The Game Is Afoot!

I’ve always been a huge Sherlock Holmes fan, so it was with great anticipation – but trepidation – that I awaited the premiere of the CBS TV series Elementary, which places Holmes in the modern day. Fortunately, the show’s first three episodes have been very good, with actor Jonny Lee Miller managing to walk that thin line that makes Holmes both admirable and off-putting as a fictional character.

What has this to do with running, you ask? Well, on last night’s episode, “Child Predator,” Holmes is seen shirtless, with a rather prominent “26.2” tattooed on his left shoulder blade. You can see it clearly at about the 1:30 mark of the video.

Dr. Watson, played by Lucy Liu, has been seen jogging in a previous episode, and the context here was Watson trying to get Holmes to join her on a run. I thought the “26.2” was going to be a part of the Holmes characterization, but as it turns out it is an actual tattoo of Jonny Lee Miller’s.

Miller is not only a marathoner, but an exceptional one, having run a 3:01:40 in London in 2008. Here he is being interviewed after that race.

The idea that someone as disciplined and focused as Holmes would be a marathon runner seems to me to be… elementary.