Sherlock (2010- )
Created by Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat
Three times every season, BBC’s “Sherlock,” a modern-day interpretation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s classic sleuth novels, creates a more suspenseful thriller than most released in theaters. Benedict Cumberbatch (“The Fifth Estate,” “Star Trek: Into Darkness”) and Martin Freeman (Bilbo Baggins, “The Hobbit” trilogy) star as Holmes and Watson, the dysfunctional duo famous for solving even the most unsolvable crime. “Sherlock” keeps all the essential parts of Sherlock (his address at 221B Baker St., his arch-enemy Moriarty, his arrogance) but gives him a BlackBerry, a confusing sexuality, and throws him into 21st century London with 21st century crimes. It’s an incredible adaptation of a story desperately in need of one (let’s just forget about CBS’s “Elementary,” whichmoves Sherlock from London and gives him a female Watson – gutsy, but ineffective).
Cumberbatch plays Sherlock with unprecedented arrogance, a touch of wit, and a vulnerability that he only reveals on special occasions. Freeman is a fantastic sidekick, famous enough to interest us but not enough to overshadow the show’s lead. The mysteries are incredibly thick with plot twists, but not the cheesy kind. You really just don’t see it coming, even when it makes perfect sense. You don’t even hate Sherlock for always being right. Each episode is an hour and a half long, without commercials, so you’re always treated to a movie-length mystery that always has you wondering what will happen next. It’s comical, it’s suspenseful, it’s really just entertaining. Don’t let the “Doctor Who” BBC buzz kill your excitement, because it tends to stick to realism and never makes you feel nerdy unless you want to. C’mon, hop on the bandwagon!