Sherlock Special Episode Title & Date Revealed

Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat, Sue Vertue, and Amanda Abbington brought us some exciting news on Saturday about their hit TV series Sherlock.


All photography by Sarah Tsang

Talking about the show’s upcoming Christmas special to a full house at MCM London Comic Con’s Gold Stage, the special guests revealed some exclusive news — the episode’s title and release date. Dubbed “The Abominable Bride”, the episode will be aired on BBC One, BBC America, and in Picturehouse and Odeon Cinemas on 1 January 2016.

The special sees Arthur Conan Doyle’s characters return to their roots for an adventure set in the Victorian era. Despite the series’ origins in the period, though, it has been quite difficult for some people to come to terms with the new setting.

“There were actually two journalists that asked us, ‘How can Sherlock possibly live in a world without iPhones?’” Gatiss said, “It is always a great tribute to the success of the show but it is an odd thing to say.”


Misgivings with those unable to accept the concept aside, why did showrunners, Moffat and Gatiss, choose to set the episode in the Victorian Era?

“When I started writing the new episode I was quite pleased that we were back in our normal world, it was quite a joy,” Moffat said, “We both thought, ‘Why didn’t we always do it like this?’ We fixed it, we fixed what was wrong with our show!

“We had never done this, we had never been able to see Benedict or Martin in the right outfits or in the right era. Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce did both, so now Benedict and Martin can do both,” he said.

“It also worked out nicely in terms of scheduling,” Gatiss added “This was normally in the period where we would have filmed the three episodes, but because of everyone’s availability we knew that we could only do a special, so it seemed like the perfect time to try this.”

The episode is based on the case of Ricoletti with the club foot and his abominable wife, an adventure which was only mentioned briefly by Watson in the books. What this did offer Gatiss and Moffat, though, was freedom to create their own story.

“That was really the starting point,” Gatiss said, “and it has elements of some other stories too, but it’s mostly a new story.”


Amanda Abbington, who plays Watson’s wife, Mary Morstan, is also excited to see her character back to her roots: “She’s slightly more reserved because of the period, but inside she is the same strong female character.

“I loved the idea of them going back to the Victorian times, and it is such a gothic horror so it’s great.”

In true Sherlock style though, neither cast nor crew were able to give anything away about the specifics of the episode, or their characters’ roles in it.

Gatiss even jokingly interjected in the panel, saying to moderator Morgan Jeffery that they were “not being very helpful” and to “stop asking these questions” because they had to keep their mouths tightly shut.

The panel were able to offer some vague answers, though, which hinted at the special’s contents, or, more specifically, the female characters’ role in the Victorian setting.

“Mark and I had forgotten that Mrs Hudson doesn’t really talk in the stories, and Molly doesn’t exist in them,” Moffat elaborated, “We had to take that one head on… Sherlock wouldn’t be Sherlock if these characters weren’t vital and at the heart of it.”

Of course, the question on everyone’s lips was related to the plot twist at the end of Sherlock’s third series, and the possibility of Andrew Scott’s character Jim Moriarty returning to the show.

Slightly frustrated at the constant queries about the villain, Moffat stated: “Moriarty shot himself dead on a rooftop in front of the most intelligent man in the world, he can’t be coming back. He’s dead.”

Or is he? It is hard to tell, as the Sherlock crew have been so good at keeping the secrets of the series thus far, so we will just have to wait and see to know the truth.

Both Moffat and Gatiss are currently working on the scripts of the fourth series of the show, and, while they weren’t willing to give any details, they are both excited to be working with the modern-day setting again.

“It was quite refreshing to go back to the show as we know it, even if it was quite an exciting detour,” Gatiss said.

Luckily, unlike with the previous series, Sherlock fans may not have to wait long for Sherlock’s fourth outing. Producer of the show, Sue Vertue, said: “The next series we do is being filmed next spring so it might be the shortest gap ever.”

Tickets to see “The Abominable Bride” in cinemas will be available to purchase on 2 November, and the episode will be screened on BBC One simultaneously.

There were also some fun moments during the audience Q&A session as well…



• Doctor Who S09E06 “The Woman Who Lived” REVIEW
• BBC Releases New Sherlock Special Trailer
• BBC Teases New Sherlock Special Trailer


Copyright © 2015 MCM BUZZ – Movies, TV, Comics, Gaming, Anime, Cosplay News & Reviews