(Very few specific spoilers below, but given the topic, best be forewarned...)
Between the Hobbit movies and series three, I really kind of miss being a fan, being positive and excited about the latest thing. I want to like the special, I want to be blown away with it and just held breathless by it the way I was those first few moments of ASIP. I was laying in bed idly watching this thing everyone had said I should check out, and was just so captivated by it, I sat up and started it again.
But this trailer isn't helping me on that front. The best way I can think to describe it is more Ritchie than Granada: gritty, action-centered, darkish. And that's ... not necessarily a bad thing I guess. I mean I liked the Ritchie movies a lot, and would gladly watch another one. But this is Moffat (and really, this trailer screams the worst Gatiss excesses on steroids), and it makes me very nervous about where this special is headed. I think we're going to get more flash and excitement than thoughtful, subtle storytelling here.
I don't necessarily need Granada, which for all its wonderful qualities (I love Jeremy Brett as Sherlock even more than Benedict Cumberbatch!) has always seems a bit ... nostalgic to me. Holmes was always such a man on the cutting edge of his times, never one to send a letter where a telegram would do and all that, and the nostalgic look back to a simpler time doesn't really fit him. But at the same time, there's such a thing as making him too modern, too gritty, too mundane. And this seems like another big step in that direction.
For the record, things I loved about the first two series of BBC Sherlock:
Clever, sharp script.
Intelligent engagement with the original sources.
Character growth that seemed integral and made sense.
A villain who was separate enough to let Holmes be Holmes.
It was the writing, and the art, that drew me, and I don't need to be thrilled, I need to be enthralled and engaged. I also need a fairly coherent story, and I'm not sure this is going to give it to us.
On the other hand ... I am not in need of being sold. It's entirely possible this is playing up certain elements they think they need to draw non-fans in, and isn't really indicative of where the episode is heading. One can hope.
Also, and this is a fairly specific spoiler: something about the scene where Holmes pulls out a revolver in his purple dressing gown made me think of the scene in "The Final Problem," where Moriarty approaches Holmes in 221B and I think Holmes shows a gun he has in his dressing-gown pocket. I'm going from memory here. But that did give me "Final Problem"/Reichenbach thoughts, and I wonder if we're not building up to some sort of Final Problem adaptation, but properly told this time.
Spoilery thought #2: there's a woman sitting beside Watson who I think is Amanda Abbington at some point. If that's victorian!Mary (and the posture did seem like a romantic interest), it seems to be a less ambiguously-villainous Mary. Interesting, given how in the sneak peek Watson seemed to still be living in 221B. So we may get another glance at that courtship/first meeting, which could be interesting as well. Even if it seems mired in something more concerned with spectacle than storytelling...