Home Reviews Sherlock Review: Season 4 Episode 1 “The Six Thatchers”

Sherlock Review: Season 4 Episode 1 “The Six Thatchers”

written by Jake Tanner January 2, 2017
Sherlock Season 4 on PBS Masterpiece

Sherlock Season 4 Episode 1 Review: “The Six Thatchers”

Oh my god you guys! Sherlock is back! It’s been way too long since we’ve gotten a proper season of everyone’s favorite super-sleuth. Beyond this point we’re obviously going to be in spoiler territory so proceed with caution. After all…

Sherlock series 4 poster


“Did you miss me?” This was a simple, yet elegant question that was left with Sherlock and Watson at the end of season 3 of the show. The man behind the message, of course, was believed to be none other than Sherlock’s archenemy, Moriarty. Moriarty leaving any kind of message should be impossible, though. In season 3 we saw him put a bullet in his mouth in an attempt to frame Sherlock for committing the crimes that he was “solving.” Has Moriarty made a comeback? If not, who is screwing with Mr. Holmes and Dr. Watson? There’s only one way to find out! Let’s dive in folks!

The Holmes Brothers are back at it!

From what we’ve seen from the trailers for this season, it looked like this show was going to take a really dark turn. That doesn’t appear to be the entire case though. The show opens up with some really witty banter between Mycroft and Sherlock about Sherl’s nonchalant attitude towards committing murder at the end of season 3.

“It’s not a game anymore” is also not entirely true. Within minutes of this episode Sherlock is right back at it. “I always know when the game is on,” he says. “Why?” asked a member of the council. “Because I love it,” and cue the opening credits. The game is on!

It didn’t take long for Holmes and Watson to fall back into their regular routine. We’re treated to a montage of them solving multiple crimes while they wait on Moriarty’s next move. We’re also introduced to a new character, John and Mary’s newborn daughter. Oh, and Sherlock is the godfather. What a scarred, messed up child she’ll be growing up around our favorite high-functioning sociopath.

The game is on!

We finally have our crime! A body was discovered in an exploded car. The boy it belonged to was claimed to have been in Tibet, making it impossible for him to be in two places at once. I sound like a broken record at this point, but the game is on!

It would seem that this death is all just a plot device to set up Sherlock’s latest game with Moriarty. The boy was hiding in his car in an effort to surprise his father, and died before he could deliver the surprise.

It’s pretty terrific that this show has been gone for so long, but the cast has such great chemistry, it’s like they haven’t lost a step.

The Six Thatchers

At this point in the episode, we know where the title came from. Someone is going around and smashing these Margaret Thatcher busts. Sherlock believes this to be tied to Moriarty’s return, but I think someone is looking for something in them. I could be way off base, but I just get the feeling that someone is looking for something inside them.

I love when I’m spot on with stuff like this. It would seem that this isn’t about Moriarty at all, but instead, it’s about Mary’s past life. She’s going to be in some big trouble going forward; her old team, AGRA, is after her. I’d like to see more development with her relationship with Sherlock. I think there’s a mutual respect between the two, and they’ve both seen some really messed up stuff. I’d like for the show to explore that some more.

The development of Sherlock Holmes since the first season is kind of incredible. He’s gone from an anti-social dick to someone with his own twisted code of honor…and kind of an anti-social dick. He would have never made a vow like he did to Mary in season 1. Now, he has a family to protect, whether Mary wants him to or not.

Watson is the odd man out.

I feel bad for John. He’s a brilliant man, but he’s only smart in a world that’s full of geniuses. It’s sad to see how much he suffers on a regular basis just due to the fact everyone else is functioning on an entirely different plane than him. It’s what makes his relationship with Sherlock as strong as it is, but it’s also what is fracturing his marriage to Mary.

The whole “affair” storyline with John and “E” isn’t something I’m really buying. He doesn’t seem like the type to do something like that, regardless of how bad things are at home.

Final Thoughts

All in all, the mystery of this episode was kind of lackluster. The bitter secretary outsmarting all of her colleagues and superiors just because she has an inferiority complex is a bit bland for my tastes. That ending though! I never expected them to kill Mary off, and I never expected it to gut-punch me the way it did. The show has come around full-circle. When we first met John, he was lost and in therapy. Now, it would seem Sherlock is in that place. I expect to see his chronicled issues with addiction to be prominent in the story for the rest of the season. It will also be really interesting to see how Mary’s death impacts the Holmes/Watson dynamic. John clearly blames Sherlock for Mary’s death, and I think Sherlock is beginning to blame himself for it too.

I’m so damn happy this show is back on. This episode was kind of mediocre at its core, but I think it’s going to set up the rest of the season really nicely. Mary left Sherlock with one last case, and the mission is simple: “Save John Watson, Sherlock.” She also leaves him with, “Go to Hell, Sherlock.” I think season 4 is going to take him there if the teasers we’ve seen are any indication.

Coming up next week on Sherlock:

What did you guys think of this week’s episode? Do you think Sherlock and Watson will reconcile their issues and become the team we’ve all grown to love again? I’d love to hear your thoughts on the episode, along with any theories you might have about this season going forward, so join in on the conversation in the comments! Don’t forget to check out the teaser for next week’s episode below! Thanks for reading!


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