Sherlock producers were careful to walk back Benedict Cumberbatch’s statement that Season 4 might end the series, though anyone watching Sunday’s “Final Problem” finale likely picked up on the sense of completion. Now, Steven Moffat addresses whether Sherlock even needs to come back for Season 5.

You’re warned of full Sherlock Season 4 spoilers from here on out, but “The Final Problem” gave us about as close to a happy ending as Sherlock and Watson may ever have, moving on from Eurus and all the season’s chicanery, and returning to their routine of solving mysteries. Mary’s final recorded message essentially confirmed as much, though Moffat tells Entertainment Weekly that it may not require them to shoot a fifth season of said mysteries:

There isn’t something we have to come back to address. Which is quite good for us. Because if we do come back, we can just start with a knock on the door and a new client, and they can go and investigate. […]

It’s certainly the first time we’ve ever ended a season thinking, ‘If we never come back, this is fine.’ As endings go, all it does is say, ‘And they carried on solving crimes on Baker Street forever.’ If we want to come back and solve more crimes we can do it, that’s no problem. We’re not allowed to end Sherlock Holmes. As Mary says, they’ll always be in that flat solving crimes, played by different actors. So the only ending you could ever have is, ‘And the legend continues, forever and ever …’

It took three years for Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman and the lot’s schedules to align for Season 4, and it may be worth noting that some viewers were dissatisfied with the episodes at that. If indeed Season 5 has no immediate questions to answer, might it be worth leaving Sherlock lie for another few years?

Does “The Final Problem” hold up as an ending overall?

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