Meaghan Kirby
January 01, 2017 9:17 am
BBC

It has been THREE long years since Season 3 aired but Sherlock is officially back! With the anticipation for the upcoming Season 4, which Sherlock himself, Benedict Cumberbatch has described as “myopically dark” we’re sure everyone has been binging the first three seasons to get themselves back in the Sherlock frame of mind.

Due to the immeasurable scope that is watching 10 90-minute long episodes, we’ve taken the time to recap the last season to get you all caught up to speed. So go ahead and open your mind palace (but please, do it without the drugs) and get ready for Season 4.

Season 3 picks up two years after the infamous Reichenbach Fall, and everyone in Sherlock’s life (i.e. John Watson, Lestrade, Mrs. Hudson) all think he’s dead and have begun to move on. John Watson (Martin Freeman) has moved out of 221B Baker Street and is now dating Mary Morstan (Amanda Abbington). Sherlock’s brother Mycroft (Mark Gatiss), the only person aware that Sherlock is actually alive, brings him back to to help subdue to terror threat to London.

Sherlock returns to London to surprise John with his great return to discover that John is ~NOT~ thrilled to see him, as John has spent the last two years struggling to move on without him AND Sherlock interrupts his proposal to Mary (typical Sherlock).

With John angry with Sherlock and therefore unwilling to work with him, Molly Hooper (Louise Brealey) briefly fills in for him. John is kidnapped by the terror cell, Sherlock and Mary save him, and he reluctantly agrees to help Sherlock stop the terror attack. That’s what best friends do. 

With Mary and John’s wedding fast approaching, Sherlock is tasked with his greatest challenge yet — acting as John’s best man. Enlisting Lestrade (Rupert Graves) to assist him with the speech and taking an immense interest in the wedding planning, Sherlock is prepared to be the best best man.

There’s also fabulous bachelor bar crawl, in which John and Sherlock get arrested. It isn’t incredibly important to the plot but is ~amazing~ to watch.

Because it isn’t Sherlock without a mystery needing to be solved, Sherlock discovers that someone at the wedding reception is about to be murdered. In a rousing and ridiculous manner, Sherlock figures out that John’s recluse old army friend, Major Sholto, is the target. Sherlock, John, and Mary are able to save him and the reception goes on without a hitch and Sherlock correctly deduces that Mary is pregnant, much to the surprise of John.

Months later, Sherlock has disappeared only to be found in a crack den by John — but it’s supposedly all for a case. Sherlock is investigating Charles Augustus Magnussen (Lars Mikkelsen), newspaper owner with the ability to blackmail very powerful people.

While breaking into Magnussen’s office, Sherlock is shot by ~GASP~ Mary (!!??) and while flat-lining on the operating table, enters his mind palace. In his mind palace, his dead nemesis Jim Moriarty (Andrew Scott) gives him a pep talk, and Sherlock escapes his mind palace, returning to the land of the living. And now he needs to figure out why Mary shot him, but come on, this is Sherlock, he already KNOWS why Mary shot him: She’s got many secrets herself. 

Mary reveals to Sherlock and John that she is a former assassin, and Magnussen has information that could imprison her for life. Mary gives the information to John, who decides he doesn’t want to know about her past.

During the holidays at the Holmes house, Sherlock drugs everyone except John (typical Sherlock) and the two take Mycroft’s laptop to Magnussen’s estate, where they hope to break into his vault for their own blackmail. While there, Magnussen reveals himself to be the big bad behind John’s kidnapping earlier in the season, as well as other events having previously taken place.

Sherlock attempts to exchange state secrets on Mycroft’s laptop for information on Mary, when Magnussen reveals that the blackmail is in his own mind palace. Realizing that as long as Magnussen is alive, his friends and their secrets are all in danger, Sherlock shoots Magnussen in the head, killing him. 

In exchange for a murder trial, Mycroft initially enlists Sherlock to complete a dangerous mission, only to be recalled when an alive Jim Moriarty appears on TV screens all over the U.K. asking, “Did you miss me?”

THAT IS HOW THE SEASON ENDS!! It’s honestly too much for us. 

The one-off Sherlock special that aired last inJanuary had the episode largely taking place in the 19th Century. The 19th Century plot takes place in the mind palace of a drug-addled Sherlock, who is struggling to deduce whether or not Moriarty is still alive. Sherlock concludes that Moriarty is dead but his network is plotting to carry out his plans. Somehow we’re sure there’s more to it but we’ll just have to see!

Now you’re all caught up and ready to watch season four of Sherlock!

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