The BBC always likes to surprise us over their Christmas television schedule, chucking in a curveball every so often to keep us on our toes. But what they love even more is using their flagship shows as hallmarks to their festive programming.

Sherlock Season 3Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman star in Sherlock

This year: Sherlock takes center-stage. With the excitement of Doctor Who’s 50th anniversary still in the air, the BBC have capitalized on a great period of drama, announcing the still-alive Sherlock will return soon, while the customary Christmas special for the Doctor received its first trailer.

For Sherlock’s teaser, the trailer kicks off with Sherlock Holmes's gravestone – a classy gold-on-black affair; what else did you expect? There are flowers at his grave, but they’re mostly dead. Then we see a moustache-clad Watson greet the mercurial detective with trepidation, which is fair enough considering the way series 2 finished.

Shortly after, a group of people receive texts – we assume – with the hashtags #sherlocklives, #SherlockIsNotDead and '#SherlockHolmesAlive rising from their phones onto the screen. Finally, Sherlock stands tall over a frosty London, just ready to solve loads of really difficult mysteries. It looks great.

Watch the Sherlock teaser

Doctor Who’s teaser is equally cryptic, with Matt Smith looking for information on a planet, and the words “Silence Will Fall” appearing on screen. We also see familiar foes, the Daleks, Cybermen, the Silence and Weeping Angels in flashes. Looks like Matt Smith is going out with a bang, and Peter Capaldi is adopting a whirlwind turn as The Doctor.

With Christmas telly getting more competitive each year, The BBC are sticking to their most-loved characters to pull in the audiences. ITV will be hoping their Downton festival special can drag some back their way.

Now watch the Dr. Who Christmas special teaser