Dirk Gently, Sherlock, and the Power of Consequences

As Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency returns, I wanted to take a look at season one and talk about one of the elements that made it a much more emotional viewing experience than I was expecting from a fun detective show. Shortly after the first season ended, I accidentally binged the show in its entirety. I say accidentally because I didn’t expect to love Dirk when I hit play on the pilot, but by episode three, I was so enamored with the characters that I knew I was in this one to the end.

And then I watched the most recent season of Sherlock. While I loved Sherlock—especially the first two seasons—this time I found myself comparing it Dirk Gently, and I realized why I found the later episodes of Sherlock so disappointing: like a lot of the recent rash of “troubled genius” shows, the writers of Sherlock ...