Hell's Half Acre (hells_half_acre) wrote,
Hell's Half Acre

Rewatch: Sherlock - A Scandal in Belgravia (Part 2)

Part 1

It's actually uncomfortable for me to watch Sherlock's act on the porch as the mugged vicar, just because I know they already know it's fake, so it hits my second-hand embarrassment squick. That being said, Benedict does an amazing job at playing Sherlock playing a mugged vicar.

Irene: "Oh, it's always difficult to remember an alias when you've had a fright. There now..." *pulls the collar out of his shirt* "...we're both defrocked. Mr. Sherlock Holmes."
Sherlock: "Miss Adler, I presume."
- I like that defrocked line. It's good.
- Also, I want to bring your attention to what Irene Adler looks like, WHO they decided to cast, HOW they've done her hair... the colour they've chosen to put on her eyelids... She's Sherlock. The hair is pinned up, made to look wavey, like Sherlock's. She's a brunette, thin, with impressive cheekbones. They've given her eye shadow that's the same colour as Sherlock's eyes (though her own eye colour is not far off).

John: "I had tea too - at the Palace - if anyone's interested."
-Oh John, no one is. You aren't used to the ladies not paying you any attention...

I've seen some people who think that it's just because Irene isn't wearing clothes that Sherlock can't deduce her, but it's actually much more than that. Sherlock can deduce a lot from John's face, but he can't deduce anything from Irene - so she's purposefully crafted her skin not to give anything away.

Also, John has a date tonight - we'll see how that goes in just a short while.

Irene: "Do you know the big problem with a disguise, Mr. Holmes? However hard you try, it's always a self-portrait."
Sherlock: "You think I'm a vicar with a bleeding face."

Irene: "No, I think you're damaged, delusional, and believe in a higher power. In your case, it's yourself."
- I've already talked about how Sherlock's vicar costume is a self-portrait - and it's not because he believes in himself.

Irene: "...and somebody loves you. If I had to punch that face, I'd avoid your nose and teeth too."
- Irene's not wrong.

John: "Haha, could you put something on, please? Anything at all? A napkin?"
Irene: "Why? Are you feeling exposed?"
- I really love this line, because it points out the problem with the whole "your sexuality is making me uncomfortable" line - no, you are making yourself uncomfortable, and your weird mental hang-ups are not my problem.

Sherlock: "I don't think John knows where to look."
Irene: "No, I think he knows exactly where. I'm not sure about you."
Sherlock: "If I wanted to look at naked women, I'd borrow John's laptop."
John: "You do borrow my laptop."
Sherlock: "I confiscate it."

Irene: "Oh never mind, we've got better things to talk about..."
- I love this exchange for multiple reasons:
1)I like the concentrated effort that John has to put in to looking at Irene's face.
2)I know that Irene's measurements are the code, and therefore the line that she's not sure Sherlock knows where to look is a reference to that (or at least she implies it was later), but that being said...I like how Irene is actually more comfortable with John's inability to look at her face than she's comfortable with Sherlock's ease of doing so. I think she had wanted to use her nakedness to settle the "is he gay?" question and he's avoided giving the answer away.
3)I like how, once again, Sherlock and John have a little domestic argument in the middle of a case - in front of a naked woman no less. And "confiscate"? Really? I can just picture Sherlock "No! That's enough laptop for you until tomorrow, John! I'm taking it away now to teach you a lesson!"

Irene: "Now tell me, I need to know, how was it done?"
Sherlock: "What?"
Irene: "The hiker with the bashed in head. How was he killed?"

Sherlock: "That's not why I'm here."
- This is actually the first time, I'd argue that Irene really takes Sherlock off guard. Well, discounting the fact that he wasn't expecting her to walk naked into the room...so, okay, maybe the second time. But this is the first time she does it with WORDS.

John: "That story's not been on the news yet, how do you know about it?"
Irene: "I know one of the policemen... well, I know what he likes."
- This is kind of weird, because Irene would have had to call that policeman especially - and the only reason she would have done that would be if she knew that he had information on the latest case that Sherlock was working on. And in order for her to know that, someone would have had to tell her... now, we know from TRF that Moriarty has a man on the inside of Scotland Yard, so, I'm thinking that Moriarty, or the man at Scotland Yard with Moriarty's permission, was actually the one who kept Irene informed.

John: "And you like policemen?"
Irene: "I like detective stories and detectives. Brainy's the new sexy."

Sherlock: "Positionofthecar... uh, position of the car relative to the hiker...[...]"
- Now does Sherlock stumble over his words because Irene just called him sexy? Does he stumble because Irene and John are, momentarily, completely focused on each other rather than him [this is the reason Benedict gives in the commentary]... or for some other unknown reason? Sherlock DOES like to show off, especially to those who appreciate it. Sherlock doesn't spell out the whole thing though, he tells her what the vital clues are and then stands back and wants HER to figure it out. Now, this isn't the first time he's done this, but it's the first time he's done it, I'd argue, where he honestly is doing it to see if Irene CAN figure it out. Of course, he's also using it as a distraction, so that Irene is focusing on working out the murder case rather than focusing on keeping Sherlock away from the photographs.

I want to also point out that the focal point in this room is a mirror, that Sherlock keeps walking back and forth in front of...

Sherlock: "... the same way I know that the victim was an excellent sportsman returned from foreign travel and the photographs I'm looking for are in this room."
Irene: "Okay, but how?"

Sherlock: "So they are in this room, thank you."
- Oldest trick in the book. I personally hate that one, firstly, because it always works on me, and secondly because it's not clever it's just annoying.

Sherlock: "John, man the door; let no one in."
- There's a brilliant millisecond silent conversation between Sherlock and John directly after this line. Really blink and you miss it, which is the whole point...but I'm a huge fan of silent communication so, yeah, just had to squee over this. I'm one of those fans who actually really really want Supernatural to do a whole episode without dialogue like they've joked about doing at Cons, but I think it'd be brilliant. Anyway, I've gotten off track... John's been commanded to set off the smoke alarm.

It is interesting to note that as soon as John leaves and the door shuts, Irene gets nervous... and it never really occurred to me until now that she's a woman who was just locked inside a room with some stranger who wants something from her... geez. I mean, I'm sure she can defend herself, but I'd be freaking out if I were her. She's actually quite calm about the whole thing.

Irene: "Oh, I thought you were looking for the photographs now."
Sherlock: "No, no, looking takes ages. I'm just going to find them, but you're moderately clever, let's pass the time."
- I like how Sherlock calls her "moderately clever" - that's high praise coming from Sherlock. He wants her to be clever, he wants her to be like him, but she has to prove to him that she is... and she's going to, because that's the part she's playing in this caper.

I love the transitions in this show. I know I don't talk much about the directing when I do these rewatches, because these things are text base, so I try to focus on the text... but the directing in Sherlock is AMAZING.

Sherlock: "Any moment now something’s going to happen, what?"
Irene: "The hiker's going to die."
Sherlock: "No, that's the result. What's going to *happen*?"
Irene: "I don't understand."
Sherlock: "Oh well, try to."
Irene: "Why?"

Sherlock: "Because you cater to the whims of the pathetic and take your clothes off to make an impression. Stop boring me and think. It's the new sexy."
- It sounds like Sherlock is putting her down here, and I think Irene takes it that way - but I actually don't think he is. Irene is asking him why it's important (to him) that she figure it out herself. What he's telling her is that he LIKES that she's found a way to exploit "the whims of the pathetic" and that he LIKES the fact that she's bold enough to take her clothes off to make an impression (note that Sherlock just did the same himself that morning)...and so, with these good points going for her, he wants her to prove that she's also capable of solving puzzles... because if she is, then she's Sherlock, and Sherlock loves Sherlock. Granted, I realize that that's a very OPTIMISTIC interpretation of Sherlock, and it could very well be that Sherlock actually did mean those things as insults. If he did though, he'd be a hypocrite about 'take your clothes off to make an impression' line.

And the most important object in the room is behind a mirror.

Sherlock: "Thank you. Upon hearing a smoke alarm, a mother would look towards her child. Amazing how fire exposes our priorities."
- This is an important little bit of psychology, which is going to come up again in less than a minute.

Sherlock: "Alright, John, you can turn it off now. I said you can turn it off now!"
John: "Give me a minute!"
*Men come down the stairs with guns and shoot the smoke alarm*

John *raises hands*: "Thank you."
- I love how calm John is.

Irene: "I'd tell you the code right now, but you know what? I already have. Think!"
- And Irene mirrors Sherlock. There's the question as to whether Irene is purposefully being a mirror, after all. Is she Sherlock or is she pretending to be Sherlock because she knows how narcissistic Sherlock is? I guess the question we come to, which we will come to later, is whether or not Irene loves Sherlock? And if she does, does she love him for being Sherlock or does she love him for being Irene? If Irene is mirroring Sherlock on purpose, it could be argued that Irene actually does fall for Sherlock...but if she's not, then Irene might just fall into the exact same trap as Sherlock does.

American: "Hands behind your head, on the floor, keep still!"
John: "Sorry, Sherlock."
- John's line is actually really important here, and I think it's actually overlooked in this scene - but John has a gun held to his head and in the second he gets to speak, he's actually choosing his final words.

Sherlock: "American, interesting, why would you care?"
- And this is where Sherlock should realize that he's only part of the game being played - that the photos aren't actually the case. What remains to be seen, or considered, is whether Sherlock ever realizes that this is a game between Irene(Moriarty) and Mycroft... arguably, I don't think he ever does, not really, not until he's told.

Here's a question: Why don't the American's just shoot Irene? Why do they need her alive? They already know the what the code on the phone is. Aren't they just trying to get it back from her before it falls into the wrong hands? If Irene's protection is the fact that she's not releasing the photos, but the photos only have one copy that are also on the phone that the Americans want - then what leverage does she really have? Why don't they just kill her and destroy the phone? - I guess at the end, she argues that she has other information on the phone that might mean the lives of British citizens, maybe she has important information on the bad guys just like she has information on the good guys... that's the only argument I can see for not just killing her immediately.

American: "Mr. Archer, on the count of three shoot Dr. Watson."
- Maybe it's just because I get used to the British accents, but the American accent this guy uses always seems so over the top to me.
- More importantly though... "It's amazing how fire exposes our priorities." The Americans were, indeed, listening, and they too are using Sherlock's tactics against him - albeit in a slightly different way.

Sherlock: "I don't know the code."
American: "One"
Sherlock: "I don't know the code."
American: "Two"
Sherlock: "She didn't tell me. I DON'T KNOW IT!"
American: "I'm prepared to believe you any second now..."
*Sherlock looks over to Irene, Irene looks down.*
American: "Three."

Sherlock: "No! Stop!"
- Again, we get a very quick communication between Irene and Sherlock.
- Would the Americans have really shot John? I think that the only way they'd believe Sherlock didn't know the code would be if he didn't manage to save Watson...so, yeah, I think they might have.
- Sherlock immediately losing his cool is always fun to watch, even though I feel bad about it later.

I also love the eye-flicker that Sherlock does as he tries to figure out Irene's measurements. I'm glad that boys are better at estimating measurements and space than girls are - personally, if I had guessed, I would have gotten John killed. :P

American: "Thank you, Mr. Holmes. Open it, please."
*Sherlock looks at Irene. Irene hastily looks away*
- Again, I love silent communication.

Sherlock: "Vatican Cameos"
- I love that a)this is a code word, and b)we don't know, and never find out, why THIS is their code word.

And then the awesome slow motion camera...very cool.

But, if we actually just watch John, we know what "Vatican cameos" means. I've seen people on tumblr make fun of John, because Sherlock and Irene both go into ass kicking mode, and John just ducks and then checks to see if the dead guy is dead. But, the fact that John just ducks - that John is, in fact, a trained killer (of sorts) and he not only ducks, but ducks until Sherlock has removed the threat, indicates to me that "Vatican cameos" is actually a code for "John, get down and stay down, no matter what."

When Sherlock disarms the lead American, and he looks over at Irene, he's SURPRISED that she too used the opportunity to gain the upper hand... and he actually instructs her to knock the guy she's holding at gun point out. I like that added bit, because of course Irene wouldn't have known what "Vatican cameos" meant, but she would know that her safe was about to create a bit of chaos one way or another - so I think, even if Sherlock had been shot, Irene would have used the opportunity the exact same way and gotten herself out of there. I'm not sure Sherlock should have been surprised.

Irene: "You were very observant."
John: "Observant?"
Irene: "I'm flattered."
Sherlock: "Don't be."

John: "Flattered?"
- Sherlock, once again, avoids Irene's "is he gay" question, by letting her know that his observance of her measurements had absolutely nothing to do with an appreciation for them.

Of course, now that I'm talking about her measurements again - I think the fact that Irene uses them as the code tells us about her own narcissism levels... and certainly lays credence to the theory that Irene might end up infatuated with Sherlock because she's infatuated with herself.

John: "We should call the police."
Sherlock: "Yes" *fires five shots into the air in a nice neighbourhood* "On their way."
John: "For god's sake..."

Sherlock: "Oh shut-up, it's quick."
- Again, I just love how every interaction between Sherlock and John is laced with this sense of domesticity, even when they're being anything but domestic.

Sherlock: "Well, that's the knighthood in the bag."
- I love how innocent and young Sherlock looks when he says this and tosses the phone up in the air. I know from the commentary that the "twiddling" was pure Benedict who now hates himself for doing it so much, but I love it.

John: "It's alright, she's just out cold."
Irene: "Well, god knows she's used to that..."
- So, mirrors, Irene has an assistant/companion that she appears to be not overly concerned with the well-being off, but when she walked into the room, John recognized that she was concerned, even if a moment later she dismisses it as seemingly trivial. Also, from Irene's response, we know that there is a sexual component (or at least a professional D/s component) to Irene's relationship with her companion - which, again, is different than Sherlock and John's relationship, but it's the same difference as the dominatrix/vicar thing, which says something.

And then Sherlock falls for the old "nice sleeve, STAB YOU!" trick... oh Sherlock.

Irene: "...now tell that sweet little posh thing that the pictures are safe with me. Not for blackmail, just for insurance. Besides, I might want to see her again."
- Now, up until that last sentence, is it wrong of me that I thought "that sweet little posh thing" was referring to Mycroft? :P (I suppose he's not very little.)

Irene: "This is how I want you to remember me - the woman who beat you."
- This is goddamn sexy.
- Now, we ask ourselves, is Irene the woman who beat him? Some people (including Moffat in the commentary) didn't think so, they thought this episode spoiled that line because in the end she doesn't beat him. I disagree. Firstly, I think she does (in a way) beat him in the end, though I think by that point they're beyond the game... secondly though, I don't think the end is what matters for this line or to Sherlock. Irene did beat him right here, right now, and again later, and to Sherlock, that's all that matters, the fact that he was beaten ONCE. It doesn't matter if she beats him every single time they play, it just matters that she managed to do it at least once. You can't be undefeated if you've been defeated, even if you do play best 2 out of 3.

(And if they were playing 2 out of 3, Irene would actually still win.)

John: "Jesus, what are you doing?"
Irene: "He'll sleep for a few hours. Make sure he doesn't choke on his own vomit, it makes for a very unattractive corpse."
John: "What's this? What have you given him? Sherlock?"

Irene: "He'll be fine. I've used it on loads of my friends."
- This always makes me squirm a bit, because I don't like the idea of people forcibly injecting former drug addicts with unknown drugs. I've had some friends, who, while never actually "addicts" developed very extreme reactions over time to drugs that are usually harmless... what I'm saying is: Kids, don't inject your friends with drugs, unless you know their medical history.

Irene: "You know, I was wrong about him. He did know where to look."
John: "For what? What are you talking about?"
Irene: "The key code to my safe."
John: "What was it?"

Irene: *to Sherlock* "Should I tell him?" *to John* "My measurements."
- The interesting thing here is that Irene does use this, I think, in an effort to cause jealousy. I mean, I suppose you could also argue that she might say it as bragging that she did get an answer to her "is he gay?" question and therefore she's clever... but the truth is that she didn't really. Everyone knows that Sherlock is observant, and you can size someone up without being attracted to them. Tailors do it all the time. So, yes, I think Irene is trying to put a little schism between John and Sherlock, perhaps going on the off-chance that they really are gay for each other.

And Irene solves the hiker case... I like the way they did this, with Sherlock still out of it and on drugs. I really like the bed transition, that was super cool. But, Irene does prove that she's clever - and can beat Sherlock not just with a surprise application of narcotics, but also with intelligence...or at least, match him in intelligence. Again though, Irene's game isn't about beating Sherlock, it's about beating Mycroft, so all her intelligent game is being focused there.

Sherlock: "John? JOHN!"
John: "You okay?"
Sherlock: "How did I get here?"

John: "Well, I don't suppose you remember much, you weren't making a lot of sense. Oh, I should warn you, I think Lestrade filmed you on his phone."
- How come I don't have more fics about Sherlock being drugged out of his mind on the way back from Irene's and "not making a lot of sense"...what was he saying?!? I want to know!

Sherlock: "Where is she?"
John: "Where's who?"
Sherlock: "The woman. That woman."
John: "What woman?"
Sherlock: "The woman! The woman woman!"

John: "Oh! Irene Adler! She got away, no one saw her."
- Drugged Sherlock is fun. Also, obviously Sherlock wasn't talking about Irene when he "wasn't making much sense" otherwise John would have known who he was talking about immediately.

John: "You'll be fine in the morning. Just sleep."
Sherlock: "Of course I'll be fine. I am fine. I'm absolutely fine."
John: "Yes, you're great. Now, I'll be next door if you need me."
Sherlock: "Why would I need you?"

John: "No reason at all."
- And that's how John's date went. He cancelled it to sit in the kitchen all night in case Sherlock woke up in a drug-fueled confused panic - which he did at least once.

The ringtone... or "text alert"
- So, I just thought this was a sexy sigh, but apparently it's an orgasm? Or, at least, that's what they said it was on the commentary... but, yeah, that's a very romanticized version of an orgasm in my opinion.

Sherlock: "The photographs are perfectly safe."
Mycroft: "In the hands of a fugitive sex-worker?"
Sherlock: "She's not interested in blackmail, she wants... protection for some reason. I take it you stood down the police investigation into the shooting at her house."
Mycroft: "How can we do anything while she has the photographs, our hands are tied."

Sherlock: "She'd applaud your choice of words."
- So, Sherlock so far has twigged to the fact the fact that Irene needs the photographs for protection. Mycroft DOES know she's using them for protection because he already knows what else she has.
- Sherlock's line about how "she'd applaud your choice of words" is actually saying that HE applauds Mycroft's choice of words... Irene is now a handy imaginary best friend for Sherlock.

Sherlock: "Do you see how this works, that camera-phone is her get out of jail free card. You have to leave her alone. Treat her like royalty, Mycroft."
John: "Though, not the way she treats royalty."
- And John is Sherlock's non-imaginary best friend. :)
- Also, now that Sherlock knows that it's not just a power play, that protection IS the cost of the photographs, he's once again back to his stance that Mycroft should just give her what she wants. Of course, Sherlock hasn't worked out WHY she needs protecting yet.

John: "What was that?"
Sherlock: "Text."

John: "But what was that noise?"
- The interesting thing here is Mycroft's face - he starts looking at Sherlock like he's a confusing alien.

Sherlock: "Did you know there were other people after her too, Mycroft, before you sent John and I in there? CIA trained killers, I think, is an excellent guess."
John: "Yeah, thanks for that, Mycroft."
Mrs. Hudson: "It's a disgrace, sending your little brother into danger like that. Family is all we have in the end, Mycroft Holmes."
Mycroft: "Oh shut-up, Mrs. Hudson."
Sherlock, John: "Mycroft!"

Mycroft: *startled* "Apologies."
- Love it.

Mrs. Hudson: "Thank you."
Sherlock: "Though do in fact shut-up."
- Hahahaha, oh love it even more. "Nobody speaks to Mrs. Hudson that way except me!" :P

Sherlock: "It's a text-alert. Means I've got a text."
- I want this line as my text-alert. I've got to figure out how to set that up.

Mrs. Hudson: "Would you turn that phone down a bit. At my time of life it's..."
- This is actually the only time I don't really like Mrs. Hudson. I mean... she's not really the type to have delicate sensibilities, and I usually find the older women get the less offended they are by sexy things...unless they're nuns or something. But you know, whatever.

John: "I'm wondering who would have gotten hold of your phone, because it would have been in your coat, wouldn't it?"
Sherlock: "I'll leave you to your deductions."
John: "I'm not stupid, you know."

Sherlock: "Where do you get that idea?"
- At this point, I just think John is teasing Sherlock that he both lost his coat and was not only beaten, but then text-alert pranked by 'the woman.' I love the affectionate way John teases him, he lets Sherlock cover his face, he hints only... and Sherlock equally affectionately let's him.

Mycroft: "Bond Air is go, check with the Coventry lot."
Sherlock: "What else does she have? Irene Adler! The Americans wouldn't be interested in her for a couple of compromising photographs. There's more. Much more. Something big's coming, isn't it?"
Mycroft: "Irene Adler is no longer any concern of yours. From now on you will stay out of this."
Sherlock: "Oh, will I?"

Mycroft: "Yes, Sherlock. You will."
- But this was the problem with Mycroft's play - and what Irene was counting on - once you engage Sherlock, he remains in play. Mycroft puts him on the board but then stops using him, so Irene starts to. You can't really use a chess metaphor for that one, because you can't control other people's players in chess... and at the moment I can't think of a game where you can. That'd be an interesting game though - if you don't move a piece in X turns, the other player can use it if they like.
- We also know that "Bond Air" was Mycroft's concern all along (like the Americans), because the morning after it's not a call from the palace he gets, but a call about whether "Bond Air" is still on.
It's very interesting though, right when Mycroft says "yes, Sherlock, you will" there are two audible heart beats added to the background noise.

I love John's smile as Sherlock plays Mycroft out of the flat.

I just happened to watch this episode recently with my British friend, and he laughed when it cut to the snow falling outside the window. Apparently every single British show that takes place at Christmas has a snow scene in it, despite the fact that 95% of Christmases (in London at least) are without snow.

I love Sherlock's little bow when he finished playing.

Mrs. Hudson: "Lovely, Sherlock, that was lovely!"
John: "Marvelous"
Lestrade: "That was very good."
Mrs. Hudson: "I wish you could have worn the antlers!"

Sherlock: "Something’s are best left to the imagination, Mrs. Hudson."
- I love John's curt nodded "marvelous" - I mean, at this point, he probably hears Sherlock playing the violin all the time, but he still compliments him after a performance.
- I also love how Mrs. Hudson wanted Sherlock to wear antlers. I really think that Sherlock likes people who treat him just like everyone else, even though he doesn't act like everyone else. I mean, Sherlock wouldn't be caught dead in antlers, but I think he's got a spot of affection for the fact that Mrs. Hudson tried to get him to.

John calls Mrs. Hudson "Mrs. H" when he hands her whatever is in that bowl. That's cute. I wonder what her first name is. I guess she doesn't have one. :P

John's girlfriend, Jeanette, actually looks nervous when she offers Sherlock a pastry. I like the way this actress chose to act this part... she's obviously clued into the fact that her relationship with John hinges on Sherlock, and she wants approval.

Sherlock: "No, I can get this. Sarah was the doctor, and then there was the one with spots, and the one with the nose, and - who was after the boring teacher?"
Jeanette: "Nobody."

Sherlock: "Jeanette! There we go, process of elimination."
- Poor Jeanette. She wanted approval, and instead she's getting ignored, because she's not worth Sherlock's notice... which, to her probably says that John goes through girls like... well, someone who goes through stuff. He does, because, let's face it, he's known Sherlock for what? a year? And he's had four girlfriends. And he goes through girls because John is both charming and he prioritizes Sherlock and so the girls eventually leave. It's hardly his fault. Sherlock is used to it by now, obviously, and isn't too concerned about whether John's lady friends are going to disrupt their lives.

Sherlock: "Oh dear lord..."
Molly: "Hello everyone! Sorry, it said on the door just come up..."
- Poor Molly. Sherlock just doesn't understand you... or does, but not completely, not yet... give him time. I do feel really bad that he cringes when he sees her though. I think, at this point, he doesn't know why she falls over herself all the time and assumes it's because she's an idiot, not realizing that she's one of the rare people who actually likes him. Sherlock is not used to being liked.

Sherlock: "Everybody saying hello to each other! How wonderful."
- Oh Sherlock, you really hate social protocol.

*Molly takes off her coat*
John: "Holy Mary!"
- Of course, I have to mention Lestrade's reaction. I totally ship Lestrade/Molly after this scene. I feel like taking them out in a rowboat and singing "Kiss the girl" at them... or maybe "Kiss the DI" because I think Molly's the bolder of the two.

Molly: "Having our Christmas drinkies then?"
Sherlock: "Well, there's no stopping them, apparently."

Mrs. Hudson: "It's the one day of the year where the boys have to be nice to me, so it's almost worth it."
- Firstly, I like the fact that Sherlock IS trying to play along with this social gathering. His line is still a little sarcastic, but he says it in a joking tone of voice. You can't really force Sherlock Holmes to do anything against his will, but the flat is clean and decorated, he's played a Christmas song on the violin, and he's sitting in the same room with everyone - even the boring teacher!
- Secondly, poor Mrs. Hudson, the ONE day of the year. Awww... I know that's not true, because 364 days of crap isn't really worth one attempt at being nice... but it still says a bunch of how much Mrs. Hudson loves her boys... and how much the boys love her, if they did all this just because Mrs. Hudson wanted them to. She seems the type to think that John and Sherlock should have their friends over for a Christmas drink.

Sherlock: "John?"
John: "Hm?"
Sherlock: "The counter on your blog?"
John: "Why?"
Sherlock: "It still says 1895."

John: "Oh no, Christmas is cancelled."
- Hahahaha, oh John, I love you.

Sherlock: "You've got a photograph of me wearing that hat!"
John: "People like the hat."

Sherlock: "No they don't- What people?"
- Sherlock still doesn't understand the blog... it's kind of hilarious.
- Sherlock also has John's "Sherlock Holmes Baffled!!" post up to the editing page...which means that Sherlock breaks into John's blog and edits entries apparently, and John doesn't care. :P

Molly: "I've seen much worse, but then I do post-mortems. Oh, god, sorry-"
Sherlock: "Don't make jokes, Molly."
- I really love this line, because Sherlock and Molly aren't that different... at least when it comes to being really awkward in social situations. I think this is why they actually make such great friends. Sherlock and Molly understand each other on a certain level. (Yes, I know i just said a few lines ago that Sherlock didn't understand Molly - but, he understands the part of her that other people don't understand, and misunderstands the part of her that other people DO understand... if that makes any sense.)
- I also really love Molly because she is me at parties/social situations. I don't do post-mortems, but I do research institutionalized child abuse  for a living. Bringing up my job at a party is a mood killer. The most dreaded question I get is "what do you do?" and it's like the second/third question that everyone asks by default. I'm starting to think that I should just start lying.

Molly: "I wasn't expecting to see you. I thought you were going to be in Dorset for Christmas."
Lestrade: "That's first thing in the morning, me and the wife - we're back together, it's all sorted."

Sherlock: "No, she's sleeping with the P.E. teacher."
- Oh, and the party starts crumbling... poor everyone. Sherlock is unflinchingly honest, because thats how he is with his friends.

Actually, let me just pause here and say that between S1 and S2, Molly has become Sherlock's friend - even in his own eyes, because Sherlock has started being unflinchingly honest with her. He doesn't compliment her to get what he wants anymore... he's treating her like he treats Lestrade and Mrs. Hudson, and even John. He's being brutally honest. This is why Molly counts, although Molly herself misses the implications (and so do other people, but we'll get to that when I get to TRF).

Anyway, back to what I was saying... Lestrade's face is fairly heartbreaking, because Lestrade knows Sherlock well enough to know that he's right. And actually, Rupert Graves has a great reaction shot where you see him do some invisible math in his head and realize that Sherlock is right. So, him and the wife really aren't back together, and everything really isn't sorted. Also, "P.E. Teacher" to me means that Lestrade and the wife have kids - and I hate breakups that involve kids, especially break-ups that involve cheating and kids. :(

Molly: "And John, I hear you're off to your sister's, is that right?"
John: "Yeah"

Sherlock: "Sherlock was complaining- saying."
- I love this part of the exchange too, firstly because Sherlock's been complaining that John's leaving for Christmas (we already know that Sherlock doesn't spend Christmas with Mycroft - so it'd probably just be him and Mrs. Hudson).
- Secondly, I love it because Sherlock gives Molly a look out of the side of his eye and she corrects the 'complaining' to 'saying' - because Sherlock is embarrassed that he will MISS John. She's revealed that he possesses a love for John, and Sherlock likes to pretend that he doesn't have emotions.

John: "For the first time ever, she's cleaned up her act. She's off the booze."
Sherlock: "Nope."

John: "Shut-up, Sherlock."
- And Sherlock doesn't understand the clever use of false hope to keep oneself happy.

Sherlock: "I see you've got a new boyfriend, Molly, and you're serious about him?"
Molly: "What?"
- Oh, this next part is going to make me cringe for poor Molly and poor Sherlock... but before we get there, I just wanted to point out that Sherlock is actually just following Molly's lead here. She just ran through the guests at the party and talked about their plans for Christmas. Sherlock has decided to talk about Molly's plans, which he thinks he can deduce - and it's happy things, because it's obvious that Molly has a new love interest and people love talking about their love interests....

John: "Take a day off."
- Oh John, can see it coming... but it's too late. Sherlock is in show-off mode, because this is his only party trick.

And realization dawns on John first, because he's known from the very moment he met Molly that she's only got eyes for Sherlock, but there's no stopping this train wreck.

Molly: "You always say such horrible things. Every time. Always. Always."
- Oh Molly.

It is a surprise to Sherlock though - he honestly did not see it coming, or else he wouldn't have brought attention to it.

Sherlock: "I am sorry. Forgive me."
- Sherlock almost walked away completely there - for a second - he almost just fled. But then he turned back and said that, and I love that they cut to John, who looks at Sherlock like he's suddenly become someone else - because he has.

Sherlock: "Merry Christmas, Molly Hooper."
*Sherlock kisses Molly on the cheek*
- The thing is that now that Sherlock KNOWS, he can respond accordingly. He can, perhaps, not say 'horrible things' - because as I said before, Sherlock was treating Molly like a friend. And I don't know about you, but I am goddamn horrible to my friends, because I know they'll let me get away with it and I know it won't break their heart. Sherlock needed to KNOW that Molly fancied him in order to let her down nicely, which he is, in fact, capable of.

And really, when has Sherlock ever had experience with this sort of thing? Not to make assumptions, but from everything we've seen so far, it doesn't appear like anyone has ever WANTED Sherlock. Even Irene, who flirts with him, doesn't really want him - not like Molly does. Molly wants what John has (only with sex). Even if Irene does genuinely think she's in love with Sherlock, she would flee in terror within a fortnight if she suddenly traded places with John and we all know it. Molly would be happy, or at least last longer than a fortnight.

Molly: "Ack! No! I wasn't- I didn't!"
Sherlock: "It was me."
Lestrade: "My god, really!?"

Sherlock: "My phone."
- Did Lestrade honestly think that was Sherlock? Hahaha...oh Lestrade, never change.

John: "Fifty seven."
Sherlock: "Sorry what?"
John: "Fifty seven of those texts, the ones I've heard."

Sherlock: "Thrilling that you've been counting."
- Oh, the Sherlock/John writes itself. I don't even know what to say to this. I mean... well, yes I do.
1) John is displaying Sherlock traits, which we'll see more of in a little while - he's not just letting things go by unnoticed. The text-alert noise is a deviance in Sherlock's behaviour (as is the fact that he never seems to answer them). So, of course John is going to notice them - and apparently, count them.
2) I honestly can't tell if Sherlock is being sarcastic or not. I think he might be trying to put John off the scent, but I think secretly he MUST be thrilled that John is counting. If only because it proves that John isn't actualy stupid.
3) If I were Jeanette - well, my boyfriend counting his flatmates sexy-texts would not be a good sign.

Irene also wraps the present in wrapping paper to match her lips. I like that added touch.

Mycroft: "Oh dear lord, we're not going to have Christmas phone-calls now, are we? Have they passed a new law?"
- Oh Mycroft. It's almost like you're MY sibling. Or, well, me. I don't think I even talked to my mother at Christmas this year. And when I do remember someone's birthday, I always feel the need to tack on a "don't get used to it" to their birthday greeting/present. (Like I said, I'm pretty horrible to my friends and family for some reason.)

Let's talk, though, about how Mycroft is alone on Christmas, just to contrast the two scenes. We get Sherlock in his flat, surrounded by friends (albeit it a small group), lit by warm colours and fairy lights... and yes, he just alienated one of his friends and then sulked off to his bedroom, but he's still Sherlock... now, let's take in Mycroft. Mycroft is sitting alone in a dark house staring into a fire, and when someone does call him, he's surprised and doesn't want them to make a habit of it. Now, even if Sherlock was doing the Christmas get-together just for Mrs. Hudson (and possibly John), like I said, you can't make Sherlock do something against his will... and he still FEELS bad about alienating one of his friends.

What I'm trying to say is that comparatively speaking, Sherlock is surrounded by loved ones - and I think this is an aspect of Sherlock that Mycroft doesn't quite understand (not only because it's relatively new, but because, I think, Sherlock likes it.)

John: "You okay?"
Sherlock: "Yes" *slams door in his face*
- Oh Sherlock... it's a good thing John knows you.

Part 3

Tags: meta, sherlock-bbc

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