‘I’m… I’m nobody. I’m with him’ – John Watson
I love the BBC drama Sherlock, it’s about the only TV show that I actually make a point of watching and I’m really looking forward to the next series.
As I’ve watched the series, I realise that even though the show is based on the character Sherlock, and he is amazingly clever, smart and witty, he’s not actually the hero of the show, Watson is.
A (s)hero embarks on a journey.
They respond to a call, they take action and they significantly change and grow as a person.
Sherlock pretty much remains his brilliant self throughout the series, as he describes himself ‘a high-functioning sociopath’.
Watson is the one who follows the path of the (s)hero.
At the beginning of the series Watson has left the army, has no job, nowhere to live, is seeing a therapist who says that he has post traumatic stress disorder and is walking with a walking stick.
Watson left the army and tried to fit back into ‘normal’ life and do what was expected of him.
It wasn’t until he answered ‘The Call’ of Sherlock inviting him along to investigate his first case, that Watson discovered that he didn’t have a limp, that it was psychosomatic.
Mysterious Gentleman: You have an intermittent tremor in your left hand. (Watson nods) Your therapist thinks it’s posttraumatic stress disorder. She thinks you’re haunted by memories of your military service …
Fire her. She’s got it the wrong way around. You’re under stress right now and your hand is perfectly steady. You’re not haunted by the war, Dr. Watson. You miss it.
Once Watson started doing what he did best, dealing with high stress and volatile situations, that he is transformed into a confident character with passion and purpose.
Often people think that the (s)hero is the main character, the loudest, physically strongest, the most famous, or has the program named after them.
But the (s)hero is the one that says ‘yes’ to that voice inside, the voice that leads them to follow their passions and purpose.
Even though Watson was trying to fit back into society, when asked if he’d seen injuries, violent deaths and trouble, he responds ‘Yes’.
Sherlock: Want to see some more?
Watson: Oh, God, yes
From the moment Watson says ‘Yes’, he is transformed from the depressed, character with no sense of direction, to being energised and engaged in life once again.
Would Watson describe himself as a hero? I very much doubt it.
Often (s)heroes see themselves as supporters of others and would never claim the title, or they don’t think that they have done anything special or certainly not brave enough to claim the title of (s)hero.
Yet sometimes the bravest thing you can do is to say ‘Yes’, and show up.
When people answer ‘yes’, they may not fully understand why they’ve embarked on the journey, it’s often not a rational decision.
People can be left wondering why they’ve said yes, when staying at home would’ve been easier.
The (s)hero is the one who allows themselves to take a chance, to grow and develop.
‘The (s)hero represents the egos search for identity and wholeness. The process of becoming a complete, integrated human being.’ – Christopher Vogler.
Claiming the role of a SHEro in your own life, doesn’t mean that you have to go and fight crime, solve murders or live with a ‘high functioning sociopath’, you don’t even have to leave the house!
But you do have to listen, or start to listen, to that small voice inside of you that wants more. The voice that is guiding you to reclaim all aspects of yourself so that you can become whole again.