Brooke at her crazy best in “Sherlock”. (Photo: Courtesy of Laurence Cendrowicz/Hartswood Films & MASTERPIECE)
Sian Brooke is an actress whose name you may not know, but whose breakout performance you definitely remember. She played Eurus, the sister we never knew that the Holmes brothers had, on popular BBC mystery series Sherlock. Eurus was deeply creepy – mentally disturbed, emotionally broken, and apparently capable of bending almost anyone to her supervillain-esque will. A master of disguise, Eurus used multiple identities to manipulate her brothers and literally built an island fortress of deadly traps and puzzles for fun. While the story surrounding this character is kind of (a lot) nonsensical, Brooke’s performance is tremendous. She plays roughly four different characters within one, and the actress throws herself into it with admirable gusto. At various points terrifying, chilling, sympathetic and pitiful, Brooke is generally miles above the material she’s playing.
Brooke’s resume beyond Sherlock is fairly limited, with small roles in British TV staples such as Inspector Lewis, Silk, New Tricks, Doc Martin and Midsomer Murders. But then she played Ophelia to Benedict Cumberbatch’s Hamlet in the mega-popular London stage production. That’s how the two met, and how, one must presume, she first came to know Team Sherlock.
The Doctor Who crew love to cast up and coming actors with minimal previous exposure. And while many people will remember Brooke from her role on Sherlock, her, most won’t know much about her beyond that. In other words, she’s a perfect candidate to play Thirteen. And her Sherlock performance already illustrated that she’s capable of playing virtually anything. What would her Doctor look like? There’s almost no way to know. And that’s very exciting.