The following essay was written before I saw The Sign Of Three. Having now seen it, I’d like to add a quick prequel. It’s now certain that Mary has a connection to CAM – he sent her a special wedding telegram that she reacted rather badly to then managed to cover up. She quite clearly has a history with him, possibly knows what he’s capable of, and is hoping he’ll just go away and she won’t have to deal with him. Sadly, that won’t be the case.

The next thing I wanted to add was, we discovered at the end of the episode that Mary was pregnant (through Sherlock’s deduction). This makes things even more intense considering that most of the fandom have predicted she is destined to die in this next episode. What will happen to the unborn child? Sherlock, John and a kid wouldn’t really work, even though I’m sure it’s some peoples fan fic fantasy (maybe he could be called Hamish). So yeah, I’m fairly certain the kid will die too, however harsh that sounds. For some reason though, I have this idea that Mary and the child will die separately. My theory is that she’ll have a miscarriage about a quarter of the way through the episode, then get murdered about three quarters of the way through as I’m writing about below. All I can say is though, wow, poor John. To lose his wife AND his kid? Can this guy have any worse luck? I mean, SERIOUSLY.

I’ve said in the essay that I think something bad will happen to Sherlock, emotionally, that he’ll be made to suffer, and honestly, it’s about time after everything John’s been through. I’m still very worried about that though. In the most recent two episodes we’ve seen a quite different Sherlock to the one from the previous two series. Especially in the last episode, he seems to have opened up a lot, become more emotional, more accepting of the fact that yes, he does have friends and he’s different to his brother (despite leaving the wedding alone). He made his “last vow” to always protect John, Mary and the baby. The fact that, in this last episode, he will obviously fail to do that, will probably really affect him in a way that bothers me greatly.

Anyway, now onto the original essay. Most of my theories remain unchanged…Please note: contains some minor setlock spoilers.

Final episode of the Series so you just know it’s going to be action packed and full of surprises and drama. There’s been quite a few spoilers from this one so it’s difficult to know where to start. Perhaps Magnussen would be a good place.

Charles Augustus Magnussen. The brand new baddie of this series who, from what I can tell, is some kind of media mogul, Rupert Murdoch type but more sinister. He owns a couple of newspapers and operates from a large tower block of offices in the heart of the city. The original Milverton was a blackmailer so I’m presuming he will be along the same lines.

I’m hoping that Sherlock will, like in the original, get engaged and pretend to fall in love with someone simply to make inroads into Magnussen’s world. It would be hilarious to see our BBC Sherlock do this with all his customary callousness.

We’ve already seen evidence of Sherlock going undercover. Already referred to by some in the fandom as Hobolock, he was seen looking bedraggled with greasy hair, slight stubble, jogging pants, trainers, T-shirt and wax rain jacket, coming out the back door of a seedy looking den and running off down the fire escape with a normal looking John in pursuit, complaining about how his cover had been blown.

This all reminded me more of a nod to the Man With The Twisted Lip where Holmes goes undercover in an opium den than anything connected to the original Milverton story, but they’ll all be cleverly linked in somehow, I’m sure.

I know there’s a scene in a car with Mary driving, John in the front and Sherlock in the back – no doubt as a terrible backseat driver. There was an IV drip unit seen on set, causing much speculation about who was going to be ill, and at one point Sherlock goes to meet Magnussen on his own at an Italian restaurant and in return (perhaps earlier or later in the ep), Magnussen sends a car with a couple of heavies round to Baker Street and can be seen walking inside – you know how they have such excellent security there and anyone can just walk in, right?

They’re all bits and bobs and it’s difficult to put them all together. The most interesting moment for me though was when Mary was walking along the street at night and she suddenly spotted images from her wedding with John being projected onto a building next to her. She was later seen talking to a tramp, then attending a meeting with Magnussen, on her own, in some kind of underground car park.

What this all seems to point to, is that Mary has a secret and is the target of Magnussen’s blackmail. The fact that it’s images of her wedding suggests it’s something to do with that, or something to do with John, but it kind of reminds me of the Noble Bachelor, and I’m wondering if Mary’s secret might be that she is still already married to someone else. Whatever it is, the entire plot is leading towards Mary and ultimately, something bad happening to her.

It’s no secret that things don’t end happily for John and Mary in the canon and I doubt she’ll survive very long in this series either. In fact, I’m predicting a dramatic and emotional death about three quarters of the way through this episode, during which Mary will die in John’s arms, with plenty of blood.

The final quarter of the episode will then be about John’s “last vow” to her to get revenge for her death and he and Sherlock will track down her killer – one of Magnussen’s lackeys. There will be a final showdown in an aesthetically pleasing and interesting filming location that will involve a Three Garridebs type situation, except with more serious consequences. John will get shot. We won’t know how serious it is but there will be plenty of blood (again) and this time it will be Sherlock cradling John in his arms begging him not to die. And then the episode will end, and we’ll have to wait for two years.

It probably won’t happen anything like that in the slightest, but Moffat and Co have promised us an emotional/cliffhanger type ending that is even worse than last time and we’ll all be screaming at the telly saying “they can’t end it there!” Trying to think of something that could be more dramatic or painful than Reichenbach is difficult, but I figured it probably wouldn’t be Mary’s death they end on, because that’s not exactly a surprise, and we’ve only had her character for one series, not long enough to become majorly attached.

We’ve also seen John suffering a hell of a lot of emotional pain – witnessing his best friend “die”, two years of grieving, then having Mary dying in this episode. He’s been through a fair bit, not to mention all the kidnappings. I think it’s about time that Sherlock had some emotional pain and emotional suffering. We know he cares about John but if he is really genuinely worried for John’s life and thinks he might die, then that’s something he’s not truly experienced before, especially if the circumstances are beyond his control – he can’t rescue him like he normally does, he has to rely on medical professionals to treat him and save his life. It would also fit in well with his general character development.

Less dramatic, but equally as painful (or perhaps more so), would be Sherlock and John falling out as a result of Mary’s death and John blaming Sherlock for it. Seeing Sherlock have to go through that would be extremely hard for the fandom to deal with!

Regardless of what the circumstances are…they’re not going to be good or happy. Steven Moffat is writing this episode. At least one person is going to die. It’s going to be painful to watch, and most probably unmissable.

P.S. I think Magnussen will escape to the next Series rather than get caught and done with in this one, but who knows, they might go for a traditional Milverton ending where he gets shot by one of his ex-victims. Mary, perhaps?