There's a TV show that we never got to see, thanks to Elementary.
What is that show? The American version of Sherlock, of course.
As any avid user of Netflix streaming knows, there seem to be two versions of many a popular BBC show. There's a Being Human (US) and a Being Human (UK). There's Shameless (US) and Shameless (UK). And should we even bring The Office into this?
As most fans know, the project that eventually became Elementary started as CBS checking in with the makers of Sherlock to see if they'd do a U.S. show. That conversation quickly went nowhere, and we got what we got. But what if things had gone differently? What if we got a Sherlock with different actors, twenty-four episode seasons, and all the tweaks that come from a transplant using the same seeds?
Sure, there have been failures in the UK-to-US television transplant process, but there have also been notable successes, too. Very solid successes.
Without the threat of lawsuits hanging so large over the show's head, Sherlock Holmes could have stayed in London, with his father only influencing his life in making Mycroft suffer through Les Miz. "A Study in Pink" might have been extended to a two or three part story, and Moriarty's arc would have lasted at least through the first season, where some of what we saw on the BBC got re-worked into the American show. Eventually, the American Sherlock would have started charting its own course, of course, with all that extra air-time to fill. Mycroft might have gotten his own episode. Maybe one totally told from Mrs. Hudson's point of view would have shown up as well. A lot of those "two minute" case snippets we get on the BBC version could have been expanded into something closer to modern adaptations of Doyle's originals than we've seen elsewhere.
It could have been a dream . . . or a dud. One never knows with these things. Could an American Sherlock surpass it's British original, even with the best writers, directors, and showrunners America has to offer? Given the track records of shows past, I'd think catching the same flavor and producing something of equal quality is the best we could have hoped for. But still, that would be nothing to sneeze at.
As it stands, an American Sherlock seems like something we'll only see if we develop travel to parallel universes at some point . . . or maybe a second act, recreating the beloved show a decade or so after the BBC finishes their run.
These days, you just never know. "What might have been" sometimes just winds up being "what is still to come." And it's not like Elementary could sue . . . .