Sherlock Hemlock is a Muppet spoof of Sherlock Holmes, as seen on Sesame Street. Sherlock is the self-appointed "World's Greatest Detective," dressed in the iconographic Holmes deerstalker cap and Inverness cape, and usually brandishing a large magnifying glass. He prides himself on his powers of observation and does succeed in deciphering small clues, but he seldom arrives at a correct, final solution without assistance. When he does find a clue, he often shouts, "Egad!" He speaks with a British accent and his earliest appearances were often signaled by "detective music" (as Ernie called it), a series of dramatic stings on a piano.
Hemlock also appeared in the recurring Caveman Days sketches as "The Royal Smart Person."
Though generally one of the less musical Muppets, Hemlock sang "X Marks the Spot!," a dire warning of what the letter/symbol X may signify, first on The Muppet Alphabet Album and then on the series itself.
In Season 21, Sherlock Hemlock starred in all of the Mysterious Theater segments, and by this time he he was given a sidekick of sorts: a faithful dog named Watson, who joined his master in the segments and occasional street appearances. Most notably, in Episode 3033, Sherlock and Watson try to find Maria's sock on a laundry day in her basement, accompanied by the Mysterious Theater theme and host Vincent Twice.
In 1998, Sherlock Hemlock and Watson starred as playable characters in the computer game Search and Learn Adventures.
Sherlock's last major appearance occurred in a Season 27 episode (Episode 3424), where the letter X wanted to quit the alphabet. After this, he was only seen in old sketches until the early 2000s. Then, in 2010 for the show's 40th season, Sherlock reappeared on Sesame Street in a brief speaking cameo at Hooper's Store in Episode 4206.
According to Sesame Street Unpaved, Nelson's performance is based on Basil Rathbone's famous portrayal of Holmes in the 1939 movie The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes and its early 1940s sequels. However, the voice, particularly in the early sketches, is modeled after the clipped diction of another British movie star, Ronald Colman.
For more sketches, see Mysterious Theater
|Picture||Summary / EKA||Description|
| Missing Chicken Salad Sandwich|
| Ernie opens his lunchbox and finds that half of his chicken salad sandwich is missing. Sherlock Hemlock, the world's greatest detective, investigates this fiendish crime. It turns out that Sherlock himself ate half of Ernie's sandwich.
| Apple Mystery|
| Ernie finds an apple on a brick wall, and wants to know who it belongs to. Sherlock Hemlock helps solve the mystery, and realises that Ernie has a brown paper bag with a hole at the bottom, and that Ernie had an apple in the bag, therefore the apple belongs to Ernie.
| Missing cookies|
|Someone has eaten Ernie's cookies, and Sherlock Hemlock investigates the case. He asks Ernie questions about the cookies, when Cookie Monster comes by with cookie crumbs on his fur. Sherlock interrogate Cookie Monster, and he comes to the conclusion that Cookie is the thief. Cookie Monster admits it, saying that he is full now and gives Ernie the last cookie, but Sherlock ends up taking it as payment.|
| The Case of the Broken Window|
| Sherlock Hemlock helps Ernie discover how his window got broken. Ernie finds that the only evidence is a baseball, and together with Sherlock Hemlock try to find out how who broke Ernie's window. It turns out that Sherlock Hemlock, who is the number five player of the Sesame Street Sluggers, hit a home-run which caused the baseball to go through the window.
| Twiddlebug Mystery|
|Sherlock Hemlock tries to figure out why there is a mess outside. He speculates that the Twiddlebugs made a mess after a Twiddlebug dance.|
| The Beach: Bert is Missing|
|At the beach, Ernie notices that Bert is missing; all he sees is Bert's hat. Sherlock Hemlock helps find Bert, and in the process, it turns out that Ernie accidentally buried Bert under the sand.|
| Exit sign|
| Everyone wants to go outside the cave, but they're not sure which way to go out until the Royal Smart Person invents an EXIT sign.
| "X Marks the Spot!"|
| Sherlock sings "X Marks the Spot!"
| Paper |
| King Ernie has a problem -- the cavemen write everything on rocks, which are too heavy to carry around. He calls upon the Royal Smart Person to invent something lighter to write on. (This sketch was adapted into a book, The Invention of Paper.)|
| King Ernie needs to clean his yucky teeth. The Royal Smart Person brings a big brush (used for sweeping), then a middle-sized brush (used for brushing hair), then a smaller brush (used for painting), and finally a really small brush (a toothbrush). Just as Ernie proclaims that he'll "brush every tooth in the entire kingdom," a saber-toothed tiger comes in, seizes the toothbrush, and begins to use it himself.
| "Mystery Guest"|
|Sherlock Hemlock competes with Cookie Monster and Don Music on Guy Smiley's game show "Mystery Guest". The mystery guest is the letter X. Sherlock guessed that the guest was the letter I.|
| Something to Drink||King Ernie wants something to drink, so he calls on the Royal Smart Person for help. The royal cow has quit, so there's no milk available. Ernie also shows that there is no liquid inside a rock or a stick. Then the Royal Smart Person suggests that Ernie should try squeezing a round orange thing (an orange), which turns out to have juice inside.|
| Who are you?||Bob tries to sneak a bag of cookies home without getting noticed by Cookie Monster. Bob encounters Sherlock Hemlock, who has never seen him before and tries to deduce who Bob is. Sherlock comes to the conclusion that Bob must be Cookie Monster, due to the cookies in the bag. Cookie Monster comes and eats the cookies from the bag, so Sherlock realizes that Bob can't be Cookie Monster. Bob then introduces himself, and Sherlock asks if Bob has cookies left that he may have. As Bob finds another cookie, Cookie Monster comes and takes it.|
| The Letter V|
|Sherlock demonstrates the letter V.|
| The Letter L|
|Sherlock demonstrates the sound of the letter L.|
| The Letter S|
|Sherlock Hemlock demonstrates the S sound.|
| The Letter N|
|Sherlock with the N sound.|
- The Sesame Street Storybook, frontispiece only (1971)
- The Together Book (1971)
- More Sesame Street Finger Puppets (1972)
- Sherlock Hemlock and the Great Twiddlebug Mystery (1972)
- The Sesame Street 1, 2, 3 Storybook (1973)
- The Sesame Street ABC Storybook (1974)
- The Invention of Paper (1975)
- Big Bird's Busy Book (1975)
- The Sesame Street Postcard Book (1976)
- The Sesame Street Mystery Coloring Book (1977)
- The Sesame Street Bedtime Storybook (1978)
- The Sesame Street Cookbook (1978)
- A Day on Sesame Street (1979)
- Early Bird on Sesame Street (1980)
- The Sesame Street Dictionary (1980)
- The Sesame Street Pet Show (1980)
- The Case of the Missing Duckie (1980)
- The Sesame Street Sun (1981)
- Prairie Dawn's Upside-Down Poem (1981)
- Put & Play Magic Show (1981)
- Sherlock Hemlock and the Creatures from Outer Space (1981)
- Which One Doesn't Belong? (1981)
- The Sesame Street Question and Answer Book About Animals (1983)
- I Think That It Is Wonderful (1984)
- Trace & Color Alphabet (1984)
- Ernie's Finish the Picture (1985)
- I Can Count to Ten and Back Again (1985)
- Sign Language ABC (1985)
- A Bird's Best Friend (1986)
- I Want a Hat Like That (1987)
- The Sesame Street ABC Book of Words (1988)
- Sherlock Hemlock Little People toy
- Sherlock Hemlock Questor finger puppet
- Sherlock Hemlock Heimo PVC figure & pen holder
- Sherlock Hemlock Grolier christmas ornament
- Sherlock Hemlock Tyco beanbag (two variants)
- Sherlock Hemlock Happy Meal Mini Bean Pal (Singapore)
- Sherlock Hemlock Gund mini plush