After too long of a hiatus, Sherlock finally returned with quite the special dubbed The Abominable Bride. As promised, not only did it feature Sherlock and Watson in 19th-century London, donning Victorian gear, but also the sleuthing duo attempting to solve what seemed like an impossible crime: a bride who committed suicide in the public eye, only to seemingly rise from the dead to murder her husband.
In between what appeared to be an almost unsolvable mystery, it was revealed that 1890s Sherlock and Watson were just part of modern-day Sherlock’s mind palace, wherein the famous detective was using the real (yet very old) case of the Abominable Bride, aka Emilia Ricoletti, to figure out exactly how Moriarty is back from the dead.
For those who forgot, at the end of Season 3, Sherlock’s archenemy seemingly came back to life by declaring with a video message, “Did you miss me?” Obviously, this confused many — including Sherlock — because Moriarty shot himself in the head at the end of Season 2.
Well, in addition to Sherlock overdosing on drugs in order to enter his mind palace (at least this time around), he deduced that Moriarty is most definitely dead. I mean, he did even go to “the trouble of an overdose to prove it.” Also, there’s no way someone could survive a bullet through the head — not even Moriarty. That said, just because Sherlock declared the Big Bad is truly dead doesn’t mean he is gone.
Somehow, Moriarty is back and causing havoc, once again. As depicted during Sherlock’s trippy mind palace visit, Moriarity declared that no matter if he’s dead, he will forever be part of Sherlock. Basically, he is the virus of Sherlock’s brain. That definitely appears to be the case. Thankfully, Sherlock has Watson to keep an eye on him and bring him back to reality. Watson is Sherlock’s saving grace.
Now, to know for certain if Moriarty is really dead, I guess fans will have to wait until Season 4 returns with new episodes. However, what does this mean? Is someone taking on the identity of Moriarty to torture Sherlock? Is there some kind of “invisible army,” like that revealed during the story of Emilia, doing Moriarty’s work now that he is dead? Does this have something to do with the name “Redbeard” that appeared in Mycroft’s notebook?
Whatever the case, Sherlock definitely has his work cut out for him when Sherlock Season 4 returns sometime in 2017 on PBS.