Community Post: The Subtleties Of BBC’s Sherlock

1. S.O.S. / Via Tumblr

So I’m watching The Great Game for the *coughmumblecoughcough* time last night and in the pool scene, I now marvel at the fact that when Watson steps into the room with his big parka, he’s blinking S.O.S. at Sherlock. It’s a subtle thing, and one I wouldn’t have picked up on without the fabulous fans on Tumblr. I thought he was just blinking nervously because, you know, there’s a dirty great pack of bombs strapped to his chest.

2. Ventriloquism Meta

In that very same scene, when John is forced to say, “Gottle of gear” to Sherlock, and repeats it a couple of times, I admit to being a bit baffled by the (seemingly) nonsense phrase. I know I’m late to the party (obviously, judging by the fan art out there regarding this phrase) but I think the fact that Watson is effectively Moriarty’s “dummy” and so makes him use the phrase not-very-good ventriloquists use: “gottle of gear (or ‘geer’)” for “bottle of beer,” is hilarious, a little bit frightening, and very much in keeping with Moriarty’s insanity.

3. A Goodnight Kiss

The other day I was skimming Tumblr when I came across someone mentioning the outline of Irene Adler’s lipstick on Sherlock’s face after she’d drugged him, meaning she kissed him after returning his coat. I must have seen “Scandal in Belgravia” 5 or 6 times, but I never noticed that. And then I took a closer look.

I could watch this show a thousand times and still never discover every nuanced layer of genius built into it. This. This little, barely noticeable touch is why I love Sherlock.

4. A Nod to ACD in Print

“In a twist worthy of a Conan Doyle novella…” You sneaky graphic artists.

5. Emailing Richard Brook

Even now, well over a year after the end of series 2, if you send an email to with ‘I believe in Sherlock Holmes. Moriarty was real.’ in the body, you get this response. Go ahead and visit the domain while you are at it.


6. You Went Where?

This is more easter egg than in-show subtlety, but in Watson’s blog online, the reason he barely posted was because he was “visiting a mate in New Zealand.” A mate named Bilbo 🙂

There are many delightful find within the online companions to the series such as Watson’s blog as well as Sherlock’s. Go spend an hour or two poking around them and see for yourself.

I’m sure there are more hidden layers than these few items I’ve dug up. And there will be more once Series 3 FINALLY airs. But in my opinion, these delightful finds only serve to enrich an already rich show.

7. Did Kitty Riley just have handcuff keys laying around? / Via JuneJuly15

Nope! Tumblrer JuneJuly15 wondered this very thing and solved the question with this screenshot: He used one of Kitty’s hairpins because OF COURSE Sherlock can pick locks. How could I forget that?

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