Tonight, I got to see Sherlock's "The Final Problem" the way it should be seen.
In a theater, with the lights low and one's complete attention to the big actors on the big screen. And, as with the best movies, just giving one's self over to its spell.
Before the movie, and it was a movie, there was a featurette with Amanda Abbington surveying her time as Mary Morstan Watson. The BBC and Fathom Events weren't playing fair with that one, really, as a getting a few tears in before the feature attraction was quite a warm-up. But it also gave a nice contrast -- the grounded nature of Watson's Mary, child-bearing, sensible, deadly Mary played against the lead female of the main feature, the ethereal Euros -- perfect.
With no delivery pizza, early BBC start, household distractions, and all that comes with a television viewing, there was so much to be gained from an accepting, no-expectations theater watch. Without the lens of "not a proper Canon mystery" or "Hey, this is kinda like Saw!" and just letting the movie be what it is . . . ahhhh, magic.
Moffat, Gatiss, their lovely cast . . . the production itself could be seen within the story, as they played their violin to try to communicate with that mind that resonated with their tune.
Embodying the isolation of intellect, little Euros created a game she thought her brother would enjoy, something that might make him the friend she lacked, for a time. But he wasn't clever enough then, and the conclusion to the adventure didn't come out as the bonding experience she planned. So she decides to play the game again, hoping this time that Sherlock will see the context.
The result is tightly focussed on character, relationship, family. Not, perhaps, the client-strangers or official police matter some would argue a Sherlock Holmes story could be . . . but something that some Sherlockians have wanted to see from Sherlock for a very long time. (The Childhood of Sherlock Holmes by Mona Morstein comes to mind as the last time I enjoyed a story involving Sherlock as a boy, and it was a fine thing to do so.) As a group, we tend to want more of Sherlock Holmes than the original sixty stories we were given, but do love to bitch when we get it.
Tonight, however, I've got no bitching to do. Sure, "The Final Problem" wasn't as perfect as perfect could be. And, yes, the whole season left so many threads hanging loose. What did that note say? How much of Moriarty was Euros? Did Sherlock have sex? But how flawed was the original Doyle Canon? And how many loose threads did that leave us to play with for a hundred years and change?
If you were around before the latest Sherlock boom, you know how incredibly few Sherlockians there actually are compared to the full population . . . the ones who took the whole Doyle Canon to heart, warts and all. And what we'll see in the years to come will be much the same with BBC Sherlock, smaller numbers who take the whole thing to their hearts than were in that initial surge of popularity, but they're good Sherlockians. And like Euros, Moffat and Gatiss, and the rest of us, really, we're all just hoping somebody gets the context of what we're up to and wants to be our friend.
But a smart friend, like Sherlock. Or else we're gonna have to start . . .
. . . just kidding! Didn't get into Euros quite that far. But she's growing on me.
Or else she just reprogrammed by brain during tonight's cinema viewing of our new "Final Problem." You can come up with your own script there. But once the dust has all settled from this latest East wind blowing, I think we're all going to be stronger for it.