LITERALLY JUST SPAT OUT MY FUCKING SOUP
You know what though
Jim’s little diguises - Rich Brook and Jim from IT - have one thing in common:
They’re both total sweethearts.
They both have a gentle demeanor and seem to care about the women they’re fooling. They’re both anxious around Sherlock. They’re both inoffensive and fuckingadorableohmygod.
They both have a heart.
No one is that good of an actor. The one thing you can’t fake is a heart.
If he was heartless, Molly would be dead. She saw Jim’s face, she was a liability. Why didn’t he kill her? He’d heard all Molly’s stories, he knew she was important to Sherlock, if only a little, so why didn’t he kill her? Why didn’t he threaten her with the gunmen during Reichenbach?
I’ll tell you why. Because Molly is lovely and he cared about her. He purposely excluded her from the threat because he didn’t want to hurt her.
Even during their first meeting at the pool, Jim showed an unusual lack of self restraint “THAT’S WHAT PEOPLE DO!”. His face wasn’t blank, it wasn’t a pokerface like Sherlock’s. He was expressive. He was emotive. He was human. Jim has a heart.
I think that on the roof during Reichenbach, Sherlock realised this. He realised that Jim wasn’t acting.
He realised what Jim really wanted: to not be alone; to find someone just like himself; to find someone not-ordinary. Most of all, he wanted that person to be Sherlock.
Sherlock saw the level of frustration and disappointment and, let’s be honest, sadness on Jim’s face when he thought Sherlock was stupid and ordinary, and when he thought Sherlock would jump to save his friends.
That’s how he beat Jim.
The way he asserts himself on Jim, moving right up into his personal space. Think about it. He never does that. He’s attacked people, usually in self defence, but never anything quite so personal, quite so intimidating.
He’s risking John’s life by doing this. He’s risking the lives of all his friends and he doesn’t care. In those moments, Jim is his primary focus.
But then, listen to his voice, listen to the things he is saying.
Ordinary people have hurt Jim, there’s no doubt about that.
Sherlock is telling Jim that he isn’t 'one of them'. He isn’t ordinary.
Sherlock isn’t being cruel, he’s being gentle.
We’re just alike, you and I.
And they are just alike, apart from that one little thing that they don’t have in common:
Sherlock is the good guy who doesn’t have a heart, and it’s his biggest weakness.
Jim is the bad guy who does have a heart, and it’s his greatest tragedy.