Sherlock: The Six Thatchers

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    Craig @craig

    The Six Thatchers

    Just as we did this time last year, it’s time to turn this website over to Steven Moffat’s other project, Sherlock, before Doctor Who returns to our screens.

    In the first of the new series, written by Mark Gatiss, someone is destroying images of Margaret Thatcher. Now that seems a perfectly valid use of one’s time to me, but is there a much darker purpose at work?


    Crikey – that was intense.

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    It was great to see “Sherlock” back, even if, as @pedant rightly points out, it was “intense”. The show runners told us it was going to be darker this time around and they didn’t exaggerate.

    One of the recurring pleasures of the show is how Gatiss and Moffat draw upon previous incarnations of the stories. And not just the Conan Doyle originals. Gatiss, in particular, when he is the main writer of an episode is fond of drawing on the Basil Rathbone SH movies of the 1940s. I am not sure enough people are aware of just how much Gatiss and Moffat draw on, and play with, the whole constellation of SH incarnations in this show.

    Last night, for example, owes at least as much to the Basil Rathbone movie “The Pearl of Death” (a very loose retelling of “The Six Napoleans”) as it does to Conan Doyle. Indeed, there is a character in the Basil Rathbone version who is a gigantic killer called The Creeper who crushes his victims and breaks their backs. He wasn’t in The Six Thatchers, of course, but, re-named The Golem, he was in the 2010 Gatiss-penned The Great Game. This is one of the things I love about the show.

    Mind you, I am not sure everything worked about last night. A team of four assassins going on jobs together with memory sticks containing all the facts about their compatriots doesn’t seem the best sort of security to me, but then I’m not part of a team of assassins. So who am I to say?

    Cannot wait till next week, even though it promises that the main characters will be thoroughly miserable (Holmes newly humbled and Watson both grief-stricken because of his loss and guilty because of his indiscretion). And what are we to make of Mary’s cryptic statement at the end of the credits? Oh yes, looking forward to next week!

    Anonymous @

    Oh man! You get Sherlock?! Well off to the DVD store in…..6 months…for us Ozzies.

    ABC don’t have any money I guess.

    (not reading much of the comments. One eye only)

    Missy @missy

    I should love to join in, but as it wasn’t shown on Free Tv – as the last three series were – I haven’t seen this yet.

    Yes, I could have used ‘STAN”, but balked at that, so I’ve ordered it from Amazon and should get it between the 2-7th of February.

    There is always the chance, of course, that the ABC will show the above sometime, but not soon enough. Why, oh why, did they do this?


    Anonymous @


    Why, oh why, did they do this.…(the ABC)

    Simply put, various governments not investing in good television because they’re broke.


    They’re broke because they haven’t invested in good television.

    Craig @craig
    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    @craig A brilliantly witty and devastatingly accurate response by Gatiss to a very stupid article. And what the response by the usual Guardian posters? Gatiss is so defensive…Gatiss has lost the plot…Gatiss is “too clever for his own good”. The last one stated quite seriously, I believe.

    Well, let me nail my colours to the mast. I am really looking forward to the next two episodes, and to anything more that Gatiss and Moffat have to offer, either jointly or singly, whether it is Sherlock, Doctor Who, a retelling of an MR James ghost story, or another Tintin screenplay.

    Mudlark @mudlark


    I am really looking forward to the next two episodes, and to anything more that Gatiss and Moffat have to offer

    That goes for me, too.  And since when has ‘clever’ become a derogatory term?  I now tend to avoid reading comments by posters on the Guardian – and even more so on other sites – because whenever I do read them I lose ever more faith in the future of the human species. 🙁

    blenkinsopthebrave @blenkinsopthebrave

    Yes, I know what you mean. It was a moment of weakness that carried me across the River Styx on that occasion. I must be more resolute.

    winston @winston

    I liked this episode but then I always do. Anything Moffat and Gatiss make is smart and entertaining. Cumberbatches portrayal of Holmes as a genius struggling with his disconnect from his fellow human beings and Freemans all too human Watson make the perfect couple. “were not a couple” I have loved this show from the first and it never fails to entertain me so it was worth the wait for me and I can’t wait to see the rest.

    Missy @missy


    Bypassing all the above posts (I really must not look) I think you are right. Last year (I think) there was talk of the ABC not buying some of their ususal programmes. who would have thought that they included Sherlock? Grrrr!


    ichabod @ichabod

    @mudlark  since when has ‘clever’ become a derogatory term?

    Since the haters were too addled to realize that it clearly means, “cleverer and I am, and I hate, hate, hate him/them/it for it!”

    Missy @missy

    I haven’t read any of the above, because we have only just seen this, I’ll read after I have posted.

    Mark Gatiss did a excellent job of this, if you hadn’t read the book, it might have been confusing, but if you had it shouldn’t. Loved the Black Pearl of the Borgias, what a red herring that was. Finding out just how brilliant Mary was, even more so than Mycroft, was superb. I remembered the way, in His Last Vow, she was able to get past security on MI5 and another site (forget which) that even Mycroft had trouble accessing, all on her mobile phone. But even then, to find out that she had actually set the whole Moriarty hoax,  just in case she was killed , was one hell of a surprise.

    What a treat! Tonight we watch The Lying Detective.


    Missy @missy

    @craig Thank you for the peom by Mark Gatiss, very clever.



    Missy @missy

    Please would one of you nice people help me out. To save me re-playing the disc, did Mycroft, at the end , ask for Sherrington on the phone?  Or did I imagine it?


    Anonymous @


    Having seen it only yesterday, I’m 90 % certain that Mycroft, standing up, asked to be put thru to Sherringford.

    However, that institution was also attempting to contact him.


    Missy @missy

    @thane15: Sherringford, not Sherrington! *smacks head* Methinks I’m going dotty.

    Thank you for your patience. Must watch yet again soon.



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