Sherlock : Season 3

Season #: 1, 2, 3
User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 631 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 40 out of 631

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User Reviews

  1. Nov 10, 2014
    9
    The third series of Sherlock is the best so far. With a change from plot-driven episodes to character-driven ones, this helps the show to evolve emotionally. Plus, great acting from the leads and a terrific new villain helps to cement this as one of the best and most clever shows on television.
  2. Jan 19, 2014
    10
    After a year and a half hiatus, the greatest British television phenomenon since Doctor Who proves that, going into its third season, it's not planning on slowing down or falling for third season slump. BBC's Sherlock, which features electrifying writing, high-end production, and absolutely phenomenal acting, hits the ground running in its first episode, resolving the cliffhanger of theAfter a year and a half hiatus, the greatest British television phenomenon since Doctor Who proves that, going into its third season, it's not planning on slowing down or falling for third season slump. BBC's Sherlock, which features electrifying writing, high-end production, and absolutely phenomenal acting, hits the ground running in its first episode, resolving the cliffhanger of the decade from season two while warmly inviting its viewers back into its slick crime-solving, ego-busting milieu.
    If there is one thing in this first episode that stands out as particularly laudable, it is Martin Freeman's dazzling portrayal of John Watson. After spending more than a year coping with the traumatic suicide of his closest friend (the feelings run so deep, some will speculate it goes beyond platonic), he reacts to the untimely and jocular return of Sherlock with such passion and credibility that he uncompromisingly validates - no, reifies - no, objectifies the character he has been able to establish with only nine hours of television. If Freeman (and to a lesser extent, Cumberbatch) are not showered with nominations by around this time of the year in 2015, you can be rest assured I will throw a fit.
    Glossy visual effects create more elaborated manifestations of Sherlock's enigmatic thought processes (more words are floating in mid-air, more images and memories whoosh by the screen to the sound of beeping technology and murmuring voices), but it's always for the better. Although some may consider the crime the duo solve in the first episode to be a little underdeveloped and convoluted, any returning fan (I included) will proudly proclaim how blown away they were by what is arguably the most impressive season premiere in Sherlock history. Unsurprisingly, the Brits at BBC have done it again.

    FINAL SCORE: 97.5 (almost perfect ---------------o----- perfect)
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  3. Jan 27, 2014
    9
    This show has redeemed itself (in spades) with episode 2 (John's wedding). Absolutely masterful. Cumberbatch is peerless, probably the best of the current crop of American and British actors. I now feel confident that "Sherlock" is on the way to a 10 rating.
  4. Jan 19, 2014
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Sherlock Season 3 focuses on character development much more than it has in previous Seasons. While fans may love this shift, I feel that this Season, specifically the first two episodes, suffer from the lack of an interesting core mystery.

    The first episode, The Empty Hearse, deals with the fall-out of the cliffhanger. I feel like this episode would've benefited from a B-level case, rather than the huge terrorist threat we're given. It's odd since it feels rushed and uninteresting throughout. One of Sherlock's deductions relied on withheld information too, which is sort of frustrating for the viewers.

    I think The Empty Hearse's biggest problem is that it tries to do too much. Yes, this is a 90 minute program but the aftermath of last Season's big cliffhanger weights down half of what makes Sherlock good: the suspense and mystery. The episode does decently fulfil its purpose, however.

    Episode one suffered from an interesting case all the way through, but the second episode (The Sign of Three) manages to build intrigue, only to fall apart at the end. Someone who can stab people seemingly through walls is an interesting premise, but the conclusion is one big 'wtf?' moment. Surely, you'd feel it if someone stabbed you, no matter how tight your belt is. And you definitely wouldn't just walk into the shower after pulling out a blade. Sherlock introducing us to the case in his best man speech was a good idea in theory, but this is just poor writing.

    There is quite a bit to love about this episode though. Sherlock admitting that he cares about someone other than himself was a huge moment for the character and the series as a whole. We even see this pay off in the finale. There's more great character stuff too, including more hints that Mary isn't who she says she is. There's also some hilarious moments, but I don't think a three episode Season can really afford having a lull in the middle.

    In true Sherlock fashion, after a weaker second entry, the third episode (His Last Vow) comes back in full from. I've talked about some of the problems I had with the first two episodes; perhaps the most criminal is not giving Charles Augustus Magnussen enough of a build-up. Charles is an expert blackmailer who pushes people around thanks to his super computer of a brain. He's the most Sherlock-esque villain of the series, and it's not much of a stretch to imagine Sherlock ending up like him if he hadn't have met Watson. That's why it was so powerful symbolically to have Sherlock kill Charles at the end. It also explains why this Season decided to focus so much on character development this time around.

    The show is called Sherlock but Freeman's performance as Watson may be his best yet. Learning his wife was lying to him all this time was heartbreaking for poor Watson and Freeman does an amazing job of reflecting the character's emotion.

    The reveal at the end about Moriarty's return is something I'm looking forward to with cautious optimism, given this series' murky reputation regarding cliffhangers. They also have to give us a clear explanation as to how Moriarty lived (assuming this wasn't a pre-recorded message) because they can't just bring everyone back to life and expect fans not to lose interest. Notwithstanding, Moriarty's return probably only means good things for the series, making Season 4's wait all the more tantalizing.
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  5. Apr 29, 2014
    8
    The third Season of Sherlock was enjoyable. Episode One was the best of three though. It used all the elements of the past seasons and used them well. My only problem was that Episode Three was a little confusing at times, but overall this is a good season. Season Four can't come soon enough.
  6. Jan 19, 2014
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Hooray, Sherlock is back! But, I cannot help but to add the comment -- "slightly disappointing."

    The opening scenes explaining the failure of Sherlock's suicide seemed initially ridiculous but I did feel they were eventually funny, clumsy funny, but funny. The whole of Episode 1 of Season 3 seemed essentially contrived. Bits and pieces pasted together to produce a show without much cohesion and, frankly, not a heckuva lot of humor (humour?). Martin Freeman was his reliable old Dr. Watson Self. Mr. Cumberbatch, on the other hand, indulged himself in a bit too much of mugging rather than comic acting. I hope he is not becoming impressed with his legion of teeny-bopper fans.

    I still enjoyed the show but it definitely paled in comparison with the first two seasons. Oh, and the music is different and much less creative and interesting.
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  7. Jan 22, 2014
    10
    The third season is amazing, Sherlock is my favorite series, this season is the best one up to now, The show is very intelligent, the casting is totally amazing, the story will surprise each second, you will be looking forward to the next season in the end of this one.
  8. Jan 29, 2014
    10
    Sherlock is now one of the best recent series, but it still have that agonizant problem of having only three episodes per season wich is really traumatizing
  9. Jan 21, 2014
    9
    The third series of Sherlock is the best so far. With a change from plot-driven episodes to character-driven ones, this helps the show to evolve emotionally. Plus, great acting from the leads and a terrific new villain helps to cement this as one of the best and most clever shows on television.
  10. Jan 23, 2014
    10
    This season of Sherlock brought everything I wanted it to bring. If there is a flaw to this installment of the series, I would say that it is trying to hard to be good to its fans. The performances, the writing and the new cast member are all excellent.
  11. Jan 22, 2014
    10
    Just like first two season, this third was great. Very good from start to the end. It is ok to don't like this show, but this is 21st century and Sherlock is now modern detective and he acts according to time he lives in. The best way to enjoy all this, is to watch all nine episodes.
  12. Jan 19, 2014
    10
    Still my favourite show! Season 3 exceeded my expectations and it was just as good as the previous 2 series. Brilliant! Better than a lot of the rubbish on at the moment!
  13. Jan 25, 2014
    8
    It took me a while to come around to this show, but I kept wanting to come back and re-watch all the episodes over from the beginning. This season starts off strong, but episode 2 is stellar and makes the whole season great. The 3rd episode is the weakest to me though. The villain is an interesting complement to Sherlock, but its ending is bothersome. Still, a great season though.
  14. Feb 5, 2014
    10
    The best series in the world right now. Ok I am being a little overdramatic but this Sherlock is one of the best masterful tv-series. Stories, acting, end result. It’s really like seeing a trilogy on the cinema. A very well done to the creators. Masterful!
  15. Mar 4, 2014
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Series 3 was spectacular. It was perfect in every way. People complain about underuse of Moriarty and because of that they didn't like the new villian. I loved Charles Augustus Magnussen. It was a great character. My only dissapointment is we didn't have an entire series about him like Moriarty. I do think that they shouldn't bring Moriarty back just yet. They should've focused more on Magnussen. Still a perfect series for a magnificent show. Expand
  16. Jan 22, 2014
    10
    this was even better than the last one which is almost impossible. its hard to believe that some people hate this show its incredible this is the greatest to happen to entertainment since doctor who and breaking bad. apparently the creators of the show were not expecting this show to be a hit let alone a global phenomenon
  17. Jan 23, 2014
    10
    Thank for Moffat and Gatiss that make Sherlock be more human which is should be. The cases are not bad but the reunion is great. The stories mimic the canon in sophisticated way. I love this season more than the previous two and I repeatedly watch it until now. :)
  18. Jan 30, 2014
    10
    Another outstanding season and well worth the wait mind you, it's truly a treat to get to start the year with some new sherlock episode's. Granted each season ends after three episodes so you aren't watching sherlock episodes for very long, but the sheer length of each episode you'll hardly care. And if by any chance you haven't seen this fallen in love with sherlock and watson get to itAnother outstanding season and well worth the wait mind you, it's truly a treat to get to start the year with some new sherlock episode's. Granted each season ends after three episodes so you aren't watching sherlock episodes for very long, but the sheer length of each episode you'll hardly care. And if by any chance you haven't seen this fallen in love with sherlock and watson get to it and watch it !!!! to those of you who have seen the entire series thus far will know what i'm talking about.... but to those who haven't seen this season and are fans i'll say this episode sherlock has you attention, episode 2 your curiosity and episode 3 the show will have your allegiance(like it didn't already) Expand
  19. Jan 20, 2014
    10
    From the handling of the end of season 2 to the progression and continuation of events involved with this season, Sherlock seems to have outdone itself. It has kept it's charm and amplified it tenfold with more humor and heart than the prior two seasons had to offer. I kept changing my new favorite episode of the show throughout the season as the writers kept adapting these classic talesFrom the handling of the end of season 2 to the progression and continuation of events involved with this season, Sherlock seems to have outdone itself. It has kept it's charm and amplified it tenfold with more humor and heart than the prior two seasons had to offer. I kept changing my new favorite episode of the show throughout the season as the writers kept adapting these classic tales so flawlessly into our modern world. I've read through a compilation of Doyle's original (the size of that tome gives me bragger's rights), and I can help noting that I feel this is one of those special cases where the movie (well, TV serial) outshines the book(s) it is based on. The worst part is waiting for more. Expand
  20. Jan 25, 2014
    9
    Yet another perfect portrayal of the reason why we love this show so much. Seems true that English Entertainment has actually reached new highs. The show did focus on character building, but that did not lessen the build-up to the Season nor did it spoil the enjoyment we usually expect from the show in way of either marvelous theories and gripping plots which was replaced with, to someYet another perfect portrayal of the reason why we love this show so much. Seems true that English Entertainment has actually reached new highs. The show did focus on character building, but that did not lessen the build-up to the Season nor did it spoil the enjoyment we usually expect from the show in way of either marvelous theories and gripping plots which was replaced with, to some extent, inter-person relationships and character formation hinting to a far grander Season 4 ahead. The acting in this season is the best ever and a joy to watch. Hats off to the best show ever in my opinion. Expand
  21. Feb 3, 2014
    10
    Best television there is right now.

    Best show I've seen since.... I can't think of a television show I've enjoyed more. If you demand a tv show cater to you instead of following where it leads, you probably should stick to safer, boring television. Season 3 definitely took a bit of a risk defining the characters to a greater degree. But, its still the best thing on television and
    Best television there is right now.

    Best show I've seen since....

    I can't think of a television show I've enjoyed more.

    If you demand a tv show cater to you instead of following where it leads, you probably should stick to safer, boring television. Season 3 definitely took a bit of a risk defining the characters to a greater degree. But, its still the best thing on television and is still light years from the ridiculous soap opera that Downton Abbey has become.
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  22. Jan 19, 2014
    10
    Just finishing up series 2 and I can seriously rate this as one of the best TV shows to date. I would rate this as high as Breaking bad, if you've seen this then you'll know how high of a praise that is.

    Stop reading reviews and watch it!
  23. Jan 20, 2014
    9
    Great way to start the series. It may be the most lighthearted episode than previous, but what a great way to start the series. Benedict Cumberbatch continues to show why he's the best Sherlock Holmes, and his chemistry with Martin Freeman's John Watson is amazing
  24. Jan 22, 2014
    8
    + Amazing Story.
    + Amazing development of the characters personalties.
    + Plot twists that will confuse you like a Rubik's cube.
    - Can drag on with new longer episodes.
    - The series only featured 3 episodes.
  25. Jan 23, 2014
    9
    This is still a brilliantly entertaining series but the introduction of Mary has made things go down hill somewhat. She's such a boring character, even when you find out more about her. Really bland and lifeless. Reminds me of David Brent's girlfriend in the office. I don't see the point of even making John's wife such a central character.

    The first two episodes are superb but the third
    This is still a brilliantly entertaining series but the introduction of Mary has made things go down hill somewhat. She's such a boring character, even when you find out more about her. Really bland and lifeless. Reminds me of David Brent's girlfriend in the office. I don't see the point of even making John's wife such a central character.

    The first two episodes are superb but the third takes a serious nose dive in terms of where they've decided to go with the plot, It looks like they're running out of ideas and are just content to keep rehashing old ones. But it's only one episode out of 9 that's let me down a bit. Still an amazing programme and keeps me laughing and entertained throughout
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  26. Jan 24, 2014
    8
    Overall, the episode is well done. We meet Watson soon to be Fiance Mary Morstan, Sherlocks brother Mycroft (played by Gatiss) and a small scene where we meet Sherlock's parents (played by Cumberbatch's real parents, Timothy Carlton and Wanda Ventham). In this episode it seems we have seen all of the plot and action in other movies, all be it from the 2010. Hopefully it gets better
  27. Feb 11, 2014
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I love the use of canon, while still keeping it modern, showing Holmes in the now, but still keeping him as separate from humanity, and bringing him closer. He's shown to be an arrogant ass, and people miss the brutal honesty that seems to be going away, but they forget this is exactly how the real homes was, a cocky bastard, to someone who saw humanity for what it was, but was still very polite- to an extent. I loved Charles Magnesson, he wasn't the Joker to Holmes' Batman like Moriarty, like some ultimate evil, he was literally just a disgusting human being. Whoever that actor was showed that very well, it's a real talent to make me be sick to my stomach of a person that isn't a complete psychopathic murderer. Honestly, did any one else question themselves as to what they would do if someone flicked your face like that? Expand
  28. Feb 11, 2014
    10
    I find it amusing how people rant on about the modernization of Sherlock Holmes from the short stories and novels. I've read the entire collection and I went through a phase of Sherlock fanaticism, but part of the show is bringing Sherlock to a modern realization. In that case, they do an excellent job of showing Sherlock's wild personalities for bouts of random experiments, displays ofI find it amusing how people rant on about the modernization of Sherlock Holmes from the short stories and novels. I've read the entire collection and I went through a phase of Sherlock fanaticism, but part of the show is bringing Sherlock to a modern realization. In that case, they do an excellent job of showing Sherlock's wild personalities for bouts of random experiments, displays of cold ruthlessness, and his drug habit. They reference many things from the collection. It's not like it's abandoned to the wayside.

    Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's work was never intended to be realistic either. How often in the collection is there some unknown villain or some trifling detail revealed after the crime is solved. It's not meant for us to be able to solve the crime, but it's to see the colorful characters that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote.

    To this extent, the TV show has it down to an absolute perfection. The interaction of Holmes and Watson is what makes the series, and Amanda Abbington (I believe that's her name) does an excellent job as Mary. I will say that I was kind of miffed with the alteration they did to her character, but overall they did an excellent job fitting Mary into the group.

    I continue to be impressed, and once more, I am eagerly waiting.
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  29. Feb 12, 2014
    9
    Phenomenal! Gatiss and Moffat are brilliant. Performances are outstanding and production value are excellent. The actors have lives outside the program, which will not lead to typecasting worries. Plots are packed with intrigue and humor. Love it!
  30. Feb 20, 2014
    8
    This series for me is the weak link of the three that have been made so far; it maintains the same visual style and eccentric wit of the previous series, however this one felt like it was lacking both a sense of direction and also menace. 'The Empty Hearse' for obvious reasons is the main draw as we finally get the revelation of how Sherlock escaped his grisly fate at the end of theThis series for me is the weak link of the three that have been made so far; it maintains the same visual style and eccentric wit of the previous series, however this one felt like it was lacking both a sense of direction and also menace. 'The Empty Hearse' for obvious reasons is the main draw as we finally get the revelation of how Sherlock escaped his grisly fate at the end of the previous series. It carries the emotional heft and also the humour that has made this arguably the best television show in Britain at the moment. Cumberbatch and Freeman are extraordinary as always but this time I felt that they were dealing with slightly less compelling material. The standard is so high however that this is all still top quality with great moments littered throughout the three stories but compared to the threat and stakes involved with series 1 and 2, series 3 feels like a slight come down. Still looking forward to the next one however. Expand
  31. Feb 22, 2014
    10
    Yes! Sherlock is back for more, and it is great, the show kept me intrigued, and it didn't disappoint at all, yes maybe the wedding episode was kinda ehhh, but I still can't wait for more.
  32. Mar 28, 2014
    10
    No surprise that it was another fantastic season of Sherlock, my personal favourite show on right now, can't wait for series 4. If you aren't watching this show, you should, it's smart, funny, tense and all sorts of drama mixed in to a 90 minute episode.
  33. Apr 21, 2014
    10
    Sherlock Holmes has always been the fascination of crime investigation fans all over the world. Many would like to imagine what would he be if had all the modern technology at his disposal to solve crimes, he'd simply be an automated crime solving machine. The makers have wonderfully imbibed the technologies of this era to take this version to a whole higher level. Plus the equally matchedSherlock Holmes has always been the fascination of crime investigation fans all over the world. Many would like to imagine what would he be if had all the modern technology at his disposal to solve crimes, he'd simply be an automated crime solving machine. The makers have wonderfully imbibed the technologies of this era to take this version to a whole higher level. Plus the equally matched counterpart villains make it the must watch of the century. No matter what you understand about Sherlock, he shall always baffle you in the end. Expand
  34. Jul 1, 2014
    10
    Pretty much the best show on television. The ONLY drawback is that there are only 3 episodes per season, but they are each basically double episodes, so 6-ish. Still, infinity is not enough episodes of Sherlock.
  35. Sep 20, 2014
    9
    With a slightly disappointing but still good first episode and a slow start to episode 2 from the middle of episode to its starts to get to what i loved about the first 2 seasons and the final episode was great.

    EP1- The Empty Hearse 8.7/10
    EP2- The sign of Three 8.9/10
    EP3- His Last Vow 9.5/10 overall 9.0/10
  36. Dec 6, 2014
    9
    Sherlock continues to be funny, silly and still very smart. In season three, the plot is even more complicated, and more exiting, but the show still keep its charming core. Cumberbatch and Freeman delivers at their best, in a show that appears to be more entertaining for every season.
  37. Dec 14, 2014
    9
    To all those people saying this was the worst season of sherlock.. what is your problem? It was cleverly handled (you'll know what I'm talking about) it was delt perfectly. so why are you getting pissed??? Because steven moffat writes **** for Doctor Who and doesn't write **** for sherlock so sherlock is automatically bad?? No.. This isn't as good as season 2 but I'd say on par with seasonTo all those people saying this was the worst season of sherlock.. what is your problem? It was cleverly handled (you'll know what I'm talking about) it was delt perfectly. so why are you getting pissed??? Because steven moffat writes **** for Doctor Who and doesn't write **** for sherlock so sherlock is automatically bad?? No.. This isn't as good as season 2 but I'd say on par with season 1. brilliant television! I loved every minute of it's screening.. excellence! can't wait until season 4... 3 years away apparently.. 2017.. ahh **** life. Expand
  38. Feb 21, 2015
    9
    I think the thing i enjoyed most about series 3 was the character building. Sure the Overall arc was a bit dull, yet the why the show built up its main characters was fantastic, the show made them develop, sometimes its good to slow things down and let the characters shine Through dialog and actions, instead of the action being the centre of attention.
  39. Jun 21, 2015
    7
    The continuation of Sherlock is less impressive than the previous season; with a less entertaining story, lack of tempo and where did the classic "Sherlock case-solving" go? Season one and two almost got too complex storytelling, but this third got a very low amount of clever, smart and complex plots.

    Let's start with the aspect that truly defines this tv-show; the unique and innovative
    The continuation of Sherlock is less impressive than the previous season; with a less entertaining story, lack of tempo and where did the classic "Sherlock case-solving" go? Season one and two almost got too complex storytelling, but this third got a very low amount of clever, smart and complex plots.

    Let's start with the aspect that truly defines this tv-show; the unique and innovative cleverness. Sherlock is extremely smarter than any individual in the show. His mind is what drives the show. The first and especially the second season got much of this. This third, well there's not much of it. I still love the show, and there are much humor in this season, but the story and the cleverness that truly defines the show is not there. Most of the time is spent on other things rather that the classic private detective Sherlock Holmes, that actually solves cases, not enjoying parties, weddings or other irrelevant stuff.

    But the season still got a great beginning, and the first really is the only clever and non-linear episode in this third season. Most of the episode is very hilarious, and the plot is enjoyable. There's even some plot-twists that truly is great! But it lacks of uniqueness when it comes to the plot. It's still great with it's humor! The second episode however; is much less "Holmes" than I expected. The whole episode is slow and it might be the most less great episode in the show. It didn't impress me with it's low amount of crime.

    The season finale is greater than its predecessor. It's much darker, dramatic, clever and very unpredictable. Still; the episode lacks the classic Sherlock Holmes and his great abilities to solve crime-related cases. It's not as entertaining as in the previous season. But I really liked the plot and there were some surprises here and there.

    This might be the least great season of Sherlock; with its lack of classic case-solving, but also the low amount of complex storytelling. It's sad, because I really enjoyed the second season, and because my overall rating for each episode in this third season only is a 7, I'm going to give this a 7/10.

    My favorite season so far is the second, this one however is much further down.

    7/10
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  40. Aug 26, 2015
    9
    Sometimes you hate it, sometimes you love it, and sometimes you just insanely laugh your arse off, but overall, Sherlock: Season 3 is one of the most awesome experiences on TV, though you can't say it bested the previous season.
Metascore
88

Universal acclaim - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 23
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 23
  3. Negative: 0 out of 23
  1. Reviewed by: Brian Tallerico
    Feb 20, 2014
    90
    The writing is still incredibly crisp, so smart, and never boring, and the deeper focus on relatable emotion, particularly in the definition of the relationship between Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Watson (Martin Freeman), could even bring in new fans to this international phenomenon.
  2. Reviewed by: Emily Nussbaum
    Jan 22, 2014
    80
    The show is at its best in such moments, these sequences that capture the semi-virtual, semi-real ways that we think, and feel, and meet, and connect today. It’s a rare attempt to make visible something that we take for granted: a new kind of cognition, inflected by passion, that allows strangers to think out loud, solving mysteries together.
  3. Reviewed by: Alan Sepinwall
    Jan 21, 2014
    75
    When you're smart men writing about the smartest man of all, you may feel the need to demonstrate your smarts in every possible way, with every beat of the story. But Holmes and Watson are such enduring characters, and these versions written and played so well, that they don't always require such elaborate mental gymnastics.