was
resurrected, but "how".
Chrissy: Should I be taking notes
on the off chance you might need to revisit this whole plot sometime in
This time Holmes gets to say his line about the game being afoot and they
both recite the rest of the line from Henry V.
Diandra: Why on Earth would I need to know how someone could appear
to return from certain death? On a completely unrelated note, I could
really use a vacation sometime in the near future. There's a lovely place
in Switzerland near what I'm told is an impressive waterfall...
Sometime later, Holmes presents Watson with fish and chips that he
apparently insisted on getting from a very particular stand because the cook
uses a really good northern stout beer in his batter. Watson just rolls his
eyes and starts walking, talking about how he's seen a lot of strange things
in his army days including an Indian man who predicted his own death in
great detail "right down to the number and placement of the bullets that
killed him". He admits that a supernatural explanation in this Blackwood
case is "theoretically possible". Holmes says yes, but if you try to
theorize before you have enough data you just end up twisting the facts to
suit said theories. He says Adler's midget is the key to the whole mystery
and holds up the watch, noting the little scratches around the hole used to
wind it and asking what Watson makes of them. Watson deduces that its owner
is a drunk and his hands are shaking too badly to wind it without slipping.
Chrissy: Does the use of the whole
'I can deduce details about your brother from your watch' thing from canon
in this different context imply this version of Watson doesn't have a
Diandra: That sounds reasonable considering there was never any
mention of his brother - or really any relative other than Mary, who
disappeared - ever again in the thousand or so pages of said canon.
Holmes commends Watson on the deductive reasoning skills he has developed.
Chrissy: Yes, it's almost like it
was your words coming out of my mouth.
Holmes reads the initials (pawnbroker marks) scored into the watch, the most
recent of which is M.H. They both look up just as they come to a shop named
Maddison & Haig and conclude that that must be what M.H. stands for.
Then Watson realizes that the fact they were already headed in the direction
of the very shop the evidence was leading to is probably not a coincidence
and smiles knowingly as Holmes heads right for the door.
Chrissy: It's so sweet how you
patiently lead me to make a conclusion you already arrived at long ago.
Either that or it's really annoying. I haven't decided which yet.
Diandra: You know, this is actually very canon compliant. Holmes
never gloated about how much smarter he was than everyone else around him.
He tried to guide people into seeing what he thought was obvious...and was
often frustrated that most of them were too dense to follow. Except
Watson, usually. This is a nuance that gets lost in a lot of translations
and results in a lot of "he's an asshole who likes to brag about how much
smarter he is than everybody else" interpretations.
Watson reminds Holmes that he really has to get back soon because he has a
date for tea with his soon-to-be in-laws. Holmes groans like 'do you delight
in reminding me of your plans to LEAVE ME FOR THAT WOMAN?' Speaking of
which...a gypsy woman offers to tell them their future as they pass her.
Holmes tries to brush her off, but she chases after them, insisting that
what she sees is VERY IMPORTANT and it has to do with Mary. Watson pulls up
short and she grabs his hand and reads his palm. She says she sees two men:
"brothers. Not in blood but in bond." Watson looks at Holmes like 'did you
put her up to this?' Holmes just stares blankly like 'if I had, would I have
let her describe us as BROTHERS?' Watson asks what this business is about
Mary. The gypsy rambles about them being married soon and seeing patterned
tablecloths and china figurines and lace doilies. "Does your depravity know
no bounds," Watson snarls at Holmes. "No," is the completely stone-faced
response. The gypsy yelps that Mary will turn fat and have a beard and - at
Holmes' prompting - warts everywhere.
Chrissy: Did you really have to
tell her about the STD? Really?
Diandra: Yes, I occasionally like to remind you that the Three
Continents Watson label came at a price.
Chrissy: .....wow, you really ran with that one, didn't you?
Watson begs them both to please stop this charade. Holmes thinks it's the
best prediction Flora here has made in years and should they talk about the
real reason he's having so much trouble finding Mary the right ring? Hmm?
Chrissy: One day your body will be
found floating in the river and no one will be able to prove that I put it
They have a little spat wherein Watson tries to get his fight winnings back
now that he knows what Holmes is using it for and Holmes tries to get him to
admit that he loves this work and would miss it if he made the mistake of
settling down with a wife. Watson looks past Holmes at the sign in the
window of the shop they are headed into advertising a variety of engagement
rings. Holmes sniffs at it and pulls the money from his pocket so Watson can
go buy a ring and prove him wrong.
Diandra: Oh, pffft. You love me and you know it.
We flash forward to them leaving the shop and Holmes exposits that Watson
found a ring and he got the address for Adler's midget. Watson notes the
added bonus of now having some change in his pocket. Holmes offers to keep
an eye on it for him as Watson becomes distracted by some sort of game a
couple guys are playing right on the street. Oh, right...Doyle mentioned
something about Watson liking to gamble, didn't he?
Chrissy: I'm sure he would have
been the last person to remember.
Holmes coaxes him to put the money away and keep walking. But Watson
remembers he really does have to go to that thing with Mary now. "Give her
my best," Holmes says over his shoulder and disappears through a doorway.
Watson starts to leave, then stops and looks back at where Holmes just was.
Inside, Holmes knocks on an inner door. No one answers, of course, since
this is presumably where the man whose body they just found lived, so he
pulls a lock pick from his little tool kit and squats. As he's working on
the lock, Watson appears and just kicks the door in. Holmes, still holding
the pick set, blinks up at him like 'I almost had it there.'
Chrissy: Oh, you love my
unnecessary displays of brute strength.
As Watson marches right in, Holmes snarkily notes what a difference it makes
when he has a companion he can rely on completely with him. Watson grumbles
that he only has about ten minutes to spare and then he REALLY needs to go.
He triggers an animal trap with his cane and says the guy obviously was
expecting somebody to get him. Holmes sniffs and says either Irene Adler was
here or her midget wears her perfume. Also, there are smells of dead things
and various chemicals used in preserving dead things. They enter a lab of
sorts full of dead animals and the remains of some sort of chemical
Diandra: Time and place, dear.
Watson looks at the scrawled symbols on a board and some papers and
identifies them as a combination of scientific formulas and sorcery spells.
Holmes finds the burned remains of some papers and suggests there might be
greater significance in the stuff he tried to destroy. Watson recites a few
chemical names, which Holmes says will "suck the iron out of the ink."
Chrissy: In a few years, there
should be a kid in Germany who could do that without needing lab
Diandra: Okay, first of all...technically that's only the same
universe if you're referring to the comics and second of all...shut up.
Watson gets to work on that while Holmes continues looking at all the
various flora and fauna the weirdo was experimenting on. There's a frog
still half-dissected and a flower he seems to have been trying to bring back
to life. Watson has revealed just enough of one of the papers to identify a
symbol that proves the guy was working with Blackwood. Holmes is like 'duh,
but what were they doing?'
Chrissy: Attempting to prove Mary
Shelley's story really is possible?
Holmes concludes he must have been successful in whatever he was doing or he
wouldn't have been killed. He sniffs and says there's one smell he hasn't
been able to identify yet. Something sweet, like molasses or maple syrup...
Watson suggests it's the candied apple one of the thugs who just entered the
room is chewing on. Holmes looks at the oil can and igniter in the other
guy's hands and says they must be here to burn the place and destroy all the
evidence, hmm? Thug #2 is like yeah, um...just hold that thought for a
minute while our friend catches up. A seven foot tall behemoth clomps into
the room and the boys both look at him like '.....fuck.' The guy slurs
something in French that the subtitles don't catch, and neither do I, so
I'll just assume it's something like "Mongo smash?"
Chrissy: You watch too many movies.
"Meat or potatoes," Holmes asks Watson. Watson obviously understands the
meaning of this and lunges at the two smaller thugs. Mongo, meanwhile, heads
right for Sherlock, who slaps his hands away with the whip he's still
carrying, then starts whacking him about the head with it. Mongo finally
catches his arm, picks him up and throws him across a table. Watson is using
some sort of pot to hit the other guys now. Holmes grabs what looks like a
walking stick and staggers upright, acting like he might just fall back down
any minute. He begs Mongo in French to give him a moment. Mongo says he's
not in any hurry, but he's already making a move for Holmes again. Holmes
starts swinging at him wildly with the stick and we go back and forth
between Holmes and Watson for a while. Neither of them is doing particularly
well and Watson has lost his engagement ring in the scuffle. Holmes grabs
some sort of...electrified...thing... and when Mongo pins him to the table
and starts choking him out he goes limp and the thing falls on Mongo's
chest, zapping him back and through the nearest wall.
Watson and his opponents are briefly distracted by this, then continue
fighting. Holmes looks at the cattle prod...or whatever...dazed, and figures
out how to charge the thing back up via a crank at the end of the table.
Armed with it, he goes to meet Mongo as he stumbles back into the room. Now
Mongo needs a moment. Holmes kind of shrugs like 'yeah, sure, why not?' Then
he glances over and sees one of the other thugs has Watson at knifepoint and
Mongo has pulled a knife himself and is propping it against a pipe lining
the wall. Holmes electrifies the pipe and zaps Mongo across the room, into
the thug threatening Watson. Then he cockily blows on the smoking end of the
thing like it's a pistol. Watson blinks at him and asks what the hell that
thing is. Holmes doesn't know, but hey, it works.
Oh, we're not done. Mongo jumps out a window (turns out they are on the
second floor) and lands on a conveniently placed cart. Holmes follows and
bounces right off the cart, landing face first in the mud. He gets up and
gives chase all they way to some sort of warehouse, prod still in hand.
Mongo opens the doors to the warehouse and then stops to swing at Holmes for
some reason, getting zapped right into the building. There's a crew working
on a ship inside and they stop to gawk as Holmes interrogates this hulking
brute in French. Holmes asks who he works for. Mongo thinks he should know
the answer to that one already. Holmes asks why he's still doing a dead
man's bidding. Mongo says because he's not dead. Duh. Holmes asks where he
is. Mongo finally gets tired of him waving the prod in his face and rips it
from his hand, tossing it aside. "Run, little rabbit," he menaces. Holmes is
like 'yeah, uh...thanks, I will.' He starts running along the side of the
ship, stopping to try to pick up an axe that proves too heavy and a chain
that Mongo rips from him after one blow. Mongo then decides he's had enough
of toying with Holmes and picks up the axe, swinging it at him. Holmes
starts running again and Mongo cleaves a few of the supports holding the
ship up, sending workers tumbling and the ship listing.
Holmes finally picks up a hammer and faces Mongo like 'aha!' There's a
comical pause while he realizes that it is about 1/20th the size of the
weapon Mongo is wielding.
Chrissy: Hey, it's not the size
that cou...oh, who am I kidding?
Holmes chucks his tiny hammer at Mongo, who doesn't even flinch before
swinging his own hammer and breaking another support beam. Then he
apparently gives up on the hammer in favor of chucking a barrel at Holmes
like this is a live action version of Donkey Kong or something. Watson
mercifully arrives just then, announcing his presence by shooting a pistol
to disperse the crowd at the door. He goes running after them, shooting at
Mongo, who has taken up the axe again, but loses it immediately by trying to
throw it at Holmes, who dodges. Which means that was probably a continuity
error or something. Holmes tries to run in front of the ship and Mongo
throws a thick chain at his legs, tripping him so he knocks himself
unconscious on the hull and falls into the track. Mongo, who is apparently
some sort of vaudeville villain stereotype, decides the best course of
action is to remove the ties keeping the ship in place and just let it roll
right over Holmes.
Watson fires a couple more shots, then just watches helplessly as the ship
rolls right over Holmes into the river, the post the anchor chain was
wrapped around ripping right out of the ground. Holmes, who is, of course,
perfectly fine, starts sitting up in the track and Watson dives to pull him
back down as the anchor post goes sailing overhead. The ship, not actually
being anywhere near sea worthy, sinks immediately. Holmes looks around at
all the chaos and asks "Watson, what have you done?"
Chrissy: You know, the fact that I
never tried to murder you is probably the best proof of the argument that
I love you.
Jail yard...I think. The boys are sitting on a bench in a muddy yard. Holmes
is nodding off, leaning against Watson, but jerking himself back awake.
Watson says yeah, he hasn't slept all night either. And he's not happy about
that fact that he completely blew any hope of having tea with Mary and her
parents. Holmes defensively reminds him that they were ATTACKED and
everything that happened after that was just necessary self defense. Watson
says he's been going over his notes from the past seven months and concluded
that he must be "psychologically disturbed" to let Holmes keep leading him
into danger while lying about his plans. Holmes mutters that he's never
complained about his "methods" before. Watson is like 'who said I was
Chrissy: I don't suffer from
insanity. I enjoy every minute of it.
Actually, he passive-aggressively rants about how he never complains about
anything. Certainly not the 3am violin practices or the horrific hygiene
habits or his tendency to steal Watson's clothing or his experiments on
Gladstone or that one time when he SET FIRE TO THE HOUSE. They have a brief,
loud domestic spat when Watson refers to HIS rooms and HIS dog and Holmes
insists he should use "our" for both. Watson brushes this aside and says he
draws the line at this apparent systematic effort Holmes is making to
sabotage his relationship with Mary. Holmes kind of sulks for a moment, then
says he understands...Watson is tired and cranky and lashing out right now.
He offers up a cottage Mycroft has somewhere where they can go to get away
and relax. Watson is like WHY WOULD I BE GOING ON A VACATION WITH YOU WERE
YOU EVEN LISTENING?! Obviously, if he were to go away somewhere it would be
with Mary. Holmes is like 'well, I guess you can bring her along if you have
Chrissy: I mean, the bed would get
pretty crowded, but...
Diandra: I would chastise you for switching roles again, but even
through a computer monitor I can see you are practically exploding over
there with all the retorts coming to mind with this ho-yay-riffic
Watson snaps that Holmes is NOT invited on this hypothetical vacation.
Holmes says it's his brother's summer house, so the idea that he wouldn't be
invited is fairly absurd. Watson is like THE FACT THAT WE ARE IN A JAIL
WHERE I CAN'T POSSIBLY GET AWAY WITH KILLING YOU WILL NOT STOP ME FROM
TRYING. They are interrupted by a guard coming for Watson, accompanied by
Mary, who he says posted his bail. Holmes gets up to follow him out of the
cell and the guard slams the door in his face, saying she didn't post bail
for HIM. "I hope you get bail by breakfast," an inmate behind him menaces.
"Because the boys are getting hungry."
Chrissy: Bless you, sir. Ahem. And
not for food, if you know what I'm saying. In fact, you will probably be
doing most of the "eating". Anybody ever tell you you have a pretty mouth?
Diandra: Yes, that's what was missing from this version so far.
Chrissy: I'm starting to wonder if this subtext is actually cannon
the way it keeps showing up. I mean... was part of Watson's job always to
be available to "defend his honor"?
Sometime later, the prisoners are all clumped together, jeering at something
and Lestrade and a couple guards go in to break up what obviously looks like
a fight. Except instead of fighting, Sherlock is just calmly delivering the
punchline to the joke he was most of the way through and the other prisoners
(including the one who threatened him but is now sitting next to him like
they're friends) laugh. Lestrade posted his bail. Holmes shakes the thug's
hand, calling him "Big Joe". Big Joe calls him "Mr. Holmes" all starry eyed
and docile. As he's swaggering out, Holmes mutters that it's a good thing
Lestrade arrived when he did because "I was beginning to run out of jokes."
Chrissy: Oh, I'm sure you would
have found other methods of entertaining them.
Diandra: Are you saying that as Lestrade or are we back to the
Chrissy: When did we leave that?
Diandra: Okay then.
Lestrade notes that in another life, Sherlock would have made a great
criminal. Holmes fires back that in that other life, HE would have made a
great policeman. Either the insult goes right over his head or Lestrade is
just used to Holmes insulting him by now and doesn't let it upset him. He
hands Holmes a paper with a headline LONDON IN TERROR: BLACKWOOD LIVES and
demands he help them solve this. And if he refuses "I'll have you in there
playing Victoria and Albert quicker than a bookie's runner."
Chrissy: ...........wow. It's not
even subtext anymore. It's just text. Seriously, did I forget about this
part of the books?
He hands Holmes a handkerchief and orders him to make himself "look
presentable" for the "friends in high places" who paid his bail money.
Holmes blows his nose loudly into the handkerchief and tries to hand it back
to Lestrade. Lestrade just looks at him like 'I hate you so much' and walks
Holmes climbs into a waiting carriage and the guy sitting in it
apologetically says he's going to have to put a bag over his head. He does
and we go right to it being taken off again and Holmes is sitting at a table
in one of those long hallway-like rooms often found in European castles. On
the other side, a British Hey It's That Guy if there ever was one apologizes
again and says "I'm sure it must be quite a mystery as to where you are and
who I am" like he doesn't know exactly who Sherlock Holmes is. Holmes runs
down the directions the carriage took after passing a French bakery that
uses a specific recipe he recognizes the smell of and from the letters
scattered on the guy's desk he can tell that his name and title is "Sir
Thomas Rotheram, Lord Chief Justice" and his ring indicates he's the head of
the secret Temple of the Four Orders, the headquarters of which they are
seated in. Then he scoffs that the guy bothered to blindfold him. The guy
sighs, grumbles about standard procedures and welcomes a couple other guys
into the room. He introduces Holmes to Ambassador Standish of America and
Lord Coward, the home secretary.
Coward asks if Holmes already has some idea of what their order is about.
Holmes is like 'er...yeah...it's... different.' Rotheram allows his
skepticism, but insists they have been "steering the world towards a greater
good for centuries". Unfortunately, some use their teachings just for the
"dark arts" and crime, so they tend to get a bad rep. Standish says they're
not asking him to believe in magic or anything, but...he should understand
their fear. Holmes rambles about fear and launches into a deduction that
Blackwood is Rotheram's son because they have the same unusual eye color and
ear shape. The three Temple members look at each other shiftily and Rotheram
confirms it, but spits that that detail will NOT be made public knowledge.
He then offers up another detail that shouldn't be made public: that
Blackwood's mother was not his wife and he impregnated her during a ritual.
Chrissy: Dangerously courting Dan
Brown territory here...
Diandra: Oh, I'm sure he wasn't the first.
He describes the mother as a "powerful practitioner" (read: witch), who
didn't survive childbirth. She was, in a way, Blackwood's first victim and
the five they hanged him for were definitely not the only ones. He kills
because he believes it will "enhance his powers". Not that they could ever
prove he was doing it and they can't do anything to stop or control him
anymore. Rotheram hands Holmes a "book of spells" that Blackwood uses and
warns that he's planning to "raise a force that will alter the very course
of the world."
Chrissy: It will be called Hydra...
So, long story short (too late), the Order wants to hire Holmes to stop
Blackwood before he can successfully enact that plan. Coward reminds him
that he has considerable pull with the police in his position as home
secretary, so they can provide him with whatever he needs. Holmes says he'll
stop Blackwood, but not for them and he won't take their money for the
service. As he's swaggering out the door, he notes that the rest of
Blackwood's family is dead, so, you know, Rotheram might want to watch his
Grand Hotel. Irene is walking around an enormous room in a bathrobe. She
opens a door Sherlock was in the process of trying to pick and he sighs like
'nobody will let me actually finish breaking in'. She hands him a bottle of
wine to open and he notes that the vintage places it in a year where there
was a comet, which altered the wine quality somehow. He's briefly distracted
when she drops the towel and walks behind a dressing screen. She asks how
the case is going. He says it hit a "dead end" when he found her guy in
Blackwood's coffin. She pretends this doesn't disturb her. He asks if her
client is a professor because he couldn't really see the guy's face when he
was playing begger, but he saw chalk dust on his lapel. Though he notes that
it's pretty weird that a professor would carry a gun, much less that fancy
contraption he pointed at Sherlock.
Irene realizes just now that the random beggar was a disguise and grumbles
that the eyepatch was a nice touch. She asks if that means this is just a
social visit since he closed the case. He says no, he just felt he should
warn her that she may have gotten in over her head since somebody is
covering their tracks and getting rid of loose ends, of which she is
probably one. He finally wrangles the bottle of wine open and pours while he
insists she leave now while she can since she's so good at doing that
Chrissy: Oh, hiss.
If she stays, she should at least go into protective custody.
Diandra: What? Hmph.
She steps out from behind the barrier in a dress that bares her entire
shoulders and reminds him that if she is in danger, he is too. Therefore,
she suggests he run away with her. He says no, what he's saying is he's
giving her a choice of where he takes her: the rail station or the police
station. She takes the glass of wine he hands her, watches as he drinks his
own, sighs and puts hers down. He looks at the glass, his face twitching as
he realizes immediately that he screwed up. He tries to forge on, asking
which option she's going with even though he is already slurring and
collapsing to the floor. He spots the syringe under the table and we get a
quick flash of her injecting the drug through the cork and then melting the
wax seal back over the hole. She catches him and tsks that he couldn't have
just gone away with her. "Never," he mumbles. She kisses him until he loses
consciousness, then just lets him fall over.
Chrissy: So would she have stopped
him from drinking the wine if he had agreed with her?
Diandra: Considering she was one of only four adversaries capable
of outwitting him in the books... she probably knew exactly how he would
answer, but held out the glimmer of hope he might prove her wrong.
Night. Rotheram is in the bath and from the ominous music, the crow
screeching outside the window and the general horror movie atmosphere we can
guess where this scene is headed. The candles all snuff out and the water
seems to turn boiling suddenly. Blackwood appears beside him and reaches
over to take his ring as he slips beneath the surface.
Morning. The maid comes into the room at the Grand Hotel and shrieks at the
sight of Sherlock sitting on the bed naked, his wrists tied to the bedposts
and a pillow in his lap. Despite having no doubt plenty of time to come up
with the best possible way to talk himself out of this, he decides to say
this: "Madam, I need you to remain calm. And trust me, I am a professional.
But beneath this pillow lies the key to my release."
Chrissy: And you wonder why people
doubt your sexual history.
Diandra: Oh please, like I would be so desperate that I would use
such a ridiculous ploy to try to trick a woman into feeling me up.
In voice over, Sherlock grumbles that naturally she misunderstood his
intentions as the maid flees the room in disgust. We switch to a carriage,
where he is fully dressed again and accompanied by Clark, who is trying not
to smirk TOO much as Holmes rants about this "religious fervor" leaving no
room for perfectly innocent misunderstandings. Clark is like 'yeah, sure,
whatever, but if she hadn't been incensed enough to call the police it could
have been hours before anyone untied you, so...'
Chrissy: I keep suggesting you get
my contact information tattooed somewhere on your body in case you're
found drugged, unconscious and/or dead and look: this is exactly the sort
of scenario where that might have helped.
Diandra: Don't pretend the suggestion that I get your name tattooed
on my ass was altruistic.
They arrive at the scene of the new crime. Clark says there were no signs of
a break in and the butler didn't hear anything. He tells Sherlock some of
the details we already know like where the body was found and the absence of
the ring. Sherlock runs a finger along the side of the tub and asks why the
water was drained from it. Another cop cites "common decency" and Holmes
snaps at them for being more concerned about the comforts of a dead man than
finding his killer. He sprays something in the air, sits on a chair by a
table and laughs. Then he points vaguely at the table and asks "what is
Chrissy: Your last marble rolling
down the heating duct?
A cop sniffs at a jar on the table and identifies it as jasmine bath salts.
Holmes is like 'great, now find the container it was filled from.' He also
suggests they check the ground under the back windows for footprints.
The cops scatter to find more evidence and he uses the spray thing to find a
crack in the wall the particles are being sucked through. He taps around it
until he finds the bit of molding that moves and unlocks the hidden door.
Chrissy: Please be a secret
passage, please be a secret passage...
He steps through into a room with all sorts of cult memorabilia, especially
around what is obviously an alter. He kneels at it and pockets a large
animal tooth and a bone before Clark returns. He shoves whatever else he
deems important into a small book and puts the whole thing in another pocket
before standing to greet them. He congratulates them on finding the large
milk pot of salts and skips out to leave them gaping at this hidden chapel.
Diandra: Yes, thank you, Tony.
Chrissy: [somewhere in the middle of that last sentence] Yay!
Night. It's raining because of course it is. Ambassador Standish enters a
building where Coward is already gathered with a bunch of other men in a
large square. He asks why Coward called a meeting. Coward says because Sir
Thomas is dead and he wants to nominate Blackwood as the new head of their
order. Standish laughs like 'I heard you English boys like your cocaine, but
you may need to ease off the drugs a little'. Blackwood enters the room
ominously and theatrically announces that his powers were given to him for a
REASON. He has been chosen to "create a new future" wherein they hold all
the power. Standish blinks like 'dear god, he's insane', but Coward is
smirking like he's totally under Blackwood's thrall now.
Chrissy: Should start calling him
Diandra: Ha. Thanks. Does that make Blackwood Dracula?
Chrissy: Well...if you were going to write a crossover...
Diandra: So this is just another plot bunny for a fanfic? What is
it with your plot bunnies lately all involving vampires?
He announces that the plan starts in motion officially tomorrow at noon and
"magic will lead the way".
Chrissy: You're several decades too
early to be Grindlewald, so...
Taking control of England should be easy enough once they see what the order
is capable of, but... "across the Atlantic lies a colony that was once ours.
It will be again." He thinks America should be easy enough to reclaim
because it was recently crippled by Civil War and a "corrupt, ineffective"
Chrissy: Pfffft. You think it's bad
Blackwood notes that the rest of the assembled men are with him and asks if
Standish will join them. Standish is like 'uh...fuck no. And you are crazy
if you think you can harness this power you want to unleash on the world.
I'm out.' He pulls a gun and aims at Blackwood. Blackwood sighs and says he
really shouldn't try that. Everyone else in the room seems to know what's
going to happen before Standish does and scrabbles away as he goes to shoot
and immediately catches fire. He manages to stagger out a window and fall
onto a waiting carriage.
Inside, Blackwood assures the probably now terrified group that they are
protected and offers a chalice for them to drink out of.
Chrissy: Which may or may not
contain his blood.
Diandra: Let it go, Chris. In other news: I forgot how batshit the
plot of this movie is. I mean...the character details and nods to canon
are great, but the main story is like Doyle's craziest efforts all thrown
together in a blender. It certainly is attention grabbing and renewed
interest in the stories for people like me who hadn't read them when it
was first released, but I can see how people who were already Holmes fans
would have found it a mixed bag, only worth while BECAUSE it brought new
blood into an old fandom.
Chrissy: I'm still not sure how it compares to that last episode
and the whole Eurus plot...
Diandra: That was crazier. Definitely.
Back at 221b, Watson is packing when Sherlock enters the room like a dog
shyly checking to see if his owner is still mad at him. He asks if he can
use the room now that it is no longer Watson's. Watson shrugs and says he
can do whatever he wants. Holmes grins and directs the officers waiting
behind him to put the dead body they're carrying right on what is no longer
Watson's desk. Watson gives him a look, sighs mentally and calmly asks who
that is. Holmes says it's the guy who tried to kill him at Reordan's. Mongo
apparently landed on him during the chase sequence and broke his neck. He
begins inspecting the body and announcing his findings of blood that is
older than his injuries. He looks at Watson like he's trying to draw his
attention with this and adds that the blood isn't human, but the man wasn't
a butcher, so... He snips a lock of hair and burns it and continues that he
was an industrial worker... worked with coal...which judging by the trousers
means... Watson finally gives in a little and says that he would have worked
in Nine Elms.
Holmes goes to grab a directory and is thumbing through it casually when he
returns to find Watson looking at the body with a magnifying glass. Watson
suggests he look for factories by the river. Then he shakes himself and
pretends he wasn't just helping with the case. Holmes finds a listing for a
slaughterhouse in Nine Elms by the river and announces that should lead them
straight to Blackwood. Watson is like 'I'm still not coming back. You're
still solving this on your own. But nice try.' Holmes deflates a little,
says it was just a figure of speech, and leaves. Watson notices he left his
pistol on a table and grumbles to either no one in particular or Gladstone
that he obviously left that on purpose. The dog grunts. He sighs, grabs the
pistol and runs off.
And we cut to them taking a steam boat along the river, the presumably owner
of the boat and Holmes making Watson shovel the coal and laughing. Watson
asks if there really wasn't any other way they could have made the trip.
Holmes says nobody knows the waterways of London better than Tanner. The
captain pulls the ship into shore and the boys run up to the factory,
pretending to be delivering a barrel Holmes picks up so they can sneak in.
They find a lab similar to Reordan's and Holmes immediately finds evidence
that something "mechanical" was dragged out very recently. He also finds a
dead rat underneath a table and snips its tail off.
They find the room where all the pig carcasses are stored and Watson reads
the Roman numerals 1 and 18 painted on the wall. Holmes recites Revelations
chapter 1, verse 18: "I am he that liveth and was dead." "And behold I'm
alive forevermore," Blackwood finishes from somewhere nearby, his voice
echoing creepily. Holmes and Watson both brace themselves against the wall
and look for the source of the voice as Blackwood reminds Holmes of his
warning to get out while he had a chance. Now, he'll just have to "bear
witness" to the world ending tomorrow. Watson threatens to shoot him if
he'll just show his face. Holmes tells him to save his bullets, but then
Blackwood briefly appears in the hole in the wall behind them and Holmes
empties his whole revolver into it even though it's obvious none of the
bullets are doing anything. A mechanism starts running behind them and the
hanging pig carcasses start moving through jets of flame along a track. As
the track moves, Irene is dragged into view, hanging from one of the hooks.
Blackwood intones that she followed Holmes right to literal slaughter.
Watson throws a fire blanket at Holmes, who runs to cover her while Watson
figures out how to stop the machinery. He basically only succeeds after
they've already gone through the whole thing and rips the burning blanket
off. He lifts Irene onto his shoulders to take the pressure off her arms and
Holmes just climbs right onto him as well so he can get her free of the
cuffs. And then a saw starts up further down the track, which starts moving
again, slicing a pig totally in half. Holmes shouts that they have plenty of
time and gives up trying to pick the cuffs, climbing on a ledge so he can
bash at them instead. This doesn't work, so he pauses to take in how the
machine is working. He throws a bowl of bone chunks he finds nearby into an
exposed gear, which slows it down. Then he takes off Watson's belt with a
warning of "don't get excited."
Chrissy: Odd time to be
deliberately triggering a sense of deja vu, but okay.
Diandra: Hence the warning to not get excited. Now is not the time.
He directs Watson to turn off the valve on the wall and, as he does, loops
the belt around the chain in front of Irene and hangs from it between her
and the saw. Watson comes back over and grabs onto the bar behind her and
looks at him like 'I can see what you're trying to do and I hope like hell
it's going to work'. The shut off valve starts causing water to spurt from a
connection in the ceiling, loosening the pipe. Holmes directs them to all
"bounce" on his count of three, which is a fraction of a second after the
saw rips the hat from his head. They all yank down and the pipe comes loose
and sends them crashing to the floor. Irene's forward momentum nearly sends
her face first into the saw, but Holmes pulls her back by the waistband. She
thanks Watson, who growls that he's going to go after Blackwood and runs
off. Holmes fishes a pin from her hair and uses it to pick the handcuffs,
which he can do now very easily of course. She hugs him and kisses his neck,
all breathless gratitude after her near death experience. He just
uncomfortably mutters that they should "help the doctor".
Chrissy: Speaking of deja vu...
Diandra: I do NOT think about Watson every time you kiss me.
Chrissy: I...didn't say that.
Diandra: Didn't you? Oh...my mistake.
Watson arrives at the dock in time to see Blackwood taking off in a boat,
standing on the back of it so he can be clearly seen. He starts running past
lines of barrels and stops when he obviously hits a trip wire. He has enough
time to register what happened and yell at Holmes - just rounding the corner
- to stay away before the nearest barrels explode. Several more barrels
explode and all three of them (Irene bringing up the rear and barely
arriving before this started) are knocked down. Sad music plays and Holmes
gets up in slow motion as the entire area where Watson was standing is
consumed in a fireball. He picks up a wooden pallet to use as a shield and
runs back to Irene, getting singed by a couple more explosions and pelted
with flying debris. He grabs Irene and runs with her back TOWARD Watson, but
they only get a few steps before they are thrown back by another explosion.
And no, Jerry Bruckheimer had nothing to do with any of this.
Chrissy: He's hardly the only male
in the industry who likes to make things go boom.
Diandra: Or any industry for that matter.
Holmes regains consciousness as Clark arrives and helps him up. Except the
first thing Clark says is that they have an order from Coward to arrest him.
Holmes, still dazed, looks around frantically. Clark understands what he's
looking for and says Watson is alive and he should get out of here. Now. He
gives him a little shove and Holmes runs. Clark looks at the approaching
Lestrade like 'nobody. I wasn't talking to anybody. Nope. No Holmes here.'
Train station. Sometime the next day possibly. Irene follows a conductor to
a train, asking when it is leaving. He non-answers that it is delayed but
"shouldn't be long now."
Chrissy: Translation: it will leave
in either fifteen minutes or an hour and a half from now.
She sits in the car, where somebody is already sitting hidden behind a paper
with a headline about Standish's death by "hellfire". He puts down the
paper, but is still hidden in shadows as he says that the train will leave
when HE orders it to, just like she will stop working for him only when HE
lets her. Yeah, it's the same guy from the carriage.
Chrissy: Who is definitely
Diandra: Yes, but depending on when this DVD was released the voice
may or may not belong to Jared Harris.
Chrissy: Wasn't there a rumor for a while that it was Brad Pitt?
Diandra: It is definitely not Brad Pitt.
Irene argues that she did her job. She found Reordan. He says no, her job
was to "manipulate Holmes' feelings for you, not succumb to them." Also, he
"want[s] what Reordan was making for Blackwood." If she doesn't meet his
demands, he will kill Sherlock.
Chrissy: Which is a motivator for
her for reasons.
Diandra: We're not really sure what reasons, but they're definitely
good and totally in keeping with her character.
Hospital. A doctor is treating a nasty wound on Watson's shoulder when Mary
arrives. Probably removing the large chunks of shrapnel that made it. We get
a good look at the gouges taken out of him while the doctor says the surgeon
is on his way to handle the rest of that. He has a thick Germanic accent, a
full beard, grey streaks in his hair and glasses and generally looks like
Sigmund Freud in profile. Mary stops him before he can leave and asks if
that's "the best you can do." He doesn't turn around as he insists he must
see his other patients now and runs away. She chases him out into the hall
where the camera finally gets in front of him so we can see that it is
Holmes in another disguise, which Mary has obviously figured out.
Chrissy: No, you were right. The
disguise thing does work better for this version of Sherlock. Except
that's partly due to Robert Downey Jr. being better able to disguise his
voice, so they can just use the same camera tricks they would use for a
Mary confirms that she recognizes who he really is by saying she knows he
cares about John just as much as she does.
Chrissy: And lucky for you, I am
too innocent to question why he gave me such a perfect description of what
you look like when you "play doctor" or why he had that look in his eyes
when he talked about the way you say "open your mouth and say 'ah'" in
that accent. Or, for that matter, why he grumbles about having to do
physicals on his other patients but practically looks forward to yours. Do
we need to pause while you catch your breath, Dee?
Diandra: [cough wheeze giggle] No, I'm fine.
She says that Watson is not his responsibility: he's a grown man who can
make his own choices. "He'd say that it was worth the wounds." Every
Johnlock conspiracy subscriber can instantly recognize that quote and verify
that yes, he would.
Chrissy: Although that fireworks
show was significantly more dramatic than a near miss from a bullet.
Holmes kind of stutters a bit impotently, then continues running away.
"Solve this," she calls after him. "Whatever it takes."
So Holmes goes back to that attic he spent the night catching flies in...I
think...apparently writes notes all over one wall in a way not at all
dissimilar to the walls of Blackwood's prison cell and sits in front of it
plucking his violin while various people's words echo in his head.
Chrissy: Yes, this doesn't make him
look at ALL like a serial killer.
He gets frustrated and throws the violin down, then pulls out a pipe to
smoke. The voices dwindle down to just Blackwood repeatedly saying "widen
your gaze." Then it expands again to him and the men of the Order talking
about his power and the book of spells and "altering the very fabric of
nature". Holmes has an AHA moment and retrieves the stuff he collected from
Rotheram's alter room. He flips through the little book and follows some
sort of spell, drawing a circle on the ground and pouring salt in it,
placing the various other objects on top of the pile. Then he melts some wax
or something and pours it in a giant pentagram shape on the floor. He sits
in it with a lit candle in front of him, drinking probably more of that
cocaine solution, slices his thumb on a ceremonial knife and drips blood on
Chrissy: The ghost of Arthur Conan
Doyle appears briefly and shouts "wrong spell, you idiot!"
Everything goes kind of wobbly as he recalls Blackwood saying three more
people would die and he couldn't do anything about it. We flash rapidly
through the deaths of Standish, Rotheram and Roerdan and I just realized (or
at least I saw it in the IMDb trivia) that like three of the four cardinals
of "Angels & Demons", they were killed using elements. Earth, water and
fire. He runs chaotically through flashes of memory of various clues and
details - intercut somewhat weirdly with flashes of Irene Adler soothing him
- and lands on Blackwood's disembodied head poking from the shadows to tell
him to give up because he'll never solve this one. A crow flies at his face
and he startles awake, laying on some sort of makeshift bed. Watson is
sitting in a chair, his arm in a sling, flicking through the book and
chuckling. Irene is actually hovering over him with a wet cloth, which
explains that part of his visions. She shoves the cloth in his hand and says
he needs to get back to work.
Watson notes the familiarity of the "artwork" and snarkily says - as a
disheveled Holmes drags himself upright - "you look gorgeous."
Chrissy: And I'm not just saying
that to remind the Woman over there of my rightful claim.
Holmes ignores him in favor of gloating over the fact that Irene didn't
actually leave and he KNEW SHE WOULDN'T. She sighs and holds up a newspaper
with the headline "SHERLOCK HOLMES WANTED." He notes that they failed to
provide a picture with his name. Probably because if the first scene is any
indication, he has made sure they don't have a good one on file. She says
since he's working outside the law now, he'll need her. "I feel safer
already," he says sarcastically.
Diandra: For the last time, you do not own me and I will NOT get a
tattoo saying otherwise.
Watson heaves himself up, distracting Holmes, who notes that he's recovering
well. Watson grumbles that he had to take bits of shrapnel out himself,
which isn't really surprising since Mary said he had a really lousy doctor.
There's a pause while Holmes tries to look innocent.
Chrissy: She also said he was ugly,
which I thought was strange, but...
He sits next to Holmes on the "bed" and Holmes awkwardly tries to express
how grateful he is that Watson didn't die. They both clear their throats and
the scene cuts before either of them can do something embarrassing and
Diandra: Nope. Not falling for it.
Now's probably as good a time as any to bring up that interview Jude Law did
when this movie came out. The interviewer described the relationship between
their characters as a great bromance. Jude took exception to the "bro" part
and asked why they couldn't just call it a romance. The interviewer thought
that would only be accurate if he and Robert did something like a romantic
comedy together. Jude immediately fired back with "we just did. Have you not
Chrissy: One of the many reasons we
Diandra: This is where I wonder if the whole thing with Irene Adler
is played up just to offset the hoyay. I mean...when the whole thing with
the "Arthur Conan Doyle Estate" threatening to sue Netflix over Enola
Holmes in a blatantly obvious money grab happened, the fact that somebody
from that same organization threatened to sue Guy Ritchie et al. if they
tried to make their version "too gay" was brought up.
Chrissy: So your theory is that they figured they could play up the
repressed Victorian homoeroticism so long as they could point to Irene
Adler and say "don't worry, he's actually straight"?
Diandra: Exactly. Making her the beard Doyle never actually
provided Holmes. Except not really because they went and made her a full
on romantic partner like almost every other version of Sherlock Holmes so
just ignore me.
Chrissy: Well...you could read this version of Holmes as bisexual.
Diandra: ....yeah, that works too, I guess. Even though I'm sure
you only mention it because Tony Stark's bisexuality may or may not be
Chrissy: Robert just gives off that energy.
We jump very suddenly to sometime later where Sherlock exposits that now
that the two of them are "sitting comfortably, I shall begin." We pull back
to show the other two sitting in chairs near the pentagram on the floor as
he paces and rambles about how his focus was initially too narrow and he
needed to widen his gaze as Blackwood put it. He brags that he may have
actually "reconciled thousands of years of theological disparity", but he'll
save that one for another time when he's between cases. He points to the
drawings on the floor, which we get a wider angle on and see now include
animals and symbols within the circle. He says Blackwood employed rituals
that have been used for centuries by the Order, so he re-enacted the
ceremony he was doing when they caught him in that church crypt. He admits
he went somewhat further down the rabbit hole than he intended, but then
Blackwood was probably not drinking a cocaine mixture used to numb eyeballs.
"And though I dirtied my fluffy white tail, I have emerged enlightened," he
finishes, apparently determined to use the hell out of this rabbit hole
analogy. Irene blinks up at him like 'what is the fluffy tail supposed to
Chrissy: Oh, we KNOW what it
represents and how it got dirty.
Diandra: Thank you, Chris.
Chrissy: See, because "rabbit hole" can be a euphemism for...
Diandra: I SAID THANK YOU, CHRIS.
He points to a drawing of a sphinx and says the Order believes - along with
many ancient rulers - that it was a door to "another dimension" of
"immeasurable power". He points to the four parts of the Frankensteined
creature: lion, ox, eagle and human and identifies the objects he took from
the alter room as a tooth, bone, feather and hair belonging to those animals
respectively. He directs Watson to unroll a map over the pentagram center
and says the points represent the five murdered girls but there's also a
crossbar running through and three of the four points on it represent the
men he's killed since he resurrected. We close in on the map, where he has
already drawn the pentagram and crossbars with circles where each body was
found, labeled with the four animals making up the sphinx. Reordan was Man,
Sir Thomas wore an Ox ring and Standish was the ambassador to America, which
of course has an Eagle as it's national symbol. So obviously the place where
he is planning his final murder is the last of the four points and will
represent a Lion. "Parliament," Watson concludes.
Lestrade and his men arrive at the...fight club...and the three hear them
coming up the stairs. Holmes directs them to a trap door in the back corner
of the room, opens it for Irene and Watson and - as Watson is disappearing
through it - hands him a piece of paper with instructions. Watson splutters
that he's not going with them. Holmes shoves his head down, slaps the door
closed and goes to greet Lestrade. Lestrade nods at the sketches all over
the floor and sarcastically asks if the Devil ever turned up then. He waves
handcuffs and says "never mind, you got the next best thing."
Chrissy: Your boyfriend Big Joe is
eager to finish what I so rudely interrupted last time.
Actually, they drive him right to Parliament and Lestrade marches him into
the room with Lord Coward. He apologizes for this unorthodox behavior while
Holmes takes in details about Coward's clothing and boots. Then Lestrade
pulls aside his lapel to show an Order pin and says Holmes has been making
accusations about them. Holmes gets a look like he actually didn't see that
reveal coming and mutters that that explains how he made inspector. Lestrade
punches him in the gut, then apologizes again to Coward that he's been
wanting to do that for a VERY long time.
Chrissy: Oh, you're far from the
Coward shrugs that he has five minutes before his next meeting. He dismisses
Lestrade, who closes the door behind him. Holmes asks if Coward helped
Blackwood with all the murders then "or just the one I prevented?" He nods
at Coward's "distinctive, handmade shoes" and we flash on him spotting one
of the hooded guys in the crypt wearing them. He keeps babbling as he
wanders over to the fireplace and kicks the flue shut while Coward has his
back turned. Coward is retrieving a pistol and loading it. Holmes asks how
many members of Parliament he's planning to murder today. Coward, still with
his back turned like 'I'm sure he's not doing anything suspicious back there
or anything' says it isn't murder, it's "mercy". Because they are giving the
masses a leader - a shephard. He starts to say it's for the own good as he
turns to shoot...and finds a cloud of smoke obscuring the entire fireplace
He creeps toward the cloud carefully while Holmes' voice comes from
somewhere indistinct to gloat that he just needed to know where Blackwood
was planning on holding this ceremony, which Coward has so generously
provided. Coward snarls that he didn't say anything. Holmes says no, not
with words. He can tell by the mud stains on his shoes and red brick dust on
his trouser knee. Also, the faint smell of excrement. Obviously they were in
the sewers under Parliament less than an hour ago.
Chrissy: Is it November 5th again?
Coward opens a window to clear the smoke and creeps into the cloud while
Holmes notes that both houses are scheduled to meet today, so the whole
government will be in the building. The opened handcuffs come sliding across
the floor to land at Coward's feet.
Coward starts backing toward the door, blustering about how it's a shame he
made an enemy out of Blackwood because he could have been a valuable ally.
He locks the door and starts quoting scripture and gloating about how they
WILL take power at noon while he looks for movement in the dissipating
cloud. Meanwhile, Holmes is sitting behind him puffing on a pipe. Holmes
says they'd better quit fucking around and get to it then and dives across
the room as Coward turns and shoots the wall where his head was. Holmes runs
straight across the room and out the open window, splashing into the Thames
near Tanner's waiting boat, which Watson throws him a rope from. Watson and
Tanner are still arguing over some sort of bet they seemed to have going
about which window he would come out of while they wrap a blanket around
him. Irene is there too, for what it's worth.
Holmes is like IF YOU ARE FINISHED, you'll be happy to know Lestrade did his
part beautifully. In fact, he seemed to almost enjoy it.
Chrissy: Yeah, you should have seen
the look in his eyes when we gave him the okay to slap you around a
We get a little flashback to Lestrade slipping the handcuff keys in Holmes'
shirt on the ride over. Watson asks if he got what he needed from Coward
then. Holmes says yes, he "smoked him out". Then he directs Tanner to the
tunnel that will lead them into the sewer. As they pass under Big Ben, we
see that they have about ten minutes until noon.
Inside, everyone is shuffling into the main hall of Parliament.
The trio creep into the tunnels and find a piece of machinery with a couple
guys milling around it. Irene asks what it is. Holmes says it's a chemical
weapon. He pulls the rat tail he cut off at the slaughterhouse from his
pocket and points out that it has a distinct blue discoloration and bitter
almond smell. Irene identifies those as signs of cyanide poisoning at the
same time Holmes gets around to saying it. He pulls out a pocket telescope
to get a better look at the machinery of the bomb while he identifies it as
obviously the thing the midget was working on. "It'll revolutionize
warfare." Watson is like 'if you're done admiring the killing machine...we
have seven minutes left to stop it.'
Chrissy: Don't worry, I'm sure
there's a little off switch somewhere on it.
Diandra: [very long, very loud groan]
Holmes starts whispering a plan in his ear, but is interrupted when Irene
just creeps around a corner and shoots one of the guys. "She loves an
entrance, your muse," Watson mutters. They all close in, fighting the thugs
guarding the bomb with pistols and fists. Sherlock is losing to his thug and
begs Irene, who has reached the bomb, to shoot the guy, which she does.
Chrissy: Now that we've established
which of us is more likely to qualify for damsel in distress status...
Diandra: Yes, but usually I prefer Watson to act as my knight in
Upstairs, the guards chain the chamber door shut and Coward starts a speech
about weeding the believers from the non- believers. Blackwood comes out
onto a little balcony and they all gasp. Blackwood theatrically says he has
returned from the grave to "fulfill England's destiny and extend the
boundaries of this great empire." By...killing its entire leadership and
declaring yourself ruler? He directs their attention to the crowd outside
shrieking about the end being near and says he plans to use that fear to
control them. From there it shouldn't be too difficult to take over the
Chrissy: The logic of every Bond
Diandra: Pretty much.
Watson is still fighting off thugs while Holmes and Irene squat beside the
bomb. She holds a coin next to part of it and a spark sends it shooting
across the hall, embedding it into a pipe. He says obviously that was to try
to prevent it from being disarmed. He points to a sort of antenna and notes
that it seems designed to receive some sort of signal. Irene suggests
electromagnetic waves. Holmes runs through the way the machine is designed
to work from there. A charge will go through a tube, converting liquid
chemicals to lethal gas, which will go into the ventilation system above and
be piped through the grates in the floor of the Parliament chamber.
Blackwood must have the transmitter that sends the signal. Holmes checks his
watch. Three minutes.
Diandra: Seriously, how did I
forget that Mofftiss ripped their entire post-Reichenbach case from this
Chrissy: I think the writers of both probably ripped it from "V for
Vendetta", actually. Still think Emilio was wrong about the BBC series
starting to go wrong when they started looking like these movies?
Up in the chamber, Blackwood is still preaching about how his new empire
will last millenia.
Irene thinks they can remove the cylinders and forget about trying to disarm
the machine. Holmes is like 'yeah, that's a great plan and it might work if
the cylinders weren't welded shut'. So, plan b. They will create a
controlled explosion that redirects the blast into some sort of container.
As he's working out the details...Mongo arrives and literally taunts (in
French) "did you miss me?" Irene tries to shoot him, but runs out of bullets
after firing uselessly through his hat over his actual skull. Holmes
grumbles that she really shouldn't have pissed him off.
The clock ticks noon and the bells start going off. Blackwood announces that
he will "summon the dark powers" on the 12th chime and anyone who is "with"
him will be protected. He presses a button on a trigger behind his back.
In the tunnels, the device sparks and starts working. Mongo is taking off
his jacket slowly when Watson appears and grabs him, yelping for Sherlock to
Chrissy: I realize this is a
completely different context than I usually say those words in, but I'm
sure you'll understand.
Holmes takes a running leap and headbutts Mongo, which...dazes him more than
anything. He tries to take a wild swing and lands on his ass. Mongo shrugs
Watson off and elbows him in the face. There's a bunch of scrabbling as both
men try to stop Mongo from getting an axe propped on one wall while Irene
tries to make an impromptu explosive from gunpowder poured out of some
Chrissy: So basically the woman is
doing all the heavy lifting while the men act as distractions.
Diandra: More like the woman is the brains while the men are the
muscle, but yes. The fact that she is treated as an equal and not JUST a
love interest is appreciated.
Holmes ends up flat on his back at one point and manages to wrap one leg
around Mongo's axe arm, kicking him in the face with the other. Watson jumps
on Mongo's back and wraps a coat around his head. Holmes finally kicks him
in the groin, which I would think was what Watson was trying to get him to
do a couple minutes ago. They both wrestle him to the ground as Irene sets
off her explosive. She removes the canisters just as the last bell chimes
and runs off down the tunnel. Holmes shouts "WOMAN" after her, then breaks
Upstairs, Blackwood and Coward are realizing nothing is happening. Blackwood
drops the trigger and stalks back out the way he came, leaving Coward for
all the angry politicians to descend on.
Holmes makes sure Watson can handle Mongo from here before he runs after
Irene. Blackwood comes down the stairs into the tunnel just in time to see
Holmes streak by in the distance.
"Relax," Watson snarls at the behemoth he's choking out. "I'm a doctor."
Chrissy: More words I'm used to
saying in a much more fun context.
Mongo finally passes out.
Irene crawls through a series of tunnels and runs up a long winding
staircase, Holmes about fifty steps behind. She emerges at the top of one of
the partially finished towers of the bridge and the camera pans out to show
off all the CGI as she runs down a walkway that stops halfway across. She is
taking in her almost video game like surroundings when Holmes catches up.
She turns to him and announces that they are "safe" now. He's like 'says the
woman precariously close to falling a couple stories'. He steps aside and
offers her an escape, promising he's done chasing her. She starts back
toward the tower and stops, saying she doesn't want to run anymore. She
offers to tell him everything. He's like YES! PLEASE DO!
Except this is the moment Blackwood catches up and drops onto the bridge
behind her. He grabs the canisters from her and they grapple. He knocks her
pistol away. She nicks him with a knife and he wallops her so hard she
nearly stumbles right off the walkway. He pins her there with his walking
stick and looks at Holmes, who is frozen in place. After a few seconds, he
just shoves her over the side. Holmes yelps and Blackwood turns to fighting
him. He wrests the stick from Blackwood and uses it as a baton to deflect
the knife. Then he grabs some netting nearby and uses it to swing out over
the water and around to the other side.
Chrissy: You know, I wonder if this
is where Mofftiss got the "he wanted to be a pirate" thing, because...
this is giving me flashbacks of your "Pirates of the Caribbean" recaps.
Diandra: Ha. You know, now that I know they ripped off that whole
bomb Parliament plot, I wouldn't be surprised.
Holmes spots Irene laying on a platform jutting out below between jabs and
wrestling over the canisters. There's a break in the fight when he sort of
kicks Blackwood and they both stumble backward with him going halfway over
the end of the unfinished walkway. Blackwood runs to retrieve the forgotten
pistol and fires as he's pulling himself back up. As he's ducking the
bullet, Holmes notices the loop of rope Blackwood has stepped in. He kicks
the anchor the other end is tied to into the water and grabs the pistol as
Blackwood is dragged past. Blackwood manages to catch a board and grunts and
struggles to hang on while Holmes fires up another deduction. There was
never any magic involved in his entire plot. He paid off the prison guard to
act possessed and...someone to break up the stone over his tomb and put it
back together with adhesive that would wash away in the first rain. The
board Blackwood is holding onto breaks and he slides a few more feet before
grabbing another. Holmes just keeps going about how Reordan found a
paralytic that reacted when combined with water and the copper of the
bathtub but couldn't be detected afterward. He admits he wouldn't have
figured that one out had the midget not tested it on some frogs first, which
were still floating in a jar in his lab.
Another board breaks and Blackwood slides a few more feet. Holmes just keeps
talking, completely unhurried.
Chrissy: You could literally talk
someone to death, couldn't you?
Standish was killed using the same compound he used in that massive barrel
explosion. An odorless, tasteless, highly flammable liquid that was sprayed
on Standish as he was coming into the building that night from a high window
and ignited when he tried to fire his pistol and the trick bullet Mongo
loaded it with blew back. And it turns out that the goblet he passed around
after Standish turned into a fireball had the antidote to the poison he just
tried to fill Parliament with, so those people would actually believe they
were saved by some sort of magic.
A beam overhead starts to come loose. "The devil is due a soul, I'd say,"
Holmes finishes theatrically. Blackwood screams at him to FOR GOD'S SAKE CUT
THE ROPE ALREADY. Holmes grabs an axe wedged into a corner and chucks it
just as Blackwood is being dragged one last time, severing the rope.
Blackwood pulls himself back up. The beam overhead groans. Holmes is...still
talking. He says Blackwood will expose himself as the fraud he is to the
world before he is hanged. Again. For real this time. Blackwood pulls the
axe closer and growls that it is "a long journey from here to the end of a
rope." The beam breaks loose just then and crashes down through the walkway
between them, followed by a chain and part of the rigging that was lifting
the beam into place. Blackwood crashes through the hole and gets caught up
in a web of chains beneath. Holmes peaks down just in time to see the chains
break free of the walkway and send Blackwood plummeting and also somehow
getting wrapped around his neck so he meets exactly the end he was supposed
to in the first place because poetic justice.
Holmes climbs down to the platform Irene is on and puts some handcuffs he
got from...somewhere...on her before she comes around. She mutters that
she's never woken up in handcuffs before. He grumbles that he has,
obviously. Recently. And he was naked.
Chrissy: Let's not pretend that was
a first for you.
She sits up with a groan and notes the thunder clouds in the distance.
Chrissy: From the East?
She says the name of her employer is Moriarty. Sherlock was right about him
being a professor and he really shouldn't underestimate him because he's
just as brilliant and twice as evil. Holmes is skeptical of that claim. He
slips the handcuff key down the front of her shirt and then leans in like
he's going to kiss her before just ripping her necklace off. As he stands
up, she gloats that he will MISS her. He doesn't doubt that and bends back
down to kiss her forehead, then leaves before she can get out of the cuffs.
Diandra: Don't. Just...don't.
Sometime later, Watson and Mary find a guy loading some trunks in a cab in
front of 221b. He points out the "notebooks" in the one on top to Watson.
Mary asks if that's his adventures and can she read them. Watson just
chuckles and guides her inside, where she hesitates. She asks if Holmes has
finally come to terms with Watson leaving. Watson thinks he must be okay
with it since he replaced the lost engagement ring with one that has a
MASSIVE stone that looks nothing at all like the one that was recently in
Irene's cleavage. Watson says they just need to take five minutes here and
they can go home. They enter Holmes' room to find him hanging from a rope
attached to the ceiling, a chair kicked over on the floor beneath him. Mary
gasps and looks horrified. Watson calmly tells her not to worry because
Sherlock would never commit suicide. Even if the love of his life was
threatening to leave him forever. "He's far too fond of himself for that."
He jabs at Holmes with his cane and Holmes jolts awake and apologizes that
he nodded off while he was trying to work out how Blackwood survived his
Watson looks for a second like he's going to help Holmes down, but then he
just walks past him and prompts him to continue the explanation. Holmes
starts to say something about a concealed hook before deciding that his legs
are falling asleep and he really should get out of this thing. Mary asks if
they should help him with that. Watson is like 'nah, he's fine' and prompts
him to continue the deduction. Holmes blinks at him like 'okay, clearly you
feel this is payback for something, so...' He says the hook was attached to
a harness around Blackwood's waist, so the executioner was another person he
paid off. Then Holmes whines that he can't feel his cheeks and begs them to
help him down.
Chrissy: Only if you agree to let
me slap them to get the circulation going again. It's okay, I'm a doctor.
Diandra: I meant the cheeks on my FACE.
Chrissy: Those too.
Watson asks what sort of harness Holmes used. Holmes opens his vest to
reveal a rigged up belt and hook contraption wrapped around his torso.
"Please, my tongue is going. I'll be of no use to you at all," he begs.
Chrissy: Honestly, why do you
INSIST on saying these things in front of Mary?
Diandra: How do you know that last part wasn't aimed at her?
Chrissy: ...okay, I know I've said this before, but I am so proud
of you, Diandra. You have gone from asking me to slap you if your recap
threatened to devolve into slash fanfiction to suggestions of a three way.
Diandra: Not sure that's what I did, really, but if there was ever
a possible threesome that is practically canon, it would probably be this.
John smirks like 'actually rendering you unable to talk sounds kind of
nice.' Mary says his name in a way that is definitely scolding. He rights
the chair, pulls a sword and slices the rope to punctuate his statement that
this doesn't explain how Blackwood didn't have a pulse. Holmes doesn't even
stutter as he hits the ground, throwing the harness at Watson as he
describes a toxin that can be distilled from a particular flower and is well
known in the Black Sea region. Apparently that was what the flower in
Reordan's lab was for. It gives an illusion of death so convincing it would
fool even a doctor. Mary asks suddenly what is wrong with Gladstone, who is
laying on his side looking very still. Holmes says yeah, he's proving my
point. Mary crouches beside Gladstone and Watson assures her he'll be fine
because "he's seen far worse."
Clark shows up just then and says Lestrade sent him to fetch Sherlock.
Holmes asks what happened this time. Clark says one of the sergeants went
missing the day he caught Blackwood. His body was found. He was shot in the
head. Holmes asks if it was a particularly small caliber bullet and we get a
flash of "Moriarty" pulling that little contraption from his sleeve. Holmes
asks if there were powder burns on the eyebrows. Yes and yes. Holmes
concludes that it was definitely Professor Moriarty then. Gladstone revives
just then and Mary assures him that everything will be fine and he is a good
Watson asks Clark where Blackwood's device is now. Clark says the secret
service has it. Holmes says there's probably a piece missing. He stands at
the window sucking at his pipe. Watson joins him and concludes that Moriarty
wasn't after the poison Reordan put in the contraption but some part of the
contraption itself. "There's nothing more elusive than an obvious fact,"
Holmes recites. He was after the tech needed to make the device work
remotely. "And Adler was just the diversion," Watson adds. Holmes is like
yes, she led him away from the device with what he thought was the important
part - the canisters - giving Morairty time to get the really important
part. Which is forgetting that Watson was still down there while Irene,
Sherlock and Blackwood were chasing each other through the sewers, but okay.
Holmes marvels that the device would definitely be worth a fortune. "Imagine
being able to control a device simply by sending a command via radio waves!"
Chrissy: You know, I saw a thing on
Facebook about which characters played by the same actor you'd like to see
have a conversation with each other. Based on that line alone, I'd have to
say this Sherlock and Tony Stark would be really fun.
Diandra: I'm pretty sure fanfiction writers have already done that
several times. Just as they've crossed Benedict's Sherlock with Khan at
Chrissy: Okay, that one would just be terrifying. At least mine
runs a high probability they would try to have sex with each other.
Diandra: Who says mine doesn't?
Chrissy: Okay, let's just leave that plot bunny in it's cage, shall
The porter who was loading Watson's stuff sticks his head in to announce
that he's finished. Holmes and Watson look at each other like
'...oh...right...' Gladstone starts to run off right out the door. Watson
goes to stop him before he runs right out into the street. Holmes flips a
bowler hat onto his head and announces to "Clarkie" that the case has been
reopened. And we jolt right into the credits.
Chrissy: Well, that wasn't as bad
as I was afraid it might be.
Diandra: Yeah, I was afraid I would end up not liking it as much
now that I know the original stories, but I actually have a new
appreciation for it. It probably helps that I waited to do this until
after that fourth season of the BBC series. Speaking of which, I would
like to formally withdraw my earlier assessment that the plot of this
movie is "batshit". In hindsight, it is a lot like "The Hound of the
Baskervilles" or a similar appropriately Sherlockian story where everyone
believes the supernatural version of events until Sherlock reveals all the
secrets behind the magic tricks. The kind of story Doyle might have
written back before he started believing in magic himself. But with more
action and explosions.
Chrissy: Yeah, I think the only really valid complaint I ever saw
was that it is a "dumb action movie" version of Sherlock Holmes,
which...true. But the whole reason Doyle hated writing these stories is he
thought they were stupid drivel for the masses, so he'd probably agree
with this interpretation 1,000%.
Diandra: And I think we can agree that this "dumb action movie" was
a welcome distraction from what's going on in the world right now and
especially our country.
Chrissy: Definitely. And assuming the worst case scenario doesn't
happen and we're not both thrown into re-education camps after the country
slides fully into a dictatorship, I look forward to doing "Game of
Shadows" with you.
Until next time...hopefully.