It's just a fact. John "not his date" Watson captured our hearts in the first scenes of BBC Sherlock. Injured and struggling with the emotional aftereffects of his life as a soldier, John was drawn to the excitement of Sherlock's life as a detective.
The CBS adaptation Elementary features Lucy Liu as the much-beloved character, but even before the show was announced, BBC fans were genderswapping the character.
These cosplays are by piitou. They feature fem!John and fem!Sherlock in action, and their costumes are inspired by the BBC's fan-favorite designs.
In the original stories, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle used the character to be an everyman for the reader.
Sherlock Holmes is fascinating, but because he's brilliant he can be difficult to understand. John's perspective was the window into the zany, unpredictable world of the notorious detective.
"Isn't this what people do? Leave a note."
Cosplayer itsL0KI replicated one of the most emotional scenes from the series (the second image on this block is there for comparison). Especially since this was a season finale- followed by a long hiatus- fans had a long time to stew in their feelings. Many hatched conspiracy theories, trying to figure out how Sherlock [season 2 spoiler] survived his jump from the roof, while others reenacted the scene.
Genderswapping is a fandom tradition. Since the early days of Star Trek, fans have wondered what would change if the gender of characters was different than what was portrayed in the original media. Part of this impulse comes from frustration with the lack of well-written female characters in popular media. Especially since so many fans are female, it's really unfortunate that we're not able to see ourselves in the stories and characters that we love.
Genderswapping gives fans the freedom to imagine female characters as more than props.
How would the friendship dynamic between the character change? Would it be more intimate, more combative? Or would it be completely unchanged? What if instead, the characters' relationship to the world around them is what changes? For fans who are already engaged with the original media, these questions can be endlessly fascinating.
This homage to the show by gallifreyancosplay is incredibly detailed- everything looks exactly like the designers of the show created. Some 'swapped cosplays don't deviate very far from the original media- suggesting that very little would need to be altered if the character were a different gender. Other cosplayers let their imaginations run wild. Part of the fun of cosplay is the freedom you have to decide how you're going to interpret the character.
How do you feel about these interpretations of John Watson?