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July 5, 2015 8:25 pm  #141


Re: Which pill was the poisonous one??

I agree, I see it quite the same way.


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February 23, 2016 10:27 am  #142


Re: Which pill was the poisonous one??

Hi. I came across this thread and decided to register to join the discussion. In 2013, I watched the episode and the game amazed me at how simple it was and how complicated it seemed to be. I am closely familiar with the game because I actually played it. Not the deadly version, of course. Just two small strips of paper rolled up into identical cylinders. One reads "Poison. You're dead." The other is blank. I assume the role of the killer. And anyone who played against me is the "victim". I played it 10 times. I was never "killed".

We have to remind ourselves that  the actions we make, no matter how arbitrary they may seem, are determined by prior events and that people are predictable. Depending on the situation and victim, the game changes. The victims of the cabbie were all afraid. Fear makes people even more predictable. Because they don't think, they just act when afraid. That relies on instinct or gut-feeling. And gut-feeling is a proto-response when our brain automatically processes any input. This is why the "move" the cabbie does is very powerful. Moving one pill towards the  opponent. Plus, he emphasized to Sherlock that, "I'm not gonna kill you, Mr Holmes. I'm gonna speak to you, and then you're gonna kill yourself." You can't really read minds but you can understand how they think(by studying people) and you can make them do what you want with the power of suggestion or NLP.

As I said, each play of the game is different. In my case, death is an abstraction and only a story element of my version of the game. So I got players who actually think. That might seem more difficult but I have known these people for two years. Lived with them in a huge dormitory and they have been almost like family. I know how they think, act, or speak. Half of them were really smart but I got the better of them. One even played twice to prove he can beat it.

This does not make me better than them or supernaturally smart. In reality, I have already studied them for 2 whole years. I just recognized that people can be predicted. I didn't cheat and made the game unwinnable, my opponents know that. Otherwise there won't be any thrill to the game. I can lose but the fact that I know w/c pill is w/c and they don't gives me great advantage.

Now, the cabbie is a genius because he just met these people, offered them a ride and then made them play the game. In that short amount of time, he studied them to the point he can easily predict them. Before coming to Sherlock, he did his research and studied him, as well. Take note, his last victim was smart and might have chosen her as a dry run for Sherlock.

There are two pills: poison pill and sugar pill. They are not both poisoned.

 Some of my friends who played the game actually made up their own character backstory while playing the game. That gave me the idea to write a short story based on our experience with the game. It didn't escape the rough draft stage. but here it is below:
https://web.facebook.com/notes/carlo-quita/killer-on-the-loose/659172210762499
I don't know yet if links are allowed so sorry in advance.
 

 

February 23, 2016 12:09 pm  #143


Re: Which pill was the poisonous one??

What an interesting view!  (And welcome!).  Why are you certain that both pills were not poisoned?   That seems the simplest solution (and often, the solutions in Sherlock aren't outstandingly clever, so I do think the simplest ones need to be considered first).  

We see how the cabbie works: he threatens Sherlock with a gun and watches him take the pill.  We never see him take a pill himself, and there's no need for him to take it.  His victims don't have any way of forcing him to take his pill first.  Maybe the cabbie could have done it your way, but there was no need for him to take any risk unless he wanted to.

The victims are weighing up the risk of the gun against the pill.   It seems obvious that that being shot is more risky than taking the 50/50 gamble over the pill.  But actually, they have wrongly estimated the risk of the gun, as it isn't loaded!  If they'd refused to take the pill, there wouldn't have been much the cabbie could have done (other than trying to club them to death with the gun).  If the information about the gun is wrong, then why not the information about the pill too?  In fact it could be a 100% chance of dying from the pill (if both are poisoned), and the cabbie has the satisfaction of watching them choose their own deaths. 

The only problem with that idea is that Sherlock seems to be about to take the pill, and surely he would have realised that this is the most obvious solution and refused to take it (although he had been drugged - and we see how badly alcohol affects him, in TSOT).  There's also the plot point of the cabbie's aneurysm, which implies he was prepared to risk death. 

 

February 23, 2016 3:12 pm  #144


Re: Which pill was the poisonous one??

Are we talking about the unaired pilot or the official Study in pink episode? Because Sherlock wasn't drugged in the official one.

Before, we see the killer we find that he made a mistake. That made him feel human. When Sherlock was with the villain, everything about the villain was so in your face so mad evil genius that some people who watched the episode have related that it kind of snapped them out of the show's groundedness. But I loved it. He felt like the real deal. Like a dragon towering over a knight. In this case, Benedict's not the dragon. Hehe.

Anyway, the way he spoke. The frustration and anger he has towards people because they don't think. He could have lied about anything else but to him that doesn't matter because he cared only about the game. The game is important to him because it reflects his worth and moves away from his image of a funny little man. The fact that he could lose was the thrill of it all. That he was clever to outlive others using his head is euphoric. Kind of ironic because his head is the reason he might drop dead any moment.

He said "What's the point of being clever if you can't prove it" not just to Sherlock but to himself as well. "Clever enough to bet your life." He's dying anyway, why not bet his life on who's superior. This is good enough not to cheat. In this way, Sherlock and him are of the same feather. The cabbie at this point has his pill out of the bottle. Ready to take it.

"You're not the only one to enjoy a good murder. There's others like you except you're just a man. And they're so much more." Of course there is a real possibility that he's just a really good liar. He's not really a genius at all and he was guided on how to manipulate Sherlock into a deadly game. But then that's just denying that there are others out there that could take over the mantle of the Napoleon of Crime. In fact, there are other geniuses out there, other than Moriarty or Sherlock, with a spectrum of motives and ambitions. The cabbie is one of them but his ambitions are more to prove his wits and mettle and a small fortune for his family than to have power and glory.

Cheating diminishes this villain in his own eyes and ours. In turn, diminishes the hero. As we all know, Sherlock can spot a liar and anyone more clever than they appear to be. He never guesses with people. So it's safe to assume, he knows the bottles could not possibly be both containing the bad pill. The only problem we face here is that he first believed, it was a 50/50 chance. This prompted the cabbie to say he's also an idiot for thinking like that. Kind of like how Mycroft kept saying to Sherlock when they were kids.

 

Last edited by Cabbie (February 24, 2016 3:18 am)

 

March 21, 2016 2:00 am  #145


Re: Which pill was the poisonous one??

kazza474 wrote:

Sherlock was pushing things to the limit. He does like to play dangerously. So I don't think we will ever know. It was a scene to show his 'dangerous play' side to viewers.
The obvious choice by the 'average thinking person'  would be the cabbie's after all the Cabbie was willing to take it.
But then would you take your own, because the Cabbie would think you are an average thinker so let's turn the tables on him.
But then would you think that the Cabbie thinks that also, so take your own after all.
But then the Cabbie might work out that you would think that, so maybe I better take his after all.


Myself?
I would have sneezed uncontrollably and hoped that some War veteran would wander past with his trusty weapon at hand!

 
LOL! My thoughts exactly!

If I was in that situation, I probably would've taken the one in front of me.

I probably would've died, but who knows. 


~proud member of OSAJ~

What is Lestrade's division?
 

March 24, 2016 5:22 am  #146


Re: Which pill was the poisonous one??

After rewatching the episode, I'm feeling pretty confident that Sherlock chose the right one. Because when he asks the cabbie if he was right, he chooses to say nothing. Now if I were dying, and I had proven the "famous Mr. Holmes" wrong, then I would probably be gloating about it. Instead, he remains silent, leading me to believe he would rather keep Sherlock guessing than admit his defeat.

Just my thoughts on the matter.


~proud member of OSAJ~

What is Lestrade's division?
 

March 24, 2016 6:50 am  #147


Re: Which pill was the poisonous one??

I concur.


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