I figured I'd review the latest Sherlock episode The Lying Detective. Because why not? I reviewed the first episode and I feel like I have a lot to say about this more recent one. And that's a good thing.
As usual, spoilers from here on in!
Okay. This may have just replaced The Great Game as my favorite episode. Let's start from the beginning with Faith and her father Culverton Smith. I loved Faith as a character, she was just wonderful. And it was great seeing Sherlock bond with her over chips and a little mystery. As for Culverton, the way Toby Jones portrayed him was perfect, because he was one of the scariest villains I've seen on this show to date. It's just how psychopathic he is and how ruthless he is with his "TD 12" serum. He seriously is an amazing villain, how he hid in plain sight and was out to kill "anyone". The way he and Sherlock interacted was great to see and how Sherlock used him to get John to be his friend again after what happened with Mary was a brilliant move in the story.
Ah, Mary. Yes, I need to talk about her a little. I know some people don't like her (and they have pretty good reasons not to), but I honestly adored her and seeing John imagine her and have her guide him throughout the episode was brilliant, absolutely brilliant. And even though I miss her in life, I feel like she's much funnier dead saying stuff like, "He really should wear the hat as a special tribute to me. I'm dead, I would really appreciate it." Just the way she knows John in this form and how she's so self-aware and loving toward him. And she can't do anything that the fans will hate her for in this form. Good move, Moffat.
As for Sherlock, damn! The drugs! The meth! How Mary asked him to do it to save John from himself! And he was so funny when high! How other people dealt with him was perfectly in line with their own characters: Mycroft seeing him as a security concern, John being angry with him about Mary and venting that anger using the drugs as an excuse - wrong on John's end, but still in line with who he is - Molly being fed-up with Sherlock's behavior as an addict and her love for him driving her to angry tears, and finally, Mrs. Hudson.
I have to give her her own section here because I love how we got to see this perfectly badass woman beneath a grandmotherly exterior. She had a gun on him and put him in the trunk of her car and Sherlock's reaction to such treatment was hysterical in every sense of the word.
"Except the boot. The boot was mean."
How she dealt with Mycroft and his men searching Sherlock's flat was perfect in its own way. The way she broke down Sherlock as a man of emotion and not hard logic was amazing. And she was able to berate Sherlock's own brother for not realizing this! It is brilliant and so wonderfully insightful for a woman we don't see much of as a character - most of the time.
"I mean, he knows you're an idiot, but that's okay because you're a lovely doctor, but he has no idea what an idiot [Mycroft is]."
And her concern for John as everyone watches the video Mary left behind for Sherlock was wonderful.
The video. I have to mention this, too. The way it was revealed that Sherlock on drugs was for her case was amazing. How the way he saved John from himself was brilliant, intense, and gut-wrenching. My heart was pounding the entire time!
And how such a scene finally exposed Culverton Smith as a serial killer was amazing. John attacking Smith to help Sherlock was so nice to see, because it shows that, no matter how much Sherlock annoys John, they are and always will be best friends.
And John's therapist. I know I've been rambling on for a while, but cutting up this episode to expose each piece for its brilliance is the point of this review. She was amazing, Eurus. The way she turned out to be Faith, the woman John texted in the previous episode, and Sherlock's secret sister was brilliant. And the note she left for Sherlock using blacklight was something I was happy to see because it reminded me of the secret messages of Journal 3 from Gravity Falls. Maybe I should have seen that one coming.....
All in all, a brilliant episode that is the perfect leader to the finale. I can't wait for The Final Problem!