In Season 3, Episode 2 of Sherlock, he mentions about a case called "Elephant in the room".

Was that a reference to some old Sherlock story, or something else?

  • 2
    It's an english expression for an obvious problem or risk no one wants to discuss. I don't remember the actual episode or what the problem was, so I'll just comment this.
    – BlueMoon93
    Mar 15, 2017 at 9:28
  • 1
    – BCdotWEB
    Mar 15, 2017 at 9:52

1 Answer 1


As I recall this is part of Sherlock's best man speech for John's wedding.

During which he praises John (back-handedly) and comments about some of the strange cases they have solved.

We are only shown snippets of the supposed cases in quick flashbacks one of which is..

FLASHBACK. The boys stand in the doorway of what looks like a fairly ordinary room somewhere. They stare up wide-eyed at what they can see inside. Sherlock opens his mouth. Offscreen, an elephant trumpets loudly. Sherlock closes his mouth again.


We aren't given any more insight other than the "blog" of John Watson

Sherlock's had some mad cases over the last couple of years and I wouldn't say I've ever got entirely used to them but nothing, and I mean nothing, could have prepared me for what we found at 29, Ryder Lane in Brockley.

Greg called us in. It was a typical suburban house in a typical suburban street. But inside that typical suburban house were two bodies. And an elephant. An actual elephant. Standing there in the middle of the room looking, well a bit bored, to be honest.

And... sorry! It's another one that I can't actually blog about because of the Official Secrets Act! I've probably said too much as it is. Although I'm not as bad as Sherlock. The amount of times I've had to stop him telling people about it. I swear, I'm going to have to follow him at the wedding to stop him telling people!

Then again, "the elephant in the room" is a common expression meaning something that is (or should be obvious) to everyone but that no-one speaks about.

In this case, it could be a passing reference to the implied (at least in some viewers minds) homosexual relationship between Sherlock and Watson.

Opinions vary on this supposed relationship but perhaps the writers were having a little fun with us.

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