Sherlock: Season Three Blu-ray Review

    Actors: Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Rupert Graves, Una Stubbs, Mark Gatiss
  • Directors: Jeremy Lovering, Colm McCarthy, Nick Hurran
  • Writers: Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Format: Blu-ray, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • Release Date: February 11, 2014
  • Run Time: 262 minutes



            Sherlock Holmes is one of the most recognizable fictional characters in both literature and the subsequent film and television adaptations, which allows for the release of yet another adaptation without any resistance from fans of the franchise. While TV’s “Sherlock” shares an emphasis on the friendship between the infamous detective and his sidekick and much of the visual flair that Guy Ritchie’s theatrical releases also had, it sets itself apart by adding a modern element to the beloved stories. The entire endeavor breathes new life into the old stories, reviving them with quick, clever dialogue and a dynamic visual style.


            The series takes a distinctly British approach to the material, wisely deciding to separate each of the adapted stories by film-length narratives. Each season essentially contains three full-length TV-movies, a medium which is carried in higher regard than is typically the case in the United States. By staying restricted in the amount of stories tackled, the qualities of those three are typically quite excellent. Season three has significant plot points in all three of these additions to the narrative, including the resolution of season two’s cliffhanger mystery. Much more of this season is dedicated to the relationships of the characters we have grown to know, rather than the mysteries, which seem a bit more convoluted than previous seasons.


            Season two ended with the supposed death of Sherlock Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch) following the confrontation with arch-enemy Moriarty. After forcing fans to speculate on the internet for a brief period, the first episode of season three plays with all of the possible theories before revealing the true answer to the mystery of Sherlock’s survival. Season three also marks the arrival of Mary, Watson’s wife after the wedding in “The Sign of Three,” and new villain Charles Augustus Magnussen in “His Last Vow.” The big surprise, however, is the return of Moriarty in the season three cliffhanger.


            The three TV movies that make up season three are included on two Blu-ray discs, with the special features on the second disc. There are three featurettes about several debated high points of the season, including the revelation of Sherlock’s near deaths, both being shot and jumping off a building. The third featurette is about the fan speculations about the various twists and turns in the “Sherlock” narrative.


    Entertainment Value: 9/10

    Quality of Filmmaking: 8/10

    Historical Significance: 7/10

    Disc Features: 5/10


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