Sherlock Special Title and Air Date Revealed

It’s a very Happy New Year for Sherlock fans as co-creator/writers Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss have announced the title and air date of the Christmas special.

Speaking on the Saturday of the London ComicCon weekend, Moffat announced: “I can exclusively reveal that the long wait for Sherlock will begin again in the late evening of January 1st”.

“…2024,” joked Gatiss before producer Sue Vertue confirmed that the special will also go out on the same date in America.

So, just to avoid any japery-based confusion, the Sherlock Special will air January 1st 2016 in both the UK and US.

But what of the title? Well, on an announcement roll, Gatiss then revealed that the special will be called The Abominable Bride – which is taken from a line in the Sherlock Holmes short story The Musgrave Ritual, which begins with Holmes sorting through some old case files with Watson.

“Here’s the record of the Tarleton murders and the case of Vamberry, the wine merchant, and the adventure of the old Russian woman, and the singular affair of the aluminium crutch, as well as a full account of Ricoletti of the club foot and his abominable wife,” says the detective.

abominable bride

So apart from his club foot and his wives less than favourable reputation, what have we learned? Well there’s Moffat and Gatiss’ habit of taking the titles of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories and putting a spin on them. A Study in Scarlet became A Study in Pink, The Sign of Four became The Sign of Three and The Empty House became The Empty Hearse.

Could the titular bride be someone we’ve already met? Firstly, there’s the bride from the recently released trailer; clutching a gun, lying prone on her back, she’s clearly seen better days.

Could she be the ‘martyr’ of war that Sherlock mentions in his voice over? Or perhaps, the ‘abominable’ part is Sherlock’s name for Mary? Perhaps she’s put the kibosh on any further adventures for the pair.

Sherlock: The Abominable Bride comes to BBC1 on New Year’s Day 2016.


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