Written by Stephanie Bell
Weddings can trigger all kinds of emotions—from joy to bittersweet sadness and from regret to conviction. John’s and Mary’s wedding in “The Sign of Three” creates all kinds of feelings—often in one person: Sherlock.
“The Sign of Three” is full of great quotes, especially from Sherlock’s best man’s speech that serves as the centerpiece of the episode. It was tough to choose only five, so the entries may be longer than in our typical “5 Best Quotes” posts! Off we go…
- “Don’t compromise the integrity of the crime scene!” – Sherlock Holmes
As John and his best man venture out for one of the strangest bachelor parties ever, naturally they are pulled onto a case. While “clueing for looks,” Sherlock leaves some… evidence behind.
- “A wedding is, in my considered opinion, nothing short of a celebration of all that is false and specious and irrational and sentimental in this ailing and morally compromised world. Today we honor the deathwatch beetle that is the doom of our society and—in time, one feels certain—our entire species. But, anyway, let’s talk about John.” – SH
The crowd quickly becomes restless as Sherlock’s speech gets off to a rambling start, criticizing, of all things, the marriage that they are all there to celebrate. Sherlock needs to work quickly to get the wedding guests back on his side!
- “If I burden myself with a little helpmate during my adventures, this is not out of sentiment or caprice. It is that he has many fine qualities of his own that he has overlooked in his obsession with me. Indeed, any reputation I have for mental acuity and sharpness comes, in truth, from the extraordinary contrast John so selflessly provides.” – SH
One of Sherlock’s most endearing and yet exasperating qualities is that even while delivering an eloquent speech about John, he manages to put the focus squarely on himself.
- “You’re already the best parents in the world. Look at all the practice you’ve had. You’re hardly going to need me around now that you’ve got a real baby on the way.” – SH
John and Mary begin their life together with some very happy news and dance off into the crowd. We see a range of emotions flash by on Sherlock’s face as he smiles, then steels himself and puts on his armor—his iconic coat—and leaves the reception, alone.
- “So if I didn’t understand I was being asked to be best man, it is because I never expected to be anybody’s best friend, and certainly not the best friend of the bravest and kindest and wisest human being I have ever had the good fortune of knowing. John, I am a ridiculous man, redeemed only by the warmth and constancy of your friendship.” – SH
Sherlock manages to save his speech and keep the crowd’s attention by closing with a heartfelt testament about how profoundly his friendship with John has changed his life. Not a dry eye in the house!
Tell us about your favourite “Sign of Three” quotes in the comments!