Who the heck is Kitty?
Is there more to her than meets the eye? Does she have her own objective with working under Sherlock? And how will she and Joan get on as they work together?
To find out more, I sat down with Executive Producer John Polson and the actress bringing Kitty to life, Ophelia Lovibond, at New York Comic Con. Let's see what they had to say...
TV Fanatic: You left last season in a good place to start season 3. How did the writers work to figure out the path of the new season?
John Polson: The writers talk a lot. Rob Doherty, the creator of the show,c has an incredible team of writers with him and they’re always bouncing ideas. The writers are coming in with something it may be an idea they’ve had for a while. It may be as simple as a newspaper article, and pitching ideas really to Rob and discussing what the next story may be.
Kitty came about because Rob was rereading the original Sherlock Holmes story where she’s introduced. We really wanted to introduce a third wheel, if you will, into this relationship and see what happened, especially given what happened at the end of two where there was clearly a separation there. So it’s really doing our best to come up with the next story and something that works. And obviously Rob in particular has a big picture for the rest of the season and hopefully beyond.
TVF: Kitty does come from some source material so, Ophelia, did you dive into any of that or did you kind of just go by the script and kind of make it your own?
Ophelia Lovibond: No, I did read the original story because when even before I auditioned I was on the phone with Rob and he said it’s from an original story. And like John was saying, she’s not a huge character in that story. She kind of enables the story to happen but I did read it and there are definitely elements of her that they’ve kept that she’s described in that story as having a very fiery volatile nature. And though being small, being very forthright. And I thought, yeah, that’s me. It was what really appealed to me as soon as I read it.
TVF: Does Kitty have ulterior motives for being a part of Sherlock’s team?
OL: You definitely learn about who Kitty is and what she’s doing there and where she’s come from. And you learn a lot more about her backstory. It gives you insight into why she behaves the way she does, why she reacts to Joan the way she does. But things happen that are unforeseen, so she kind of reacts to them in the moment as well. You have to keep watching.
TVF: Kitty is the protégé, but are there things Joan or Sherlock might learn from Kitty?
JP: Here’s something I can’t say. What starts to happen in a really interesting way and a credit to the writers, is Sherlock realizes that there’s a lot he can teach Kitty, but not everything. And Joan is the perfect kind of compliment to that. So, parental is the wrong way to put it, but there’s certainly a kind of a role model approach from both of them as the season develops. I think it’s really fun to watch and also to see Sherlock almost admit that alone he can’t really do it. He does need Joan’s help in this once again.
It does sort of give too much away to talk about it a lot, but let’s just say there is a relationship that develops obviously between Sherlock and Kitty but also to a point between Joan and Kitty as well.
TVF: I won’t ask you what past characters might come back, but what are the rules for bringing those characters back?
JP: It’s really about figuring out which specific stories we want to tell and in what order and then which characters. It’s no different to I think a lot of other shows, which is which characters best service those stories. That’s part of it. Part of it is obviously the many experiences we’ve had with all of those characters has been amazing and figuring out some of the boring practical issues like people’s availability and how that fits with where we are and where we want. You would never bring back, say, Moriarty for just an episode. You’d want to figure out a way to build it into something bigger than that.
TVF: Will we see any new characters from the Sherlock mythology? We’re talking about older characters that we’ve already seen but are there new ones kind of on the docket?
JP: I would be very surprised if we don’t, put it that way.
TVF: Ophelia, what’s been your biggest surprise just being a part of the show?
OL: The whole thing really, my agent just called me and suggested it and it just came from nowhere. I had to kind of not let myself get too excited until I was actually here and it was real, and it was happening. But just being a part of the show, I grew up in London I lived right by Baker Street and all those things. So just to be in a show like this, it feels really good to be a part of this, the whole mythology of it.
TVF: We did a little time jump in the premiere but will we go back and see what Sherlock was up to in that time between seasons 2 and 3?
JP: Yeah. I think there’s a good chance that we will hear more about what happened at MI6 and what that dustup looked like between Sherlock and MI6, whether that’s a flashback episode, I don’t think so, but certainly through his eyes I think we will reveal more about that because I think a lot of people want to know. Eight months is a long time. Clearly something happened as we saw in that scene between Gregson and Sherlock where he basically says ‘You want your old job back” but I think there’s a lot of drama and a lot to be learned there. And again, I’d be very surprised if we don’t touch on that.
Elementary Season 3 airs Thursdays at 10/9c on CBS.
Jim Halterman is the West Coast Editor of TV Fanatic and the owner of JimHalterman.com. Follow him on Twitter.