Moffat Talks “Sherlock” S4 Format, Plans

With this year’s standalone Christmas special completed, things are already being prepped for a fourth season of The BBC’s “Sherlock” which is expected to go into production shortly for airing in 2016.

In a new interview with EW, series co-creator Steven Moffat revealed a couple of details about what’s in store and offered thoughts on several related subjects.

First up, like the previous seasons, this will be three standalone 90-minute telemovies with an ongoing storyline thread throughout all three. Moffat says the new season will be darker and it will deal quite a bit with consequences:

“The first series was all about the beginning of their friendship. Second about the formative stages, the love and fear and loss and all that. The third was good days, me and my pal and my pal’s wife. Those are golden days. The missing element in a lot of Sherlock Holmes adaptations is allowing it to be funny. There’s a lot of humor in Sherlock Holmes, and it’s ignored in a lot of adaptations.

[Season 4] is going to be… I suppose you’d say… consequences. It’s consequences. Chickens come to roost. It’s dark in some ways – obviously it’s great fun and a Sherlock Holmes romp and all that – but there’s a sense of… things… coming back to bite you. It’s not a safe, sensible way to live. It’s hilarious and exhilarating some days, but some days it’s going to be bloody frightening.

Moffat adds answers coming to questions which nobody has asked, including “one thing that no one has really brought up”. He does suggest Moriarty (Andrew Scott) won’t be back, but does say the actor has been asking about potentially returning. He even has some great commentary about not just fan fiction but slash fiction in regards to this franchise:

“There’s been some eye-watering stuff of Benedict and Martin together. A load of it has been superb. There’s a tendency to disparage it. I don’t agree. Even the slash fiction, that’s a great way to learn to work.

No one really does three-act structure, but just trying to put words that make somebody else turned on, that’s going to teach you more about writing than any writing college you can go to. It’s creative and exciting. I refuse to mock it – because I’m a man who writes Sherlock Holmes fan fiction for a living!”

The Victorian era-set Christmas special is scheduled to go to air this year, with the fourth season to screen sometime in 2016.