What I loved about Sherlock initially was that the series was a bit of an underdog. It quietly appeared on our screens starring a posh bloke with a funny name I’d never heard of and the man who played the shy porn actor in Love Actually.
I only had a vague knowledge of Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss too. I think most people thought the show would fail. And this was good – the series and its team appeared cool in an un-cool, antiestablishment sort of way. A bit like Sherlock Holmes himself. That’s why so many of us fell in love with it.
Now Cumberbatch and Freeman are global megastars, Moffat and Gatiss TV royalty. They are proper cool, full-on powerful, A-list cool. Sherlock isn’t an underdog anymore; it’s one of the biggest shows on UK TV with a cachet of awards. It commands headlines and is caught up in a frenzy of anticipation for the new series. The underdog has become top dog – with bells on. The outsider has become more inside than granny on a rainy day.
Now, I’m not saying they don’t deserve all this. As regular readers of my blog will know, I’m a genuine admirer of BBC Sherlock. I just wonder what impact these changes will have on the series long term. Has it reached its peak, will it live up to and then be able to sustain the hype? Or will it burn itself out?
Here in the UK viewers do love to build up a show then knock it down. It’s the same with the press. Just as they turned on Sherlock in The Reichenbach Fall, will they one day do the same with the series itself?
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