WORK of genius or totally self-indulgent?

The televisual equivalent of Marmite returned in typically grandiose fashion on New Year’s Day on BBC1.

Quite what Sir Arthur Conan Doyle would make of the latest reworking of Sherlock is impossible to say but I’d take a guess that he would be both amused and impressed.

Of course it’s pure tosh, but it’s such high quality tosh that it has become essential viewing.

Benedict Cumberbatch as the great detective and Martin Freeman as his sidekick Watson are emerging as one of TV’s great double acts.

Few people do disdain as well as Cumberbatch.

Monday’s first episode had the bonus (for the male half of the viewing audience at least) of a naked femme fatale who may or may not have captured the great man’s heart.

The usual Sherlock gimmicks such as text messages on screen and glimpses of the great mind at work were out in force, delighting fans and infuriating traditionalists.

Created by Stephen Moffat and Mark Gatiss, who incidentally is superb as Mycroft Holmes, Sherlock is clearly a labour of love and has been brought a classic alive for a modern audience.

The Beeb should be commended for allowing them to transport their hero into the iPad era.