‘Sherlock’ is more like ‘The Princess Bride’ than you think

As you wish, John.

 

Aja Romano

Internet Culture

Published Aug 12, 2014   Updated May 30, 2021, 7:08 pm CDT

Death cannot stop true love. All it can do is delay it for a while–especially if you faked your death to track down heinous criminals away from your mourning princ– er, roommate.

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Tumblr user incurablylazydevil has uncovered a hefty amount of narrative similarity between The Princess Bride and Sherlock in a series of GIFsets that blew our minds and won our hearts earlier this week. The fan, who goes by Jadzia online, unearthed a number of parallels that, when placed side by side, remind us how powerful certain narrative tropes are as they play out in popular culture.

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Oh, and they also highlight how the modern-day John and Sherlock are totally in a classical romantic relationship, whether or not Stephen Moffat wants to admit it.

It’s no secret that fandom loves its crossovers—that is, taking two stories from pre-existing universes and overlaying them, interlinking them, or sticking characters from one universe into the other. Still, the number of intersections that already exist between these two storylines is a revelation. 

They both contain vows of undying fealty after Wesley and Sherlock faked their own deaths:

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Meanwhile, while Wesley/Sherlock were off having adventures, both Buttercup and John are in a period of deep mourning.

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Both The Princess Bride and Sherlock contain a deadly mind game centered around a simple choice between two deadly containers:

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And they both contain unexpected fire rescues!

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Both Wesley and Sherlock are temporarily “dead,” during which time they endure significant torture…

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…a slumber from which the thought of their beloved (in Wesley’s case, Buttercup, in Sherlock’s case, John) is the one thing that can revive them.

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As a bonus, Jadzia included this clever illustration of the Princess Bride and Sherlock fandoms:

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Yup, sounds about right to us.

Be sure to check out the rest of Jadzia’s parallels at her Tumblr: Part One; Part Two.

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And if you see any six-fingered men about London, you know who to call.

All GIFs via incurablylazydevil/Tumblr | Illustration computer photo via Matt Buck (CC BY SA 2.0), Sherlock photo via Fat Les (CC BY 2.0), Princess Bride photo via rick (CC BY 2.0) Remix by Jason Reed

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*First Published: Aug 12, 2014, 10:30 am CDT