‘Sherlock’ Released The First Two Episode Titles For Season 4, But What Do They Mean?

In the first trailer for Sherlock‘s series four (or “fourth season,” as American would say), Benedict Cumberbatch’s titular hero warned “something’s coming” while distressing images of his friends and colleagues in dire need flashed on screen. Then again, with a new villainous presence (Culverton Smith) ripped straight from Sir Walter Conan Doyle’s books and played by Toby Jones, the BBC’s next installment of its hit modern adaptation of the classic character is bound to abound in thrills. Especially since the consulting detective gets a new partner in the form of a bloodhound possibly named “Toby” (after Holmes’s dog in The Sign of the Four).

Unfortunately, new episodes won’t grace televisions until sometime in 2017. So to satisfy fans’ insatiable appetites, BBC One posted the official titles for the first two episodes on Twitter.

If “The Six Thatchers” and “The Lying Detective” weren’t teasing enough, the show’s official Twitter account added its own variation to the news — a third episode designated only by a question mark:

The two episode title reveals set off a a flurry of activity among industry publications, blogs and social media alike. As Digital Spy reports, most agreed the first (“The Six Thatchers”) was an homage to Doyle’s The Adventure of the Six Napoleons, in which an unknown culprit smashes busts of the famous French general and emperor in order to find a “black pearl.” As for the second (“The Lying Detective”), its title most likely derives from The Adventure of the Dying Detective, whose title alludes to Holmes’s faking an illness to coax a confession out of Culverton Smith, who happens to be Jones’s character in the episode.

Perhaps the question marked third episode is the bloodhound’s debut, and will bear a name similar to The Sign of the Four? That, or as one Twitter troll astutely remarked, maybe episode three will finally do what Sherlock‘s creators swear will never happen:

(Via Digital Spy)