The boys from Baker Street were back in the most divisive series of Sherlock yet which, while outstanding at times, missed the mark for many fans. Still, the game was on.
The latest series of the BBC hit show Sherlock has certainly been dividing audiences.
Writers Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss promised us that the fourth series would be darker than before but that wasn’t the only change that was afoot.
The storylines were very different to ones that we’d seen on previous series, although if you took a closer look they did follow similar themes.
Often it felt like we were watching an episode of EastEnders or a James Bond film with all the family drama and action that was going on.
However, these new elements provided a new dimension that only added another level to the show and at the end of the day we were still watching Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Watson (Martin Freeman) solve crimes together.
The show is in its fourth series now and so it was time for it to evolve and mature, which it certainly did with these new storylines.
From the first highly emotional episode it was clear that this series would take Sherlock in a different direction.
The Six Thatchers was eventful to say the least with a thrilling ending that proved that the writers could still shock audiences with a huge twist that no-one saw coming.
The episode really developed the characters of Holmes and Watson allowing Freeman to be at the top of his game with an incredibly strong performance.
The Bond-like action and cinematography worked well ensuring that the episode was exceptionally exciting as well as tear-jerking; that dramatic ending seriously packed a punch.
The Lying Detective was certainly the best episode of the series which also ended on an almighty twist.
Toby Jones was simply outstanding as the villainous Culverton Smith, a man who embodied the truths we’ve had to face recently about how fame and money can be used to disguise awful crimes.
The episode may have been cunning and cruel but it was also the most human of the show so far as it concentrated on and celebrated the friendship and love shared by Sherlock and John.
However, right at the end we were introduced to the inhuman Euros (Sian Brooke), a villain who could even rival the great Jim Moriarty.
Brooke put on the performance of her life and dominated the series finale, The Final Problem, as she brought the menacing Euros to life.
The last episode echoed the finale of the first series as Holmes was put to the test and emotionally tortured by the punishing Euros who was seeking her revenge.
Alluding to the Saw movies and The Silence of the Lambs the episode felt like a horror film and allowed us to see a new vulnerability to Cumberbatch’s Sherlock as he was presented with a very new challenge.
Despite the darker tone this series still had the witty humour that we are used to seeing and it was great to see Mrs Hudson (Una Stubbs) have her moments in the spotlight as her sassy attitude gets us laughing.
As always the performances were outstanding, the cinematography top notch, the soundtrack beautiful and the writing extraordinarily clever.
The last montage certainly made it seem like there may be no more Sherlock but the decision is still up in the air and it’s clear the cast and crew have the most exciting time making the show.
And we, the audience, have the best time watching it.
Although this may not be the Baker Street boys at their best, Sherlock is still the one of the best shows on British television and is as enjoyable as ever.
Emily Murray is a journalist at UNILAD. She graduated from the University of Leeds with a BA in English Literature and History before studying for a Masters in Journalism at the University of Salford. Emily has previously worked for the BBC, ITV and Trinity Mirror. When Emily isn’t writing about topics including mental health and entertainment, you can find her at the cinema which is her second home.