The case of Sherlock Johnlock fandom reiterates the question Jenkins (2006) posed about Twin Peaks (1990–91) fans and David Lynch: what if fans found out the text was meaningless or that all meaning came from their interpretive community and not the author? This is an especially pertinent question, given that a photo set of Lynch asserting the primacy of the text has been making the rounds on Tumblr among Johnlock fans in the wake of Freeman’s March/April 2018 comments. Further, a July 9, 2018, Tumblr Q&A, which Moffat and Gatiss conducted as 221b-investigates to promote their Sherlock-themed London escape room experience “The Game Is Now,” reiterated for many Johnlockers that Mofftiss—with their “patronizing, supercilious and teasing” nonanswers (we-love-the-beekeeper, July 9, 2018)—still do not wish to meaningfully engage them. Several fans submitted questions already knowing full well they would not be answered but with the intent to hold the writers accountable for their narrative, while others were disappointed in the lack of serious answers. Worse yet, Moffat and Gatiss appeared to disdain analysis—or recognize its potential for narrative disappointment. In response to a question meant to echo Sherlock’s words in “TST,” alwaysanoriginal asks, “Any words of advice for those who like to pull on the ‘loose threads’ of the world?” Mofftiss responds, “You’ll ruin your jumper.”
Hofmann, Melissa A. 2018. “Johnlock Meta and Authorial Intent in Sherlock Fandom: Affirmational or Transformational?” In “The Future of Fandom,” special 10th anniversary issue, Transformative Works and Cultures, no. 28.