Fall TV Preview

Elementary Season 4: John Noble Is Sherlock's Dad — and a Series Regular

John Noble Elementary

Elementary mystery solved: Fringe and Sleepy Hollow vet John Noble will play Sherlock Holmes’ wealthy, estranged father when the CBS drama returns with Season 4 this fall.

And producers clearly have big plans for Noble, as he’s joining the cast not as a guest star but a full-fledged series regular. 

Last month, executive producer Rob Doherty confirmed to TVLine that “it’s time” for the elder Holmes to reunite with his son (played by Jonny Lee Miller). “I would very much like to meet Dad and explore this very complicated dynamic that we’ve been alluding to over the last two seasons,” he said. “There’s a lot to get out of a longer-term story about Sherlock and his father and everything between them.”

Per CBS, Mr. Holmes arrives in New York City in the Season 4 premiere “to deal with the aftermath of his son’s recent relapse.”

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  1. Ploki says:

    I’m so excited about this! Perfect casting! Best TV news so far this year!!

  2. bill says:

    Great look forward to it

  3. di inscoe says:

    SO HAPPY!!! Always love to see John Noble on my screen!!

  4. JoeTV says:

    Excellent casting!!!

  5. lqza says:

    Excellent, I thought we would never see him.

  6. Steve F. says:

    Great casting choice – John Noble’s presence on any TV show elevates it to another level!

  7. Kate says:

    Well this is fun!

  8. Jan says:

    Fantastic! Can’t wait for this, I love John noble!

  9. aph1976 says:

    I think this is great casting and it should be interesting to see how Sherlock deals with his father been around full time.

  10. Marika Toth says:

    Great addition to the cast.

  11. Wordsmith says:

    In retrospect, who else were they really going to cast for this role? He’s the obvious top choice.

  12. DL says:


  13. SAM says:

    AWESOME NEWS! (Sorry for the shouting but this is fabulous!)

  14. Christie Abraham says:

    Best news ever. How wonderful to have John Noble as Sherlock’s father. I cannot wait. Missed him since Fringe.

  15. Deion says:

    So no chance that Henry might rise again on Sleep Hollow. But this is excellent news.

  16. Karen MT says:

    Oooooh, YES! I love him.

  17. Anna says:

    Okay, this is awesome. Might have to catch up on this show now… God, where do I find the time? Maybe I should stop watching stuff because of people I like.

  18. excellent news. really looking forward to have him back on my tv screen.

  19. Merissa W. says:

    Best…news…ever!! Great for the show!! It needed some sort of “change”. And can’t wait for him to be back on my TV every week!!!

  20. N ostrowski says:

    Perfect casting!!!!!!!!!! Can’t wait!

  21. Diz says:


  22. Lore says:

    BEST NEWS EVER for this show… i love him very very much, Welcome my dear Dr. Bishop

  23. AW says:

    Wonderful! I’m happy with John Noble, as long the writing for Sherlock’s dad character is better than his character in Sleepy Hollow!

  24. Kelly says:

    Bummer! I wanted him for Merlin on OUAT!

  25. NotBri says:

    This is amazing! I can’t wait till season 4 starts!

  26. Heidi says:

    Brilliant. Can’t wait.

  27. I’m glad everyone is happy. As far as I’m concerned, adding anyone to the show that will take screen time away from Lucy Liu is a disaster.

  28. Alana says:

    I guess I need to go back to watch Elementary

  29. Lizo says:

    Oh. My. Gawd. This is PERFECT. AHHHH SO EXCITED !!!

  30. uk-usa-tvaddict says:

    Is he English? I have seen him play crazy and he was part of the crapstorm that ruined season 2 of Sleepy Hollow but can he play distant, aloof, manipulative, rude, dismissive to both Sherlock and Joan and also charming? That is a tall order. How is he going to be a regular? is he going to move into the brownstone or are Joan and Sherlock going to work for him? This makes no sense to me. I would have thought that he would be a guest star at best.

    • Carolyn says:

      John Noble is Australian.

      • timeliebe says:

        And yes, Noble totally can, @uk-usa-tvaddict.

        • uk-usa-tvaddict says:

          I always imagined Papa-Sherlock as this ULTRA-Englishman. He sent his sons to prep school/boarding school. I realise that John Noble speaks English but he doesn’t seem English enough. I was thinking of someone like John Nolan who plays John Greer on Person of Interest. Now he does chillingly calculated and commanding with a very quiet voice and an impeccable British accent. All wrapped up in a wonderfully tailored Savile Row suite and brogues.

          • timeliebe says:

            I can see why you’d want John Nolan, @uk-usa-tvaddict – but to me, he’s a bit TOO much of a cold fish. Yes, I know Sherlock sees his father that way, but it’s clear that Sherlock’s perception of his own family is a bit skewed – or at least seems to be to outsiders.

            It’s possible that Holmes, Sr. is something of a self-made man, who made his fortune in Australia – or lived there for a number of years for other reasons (to cover Noble’s very occasional slips into “Aussie-ism”, or the Midlantic accent he normally uses on American and Australian television). He needs to be somebody you could believe would have two geniuses as sons – John Nolan doesn’t have quite that quality (though I’d cast him as George Smiley over Gary Oldman again in a second).

            Is this one of those “Oh, Gawd – not ANOTHER Cod-British Accent on ‘Murikan Television!” things? Which is kind of the same way I feel whenever FOYLE’S WAR introduces characters from the US Army Air Corps base near Hastings…?

          • Aimee says:

            wow timellebe, I thought I was the only one that cringed at the “american” characters on Foyle’s War. That Army guy that Foyle goes fishing with…terrible!

          • timeliebe says:

            No, @Aimee – that guy’s accent is what I had particularly in mind. I think he must come from the American State of Anarchy – though surprisingly, the actor, Jay Benedict, was born in Burbank! He must have lived in the UK for so long he no longer sounds American…..

  31. keenen says:

    I guess I am the only one not happy about this. I wanted someone far more attractive and charismatic. I have never understood the fascination with John Noble on any show.

  32. Scribe says:

    YES! Not quite the Merlin I wanted for Once Upon a Time but this is good too.

  33. Mr. Tran K says:

    John Noble is a great addition to the cast of Elementary when Season 4 begins in November after Thursday Night Football is done on CBS. Sad about him leaving Sleepy Hollow after Season 2 was over.

  34. kathyb1953 says:

    Excellent choice! Now I am really looking forward to season 4.

  35. Joey Padron says:

    happy John got a great role for the show! he’s gonna do great on the show!

  36. Bill says:

    Can’t wait to see Jonny and John together!!!

  37. Pat says:

    This is fantastic news. I love John Noble and he will be an excellent addition to the Elementary cast.

  38. Margie says:

    Oh, I am so excited for this!

  39. Marsha Dobbins says:

    John Noble… really? The mystery surrounding Sherlock’s father is intriguing. You’re taking that away from us. That’s bad enough. But John Noble?… really?…Really??? No offence to him, but he has one character in him. He’s always the same. Our generations Peter Fonda.

    • Jake says:

      Comparing Walter from Fringe to the character he played in Sleepy Hollow, and you say they are the same? I disagree.

  40. Bella says:

    Awesome choice. I can hardly wait for scenes with John Noble and Jonny Lee Miller and John with Lucy.

  41. meatwad says:

    i wonder if it will still be interesting half way through the season. I like the casting and think this could be great but seeing a bit of those two together in every episode sounds like a bit much

  42. Viv says:

    Okay. Now I’ll start watching.

  43. John Noble is great! I can already visualize him in the show. Perfect pick.

  44. njartist says:

    Great news! Looking forward to Season 4 and hopefully many more to come.
    John Noble an excellent choice .

  45. Kae says:

    THIS is how you cast a role!!!!

  46. PippaJo says:

    Fantastic casting! I would have preferred Sting, but…..John is the next best choice, for sure! (And it’ll keep Henry from returning to Sleepy Hollow, so that makes it even better.)

  47. lrdslvrhnd says:

    So, Ichabod Crane is Sherlock’s grandfather. That actually makes a LOT of sense!

  48. Ulie says:

    There was never a father in any of the original stories. What makes elementary great is that it stuck to the original character. This is another “Kitty” and “Mycroft” bad character and will destroy the show.

    • timeliebe says:

      ELEMENTARY doesn’t become a modern-day clone of Doyle’s Holmes stories (which SHERLOCK certainly does) as much as a jazz riff on their elements, characters and themes, @Ulie – which is one of the things I like about it so much. Watson hasn’t yet returned to a medical practice but instead became a Private Investigator herself – well, all about Watson, in fact, from turning the character into Lucy Liu to making her nearly Sherlock’s intellectual equal. It doesn’t sound promising when you say it, but when you watch it all those changes make perfect sense, and both Miller and Liu sell it beautifully.

      I took forward to seeing how the show uses John Noble as Holmes, Sr., and what they tell us about their own free-associating version of The World’s Greatest Detective.

      If you want Traditional Sherlock Holmes, Universal Pictures did a lovely series of short movies starring Basil Rathbone, and Grenada Television did a long-running series starring Jeremy Brett…. Or there’s Benedict Cumberbatch, who Moffat and Gatiss are using to make a sociopathic mockery out of Sherlock Holmes with over on the BBC.

    • i hated Kitty and Mycroft too, but i still hope i won’t hate papa Holmes. because of John Noble

      • timeliebe says:

        I thought Kitty worked well as a riff on the canonical Kitty Winters, @Olivia Walovski – and while Rhys Ifans sure wasn’t how Mycroft’s traditionally presented, I thought he did as good a job as could be expected given what they gave him to play (which, yeah, was kind of all over the map, wasn’t it?).