Fans of the BBC program “Sherlock” got another preview of an upcoming special when the BBC released an image of “Sherlock” stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman.
On July 8, BBC One tweeted a picture of Cumberbatch and Freeman dressed formally, with Freeman sporting a mustache.
Earlier this year, “Sherlock” co-creator Steven Moffat discussed the upcoming special episode and confirmed that it will not take place in the series’ usual time period. The BBC “Sherlock” series updates the action with Sherlock Holmes and Watson to the present day rather than having it take place in the 19th-century setting of the books.
“The special is its own thing,” Moffat previously said of the upcoming special episode. “We wouldn't have done the story we're doing, and the way we're doing it, if we didn't have this special. It's not part of the run of three episodes. So we had this to do it – as we could hardly conceal – it's Victorian.”
The three episodes Moffat is referring to is most likely the show’s next season. Before now, seasons of “Sherlock” have consisted of three episodes, each running about an hour-and-a-half. The show has run for three seasons so far.
“Sherlock” quickly became a critical and audience favorite and has won multiple Emmy Awards, with Cumberbatch winning the award for Best Lead Actor in a Miniseries or Movie and Freeman winning the Best Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or Movie prize last year, while Moffat won the Best Writing prize in the same category of Miniseries or Movie. The show also won the Audience BAFTA Award in 2015 in addition to other prizes in the past.
One way in which “Sherlock” exemplifies the current age of critically acclaimed television is its running time. “Sherlock” and shows in America on cable channels frequently air in far fewer episodes than shows on broadcast networks, and this difference can be for the better creatively. Even if “Sherlock” ran for an hour like many American dramas, it would still only be almost five episodes. Popular HBO show “Game of Thrones” only offers 10 installments per season, while the HBO show “True Detective,” which is currently airing its second season, only goes for eight. Recent Starz hit “Outlander” mixed things up even further by having a 16-episode season but airing eight episodes in fall 2014 and the other eight in the spring of 2015.
Tim Kring, creator of the NBC show “Heroes,” is currently working on a new version of the show titled “Heroes Reborn” and recently spoke about how thinking has changed about season length since his show debuted in 2006. "Reborn" is currently set to air for 13 episodes, while seasons of the original "Heroes" could run for up to 25. "It gives us the opportunity to do a closed-ended story that has a beginning, and a middle, and an end," Kring said of "Reborn." "And in this day and age with so many things to compete for people’s eyeballs and their attention on television, to log onto something that tells a finite story and has an end in sight, I think, gives the audience that peace of mind that they can jump on it without believing that it’s going to go on endlessly and maybe not pay off in the end."