Sherlockians have always been a fun crowd. Sure, we have a few "oh, this is seriously scholarly business" sorts who get their heads too far up their asses to be truly fun on occasion, but over all? It's been fun, fun, fun. From Ronald Knox to John Bennett Shaw, from Stout's declaration that Watson was a woman to Holmes Peak expedition medals, there's been a lot of good fun to be had. Which is why it's grand to see the folks behind BBC Sherlock just playing with the fans.
Reading the Twitter feed this morning was like going over the messages of some wacky intelligence organization trying to stop a plot by a happy sort of terrorist. Stakeouts were being set up at key locations. Specific communication points were closely monitored for the slightest change. Pigeons and trucks of dirt were reported in as eager eyes watched for any sign of what was coming.
Eventually, as anyone with a Twitter feed knows by now, a hearse rolled up at St. Bart's with "SHERLOCK 01 01 14" spelled out in flowers. The perfect touch for a returning suitor, showing up with flowers for those whose love they enjoy. And at St. Bart's hospital . . . the one location that has been in the hearts of Sherlockians as long as there have been Sherlockians.
The crew behind BBC Sherlock's promotion do these things because they have a TV show to build excitement over, yes, but they also do it because they know they have fans out there who will get excited and play these games with them. And have fun doing it.
A few creaky old Sherlockians holdouts can harrumph and go, "Well, they're not going to show up at our meetings!" all they want, but if it walks like a Sherlockian and talks like a Sherlockian and has fun like a Sherlockian, well . . . guess what? Anyone rapturously fanatical about Sherlock Holmes to get out on a chilly London street and watch for an empty hearse is a lot more Sherlockian in my book than any Mr. Same-old-same-old who demands others do exactly what he does to be called "Sherlockian."
Congratulations and thanks to everyone involved in both sides of our latest little Sherlock event. The world needs all the fun it can get, especially when it involves our friend Mr. Sherlock Holmes.