‘There is a clue everybody’s missed’: Sherlock writer Steven Moffat
For the time being, we cannot say for sure what the ‘clue’ was, but what we can do is – speculate.
The first thing to remember is Sherlock was ahead of Moriarty, all the way to the end. It appeared on the roof as if he was a bit dumb, but he was only acting dumb because he knew exactly what was going to happen. He knew he was going to “die”.
The second thing to remember is that Sherlock chose the meeting place. This is important because by choosing the meeting place he has control over the stage.
The third thing to remember is that the call that sent Watson to see Mrs. Hudson because she was shot, turned out to be a fake. That fits in pretty well with the canon. He needed him out of the way while he dealt with Moriarty and staged his death.
As soon as the latter stages of Moriarty’s game dawn on Sherlock, it’s off to Molly he runs, to tell her not only that she counts, but that he needs her help. Her access to dead bodies (she worked in a morgue), pathology reports and medical personnel make her a sure thing for some kind of involvement. But which was it? A corpse-swap? A false report? Both?
The trash truck
Filled with rubbish bags (but is that all it’s filled with?), the open-backed vehicle was parked next to the spot on the pavement spot where the body landed, and pulled away just as the crowd rushed to the scene.
The truck was a prepared and cushioned landing spot, parked precisely to block Watson’s view (and presumably that of the sniper Holmes was also trying to fool) giving Sherlock time to break a blood capsule or two and move relatively unharmed to the pavement where he played dead.
If not that, then the truck could still have been there to obscure a switch of some kind, and to carry off the non-Sherlock body, whoever that may be.
The mysterious cyclist
On his way to the body, Watson was knocked down by a timely cyclist. This was no accident. Again, this was part of the plan. Either John was concussed or maybe he is injected with a small amount of sedative because when he gets up, his vision is blurred and his speech is slurred. This is important because if he was fully compos mentis, he would realized that the body lying on the pavement was not Sherlock, it is another body in a prosthetic.
After returning from the wild goose chase, Watson arrives at the scene and is made to fix his eyes on Holmes. Witnessing the fall, he’s then knocked down by the cyclist, and blocked by the crowd (of Sherlock employees?), before he eventually reaches the body.
If the body was indeed Holmes feigning death on the pavement after landing safely in the rubbish truck, his heart would be racing. How then, could a medical doctor be fooled into thinking he had no pulse?
A tricky one, this, with possible explanations being that either the body was indeed dead and made up to look like Holmes, or the more prosaic solution that Watson was in no fit state to make medical judgements.
Mycroft, remember, practically is the British government. He’d have the resources at hand to stage any number of fake public suicides one would imagine, and he’s not squeamish around corpses as the flight of the dead proved. But Mycroft’s involvement rests on this: Would Holmes have gone to him for help? Seems highly improbable to me, but it is a possibility.
Lastly, is Moriarty dead? If Sherlock can fake a deadly plunge, why can’t Moriarty fake a suicide?
Thank you for reading.
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