(Note to editor: Hi there, just wanted to ask if you could replace the thumbnail for me as I've chosen not to include Molly Hooper because I don't think she fits the bill of minor character. Hope you like the list, and I can change some of the entries if you feel they aren't quite right. Michael)
A show is only ever as good as its supporting cast, but a supporting cast is only as good as the minor cast. When creating a show, it's crucial to guarantee that every part of it works down to the bone. One of the best ways to ensure this is to establish a solid set of characters, all the way down to the smallest bit parts.
A minor role is a character who doesn't appear very often - if even more than one episode - but can play a significant part in either the development of a lead, the plot of the episode or even an overarching moment in the series. Sherlock was fantastic at creating memorable versions of such characters, primarily because Sherlock and Dr Watson often found themselves dealing with new one-off clients on a regular basis.
The following ten entries are the minor characters who made the biggest impact on the show. Whether that's because the audience was instantly attached to them, they presented a substantial challenge or were just entertaining is interchangeable, but what isn't is the fond memories they left behind.
This list will contain spoilers.
10. Sarah Sawyer
Before Mary came along, John Watson did not have much luck with women, and it's easy to see why. Taking care of Sherlock Holmes was a full-time job, and while John always tried to make space for someone special, he'd often get side-tracked due to his business partners shenanigans. The first significant instance of this was Sarah Sawyer.
The beginning of this relationship was filled with promise, as they met during a job interview in "The Blind Banker" when John wanted to join her GP practice. After getting the job, the two began to hit it off, and despite some rough patches - like John falling asleep at work - they went out on a date and eventually became a thing.
Of course, as far as first dates go, being kidnapped and threatened with death isn't a great start, but it seemed to work as they were still together in the next episode.
Although her time was brief, it was easy to fall for Sarah's charms, as her quick wit and sharp tongue were enjoyable, and her flirtations with Watson helped them to have great chemistry. She wouldn't be his romantic endgame, but she was great as the show's first touch with romance.