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I actually posted this as a comment to one of [livejournal.com profile] marta_bee's posts, which you can find here: http://marta-bee.livejournal.com/294972.html.  I got a bit carried away with my reply, so I thought I'd go ahead and post my thoughts here as well.  Because I cannot squee enough about this episode.  Before you read any further:  yes, I am aware of its many flaws.  It's not perfect, by any means.  Be that as it may, here is why I loved it so much:

WARNING: MASSIVE SPOILERS



Despite it being the least Sherlockian and the least dramatic episode of all three seasons, this was, hands down, my favourite episode of Series 3. It warmed the cockles of my fannish heart. It gave me the human Sherlock that I was hoping to see this season, and proved to me that, yes, Sherlock loves John as much as John loves Sherlock. FINALLY. Real, unfettered emotion from the cold, logical detective.


So, even though it probably was a bit out of character? I didn't care in the least, because it made me happy.



I think a big part of the appeal for me with TSoT was the emphasis on human relationships. Not just Sherlock and John, but others as well. Sherlock and Mary, John and Mrs Hudson, Sherlock and Mycroft, Sherlock and Janine. So many interactions between our characters that we don't get much of a chance to see. The cap of three episodes per season really limits what we get to see in terms of evolving friendships/relationships between our beloved characters. This episode really made me crave more Sherlock/Mary interaction, and also made me wistful for what kind of relationship Sherlock might have with the Watson baby.

Also, the little hints of backstory and inner glimpses into the characters' lives were delightful. The mention of Redbeard. Mrs Hudson talking about her husband. Our introduction to John's commanding officer. Mycroft, at home on the treadmill. Granted, we got even *more* backstory and character introductions in both TEH and HLV, but this was a nice bridge between those two episodes.


I could go on and on. But these are some of the reasons this episode touched me so much.
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