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August 25, 2014 4:52 pm  #21


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

Sherlock says the one thing that surprised him was the suicide.


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August 25, 2014 5:15 pm  #22


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

That's the one thing that puzzles me, because obviously Lazarus required Moriarty to be dead or incapacitated.   If he didn't plan Moriarty's suicide, what was Sherlock planning?  And if you look at his words, it does look like he talked him into it. 

Anyway, Doctor Who has that covered too.

Sherlock: the one thing I didn't anticpate was just how far Moriarty was prepared to go

The Doctor:

Don't make assumptions about how far I will go ..

I'm sort of joking about Doctor Who.  I don't really think there are hidden messages about TRF there.  But I was stunned when I saw that scene, at the parallels.

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August 25, 2014 5:46 pm  #23


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

Steven likes doing this.


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August 25, 2014 7:57 pm  #24


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

Yes, Lazarus wouldn´t have worked with Moriarty conscious on the rooftop, so Sherlock and Mycroft had to at least think about a possibility to make him incapacitated. Maybe they didn´t anticipate his suicide, but then again.. that´s just what he tells Anderson. Sherlock knows Moriarty is completely unhinged. He is a bored criminal mastermind, who is so lonely he developed an obession with Sherlock, the only one he perceives as his equal. His ringtone is "Staying Alive", so obviously this is a topic with him. Maybe Sherlock knows from his past the self-destructive pull that comes from being all alone (I´m thinking of his apparent drug abuse here), just that he had a loving family, a pretty good understanding of what´s right and what´s wrong, a caring heart and a purpose. Moriarty has none of this, so probably the only things keeping him alive is the distraction that comes with his criminal activities and the constant search for a challenge, things that give him the only positive feelings he knows, those of power and supremacy.
And his game/flirt/obsession with his only soulmate and arch-enemy, the only one clever enough to challenge and possibly stop/defeat him.. I guess for Sherlock it´s not too big a leap to imagine someone might risk his life just to prove he is clever. And I think Sherlock knows Moriarty craves for his appreciation. Remember the line in ASiP where he says "I love the brilliant ones - they´re all so desperate to get caught. Applause! Appreciation! At long last the spotlight." Other people don´t interest Moriarty, I guess he sees them as goldfish, too.. but Sherlock, the boy who almost got him at his first murder.. what an audience. He is almost as brilliant as he is, he must be impressed, he must appreciate his work, his intelligence. The final problem - who would win at a direct confrontation where everything´s at stake, a battle of minds, a duel to the death? No more minions this time, just the two of them against each other. This is a real game of chess, it is not "dull" and "just chance" like the game the cabbie put up, and both are willing to put their life on stake to keep the upper hand. Maybe it was just accident that Sherlock pushed all Moriarty´s buttons in the right order to make him do what he did, but maybe it wasn´t? Maybe it was all planned and accounted for? In the last episode Sherlock had learned the hard way that there are textbook tactics to manipulate people into doing how you please, and I think that if you watch closely he might be using them. One lonely man desperate to show off - and a person clever enough to make him feel special. The promise of love, the pain of loss, the joy of redemption - then give him a puzzle and watch him dance.. I can´t help seeing parallels here. (Sorry if that sounds horrible and cynical..)

 

August 25, 2014 8:34 pm  #25


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

No, it doesn't sound horrible and cynical.  It makes sense that Sherlock would translate the experience with Irene to Moriarty.   There seems to be a development over S2 and he learns and matures in each episode.  I love your use of the quote there (and I agree with the rest of your post).

Last edited by Liberty (August 25, 2014 8:34 pm)

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August 25, 2014 9:18 pm  #26


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

If Sherlock played Moriarty the way Irene played him in SiB it would also answer your questions from the first post:

Liberty wrote:

Moriarty underestimates Sherlock, and believes what Sherlock says on the roof.  It doesn't occur to him that Sherlock is lying.  I'm not sure why, because the clues are there.   (Sherlock knows his Bach, for instance).    Is it pride?  Wanting to believe something?   Wanting a reason to fulfil a death wish?  He couldn't "read" Sherlock, underestimated him? I'd like your ideas on this bit - why didn't Moriarty suss out Sherlock?  Why did he let himself be manipulated into suicide?  

Moriarty was desperate to impress, and Sherlock made him feel special from the moment their "dance" officially started in the courtroom. "We had a special.. something." And later in 221b: "Most people would knock - but then I guess you´re not most people". It must have been thrilling for M. to be recognized by the only person he ever was a "fan" of. His pompous ego was flattered, he was intrigued, he got carried away by the game. He had to believe Sherlock, because doubting his words would mean doubting his own supremacy and magnificence. And that´s something a psychopath just can´t do (just finished an interesting read about psychopathic personalities http://cdn.boardhost.com/emoticons/wink.png
). He had waited his whole life for this moment, he felt on top of things and was too eager, so he became careless. Not only did he give Sherlock the first move in which he determined the place for their final showdown (I always wondered why he let Sherlock choose the place), but he couldn´t control his emotions anymore. If you want he is another example of someone who´s sentiment got the better of him, just that in his case his sentiments were only for himself and his twisted ego.

 

August 26, 2014 7:52 am  #27


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

Thank you for that.  It does help to answer my questions!  I wondered about Sherlock choosing the place too, and also about Sherlock knowing that he could choose the place (everything was set up for the roof of Barts).  I suppose Moriarty thought that Sherlock choosing that location was him playing along with Moriarty's game. 

I suppose there weas a message from HOB too, about how suggestible people are and that they'll see what they're told to see (well, under the influence of hallucinogenics at least, but still).  Moriarty already has a picture of how it's going to go, and Sherlock just needs to tick the right conversational boxes to convince him he's on the right track.  For Moriarty to not fall for Sherlock, he'd have to admit he'd got it all wrong.

Another clue about Sherlock's planning, I think, is him checking off the names of the three targets ... he knows who they are already.  And it's not just the people close to Sherlock.  Mycroft isn't a target, Sherlock's parents aren't targets, and neither is Molly.  Moriarty doesn't know Sherlock as well as he thinks he does.  He probably got a lot of information from John's blog.  Sherlock needs to be absolutely sure about the targets because soon Moriarty will be dead and Sherlock won't be able to extract that information.  Moriarty insists that "everyone" is at risk, until Sherlock gets him to confirm the names and "Three bullets.  Three gunmen.  Three victims". 

Sherlock doesn't actually need that information at the moment.  He has the fall planned, and it doesn't matter how many victims there are - his "suicide" will be the key to call off all the gunmen in that moment.  No, what he really needs to know, I think, is who he has to avoid contacting over the next two years - who is being watched and still at risk.  He can't make a mistake over that. 

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August 26, 2014 9:33 pm  #28


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

Wow, you guys are AMAZING.  This is such an interesting discussion.  In spite of the pain this episode causes me, I think I have to go back and watch it again with all your ideas in mind.

I think part of the reason I avoided this one specifically is because the rooftop scene confused me.  But now I have several theories to consider, and it will be interesting to see how they fit.

Still, can someone explain the following:

- the IOU motif.  We see it on the apple, the windows across from the police station, and in the graffiti.  Please explicate.

- the finger tapping and the Bach connection.  I am not up on my classical music, so what's the deal?  I saw the finger tapping three times: at 221B by Moriarty, in the lab by Sherlock, and on the rooftop by Sherlock.  Are all of them significant, and what do they signify?

Thanks-


____________________________________
I had bad days!


 
 

August 27, 2014 5:34 am  #29


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

I understood that was just Moriarty playing games.


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August 27, 2014 7:37 pm  #30


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

I feel as if I haven't quite worked out the IOU message (beyond what Moriarty says).  I think the apple is a reference to Snow White and her fake death.   The poisoned apple came as a gift from the Queen (Honey, you should see me in a crown!).  But IOU - I'm still working on it .  Sherlock does say that he has something of Moriarty's that he might want back (the fake code), but that would be Sherlock owing Moriarty, rather than the other way around. 

The finger tapping - I'm not up on Bach either, but it's made clear that Sherlock is, very much so. He is playing a Bach piece when Moriarty arrives, and he is able to tell a story about Bach's personal life.

You see, I'm not sure if Sherlock ever thought there was a code, but he played along with Moriarty and still had to find what Moriarty wanted him to think was the code (or maybe he really did believe there was a code).   At first he thought Moriarty had left something physical in his flat.  But eventually he works out that it was the finger tapping.  I feel that if Sherlock knew Bach so well, when he worked out that the finger-tapping was what Moriarty wanted him to think was the code, then he'd also notice that it was a Bach piece.  (Or else, why establish that Sherlock knew Bach intimately?). 

Incidentally, Sherlock already knows how Moriarty operates and that he uses threats and so wouldn't need the code. He knows that's how the court case worked.  He knows that that's what Moriarty's going to use on the rooftop (the threats against John, etc.).  So I think he already knows that that's how Moriarty got the Crown Jewels, etc.  He's manipulating Moriarty (I think so, anyway). 

Last edited by Liberty (August 28, 2014 6:57 am)

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August 28, 2014 5:51 pm  #31


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

I have trouble believing that Sherlock was able to predict Moriarty's suicide, to the extent that he actually, intentionally prompted it. The other thing about this theory--which is certainly compelling-- well, it turns Sherlock into a villain. All of the character development of seasonj 3 goes out the window, because he *really is* a psychopath. 

 

August 28, 2014 6:38 pm  #32


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

I don't think it does make him a villain, any more than shooting Magnusson makes him a villain.  I just posted something in another thread and won't quote it all here, but it was Steven Moffat saying that Sherlock would have no qualms about killing somebody if he decided that person should die - that he was able to do something other people wouldn't be able to do.  Sherlock hints at that on the rooftop (although I think he's also bluffing!). 

Sherlock claims to think the Camden Garroter was a good man because he saved so many lives.  I don't know if Sherlock really believes that, but by killing Moriarty (and Magnusson), he's saving other people.  That's his motivation.  It's not really for himself.  He had to kill Moriarty.. He wanted to kill him (in the book, anyway), and talking him into suicide was just a clever and very apt method. 

(And also, possibly safer all round.  Sherlock seems to act as if he's being watched, and there may have been repercussions for openly killing Moriarty, either for him or for others). 

If I watch the scene with that in mind, it really does seem as if Sherlock is talking Moriarty into it. 

Last edited by Liberty (August 28, 2014 6:38 pm)

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August 28, 2014 7:12 pm  #33


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

Why would that make Sherlock a psychopath? I don´t agree with that conclusion. Moriarty is an evil which proved to be unassailable by the justice system and which had its finger on the trigger to kill three people. To get rid of such a threat in such an elaborate way counts as self-defense and does not qualify as a psychopathic act at all.
Also let´s not forget that we talk about a man who plans the murder of friends and family as mental exercise. He would strangle Mycroft, he would poison John.. what would he do to a lunatic mastermind who threatened to burn the heart of him? Meet him with nothing but a fake code and the vague hope he will get everyone out of it alive? I don´t think so..

 

August 31, 2014 8:53 pm  #34


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

Zatoichi wrote:

Why would that make Sherlock a psychopath? I don´t agree with that conclusion. Moriarty is an evil which proved to be unassailable by the justice system and which had its finger on the trigger to kill three people. To get rid of such a threat in such an elaborate way counts as self-defense and does not qualify as a psychopathic act at all.
Also let´s not forget that we talk about a man who plans the murder of friends and family as mental exercise. He would strangle Mycroft, he would poison John.. what would he do to a lunatic mastermind who threatened to burn the heart of him? Meet him with nothing but a fake code and the vague hope he will get everyone out of it alive? I don´t think so..

Actually, I honestly thought the comments at John's wedding were just Sherlock, in his ham-handed way, trying to be funny. (In context, that makes the most sense to me. ) 

Regardless, he's a different guy now than he was in s1 & 2. 

 

August 31, 2014 8:55 pm  #35


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

it's exacrly the same guy who in S2, tells the 2 young girls that people don't really go to heaven.


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August 31, 2014 9:39 pm  #36


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

besleybean wrote:

it's exacrly the same guy who in S2, tells the 2 young girls that people don't really go to heaven.

I'm not so sure. It's very difficult for me to see the Sherlock of s1&2  letting Mary get away with shooting him because he wants so badly for John to be happy. Or planning the wedding. Or not taking cases, so he can plan John's wedding. On the other hand, there's a lot of uneven characterization going on in this show. On one hand, he can be incredibly selfless. On the other hand, he's wierd and rude, and people (including some of the fans of the show) don't really like him. It's like Moffttiss really wanted Sherlock to be unlikeable, but lovable. 

 

August 31, 2014 9:54 pm  #37


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

RavenMorganLeigh wrote:

On one hand, he can be incredibly selfless. On the other hand, he's wierd and rude, and people (including some of the fans of the show) don't really like him. It's like Moffttiss really wanted Sherlock to be unlikeable, but lovable. 

I couldn't have said it better. Series one and two, I understood Sherlock, but didn't like him in the least. He was the kind of person I no longer tolerate in my life, someone who's so good at something that people fawn over him and allow him to treat them like dirt. He was a jerk, plain and simple.

Series three Sherlock has matured. He has a self-awareness that he lacked in series one and two. I am very fond of series three Sherlock. I might even like him.

I don't consider this characterization uneven, but realistic and unusual to see in a television programme. Characters are allowed to to grow, or not, in response to to events and other people and become better or lesser versions of who they were originally.

If someone had told me after I watched ASIP the first time to hold on to my scarf because I was going to be taken on a ride that would pause with me feeling warmly towards Sherlock and cooly towards John, I would have been shocked. I was a John fan from the start. I could identify with a lot of aspects of his background and, to paraphrase Mr. Holmes, he was so unbelievably hot.

There haven't been many shows I've followed where I've had such a 180 degree about face on my feelings for characters and I think it speaks volumes as to the quality of the writing of the show.

Mary


John: That's clever. So you scratch their backs and...
Sherlock: Yes. And then disinfect myself.
 

August 31, 2014 11:02 pm  #38


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

maryagrawatson wrote:

RavenMorganLeigh wrote:

On one hand, he can be incredibly selfless. On the other hand, he's wierd and rude, and people (including some of the fans of the show) don't really like him. It's like Moffttiss really wanted Sherlock to be unlikeable, but lovable. 

I couldn't have said it better. Series one and two, I understood Sherlock, but didn't like him in the least. He was the kind of person I no longer tolerate in my life, someone who's so good at something that people fawn over him and allow him to treat them like dirt. He was a jerk, plain and simple.

Series three Sherlock has matured. He has a self-awareness that he lacked in series one and two. I am very fond of series three Sherlock. I might even like him.

I don't consider this characterization uneven, but realistic and unusual to see in a television programme. Characters are allowed to to grow, or not, in response to to events and other people and become better or lesser versions of who they were originally.

If someone had told me after I watched ASIP the first time to hold on to my scarf because I was going to be taken on a ride that would pause with me feeling warmly towards Sherlock and cooly towards John, I would have been shocked. I was a John fan from the start. I could identify with a lot of aspects of his background and, to paraphrase Mr. Holmes, he was so unbelievably hot.

There haven't been many shows I've followed where I've had such a 180 degree about face on my feelings for characters and I think it speaks volumes as to the quality of the writing of the show.

Mary

I totally hear you, Mary. I, too, actively liked John, and found myself put off by Sherlock-- HoB was the one where I was just about to write off Sherlock. The thing is, we saw s1&2 through John's eyes, and s3 through Sherlock's POV. And, as I watch s1 & 2 again, I find I'm seeing Sherlock's character with new eyes, filtered through what we know of him in s3. 

I think it's interesting that the writers have chosen to keep John (willfully, at times) blind to the changes in Sherlock. 

 

August 31, 2014 11:23 pm  #39


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

RavenMorganLeigh wrote:

I totally hear you, Mary. I, too, actively liked John, and found myself put off by Sherlock-- HoB was the one where I was just about to write off Sherlock.

Interesting. That's the episode where I thought he was maturing because of the exchange in the graveyard, where he makes a half-assed attempt at apologizing to John ("I just have one.").

I find I'm seeing Sherlock's character with new eyes, filtered through what we know of him in s3. 

I think the most important thing I learned about Sherlock in series three is how badly his parents spoiled him. That explains a lot.

I think it's interesting that the writers have chosen to keep John (willfully, at times) blind to the changes in Sherlock. 

Series three told me that John has an idea of who Sherlock is that has nothing to do with reality...

Mary


John: That's clever. So you scratch their backs and...
Sherlock: Yes. And then disinfect myself.
 

September 1, 2014 6:09 am  #40


Re: Did Sherlock plan and orchestrate Moriarty's suicide?

RavenMorganLeigh wrote:

maryagrawatson wrote:

RavenMorganLeigh wrote:

On one hand, he can be incredibly selfless. On the other hand, he's wierd and rude, and people (including some of the fans of the show) don't really like him. It's like Moffttiss really wanted Sherlock to be unlikeable, but lovable. 

I couldn't have said it better. Series one and two, I understood Sherlock, but didn't like him in the least. He was the kind of person I no longer tolerate in my life, someone who's so good at something that people fawn over him and allow him to treat them like dirt. He was a jerk, plain and simple.

Series three Sherlock has matured. He has a self-awareness that he lacked in series one and two. I am very fond of series three Sherlock. I might even like him. ..

I totally hear you, Mary. I, too, actively liked John, and found myself put off by Sherlock-- HoB was the one where I was just about to write off Sherlock. The thing is, we saw s1&2 through John's eyes, and s3 through Sherlock's POV. And, as I watch s1 & 2 again, I find I'm seeing Sherlock's character with new eyes, filtered through what we know of him in s3.  

That´s interesting, because I never saw Sherlock as a jerk or found myself put off by him in S1 & 2. He made some dick moves and he was rude and impatient, but he also already had a very strong caring and emotional side from the start. It´s just very quickly dismissed or replaced by some "psychopath"-notion by John. (That´s one of the reasons why I´m not a Johnlocker, I think John is not very good in understanding Sherlocks feelings and motivations. He likes him to be the "mad man" pulling him into adventures and he doesn´t give much thought beyond that. The things he writes in his blog.. but well. Still he loves him and is invaluable for him, so that´s fine with me. I hope we get a deeper understanding between them in S4, then I might even enjoy the thought. Right now it makes me uncomfortable..) 

In ASiP he helps John lose his limp, in TBB we see him hurt by remarks that everyone hated him in uni, in TGG he was seriously upset about the bomb explosion (he didn´t just shrug it off like a psychopath during a game might have), in SiB he apologizes to Molly when he realized he hurt her feelings and was so very sweet and protective towards Mrs. H, in Hounds he fought with fear and doubt and apologized to John for hurting his feelings (and he totally got why the innkeepers couldn´t bring it over them to shoot the dog, he just played along to John´s "no you don´t" when he answered "No I don´t. Sentiment?" Because that´s how John likes to see him and he wouldn´t tell him about his traumatic childhood experiences, would he?) and in TRF he sacrificed his life as he knew it to save his friends. 

So for me S3 was not a 180 but rather a continuation of his development that already started way before (probably accelerated by his experiences during the hiatus).

Sorry for being way off-topic now..

 

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