Mark Watches ‘Sherlock’: S02E02 – The Hounds of Baskerville

In the second episode of the second series of Sherlock, this is some scary shit. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Sherlock.

Oh, there are just too many feelings, everyone. Just way too many feelings. Allow me to split this review up into sections in order to best capture the brilliance and the pain of “The Hounds of Baskerville.”


I can’t escape this, and it’s the one thing I bring up immediately if anyone tries to talk to me about this spectacular episode. This is absolutely some of the best facial-expression acting I have ever seen on the face of this fine planet. We all know Martin Freeman and Benedict Cumberbatch are talented; luckily, now we get to add Mark Gatiss, Russell Tovey (ALLONS-Y ALONSO!), and Rupert Graves to that list. (Actually, I want to retroactively add Lara Pulver to this as well. IT’S ONLY FAIR.)

I’ve lost count of how many times a wordless look made me want to pass out from excitement. I love that the entire argument scene in front of the fireplace was filmed to frame Sherlock’s profile in one half of the screen. I suppose this might fit in another section, but seeing fear strike Sherlock so hard that it makes him cry was one of the more genuinely upsetting things in this entire run of the show. The writers and Cumberbatch have done such a fine job at showing us how distant Sherlock is from his emotions that it is wholly shocking to see him exhibit that kind of behavior.

Then there’s Mycroft’s eyeroll at his brother. IT’S SO BEAUTIFUL. There are the countless times that Sherlock actually smiles at John. There’s the way he looks at John when he’s drinking coffee. There’s the way Sherlock looks at John when he realizes he’s actually hurt him. There’s the way John’s face looks like post-drug-induced fear session in the lab. There’s Sherlock’s face when he enters the room, covered in blood, carrying a harpoon. THERE ARE TOO MANY FACES AND I LOVE EACH AND EVERY ONE OF THEM. I swear to you, all day yesterday I fought the urge to make this entire post nothing but GIFs of every face I loved in “The Hounds of Baskerville.” I ACTUALLY STARTED COLLECTING THEM ON TUMBLR. oh my god what has this show done to me.


Sherlock has always been grounded, in some part, with a real-world rationality. It deals with complex relationships and political systems, in the very human actions of the world around us, and the way that subterfuge and dishonesty work against people. Even if the show fucks up, it’s all very real. The fiction is only in the details, not the general worldview. It’s why this episode is particularly satisfying: for a large part of this story, we have to start accepting that there might be something paranormal at work for once.

I have a strange relationship with the horror genre. It is the only genre of film that I will almost unequivocally give a chance. I have certain directors I adore (Kathryn Bigelow, Paul Thomas Anderson, David Lynch, David Fincher, and, until Antichrist, Lars Von Trier) that I’ll generally make sure to see whatever they’re putting out. But I’m not that way with an entire genre. I don’t really care for most action movies; I tend to seek out underground thrillers over big-budget ones. I like period-piece dramas sometimes. Actually, my taste in movies is really all over the map, but I generally go out of my way to watch any horror movie I can.

I know a lot of people enjoy being scared, but I really love it. That’s ultimately why I don’t really understand my obsession: most horror movies aren’t scary and are rather awful. On top of that, what frightens me isn’t what scares most people all of the time. Sometimes, thrillers that have no supernatural or horror elements in them at all scare me to death. (I am going to recommend this movie until the end of time: 13 Tzameti. Do not read anything about it. Rent it. I’m pretty sure it’s on Netflix. Don’t read the synopsis, don’t read the sleeve it comes in. Just know that for about 60 minutes straight, nothing makes any sense and it hurts and I thought I was going to throw up because it’s so tense and terrifying. I LOVE THINGS THAT GIVE ME A VISCERAL AND PHYSICAL REACTION.)

There are a lot of horror tropes to be found in “The Hounds of Baskerville,” and I can’t say I dislike any of them. Part of that is the novelty of them; I didn’t expect them to show up at all. But Mark Gatiss, who wrote this episode, uses them in a loving way; it’s not some deep commentary on their existence or a chance to necessarily invert or subvert them. Instead, he’s focused on capturing one very specific thing from the original source: how fucking creepy it all was.

The use of light in this story is one of my favorite tropes in horror movies, and as a storytelling technique, the inversion of it ends up being even scarier. The moors are awash in darkness and shadows betray the identity of the hound that seems to be lurking just beyond our view. But the most effective of all the scenes in “The Hounds of Baskerville”? The scene where the flood lights go on and off in Henry Knight’s backyard. Was he imagining them? I loved that there was no set up for that scene, in the sense that we discovered at that moment that Henry had installed those lights. It’s when we realize just how serious his affliction is; we suddenly know that the things Dr. Frankland did to him are killing him. Yes, that hindsight comes in later, but I love that brightness is used to represent a threat.

If you think about it, that comes back into play during the scene where John is taunted by the hound inside the laboratory. The set the show uses for the inside of Baskerville is unbelievably bright, a pristine location meant to give us thoughts of purity and cleanliness. Yet the second the lights go out, that place doesn’t seem so serene anymore. It’s terrifying, but I found myself even more frightened when the lights came back on and John was upset, screaming at Sherlock.

But there were two moments that scared me in a way most horror movies never even get close to. I’ve already mentioned the scene before, but that moment in front of the fireplace is pivotal to this entire story. Seeing Sherlock afraid is bad enough, but that is such a huge character moment for the man. Here is someone who trusts his five senses so implicitly for observation, and now he has to accept something that is virtually impossible: he saw the same hound that Henry did. Henry’s silly story is not a story at all. It’s real. It destroys him, plain and simple. Yes, he does later accept that he saw it and wrap it into his own personal theory, but in that space of time, we see Sherlock as we’ve never seen him: afraid.

And I cannot be the only one to have completely lost my shit when WE saw the hound at the very end of the episode. I was satisfied with the resolution/endgame, even if it dispelled of any supernatural entity. But then the hound actually showed up and I was so confused and WHAT IS GOING ON HOW IS THIS REAL WHAT IS AIR?!?!?!?!?! Ugh, I know that showing the “creature” in any capacity in this kind of story generally can be disappointing, but I adored it. SO GOOD.

Also when Sherlock hallucinated Moriarty I screamed. So what? Stop judging.


I am just beginning to, like, fall in love with this character? His appearance in “The Hounds of Baskerville” is not just unexpected; it’s one of the highlights of this episode. He’s evolved beyond being the only person to tolerate Sherlock. In series two so far, I feel like there’s a new subtext to his behavior towards the man. He respects him in a new way that he never did before. A lot of what his character did in series one was to act irritated with Sherlock, to simply allow him to do what he needs to do to help solve a case. Now, however, his joy at being to help out Sherlock and John during the last portion of this story isn’t fake. It’s not ironic. It seems so very real to me, and that makes me very happy.


I am kind of in love with the fact that this entire story does not take place in the city. The moors are beautiful, and it really sets this whole episode apart for all of the others. It’s an excellent use of filming on location, and one of numerous things that stood out to me.


I don’t think this is a flawless episode, but it is really damn close to being one. First of all, the whole “I’m-going-to-drug-my-best-friend-against-his-will-and-lock-him-in-a-room-with-an-imagined-beast” thing is a bit much for me. Yes, Sherlock ended up being wrong, having not drugged him at all, but it makes me feel icky that someone’s consent was ignored in this context. He’s your best friend! Your only best friend, I might add. Surely you should respect that?

And I’m glad he did respect Henry enough to at least tell him that he was going to take him back to the moors, but holy cow, taking someone to the one place that triggers them more than anywhere in the world and setting them loose is a bit too far. Thankfully, that could have turned out so much worse than it did, but oh lord.


Apology apology apology praise praise praise praise THINLY-VEILED INSULT. Oh, Sherlock, just please never change.

Actually, the Mind Palace might be better than this? God, I don’t know TOO MUCH GOOD. It’s kind of sad to me that next week is THE LAST ONE OF SERIES TWO. That soon??? SWEET SUMMER CHILD, WE ARE ALL SO UNPREPARED.

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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109 Responses to Mark Watches ‘Sherlock’: S02E02 – The Hounds of Baskerville



    (link has spoiler for title of the next episode)

  2. Dent_D says:

    Is this right? Are things broken? Where are the other comments? It is 6 in the evening I am so confused I am never this early.

    I'm just going to copy and paste what I wrote about the show on Reddit:

    As usual I loved the character interaction. I'm not sure I've seen actors more engaging to me than Freeman and Cumberbatch. I squealed at Watson suggesting "Asberger's" to Lestrade (no, I don't consider it an official confirmation). I loved Sherlock's desperation for cigarettes. The UMQRA red herring was great.

    But I was kind of disappointed and bored by the mystery. First off, I was not in the least bit scared by this episode. I have friends who said they did not want to sleep with the lights off after watching, but every time something "scary" was happening I found myself rolling my eyes. I don't know, I guess I'm just immune to terror? But everything seemed predictable to me. Maybe I am just being too bitter. (Mark, I am so sorry I do not share your love of horror. I think I really am bitter because I don't let myself get into horror at all.)

    Second, for some reason I wasn't really satisfied by the "it was a drug" solution. I had a strong suspicion that there definitely wasn't a real "demon hound". I have no idea what would have been a more acceptable solution for me though.

    Additionally, I was really taken out of the story when Sherlock magically guessed the override password to get into the CIA files. Knowing what modern IT policies on passwords are generally like, there is no way Major Barrymore would have gotten away with somebody's first name. I know I should have allowed for suspension of disbelief but this really irritated me. Yes, I am being nitpicky.

    • LadyPeyton says:

      Even if he's not Aspberger's, having just completed extensive testing to get my daughter diagnosed, I am convinced he's very definitely Spectrum.

  3. platoapproved says:


    I honestly think that he wigs the fuck out better than any other actor I've seen. When he screams I am terrified vicariously and that almost never happens.

    <img src=""&gt;

    I also, for one, would love to see some of that tumblr collection of GIFs in the comments because WHAT IF I MISSED ONE?

    • Maya says:


      • platoapproved says:

        For a moment I contemplated replying with a Russell Tovey crying GIF but then I realized that would just be too sad.

      • lula34 says:

        Russell Tovey was one of the best things about Being Human–the other being Aidan Turner as “Mitchell,” HNNNNNNNNNG! Ubjrire ur’f abg ergheavat sbe n sbhegu frnfba, abe vf Gheare (qhr gb uvf vaibyirzrag va Gur Uboovg), gurersber V nz abg ergheavat gb Orvat Uhzna. Vs gung znxrf zr funyybj, fb or vg.

        • V nz xvaq bs haqrpvqrq nobhg jngpuvat gur arkg frnfba bs Orvat Uhzna fvapr Naavr’yy or gur bayl bevtvany punenpgre yrsg naq gur guvat V ybir orfg jnf gur qlanzvp orgjrra Naavr, Trbetr naq Zvgpuryy…fb. Uzz. V qhaab.

        • psycicflower says:

          rot13 because it's on Mark's confirmed list.

          • lula34 says:

            Sorry! Ohg V qvq guvax gung jnf hanibvqnoyr xabjyrqtr–V zrna, vg'f rireljurer. Tbbq sbe uvz vs ur qbrfa'g cvpx hc ba vg, gubhtu. Nsgre nyy, ur qvqa'g xabj Natry jnf n inzcver, abe qbrf ur xabj bs Wbua Aboyr orvat va Ybeq bs gur Evatf, fb V fnyhgr Znex'f ynpx bs cbc phygher vaibyirzrag. Vg nznmrf zr.

          • Chris Durston says:

            On his confirmed list? Mark's going to be watching Being Human?!
            OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH IT'S MY FAVOURITE SHOW EVER. Mark, you might have been unprepared before, but Being Human… you are less prepared than cheese that's about a second from making an earlier-than-desired acquaintance with a grater.

      • FuTeffla says:

        Russell Tovey is on a par with John Simm for making me cry because of their cryfaces.

    • Genny_ says:

      In anyone else's hands every scene he broke down in would have been godawful, but I found him totally believable. HOW DOES HE DO IT.

    • Nomes says:

      It's that falsetto scream that does it for me. Like, this is not a small man, and when he lets loose with that SHRIEK it is like he has given up on any pretense of normality and is just freaking right the fuck out. See also Being Human in its entirety.

  4. lula34 says:

    I just want a link to watch this episode. That's all I ask. Just a link. One that doesn't require me to wade through porn, surveys, or sell my firstborn to the devil.


  5. Shadowmarauder says:

    I thought it was a pretty good episode but i really hated the whole Mind Palace scene, it was all a bit Minority Report. What was going on at the end though. What was Mycroft doing with Moriarty?

    • Genny_ says:

      I assume Mycroft went and found/captured/whatever Moriarty after ASiB, since he was all 'oh apparently this guy wants my attention'.

      Spoiler for the next ep: gur cerivrjf znxr vg frrz yvxr ur'f njnvgvat gevny, fb V'z thrffvat ur'f ratvarrerq uvf bja pncgher sbe fbzr ernfba.

      • Shadowmarauder says:

        I like the idea of Mycroft capturing Moriarty. I'm picturing him rappelling down a helicopter and going all James Bond on him.

    • vermillioncity says:

      But in the context of Sherlock as on the autistic spectrum (which he almost undeniably is), that Mind Palace sequence was FANTASTIC. The hand gestures? So, so typical of Asperger's, at least in my experience (disclaimer: I have a severely autistic brother, but he doesn't actually have Asperger's syndrome, and I'm not autistic myself, so anyone who knows better feel free to correct me). The difference was that we could see what HE was seeing, not just the twitchy, self-contained, gesturing parts that we might usually only be able to comprehend.

      • @cykotyks says:

        I rather loved the Mind Palace sequence, but I pretty much love all of the little "how Sherlock's brain works" sequences. (I tend to get really annoyed when the camera focuses on certain things but doesn't give us what Sherlock is thinking.) Then again, I'm a big psychology nut, and seeing/learning how atypical minds work is absolutely fascinating to me.

        • Xander Bazaar says:

          The Mind Palace thing doesn't have much to do with atypical minds. The method of loci is a mnemonic device that most people could use.

  6. Maya says:

    TBH, I don't think I would have loved this episode as much as I did if there had not been Russell Tovey in it. Something about him makes me sympathize with him NO MATTER WHAT HE DOES. Like, he is FLAWLESS at being sad/terrified/crazed/happy/amazing in general. There is no other actor who can make me cry with him so easily. NONE.

  7. Genny_ says:

    To address the drug thing briefly: that is absolutely the kind of thing Sherlock would do, IMO. It's terrible, but sometimes Sherlock can be terrible, and it even reminds me of the two being introduced in the original stories, where Watson is basically told 'this guy would drug you for the hell of it, but hey, he'd totally do it to himself as well!' It made me uneasy, but I can't quite call it out of character for him.

    Anyway, honestly? I think this is my favourite episode of Sherlock yet. (Both my faves have been penned by Mark Gatiss, then. Huh.) And I don't even like the story this was based on that much, and I am very much NOT a horror fan! But the acting, the character moments- the scene with Sherlock having what basically amounts to a panic attack, contrasted with the scene where John reacts so much more actively to fear- the humour… this was just such a great, solidly written, engaging episode. And also I died at the references. (7% and the slipper and 'brown as a nut' and the Diogenes club and ahhh!!!!)

    Oddly enough, very little about the atmosphere of this episode scared me, though it was wonderfully done. Mostly? The characters' reactions made me nervous. Which just goes to show how great the acting is, I suppose.

    Oh, and I am damn proud of working this episode out as I went. (I even guessed what was up with the rabbit.) Shush, I never manage that, let me be proud of my tiny achievement.

    In conclusion: holy shit, I have rewatched the ~mind palace~ (LOL at his arrogance, though) scene more times, literally, than I can count. THIS SHOW HAS THE BEST EDITING EVER.

    • platoapproved says:

      Yeah, I agree re: the drugging, I appreciate that he isn't a character who we are only ~told~ makes bad decisions and lacks basic empathy, but that his actions back it up. I mean, it doesn't make me LIKE him more, but it makes me like the writing more.

      • Genny_ says:

        I think the thing with Sherlock as a character is, you just WANT to like him so much, because there's so much about him that is wonderful. And it would be so easy to slip into that completely. The fact that the show still makes him such a difficult character is something I honestly admire about it.

        • jbb says:

          And I think in the original he tricked John by letting him think he (Holmes) was in London and not answering any of Watson's letters. So I can see where Gatiss is drawing on the canon there, as well as the characterisation of Sherlock in this series.

  8. Waffles says:

    My reaction to this episode was very simple: OMG, Gatiss, I want to marry your brain.

    I mean, can we just pause for a moment and appreciate that GREG Lestrade now has a first name? And, and… That mind palace scene, and the Sherlock apologizing to John scene, and the entirety of the scene where Greg shows up, and that tiny little utterly perfect snippet of Mycroft, and Bluebell the rabbit, the last scene in the hollow with the gas and the hallucinations, the scene where Sherlock is shaking from fear. Just, all of it.

    The password solving scene did bug me though. I mean, most people's email passwords would be more complex than that! But that was the only thing that threw me. All in all, I'd call an episode with only one flaw like that very successful.

    • Bumblebea says:

      ARGH yes. The password scene. That always annoys me. I mean, it would at least be Maggie123, especially at a top secret military base.

      (Okay, yes, I understand it works from a dramatic point of view, but it would be a lot more realistic if Sherlock had found it on a Post-it. Stuck somewhere discreet, of course, seeing as this is a top secret military base.)

      • Dent_D says:

        Yes!! I could easily see Sherlock using the clues on Barrymore's desk to infer that A) Barrymore is the type of guy who can't remember passwords and B) Barrymore stores a note of his password in location X because that is the kind of guy he is

        • Waffles says:

          Yes! Change it to that, and I think we might have as close to a perfect episode as we could ever hope to get.

  9. wahlee says:

    I will forever and ever love Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat for keeping the line "Mr Holmes, they were the footprints of a gigantic hound" intact and unaltered (and then REPEATED <3 <3 <3). I LOVE YOU MARK AND STEVEN WILL YOU MARRY ME?!?!?

    Also, a great big heck to the yeah on the faces thing. I'm a big fan of actors who use their expressions to great effect (see: Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy, esp. The Look in P&P, pretty much everything David Tennant has ever done) and I was absolutely dying with the faces in this episode. I just. . . guh.

    • redheadedgirl says:


      • xpanasonicyouthx says:


        • redheadedgirl says:

          I also love that Mycroft's reaction to the entire "breaking into a highly secure facility" is to roll his eyes, I'm assuming taking a serious slug of scotch, and then helping his little brother with whatever hairbrained scheme he's up to now. The relationship is both fucked up and heartwarming.

          • psycicflower says:

            The fact that Sherlock breaking into a top secret facility with Mycroft's ID only raised an eye roll make me wonder how often Sherlock does stuff like that or what worse things he's done.

            I love their relationship so much. I could honestly watch a show just about the various characters relationships with each other and not be bothered by the the lack of crime/adventure.

    • enchantedsleeper says:

      see: Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy, esp. The Look in P&P

      Oh man, my mum and nana go on and on about that Look xD I need to see it properly for myself.

      • wahlee says:

        [youtube _GHm4MK6F1Y youtube]

        The look at the beginning is awesome, too, but The Look is the one at the very end, when they're looking at each other. It's just. . . guh.

        • nanceoir says:


          Several years ago, I had a friend who was leaving the country for a good 16-18 months, and she would have most of her stuff with her. She was a big fan of Colin Firth, particularly as Mr. Darcy, and the Look was indeed her favorite thing. Somehow or another, my sister decided we should get Colin Firth to sign a copy of that picture by going to New York and doing SNL standby. We managed it (and were some of the few people to see him as he left the building that night) and thus were able to give my friend a pretty neat going-away gift.

          (Also, we both got into see the dress rehearsal performance, which was great, considering the last time we both had tried, only one of us got in. But that weekend wrought havoc on my copy of GoF, which was a sad consequence.)

  10. knut_knut says:

    Once again, overall, I really liked this episode, but it was kind of slow for me. I started to feel really sleepy during the parts that weren't super suspenseful 🙁 And this case could have been solved a lot quicker if Sherlock watched Batman Begins.

    BUT SERIOUSLY, ALL THEIR FACES. I mean, look at Mycroft's eyeroll!!
    <img src=""&gt;

    • Genny_ says:

      I have been privately calling the drug 'fear toxin', so agreed on the BB front.

    • Waffles says:

      OMG that eyeroll. I keep trying to look away, but it's not working.

    • unefeeverte says:

      I have a whole conversation in my head now.

      John: This is the Astronomy thing all over again.
      Sherlock: What?
      John: I'm just saying, maybe you shouldn't be so discriminating about what you store in that computer brain of yours.
      Sherlock: I fail to see what would have prepared me for fear-inducing drugs in the woods.
      John: If you could be persuaded to go to the movies every now and then, we would've been finished a whole lot sooner.
      Sherlock: What does that brainless Hollywood nonsense have to do with our case?
      John: The same thing happened in Batman Begins.
      Sherlock: Well, apparently you watched it and it didn't help, so.
      John: Yes, but I'm not the world's only consulting detective, am I?

  11. Ughhhh this episode was so good it HURTS. Definitely my favorite so far.

    Russell Tovey was SO GREAT in this. I squealed when I saw him onscreen and he just really nailed it. I'm not sure how good this would have been if that character had been in the hands of literally anyone else.

    Mark, you are so right re Sherlock being so terrified. It made me so uncomfortable and nervous to watch! This whole episode was definitely the scariest of the bunch, and I remember feeling pretty creeped out when I read the original story too, so kudos on that.

    All in all, this was one A+ episode, leaving me EXTREMELY excited for next week's!

  12. jbb says:

    Agreed that the location/setting was awesome, it was creepy and beautiful. This episode had some great character moments, especially for Sherlock and John, though it almost felt like Mycroft stole the show with his 30 seconds of coolness. Gatiss plays him so effortlessly. I'm also glad they kept in those classic lines about Watson being a conductor of light, etc.

    I couldn't really get into the Henry character though. I can never see Russell Tovey as the character he's playing: not because he's bad at it, it's just all I see onscreen is Russell Tovey Acting. It might a similar thing to when Nolan keeps reusing actors in his films: it's hard to see them as the characters first and foremost.

    • Dent_D says:

      I have the same problem with certain "big names" in Hollywood. DiCaprio, Jolie, Cruise, Willis, Heigel, Cera. For me I've learned to redefine my enjoyment of those movies in terms less of how well did Big Name X portray this character and more of how well did this character mesh with Big Name X.

  13. bearshorty says:

    I'm not a fan of horror but I do like suspense horror and it was well done here: both in the forest scenes and in the lab with John.

    I loved this episode. I watched many scenes over and over just for dialogue and expressions. I think I watched the scene at the inn/pub when John talks to the innkeeper probably 10 times before moving on. John is not even trying to correct people anymore about their assumptions of being a couple. Hee. I also really liked that John drank the coffee that Sherlock gave me despite commenting on the sugar – he still drank it anyway.

    I also found the fireplace scene the best acting Cumberbatch ever done – just the fear in the face and the voice and being unnerved by that fear – it was very powerful.

    And I could relate to that fear on another level, I'm afraid of dogs. Normal, regular, not just gigantic hounds. I had this phobia since I was a child. And no, it was not part of any bad dog encounter, I was just always afraid of dogs. This got better with age but I will still cross the street if I see a dog ahead of me and dogs without a leash can send me into panic mode. Luckily, that phobia never translated into pictures of dogs or TV or movie dogs – so I was not as scared of this episode as I could have been. But seeing Sherlock's fear I could really understand it on a panic attack level since that would so be my reaction – that was well portrayed. And, of course, for Sherlock it was more than fear of the animal – it was fear of having emotions and responding illogically all of a sudden that unnerved him more.

    That ending with Mycroft and Moriarty was intriguing.

  14. Ryuu says:

    I usually just ~observe~, because i'm reeeeally not confident with my english, but this time I had to comment to ask:
    Mark, have you watched Mark Gatiss' A History of Horror? It's a BBC three-part documentary, and it really shows just how in love Gatiss is with the horror genre. I think you'll like it!
    Also, the setting of this episode was beautiful, I was incredibly unconfortable with sherlock's fear since it just felt so so so wrong, and Mycroft is the best big brother of all big brothers.

    Okay, I shall go back to lurking now.

    • egao-gakari says:

      Your English was perfect in this comment! Take courage and comment more!

      Also, just out of sheer curiosity, what's your native language?

  15. hilarius11 says:

    I was so fracking happy with this episode. I read the Hound of the Baskerville's in preparation for this episode (the only Sherlock I've ever read, TBH) but I was blown away with how they modernized it!!! Everything made sense, it was beautifully shot, and the faces, oh the faces!!!
    On a note, I pointed out to my brother while we were watching it, that the cinematography really changed between this episode and the last one. I thought it was brilliant how the cinematographers capture the setting in which they are shooting. The city=hustle/bustle cinematography, close editing, and really tight, narrow shots. The country=huge, open, sprawling landscapes. The shots also change in tone within the episode, with tight close up shots in the laboratory for example. Just absolutely brilliant work, shows the attention to detail that the creators put into it!
    The fact that Sherlock is most afraid of Moriarty is amazing, btw. I love that attention to detail. Can't wait for next week!!!!

    • psycicflower says:

      I love how gorgeously shot this show is. It never fails to look stunning regardless of the scene or background.

  16. tardis_stowaway says:

    This glorious episode contained pretty much everything I wanted except for Sherlock camping out in a shack on the moor like he does in the book. The idea of Cumberbatch's Sherlock doing that is hilarious. However, since we got to see Sherlock covered in blood and carrying a harpoon and later DRIVING A CAR (he can do that????), there was no lack of unusual things for Sherlock to do.

    Sherlock attempting to drug John made perfect sense in Sherlock-land. Sherlock would doubtless have tested the drug on himself if he could, but he needed someone who didn't know that it was an experiment and hadn't yet seen the hound. Sherlock trusted that John would forgive him and knew that John thrives on danger. Trying to find an unknown experimental drug in the sugar would have taken an awful lot of time (real science doesn't often let you detect a totally unknown chemical by putting the sugar in a machine that goes ding when there's stuff). Drugging John was the obvious choice….if you operate in a world where TERRIFYING AND ENDANGERING YOUR ONLY FRIEND WITHOUT HIS CONSENT isn't a dealbreaker. And the thing is, John did forgive him (after pointing out that this was Not Good.) This is another piece of evidence for my theory that as completely marvelous and odd as Sherlock Holmes is, the truly extraordinary and strange one in the partnership is John Watson, who passes as normal yet still falls for Sherlock (platonically or not), who comes running for "could be dangerous."

    I love Mark Gatiss for not only writing this wonder but also temporarily stealing the show with Mycroft's magnificent eyeroll.

    • I totally agree about the car thing. I was super surprised by that. I was kind of expecting him to not know how to drive because he couldn't… do… something. I actually don't know exactly why this shocked me, but it did.
      I was also super dismayed when they killed the dog. I just hate violence toward animals, even one who is reportedly vicious. ALTHOUGH WE NEVER SEE THE DOG ACTUALLY ATTACK ANYONE! Oh no, maybe the puppy was just coming over for a cuddle, or a biscuit, but no, they're all hyped up on Fear Smoke and just had to pop a cap in that poor dog's ass. Jerks.

  17. [youtube FL4HSiGvk68 youtube]

    How about the power to solve a case
    From sitting around all day
    In his MIND PALACE?!
    That's brilliant deduction, John.

  18. Lumosnox says:

    How has no one mentioned Moriarty's little SHRINE OF HATE at the end there???? I mean good god, that's not ordinary nemesis hatred, that is FULL BLOWN get-a-flipping-restraining-order OBSESSION. If I were Mycroft, I would not feel good about watching a criminal pyschopath etching my little brother's name all over the walls.

    Also, have you SEEN the stalker vid that Moriarty uploaded on John's blog? (here's a link for non-brits:

    Andrew Scott has been on screen in Sherlock for LESS THAN 11 MINUTES (fact). Yet every time he appears he scares the bejesus out of me.

    • chichichimaera says:

      The things about Moriarty though is that it could just have been a calculated act designed to unnerve Mycroft, or anyone else seeing the room. It's impossible to tell.

  19. FuTeffla says:

    I don't know what excited me more: Watson being a rank-pulling BAMF or the sudden appearance of (GREG!) Lestrade. I wish he'd show up on my holidays.

  20. FuTeffla says:

    Oh, and I love that Dr Clive Mantle (I can't remember his character's name, I was too busy shouting 'Yay, Clive Mantle!') had a t-shirt detailing his top-secret military chemical weapon project.
    I Created A Dreadful Weaponised Paranoia Fog And All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt.

  21. Now, however, his joy at being to help out Sherlock and John during the last portion of this story isn’t fake. It’s not ironic. It seems so very real to me, and that makes me very happy.

    I put it down to the fact that he's kind of on holiday and probably will have far less paperwork to have to do to sort this out.

  22. LadyPeyton says:

    I adored the stunt casting. Adding my favorite television werewolf to a remake of the Hound of the Baskervilles is so perfect I am set aquiver with adoration. Add to that the fact that no one in the universe screams as well as Russell and you have handed me 2 hours of perfect television. And that's *before* we get to the Sherlock/John interaction.

    All in all a very satisfactory show. I am awash in sadness that next week is the last of the series.

  23. enchantedsleeper says:

    I need more of these fabled gifs @__@ Has anyone got any good Tumblr links they can share?

  24. dcjensen says:

    Have I mentioned this Sherlock fanfic by my friend Fay?

    The Case of the Unwelcome Owl.

    It's really worth a look…

  25. psycicflower says:

    So late and didn't have time for a proper comment so have a random selection of gifs and quotes!

    Sherlock your face is all kinds of glorious.
    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

    ‘Now shut up and smoke.’
    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">
    ‘Oh please can we not do this this time.’ ‘Do what?’ ‘You being all mysterious with your cheekbones and turning your collar up so you look cool.’ ‘I don’t do that.’ ‘Yeah you do.’

    ‘Oh hi we’re gonna have a wander round your top secret weapons base. Really? Great, come in. Kettle’s just boiled.’
    I loved John getting to go all military and pulling rank.
    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

    ‘That you’d be wearing the hat though.’ ‘That wasn’t my hat.’ ‘I hardly recognise him without the hat.’ ‘It wasn’t my hat.’
    I have a feeling this is going to become a favourite in joke.
    ‘I’d love to tell you but then of course I’d have to kill you.’ ‘That would be tremendously ambitious of you.’

    Sherlock tricking/guilting John into drinking to coffee is hilarious. I just love his face.
    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">
    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">

    ‘I don’t have friends. I just have one’
    All together now Awww/fangirl flail

    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">
    Um, Mycroft what in the actual fuck do you think you’re doing letting Moriarty go. How did you catch him and why did you let him go?

    Is it Sunday yet?
    <img src="; border="0" alt="Image and video hosting by TinyPic">
    (also an accurate depiction of my current mental state because SHERLOCK)

  26. Albion19 says:

    I didn't catch it but apparently the Tardis makes an appearance?

  27. Starsea28 says:

    There are a lot of horror tropes to be found in “The Hounds of Baskerville,” and I can’t say I dislike any of them. Part of that is the novelty of them; I didn’t expect them to show up at all. But Mark Gatiss, who wrote this episode, uses them in a loving way

    You probably won't know this, so I'm going to tell you: Gatiss wrote and presented "A History of Horror" on BBC Four, a programme which looks at the history of the HORROR GENRE from its beginnings in the 1930s right up until the present day. It has a British bias, of course, but I highly recommend it! And that's why I was not surprised by all the horror tropes in this episode or the affection for them.

    I don't think the episode excused Sherlock's treatment of John, exactly, but it was passed over in a way that his insult about John not being his friend wasn't. I guess that was more important? Hmm. Well, I still love that scene and the one in the graveyard when Sherlock is like a cat who's done wrong and is trying to make it up to you by acting (for once) like you are the most amazing person in TEH WORLD.

    Also: SHERLOCK APOLOGISING. I was shocked when he did it to Molly but this is even bigger!


  28. lutamira says:

    First, agree with all your Sherlock love! All of it – the faces, Lestrade showing up, the use of the horror genre to incredible effect, the perfection of setting this completely outside London. Reading your reviews makes this all twice as much fun, because now I am thinking over all the things I adored. 🙂

    Second, I have to ask – have you seen Twin Peaks??? Aka, the David Lynch-penned TV show of the early nineties? I have to assume you have, since you mention having seen everything he's ever done, but just in case you hadn't seen it… well, it would be more than worth your time. More. Than. Worth. It.

    I see you have a suggestion box, so I'm just gonna head over there now and pop this in there. 🙂

  29. Bumblebea says:

    Random Sherlock thoughts:

    OH HAI RUSSELL TOVEY <3 ILU though I do not approve of this silly posh accent you are putting on. What. No. Especially the way you pronounce ‘nights’.

    -HAHA THE BLOOD AND THE HARPOON. ON THE TUBE. Though I bet you he didn’t get so much as a strange look – I’ve seen far more outrageous things on the tube, and no one blinks an eyelid.
    -Sherlock what are you doing being rude to Mrs Hudson. HDU. Go and apologise.
    -That rabbit will definitely end up being the lynchpin to the case. I’d bet my firebolt on it.
    -“Go back to Devon and have a scone!” Well as long as it’s cream first.
    -Mrs Hudson 🙁 one of you go and give her a hug. You can do so much better than that cheating café dude!
    -Eeep Devon! Dartmoor! THIS IS MY CHILDHOOD HOME GUYS. I USED TO GO WALKING ON DARTMOOR. HOT SOUP IN FLASKS. POOONIES. SCARY STORIES (although they were of a ghostly glowing hand rather than hound. During WW2, an officer serving at the army base on Dartmoor crashed his motorbike and lost his hand. Due to the ~spoooooky~ nature of the moors the hand gained a life of its own, glowing a ghoulish green at night and groping its way around the moors until it came across unsuspecting victims to strangle in their sleep. This was the common story told about Dartmoor ten years ago, and it used to give me nightmares 🙁 If it had been like this… *shudders*)
    -So good they used it twice.
    -Sir Henry to Henry Knight. It’s the little details that make me happy.
    -Sherlock scared – DNW. Pretty much biggest DNW ever, apart from maybe the Doctor scared. (However it was at that point I went ‘yeah they drugged him’)
    -“I don’t have friends. I just have one.” <3 And his heart grew three sizes that night.
    -OH MAN HOLMES AND WATSON JUST WORK SO WELL TOGETHER. When John just immediately goes along with the ‘bet’, and uses his militaryness and pulls rank at the base, and just all of it SHUSH ILOVETHEM.
    -However I do not like Holmes being a jerkface to his only friend. At least Watson isn’t just lying down and taking it. Until the end of the episode; I sense he has just given up by this point.
    -Though I totally side-eyed him trying to make it up to him and was yelling at Watson not to drink that coffee. I AM SUSPICIOUS OF YOU DOING NICE THINGS NOW SHERLOCK. WHAT DOES THAT SAY?
    -I lovelovelove the way they took all of the original elements of the story and just as you thought you knew where it was going went LOL NOPE. SHERLOCK’S COMING WITH US, DR LIVESEY ISN’T EVIL AND IT’S ACTUALLY DOGGERS.
    -Barrymore had a beard. That was all I needed to be happy. (I have strange requirements of adaptions.)
    -Also Grimpen Mire -> Minefield = Perfection.
    -“Don’t do that….with your cheekbones and turning up your collar to look cool.”

    All in all, my inner Holmes fangirl was squealing away. Best episode yet y/y?

    One little niggle: where were my Dartmoor ponies? 🙁 Not one shot of them running about being pretty? PONY BIGOTRY IS EVERYWHERE THESE DAYS.

    Oh and one more thing:

    • Bumblebea says:


      *Dr Stapleton. I meant Dr Stapleton. My mind is still on Treasure Island mode 😛

      (Did anyone see the new Treasure Island adaption. It is ~relevent~ I swear)

    • ldwy says:

      Fantastic comment. I agree with many points. 🙂

  30. amyalices says:

    In tribute to Sherlock's Mind Palace, Tumblr presents John Watson's:

    <img src=""&gt;


  31. Bumblebea says:


    Sherlock: alcoholdl
    John: Your having an emotion.
    Sherlock: jkfeoadjfFUCK YOU I'M FINE

    Accurate representation of the scene is accurate.

    Also, sneaky Merlin reference I SEEEE YOOOUUUU

  32. I apologize, I didn't know.

  33. 4EyedBlonde says:

    Kind of OT but… I saw a post on Tumblr that told all the Sherlock fans to take a picture of themselves immediately after watching the last episode. I think we should all do that in the comments for the next liveblog.

  34. elop says:

    I just have a quick question! Sherlock says he knew the baddie scientist had been to America because he referred to a mobile as a cell phone, but didn't the H.O.U.N.D. project happen in the 80s?

    • Shiroikami says:

      There were cell phones in the 80s. They were these ridiculously large things the size of a cinderblock (well, okay, not QUITE that big, but pretty close), and hardly anyone ever had one unless they worked for like, the government. So that actually works okay…

  35. Shiroikami says:

    Two things:

    1. "I don't have friends… I just have one." BEST. LINE. EVER. Also true. And I will love them both forever.

    2. V qba'g xabj vs nalbar ryfr jngpurf Nycunf, ohg Fureybpx qbvat uvf zvaq-cnynpr guvat xvaq bs erzvaqrq zr bs Tnel qbvat uvf vaivfvoyr pbzchgre guvat. And it was adorable and awesome at the same time.

    (Above rot13'd in case Mark ever decides to watch SyFy's "Alphas").

    Oh, I guess one more thing – Sherlock trying to apologize and Watson just being all like "Whatever. I'm not listening to you. I'm mad at you. We're fighting right now." and Sherlock being totally out of his depth with that because HE NEVER APOLOGIZES TO ANYONE. 😀

  36. Brieana says:

    I feel like Cillian Murphy's character in that Batman movie did something similar with the scary gas and shit.

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