The big Sherlock-related news this week is the reveal that Martin Freeman is to join the cast of superhero threequel Captain America: Civil War, playing an as yet undisclosed role. What with it already being known that Benedict Cumberbatch is to star in his own film as Marvel hero Doctor Strange, it seems that the worlds of Sherlock and superheroes are colliding. But could you call Sherlock a superhero? Although the detective doesn’t classify himself as a hero at all, there are many aspects to Sherlock that are also commonly-used elements in superhero films. Let’s take a look at them.
5. The City to Protect
Just as Superman has Metropolis or Daredevil has Hell’s Kitchen, Sherlock has London. Like many superheroes, Sherlock is sworn to clean up the streets of his home city of all crime. Of course with him it’s less for the sake of justice and more as a way of staving of the boredom and as an alternative to getting high. But Sherlock does also have a penchant for standing on rooftops, which is a very superhero-y thing to do.
4. The Iconic Costume
No self-respecting superhero would go out to fight crime without a snazzy outfit. A good superhero needs a look that makes them standout from all the others, preferrably something that will give them an unmistakeable silhouette. Well, they don’t come much more unmistakeable than Sherlock’s deerstalker – and his long coat and scarf combo he goes everywhere in (seriously, does Sherlock never get hot during Summer?) more than match up to a pair of underpants and tights.
3. The Trusted Sidekick
Where would any superhero be without a trusty sidekick? A good sidekick compliments the hero’s abilities by possessing their own competence and skillset – something that definitely applies to John Watson. While Sherlock has the brains and detection, John brings the heart and the medical knowledge which comes in handy in many of their cases. It’s safe to say that Sherlock is a greater hero thanks to being part of a dynamic duo with John.
2. The Supervillain
Over just nine episodes, Sherlock has built up a memorable enough rogues gallery – pooled from the original stories – to match up to any comic book hero, including a serial killer cabbie, a monstrous hound and a mastermind media mogul. Yet Sherlock has only one nemesis. Like Venom is to Spider-Man, Jim Moriarty is Sherlock’s dark reflection and, akin to the Joker’s relationship with Batman, seems to exist solely to play with Sherlock and cause chaos. Every superhero needs a good old-fashioned supervillain.
1. The Superpower
Of course what sets superheroes apart from your normal garden-variety heroes is their superpower. Be it super speed, flight or shrinking, every superhero has to have something that sets them apart. Sherlock, of course, has his incredible deductive abilities. In the blink of an eye, Sherlock can know everything about a person just by looking at them. We think that beats most superpowers hands down.
We could go on and on with this list (Sherlock also has a loyal servant in Mrs Hudson, like Iron Man’s JARVIS and Batman’s Alfred, and in Irene Adler he has a love interest on the wrong side of the law like Catwoman or Elektra) but we’ll stop here for now. So have we convinced you? Do you see Sherlock as a superhero? Have your say in the poll below!