As a publicity stunt, a hearse was driven around London this morning via location filming sites, with the BBC One show's title and date of broadcast of the first episode - entitled The Empty Hearse - spelled out in flowers.
Producer Sue Vertue started the ball rolling yesterday evening with the following tweet, alerting fans to the fact that something was going to happen:
Sue Vertue : Hey #Sherlock fans of London. Keep your eyes peeled in the morning rush hour and pay your respects
The BBC subsequently confirmed to website Sherlockology that episode 2 - The Sign of Three - will go out on Sunday 5th January, just four days after the first one, with the third and final episode, His Last Vow, airing on Sunday 12th January. The broadcast times of all three are yet to be confirmed.
A sell-out preview screening of The Empty Hearse is to be held at the BFI on Sunday 15th December.
The series will start in the USA on Sunday 19th January on PBS at 10pm ET.
UPDATE - WEDNESDAY 4th DECEMBER: The first episode will air in the UK from 9pm to 10.25pm.
Two years after the devastating effects of The Reichenbach Fall, Dr John Watson has got on with his life. New horizons, romance, and a comforting domestic future beckon. But, with London under threat of a huge terrorist attack, Sherlock Holmes is about to rise from the grave with all the theatricality that comes so naturally to him. It's what his best friend wanted more than anything, but for John Watson it might well be a case of "be careful what you wish for"! If Sherlock thinks everything will be just as he left it, though, he's in for a very big surprise . . .