Character: Sherlock Holmes
Type: TV Show
Shown: BBC Three
Year: Started 2010 – Ongoing
What is the scene about?:
In this scene, Sherlock Holmes is meeting Dr. John Watson for the very first time. Dr Watson has been brought to meet Sherlock Holmes to see if they would be suitable to share a flat together. Before the subject can be brought up, Sherlock answers John’s questions before he has time to even think them!
What makes him an AM:
Sherlock is an Alpha Male but not in the traditional sense. When you think of Alpha Males you visualise action film stars such as James Bond or Jason Bourne beating people up, getting the girl and so on. However, this is an incorrect viewpoint. Alpha males control the situation and are the most powerful in the group, others respond to them in kind. Sherlock displays how you can be brainy and be alpha too.
00.00 – 00.15 Sherlock ignores John and Mike when they enter. He doesn’t respond to them coming into the room by issuing a welcoming i.e. showing that John and Mike are on the same level as him (Please note that this although shows power, it also comes across as rude and can alienate people). John, perturbed by Sherlock not greeting him, looks around the room, in a beta male fashion not confident in the situation. Sherlock simply continues with his work
00.26 – 00.36 John responds to Sherlock’s first words (a question if he can borrow Mike’s phone) by saying he can use his phone (John is somewhat eager to please – a beta move). In response to John offering, Sherlock locks eye contact with John for a few seconds. Then Sherlock walks over and collects the phone. Immediately, Sherlock starts texting and looks away from John – at this point, he starts to ask John a question (about where he served in the Army). Sherlock asked for what he needed, when he got it, he carried on with the action that he needed to do.
00.36 – 00.47 Notice that he doesn’t look at John – Sherlock knows that he has John’s attention, that he is the most important thing in the room and of course, John will be looking at him. Sherlock ignores John’s questioning reply, so John looks to Mike for answers and reassurances as the Alpha male isn’t paying attention to him. When John finally answers Sherlock’s question (about the location he served in) he looks down to the floor as he answers. This is a submissive move by John (i.e. he is bowing to the more senior male in the room, showing that he is more dominant), showing he has accepted Sherlock as the Alpha male in the pack. John plucks up the courage to question Sherlock but Sherlock simply dismisses his question by looking away and announcing his ‘servant’ has arrived (Molly with his coffee).
00.51 – 00.58 Completely ignoring John, Sherlock turns to Molly (who has just arrived with his coffee) and questions her on where her lipstick has gone to (earlier in the episode, she had been wearing lipstick to appeal to Sherlock and he voiced his dislike of it – she has since removed it from her face to try and win back favor with Sherlock). Molly explains that she has removed it. Sherlock without any ‘sugar coating’ to his thoughts, simply states to her what he believes (e.g. it makes her mouth now look too small). This is a good Alpha male trait here – saying what is on your mind and not holding back due to concern about what someone else may think. An Alpha male will not apologise for what he believes and will speak his mind.
Notice how Sherlock turns his back as he talks to her and walks away. Sherlock is voicing what he believes, he doesn’t care for her reaction, he is not pandering to the girl – this is a big thing to learn! Remove the girl from the pedestal, let her try to win you over.
01.01 – 01.13 Sherlock asks John a question but he doesn’t look at him. Sherlock knows that he is the ‘Top Dog’ in the room and that everyone will be listening to him. John queries Sherlock as he doesn’t really understand why he is asking, not what he is asking. Sherlock repeats it (as if John doesn’t understand him) and also gives him further information this time to ensure he is understood. This time though Sherlock looks at John to check that he understanding, giving John a ‘reassuring’ smile to appear warmer to John, as if he is trying to encourage him to follow what he is saying.
01.13 – 01.43 John starts to question Sherlock about why he would mention about them possibly being flat mates (he again looks to Mike, to try and get some reassurance from him as the Alpha male – Sherlock – is ignoring him and being in total control, something John as a military man is not used to). Again, Sherlock ignores John’s questions and start getting ready to leave. An Alpha Male knows that his time is valuable and will not engage in any activity that is not of benefit to him. Sherlock has decided that the interview is finished, he has vetted John enough. He decides to leave the office, knowing that John will do as he says.
01.46 – 02.19 Sherlock turns in annoyance at Johns questioning ramble. Notice how John talks fast as he if panicking now that the Alpha is leaving, he needs some answers and is pleading with the Alpha to engage him again. Sherlock talks slowly and calmly throughout the clip – another sign of confidence and being an alpha male.
Sherlock again locks in the eye contact. He turns to John, with his body language open and facing him, and addresses why he thinks what John has said is incorrect. Sherlock is, not for the first time, saying exactly what he thinks openly and honestly. At the end of Sherlock talking, John again looks down to the floor as he plays Beta male again, accepting what Sherlock says to be correct.
02.19 – 02.29 Sherlock turns back, but with his body language still facing towards the exit. He tells John the details about the house visit but it is merely a afterthought, he knows John is under his spell now and will come along with him. He doesn’t need to go back or plead to John to come along. He knows that John will come and he can now focuses on what he wants to do, which is to leave the room. Sherlock leaves the room and leaves John to stand stunned and again look to Mike for reassurance.