Knowing how calculating Sherlock can be, I find it very troubling how he was able to make such a shitty judgement call as to get back into drugs just for a case. You’re telling me that giant brain couldn’t come up with just one alternative way to bait Magnussen than to actually do coke

Or did he, after all this time, just slip up and give into temptation by convincing himself it was the only way? 

The only explanation is that he knew, from the start, that somehow it would affect John, and that was the catalyst for sacrificing his sobriety. And after all his battles, that is a huge sacrifice. I sincerely hope he didn’t enter into it lightly, as is implied.

Also, I’m a bit miffed we never saw any adverse affects from his consumption. I know Holmes in canon was a regular user of cocaine, and maybe that’s just enough to make this less-of-a-big-deal. But to me, this BBC Sherlock is characterized by having beaten his habit. And showing his relapse, purposeful or not, should have come with some major consequences. (Though Molly’s slapfest was a damn good start.)

We have never ever gotten any definite indication that Sherlock ever had an addiction.

In the modern day, we are trained by society to automatically equate hard drugs and addiction (and judge their use with according harshness).  But while it’s important to understand the risk drugs bring with them in terms of addiction, they are NOT in fact automatically synonymous.

In any case, it was still a stupid thing for Sherlock to do, absolutely.  Every time you use, it’s a risk.  But canon Holmes used casually and usually in a well-controlled manner (although it may have begun to become an addiction around the time Watson finally got him to stop—and maybe that’s also why Holmes finally listened to him), and while Sherlock does say he “solves cases as an alternative to getting high,” that is not necessarily the same as saying, “solves cases to take my mind off my addiction.”  It could simply mean he equates the two as the only things that have ever had much useful impact on his boredom levels.

Even if he had an addiction, we also don’t know for sure what he was addicted to (ACD Holmes famously preferred a 7% solution of intravenous cocaine, although he did mention at least once that he sometimes also used morphine—rock on, Holmes, you gave the world speedballs—but we have NO idea what BBC’s Sherlock used).  All drugs are not interchangeable.  In this episode, his focus seems to be on opiates (he plays a lot with his morphine drip, often in front of people he wants to convince, and then typically returns it to a moderate or even low setting once they leave).  Even if he has an addiction to cocaine (an upper with intense energetic effects), mucking around with opiates (which make you mellow and fuzzy) would not necessarily trigger anything like the same reaction and behavior patterns in him.  (Although I imagine it’d put addiction on the forefront of his mind, which would certainly be frustrating and possibly risky for him.)

(What I find quite interesting is that Sherlock’s addiction—or lack thereof—is not the one the episode zeroes in on.  It’s John’s addiction to danger and people like Sherlock.  Sherlock has his drug use under control; John demonstratively does not.)

In summary:  using drugs was absolutely a stupid, dangerous, typically arrogant move on Sherlock’s part.  However, he did not necessarily just launch recklessly into it or have some kind of self-sacrificial blowout.  It’s just like him to go for what appears to be a recklessly grand gesture, but actually have quietly addressed all the angles and risk factors (and then, of course, sometimes for this to backfire on him anyway, because when you WANT to make people think you bit off more than you could chew, sometimes it turns out you actually did).

Also worth noting: we’ll see whether there’s any fallout about it next season.  After all, when he smoked the cigarette Mycroft gave him, we didn’t see the resulting nic fits till the episode after.

Also also: *noms on your sexy brains*

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *