TCA Winter Press Tour: Benedict Cumberbatch talks “Sherlock”; doesn’t talk “Star Trek”

On Day 2 of PBS’ presentations at the Television Critics Association (TCA) 2012 Winter Press Tour, Masterpiece presented the good news that America would be seeing Sherlock, Series II, Sundays May 6-20. Reprising their roles as Holmes and Watson are Benedict Cumberbatch (on fire lately with War Horse and Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy) and Martin Freeman (The Hobbit), with Lara Pulver (pictured left) introduced as the mysterious Irene Adler — who becomes an intriguing mental match for Holmes, and possible emotional interest, as well. The preview we saw looked awesome, and should satisfy fans of the first season (don’t worry; executive producer Rebecca Eaton says we get a resolution of the Holmes/Moriarty cliffhanger that ended the first series).

Pulver was present at the session, while Cumberbatch appeared via satellite (right in photo, looking decidely un-Holmeslike, and almost a bit like Dennis Quaid). Cumberbatch spoke on the relationship between Holmes and Adler, one of the rare women who can befuddle the great sleuth (and, frankly, one of the few other human beings whom he considers equal to his genius), who meet in the first episode, “A Scandal in Belgravia.”

“I think he meets a like-mind,” says Cumberbatch of Holmes. “That’s the fundamental attraction for him. He meets someone who is a challenge, who is rather good, and it takes him by surprise, not because he’s a misogynist. … pretty much all people apart from him are a bit stupid. So the fact that he meets somebody who is a worthy opponent of either sex is of great intrigue. I  mean, look at the relationship with Moriarty. There’s a huge bond between those two. It’s an obsession. But with Ms. Adler, it comes with the whole game of love and relationships and the understanding between one sex and another.”

When the busy Cumberbatch was asked whether a third series of Sherlock would be in store for him, he couldn’t deduce a conclusive answer for us.

“I’m only going to tease you with, ‘I would like to,’” he said.

He teased even more when asked about his recent casting as a villain in J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek sequel, planned for 2013, although he offered a big grin.

“What’s that?” he joked, looking off camera. “Sorry? I can’t say anything? Sorry. There’s a lawyer standing here saying I can’t say anything. I’m hugely, hugely excited, and I’m very, very flattered. … I’m just getting my head around the fact that it’s happened. So if you will forgive me, I’ll pass on that. I’ll give you my headline on it, which is I’m over the moon.”

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Credit: Rahoul Ghose/PBS

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