10 Fun Facts about BBC Sherlock Holmes


Fun Fact No. 1: While filming this memorable scene in 'A Scandal in Belgravia,' Lara Pulver was determined to make Martin Freeman break from character and look directly at her breasts. John Watson, however, is too much the gent, and maintained complete eye-contact with Irene Adler. In fact, more determined, or concentrated eye-contact has probably never been made!

Fun Fact No. 2:In ‘A Study in Scarlet,’ John Watson chances upon Stamford - an old acquaintance, who goes on to introduce him to his future friend and flatmate, Sherlock Holmes. The location of this chance encounter is the Criterion Bar – a location that was re-used in the unaired pilot of BBC’s Sherlock. 

When the crew were re-filming the final version of ‘A Study in Pink,’ however, the Criterion was no longer available as a location, so instead, Stamford and Watson are seen drinking take-away coffees in the park – with cups stamped, “Criterion.”

Fun Fact No.3: In the recent BBC series, Sherlock’s parents were played by the real parents of Benedict Cumberbatch – Wanda Ventham and Timothy Carlton.

Ventham and Carlton are both professional actors, and had originally hoped their son would not be drawn to the often unstable, and precarious profession

Fun Fact No. 4: In writing the sixty Sherlock Holmes stories, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle unfortunately made a number of continuity errors. One such error relates to the location of the “Jezail bullet wound” that Dr. Watson received when serving in Afghanistan. In ‘A Study in Scarlet,’ for instance, Watson writes “I was struck on the shoulder by a Jezail bullet.” In ‘The Sign of Four,' however, Watson narrates “I… sat nursing my wounded leg. I had a Jezail bullet through it some time before…” Finally, in ‘The Adventure of the Noble Bachelor,’ Watson simply refers to the wound as “the Jezail bullet which I had brought back in one of my limbs…”

The shifting nature of this wound is cleverly referenced in the first episode of BBC’s Sherlock, when John’s limp turns out to be psychosomatic, while his real wound lies in his shoulder.

Fun Fact No. 5: In ‘A Scandal in Belgravia,’ Sherlock is seen holding a newspaper with the headline “Refit for Historical Hospital.” This was originally intended as a clue for the season’s cliff-hanger episode, ‘The Reichenbach Fall.’ 

According to Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat, the renovation scaffolding surrounding Bart’s Hospital was to play a crucial role in Sherlock’s survival of the fall. The idea of this, however, was scrapped before filming of ‘The Reichenbach Fall’ began; thus relegating the “clue” to a simple red herring.

Fun Fact No. 6: In Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s ‘A Scandal in Bohemia,’ Holmes reveals that there are seventeen steps leading up to his Baker Street flat. In order to pay homage to Doyle’s little details, BBC Sherlock also furnished their 221B set with seventeen steps. 

This is also true of the Sherlock Holmes Museum in London, which has seventeen steps leading up to the second floor.

Fun Fact No. 7: In series two of BBC's Sherlock, Benedict Cumberbatch received violin training from Eos Chater - second violinist of the famous string quartet, Bond. 

Chater tutored Benedict in the correct stance of the violinist, as well as in such techniques as fingering, bowing, etc.
As Chater provided the audio of Sherlock's violin playing, Benedict was not required to learn full pieces for his role. He did, however, learn extracts of certain pieces, including an extract of Bach's Sonata No. 1, in the season's cliffhanger episode, "The Reichenbach Fall."

Fun Fact No. 8: In the original pilot of the BBC series, Molly Hooper was supposed to be a “throw-away” character – used only to demonstrate how arrogant, and ignorant Sherlock was of other people's feelings. In fact, Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat’s first rule for themselves in creating a modern Sherlock Holmes was: “Do NOT introduce a regular character who is not from Doyle.”

Louise Brealey, however, was just so delightful in the role, that Moffat and Gatiss were compelled to break their rule, allowing Molly Hooper to become, not only a regular, but an integral character to the show.

Fun Fact No. 9: Although the deerstalker has become symbolic of Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle never specified that the detective ever wore such a hat. Instead, the accessory was attributed to the character by illustrator, Sidney Paget, whose drawings provided such strong, and memorable imagery that they continued to influence film/television and stage embodiments of Holmes for years to come.

The first story in which Sidney Paget depicted Holmes in the iconic deerstalker was 'The Boscombe Valley Mystery' - while the closest Conan Doyle came to describing Holmes in a deerstalker was in ‘Silver Blaze,’ where he was said to wear an “ear-flapped travelling cap.”

Fun Fact No.10: The Bloody Guardsman who was the "test run" was played by Alfred Enoch A.K.A Thomas in Harry Potter.


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1 Response to "10 Fun Facts about BBC Sherlock Holmes"

  1. Alfred Enoch is the real life son of William Russell, who played Ian Chesterton in the first ever Doctor Who!