The hit BBC drama series 'Sherlock' has been praised for many reasons including its writing, the performances of its stars Benedict Cumberbatch (who plays the titular Sherlock Holmes) and Martin Freeman (his stalwart Watson), as well as the visual direction of the show. Yet the series has accomplished something that is even more impressive than the above, considering the age we live in: 'Sherlock' has managed to create a mystery--and keep its solution a secret.
At the close of the second season of 'Sherlock,' our intrepid consulting detective is seen falling from a building rooftop to his seemingly-certain death... and yet here we are, preparing for season three. Obviously fans are well aware that Holmes did not make a mess of the pavement at the end of season two, and yet no one can figure out just how the brilliant thinker managed to avoid a splattered fate. Rabid fans have clambored across websites, discussion boards and spoiler-posts to try to learn the answer and, to the credit of 'Sherlock's production staff, they have largely come up empty-handed.
Cue the production of the third season of 'Sherlock,' where Cumberbatch and Freeman have recently been spotted filming in Bristol and Cheltenham, with photos popping up across the internet and potential spoilers in tow. One of 'Sherlock's producers has taken the unique approach of addressing the series' fanbase as intelligent adults, requesting that the fans respect the hard work of the cast and crew of 'Sherlock' while also contributing to one of the best-kept secrets on television. Producer Sue Vertue released the following statement:
"As many of you are aware, we’ll soon be embarking on our first London leg of filming for series 3. I’m also aware that there is quite a lot of speculation about where we’re shooting when. I can’t stress how much we the Producers and Benedict, Martin and the rest of the cast appreciate your love and dedication to our show – we’ll endeavour to live up to your expectations for Series 3.
What I am nervous about is that our London shooting schedule is punishing and will really give us very little time to interact with you. The actors really hope you understand that.
Also, and I know this is probably asking a lot, the majority of fans and indeed ourselves would REALLY appreciate it if you didn’t post pictures or spoilers or ideally our daily locations.
Thanks for your understanding. Sue x"
I could see this pleasant and respectful note having the desired effect; fans are highly effective as a community when it comes to shunning those who disrespect the central focus of the fandom. Wouldn't it be interesting if a mere request on behalf of a producer positively affected spoiler-culture online? Time will tell if Vertue's efforts pay off.