Nerdfighter Benedict? Or just failed Vulcan?
As far as I can tell, there are eight possibilities here. (I’ve spent a fair bit of time thinking about this.)
1. Benedict Cumberbatch is a hardcore nerdfighter and when Martin Freeman threw up a gang sign, Cumberbatch was like, “I have one of those.”
2. Cumberbatch, who obviously has a relationship with Star Trek, just naturally changed the Vulcan sign (pulling in the thumbs, turning the palms inward, crossing the arms) in precisely the same way that I happened to change the Vulcan sign when I first made the nerdfighter sign in the halcyon days of 2007.
3. One of the interns on set who has gained the trust of Benedict Cumberbatch was like, “If you do your hands like this, the Internet will get really excited.” And so he did.
4. BBC, in their infinite wisdom, staged the entire photo and Cumberbatch was taught the nerdfighter sign (I MEAN LOOK AT THE PERFECTION OF HIS NERDFIGHTER SIGN! He seems so comfortable and confident in it, almost as if it is muscle memory, almost as if he has flashed it to his laptop screen on hundreds of occasions in the past, but I digress) and this photograph was staged to get people psyched for Sherlock, although what tiny segment of nerdfighteria is not already psyched for Sherlock? Also, if this is the case, who is Martin Freeman trying to advertise to? Residents of the West Side?
5. Benedict Cumberbatch has a relative or a friend who is a nerdfighter and so he is passingly familiar with nerdfighteria and liked what he has seen and wanted to make us all very happy.
6. The nerdfighter sign also happens to be the hand sign of some obscure English gang with which I am unfamiliar called like The East London Wanderers or The Slightly Intimidating Liverpudlians or whatever.
7. Nerdfighteria actually figures in the plot of the new season of Sherlock. Perhaps a nerdfighter has been (wrongly no doubt!) accused of a murder.
8. Benedict Cumberbatch was playing some kind of British version of Rock Paper Scissors against two invisible opponents, and he went double scissors (as any smart person would).
As much as I’d love for Mr. Cumberbatch to be a Nerdfighter, I’d also really love him to be a part of the ‘Slightly Intimidating Liverpudlians.’ I feel like that’s the kind of gang he’d be a part of. They look cool when they stand on cliffs and stare, but then they smile and you just swoon.