Tag Archives: Sherlock

Here We Go Again…

16 Jan

I came online this morning to find the internet in meltdown.  Sherlock fans venting their anger at the creative people behind the Sherlock episode “The Final Problem”.

I was going to stay out of it, but I can’t.  Because I’ve seen this shit before and it is NEVER good for anyone.

The last time I saw an internet storm this bad was when Cote de Pablo, who played Ziva David on NCIS left the show.  I said my piece then, but obviously people weren’t listening, so, at the risk of repeating myself… here we go again.

You have a right to be upset about a television show.  You have the right to an opinion.  You DO NOT have the right to be rude, vicious, and vile to the people involved in the creation of the show.  THAT is bullying and harassment and is a crime in almost every civilized society.  Problem is, in acting like that, you are displaying to the world that you are not civilized at all.  Or mature.  Or intelligent.

In what world do you think it is right to abuse Sherlock writer Mark Gatiss?  Or Arwel Wyn Jones – a man who, while he is responsible for the wonderful sets and locations, has sweet bugger all to do with the script?  In what world is it right to so harass the director Ben Caron that he deletes his Twitter account?

I’ll tell you what world. NONE.  None at all.

The demonstration of vindictiveness and bile displayed demonstrates a lack of compassion, humanity, and sanity.

It’s a television show, people.  Look around you.  There are people suffering: homeless, hungry, miserable, dying in wars…and you’re bitching because a television show didn’t go the way you wanted it?  Priorities, people, priorities.

It would serve you right if that was the last ever episode of Sherlock.  I know that if I was involved with the show I sure as shit would be wary of making any more and exposing myself to that level of vitriol.

Grow the hell up!

Sherlock: The Abominable Bride

4 Jan

Having had time to ponder and digest the deliciousness that is “The Abominable Bride”, I have decided to write about it.  Yeah, I know I’m late to the party, but what the hell…

As it wasn’t screened on free-to-air TV in Australia, I went to the cinema to see it.  I think it was probably better suited to the large screen rather than the small, to be perfectly honest.

I was captivated right from the beginning.  I was damn near drooling at Martin Freeman’s narration, which was taking directly from “A Study in Scarlet”.

The plot was so convoluted as to be torturous, but it was a delight.  There were so many canon references, that I will be watching it on dvd for YEARS to capture them all.

I first became suspicious that it was all taking place inside Sherlock’s head when Holmes and Watson went to visit Mycroft at the Diogenes Club.  Whilst Mark Gatiss’ Mycroft was a sterling homage to the canon version (looking very much like Sidney Paget’s illustration for “The Greek Interpreter”), the very Mr Creosote-esque surrounds made me suspect that this was how Sherlock viewed Mycroft (remember the comment of ‘Go Fatty’ in “His Last Vow”?).  I was positive it was all Mind Palace on Sherlock’s second visit when Mycroft came out with the line ‘The virus in the data.’ Anachronism alert!  The Victorians had no idea about computer data, and I’m not even sure they knew what a virus was at that point!

The Reichenbach Falls scene was brilliant.  Loved the fact that Watson saved the day.  The whole sequence seemed to be designed to lay the ghost of Moriarty once and for all.  I suspect that, with the exception of flash-backs, we won’t see Moriarty again.

We got to see and understand some of the complexities surrounding the relationship between Sherlock and Mycroft.

We got a gothic and, at times, downright terrifying ghost story.  That rotting corpse coming to to life had an entire cinema of people shrieking with fear!

Most importantly we got a brilliantly constructed, well writing, extremely interesting episode of “Sherlock”.  Even if it did feel like a 90 minute drug trip!

It was bloody marvellous!

Fan Is Short For Fanatic

8 Sep

Once again we are reminded that the word “fan” is an abbreviation of the word “fanatic”.

I refer to the blogger who posted images of baseball bats wrapped in barbed wire online and made death threats against Amanda Abbington and Martin Freeman.

The fan blogger in question is, allegedly, a fan of Benedict Cumberbatch’s.  I say allegedly.  Because, frankly, in my opinion, such behaviour shows that the person has no real love or respect for him, because if she did, then she would not threaten his friends and co-workers!

One of the things that really pisses me off about incidents like this is that all of Benedict’s fans get painted with the same brush of lunacy.  This is one of the reasons I refuse to be drawn too deeply into Sherlock fandom, and why I refuse to accept the label of “fangirl”.  I barely survived the NCIS fandom, and frankly, the TIVA fanatics have nothing on the lunatic fringe of the Sherlock fandom.

Thankfully, the majority of Sherlock fans are intelligent, sensible, lovely people, a number of whom I have met and like enormously.  There is, however, the very small minority, to which this person obviously belongs, that has me shrieking and looking for a very tall tree to climb!

Actors and other public figures have to put up with a lot of shit.  They tend to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune more than the average person in the street.  What they should NOT have to suffer is the baseball bats and barbed wire of outrageous fruitbats!

Sherlock Special…an apology?

17 Mar

I was very interested yesterday to see that Steve Moffat has said that the Sherlock special is set entirely in Victorian London and is not a part of a three episode arc.  It is a stand alone story.

To me this is very interesting.  As I have said before, I am a Sherlock Holmes fan first, and a Sherlock fan second.  With that in mind, I have to tell you that I was deeply disappointed with series 3 of “Sherlock”.  I loved “The Empty Hearse”, but I disliked “The Sign of Three” and “His Last Vow” intensely.  Both episodes went too far off canon for my liking. Mary Morstan was NOT an assassin.  In season 2, Irene Adler as a dominatrix rather than an opera singer was clever.  Both professions are/were a little dodgy in their respective time periods.  But Mary Morstan as a ruthless killer for hire?  No, nay, NEVER!  Holmes disapproved of Watson’s marriage and did not attend the wedding.  He sure as shit didn’t arrange it or was best man.  Too far away from the originals for my comfort.  Way too far.  I am not the only Sherlockian to feel like this.

The only thing that saved “The Sign of Three” and “His Last Vow” was the friendship between Sherlock and John.  That was as strong as ever, and as it is the core of the canon, it went some way to redeeming both episodes in my eyes.  Not enough that I will willing subject myself to watching them again, however.

In my opinion “Sherlock” is starting to head into “Elementary” territory, ie, using the character names, but the characters don’t have the spirit of the originals.  Nothing more than a drama using well known characters, but not respecting the spirit of those characters.

I think Steve Moffat and Mark Gatiss are aware that they are now treading in dangerous waters.  Waters that could rise up and swallow them.

Hence the special.  A purely Victorian special. Something to make the hearts of all Sherlockians beat faster with excitement.  Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman bringing their special on screen chemistry as Sherlock and John to the more traditional Holmes and Watson.  From what we have seen from the setlock photographs, it is obvious that the special is something of a tip of the hat to past incarnations of the immortal duo.  Several shots I have seen recreate scenes from Granada Televisions wonderful adaptations staring Jeremy Brett and David Burke/Edward Hardwicke.  Other photos I have seen made me think of “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes”, the Billy WIlder film staring Robert Stephens and Colin Blakely that was one of the inspirations for “Sherlock”.  Indeed, the Mycroft of “Sherlock” is lifted lock, stock, and a cellar full of barrels, from the movie.

The special is a return to the roots of “Sherlock”.  To the stories of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle that captured the imagination of generations.

In light of this, I am wondering if the special is a form of apology.  An apology to the Sherlockians who came to “Sherlock” looking for a modern take on the icons, and were horrified by the direction season 3 took.

I can honestly say that I am looking forward more to the special than I am to season 4.

Sherlock in Gloucester – On a Bicycle?

22 Jan

I am absolutely fascinated by the photos coming out of Gloucester today.

Be warned.  I am about to speculate on one particular costume.  If you consider costume discussions spoilers then step away from this blog now.  Nothing for you to see here, move along, there’s a good chap…

Have they gone?  They have? Right…

Amanda Abbington’s costume both fascinated and delighted me.  The photos of her walking out of the cathedral with Benedict showed her wearing a very interesting costume.  She was dressed in a Victorian ladies’ bicycling costume.  The advent of the bicycle during the Victorian period created quite a vogue for ladies to take the air in a variety of only slightly scandalous attire.

It’s not the whiff of naughtiness around the costume that fascinated me, but rather the fact that I can think of only two Sherlock Holmes bicycle related things.  One is canon, involving the character Violet Hunter being followed when she cycles, but we are dealing with Mary Morstan here, NOT Miss Hunter.  The other is far more intriguing.

The movie “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes” starring Robert Stephens and Colin Blakely had a cycling scene.  Holmes, Watson, and Madame Valladon aka Ilsa von Hoffmanstal (Genevieve Page) cycling around the Scottish Highlands.

Given both Mark Gatiss and Steve Moffat’s love of that movie, I am wondering if they are adapting that scene for Sherlock.

Amanda Abbington’s Mary Morstan has much more in common with Ilsa von Hoffmanstal than with Arthur Conan Doyle’s creation.  His Mary was a brave, but put upon, young woman.  Gatiss and Moffat’s creation is an assassin.  Ilsa von Hoffmanstal was a spy.

Mark Gatiss has form for sneaking bits of “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes” into Sherlock.  He had me damn near falling off my chair laughing when I watched “The Empty Hearse” after he gave Una Stubbs’ Mrs Hudson one of Irene Handl’s Mrs Hudson’s lines from the movie.

A sudden thought… they were shooting in a cemetery the other day… there is an excellent graveyard scene in “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes” as well!!!

Time will tell what they are doing.  I do know one thing.  This synthesis of traditional Holmes/Watson and modern Sherlock is delighting me no end, before it even gets to the screen.

A Study in Pink – A Few More Thoughts

4 Jan

Here in Australia the ABC (Australian Broadcasting Commission – equivalent to the BBC) has picked up the first two seasons of “Sherlock” to show on repeat.  Even though I have them all on dvd the temptation to watch without interruptions from commercials was too good to pass by, so I settled down last night to watch “A Study in Pink” – AGAIN.

I have lost count of how many times I have watched this episode.  It remains one of my favourites, and every time I watch it, I discover something new.  I have a few thoughts to share on the subject.

I have blogged previously on the episode, in case you missed it.  https://margysmusings.wordpress.com/2013/04/21/a-study-in-pink/

John’s therapist writes that he has “trust issues” at the start of the episode.  If John has trust issues, how come he offers the use of his mobile phone to a complete stranger, to whit, one Sherlock Holmes?  The scene also raises another pertinent question.  How the hell did Ella qualify as a bloody therapist as she’s so damn incompetent?

Just how did Detective Inspector Lestrade know where Sherlock was living?  He’d just moved in that day!  Is this a continuity error…. or early evidence of Lestrade being handled by Mycroft?  There is some interesting fan fiction in there somewhere, and I DON’T mean Mystrade.

The big question.  Did Sherlock and John  save the life of the man from Santa Monica when they chased Jeff Hope’s cab, on foot, through London?  Was the mystery American to have been victim number 5?  Hope couldn’t kill him after that…there were witnesses that the man had been in his cab.

Every time I watch “A Study In Pink” I find something new.  A line I’ve missed, or in these instances, questions to be asked.

Still think the man from Santa Monica is the biggest question of all.

Sherlock: Chronicles

14 Dec

“Sherlock: Chronicles” by Steve Tribe is an in depth guide to seasons 1 to 3 of the BBC production “Sherlock” starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman.

However, the book isn’t simply for fans of the show.  Yes, it is aimed at the show’s fan base, but it is also a book for Sherlock Holmes aficionados.

This book has photographs of earlier portrayals of Holmes and Watson, such as Brett & Hardwicke, and Rathbone & Bruce.  There are also reproductions of a couple of Sidney Paget’s original illustrations.  For this Sherlock Holmes fan, the inclusion of photos from the 1970s movie “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes” starring Robert Stephens and Colin Blakely was the icing on the cake.

There are many excellent photos, a lot of them behind the scenes, which delighted the heart of this backroom geek girl.

There are deleted scenes from the episodes, and also, for the Sherlock Holmes fans, wonderful comparisons of scenes from the script juxtaposed with the original pieces from the stories on which the quoted scene was based.

The book is also threaded through with quotes and interviews with Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Mark Gatiss, Steve Moffat, Sue Vertue, Loo Brealey, Arwel Wyn Jones, et al.

The section on costuming was very interesting.  I was unaware just how much input both Benedict and Martin had had into Sherlock and John’s respective wardrobes.

Steve Tribe has created a book that will delight the fan girls, hold the interest of Sherlock Holmes fans, and absorb the geeks who love to know how things are done on television.  And trust me, there is a lot of “How We Did This Stuff”.  I found how they did the tube train scenes in “The Empty Hearse” particularly fascinating.

Highly recommended.

Happy Little Sherlockian

25 Nov

I am a happy little Sherlockian this morning.

Yesterday I arrived home from work to discover that I had a copy of the “Sherlock Chronicles” by Steve Tribe that the lovely Rebecca in England had purchased and sent to me.

I haven’t started to read it (yet), but did sit down to have a little flick through it.  And was immediately captivated by the photographs.  So many behind the scenes photos that I hadn’t seen before, as well as many gorgeous photos of Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, and the others.  And not just Sherlock photos.  I spotted some from other things they had been in such as a photo of Benedict from “Frankenstein”.

The other thing I noticed is that the book also has photos of William Gillette, Jeremy Brett, and Robert Stephens, and copies of Sidney Paget’s original illustrations.  So the book promises to be a feast for Sherlockians, not just Sherlock fans.

As I keep having to point out to people, I’m a Sherlock Holmes fan first; a Sherlock fan second.  I adore Benedict and Martin’s portrayals, for me they are the closest to my ideal of, to me, literature’s greatest friendship.  But I will always love Robert Stephens’ Holmes (my first screen Holmes) and I adored Edward Hardwicke’s Watson.

Then this morning I came online to discover Twitter all abuzz with the news of the read through for the Sherlock special.

Words cannot express my delight at the photo of Benedict and Martin dressed as traditional Holmes and Watson that I also found all over Twitter.

Sue Vertue said the photo shows them as they will appear in the special, which raises some VERY interesting questions.  Is the special going to be divorced from the series and be set in the Victorian period with Benedict and Martin playing their character’s great-great-great grandfathers or uncles?

Is it a dream sequence?  Sherlock strung out on drugs dreaming of a time past?

A friend of mine, Angela, suggested the possibility of a Dickensian “Christmas Carol” type thing with Victorian Sherlock and John as the Ghosts of Christmas Past.

Or is it something as prosaic as the two men attending a masquerade party?

Whatever the outcome, my Sherlockian cup is overflowing… mostly with drool.

London 2015

12 Nov

The next major step on the road to my London trip next year has been taken.

I have booked my airfares and hotel.  I now have dates I will be in London and a place to lay my head.

It is now starting to feel very real.

I had several criteria for the hotel.  It had to be close to UCL (for the Petrie Museum), the British Museum, and the Sherlock Holmes Museum.  My travel agent found me a nice hotel that was snuggled close to these attractions and I accepted his word on it.  It wasn’t until I got home and looked up the hotel that I realised just how serendipitous the hotel selection was.

My long time readers now that I am both a Sherlock Holmes fan and a BBC Sherlock fan.  I discovered that I will be spending 19 days literally just around the corner from North Gower Street where they shoot the exteriors for Sherlock!  Speedy’s Cafe is amongst the closest places to eat to my hotel!

I have a tendency to taking early morning walks.  I can see me quietly wandering North Gower Street playing a mental game of “I saw this on Sherlock” as I spot familiar things.

The Petrie Museum, The British Museum, and The Sherlock Holmes Museum are amongst the top attractions on my lists of things to do and see.  I am hoping the Sherlock Holmes Museum sells deerstalkers, as I have wanted one since I was 10 years old.

So far I have only one day fully planned out.  One of my favourite people in the whole wide world, my friend Rebecca, and I are going to the Tower of London and then doing the London Bridge Experience which is recreations of London’s dark and murky past.  Possibly tourist tat, but I am so looking forward to it.

And my list of things to do and see keeps growing.  Thanks to a documentary on underground London, I discovered that the Guildhall Art Gallery has preserved the ruins of Roman London’s amphitheatre in its basement and you can visit it.  And it is free!

The legendary London Stone in Cannon Street is also on the agenda.  One legend has it that is is the mystical heart of London.  Another legend (my favourite) claims it was the stone from which Arthur’s sword Excalibur was drawn.

This is what I love about London. The wondrous blend of history and mystery that makes it like no other city in the world.

The Return of Jim Moriarty

1 Jun

I’ve been contemplating how Steve Moffat and Mark Gatiss are going to bring Jim back from the dead and I have one idea.  It’s not my idea, actually, it’s pretty much accepted canon amongst Sherlock Holmes scholars. 

Our Jim won’t be rising from the dead.  Nope.  He’s as dead as the proverbial dodo.  The accepted Sherlock Holmes wisdom is that there were three James Moriartys.  Yes, you read that correctly, three of them.  They were brothers, all named James. James the Elder, James the Middle, and James the Younger.  The Moriarty of the canon, and probably the Jim of Sherlock, is the middle brother.

Confusing isn’t it?  And you thought Moffat and Gatiss were bad!  This is what serious Sherlock Holmes scholars came up with YEARS ago.  It’s been more or less accepted as canon for a large number of years, the same way that Sherlock’s first name of William is accepted, even though Sir Arthur Conan Doyle never so much as hints that Sherlock is not his creation’s first name!  I have read several “biographies” of Sherlock Holmes that state his first name is William, named after his father.  The family was originally landed gentry from Yorkshire, but that’s getting off topic somewhat.

Anyway, back to the James Moriarty Trio.  At least two contemporary writers of Sherlock Holmes fiction have used the idea.  Most notable is Kim Newman in “The Hound of the D’Urbervilles”.  We actually meet the other two Jameses in his book.  And the idea is mentioned in passing in Michael Kurland’s “The Infernal Device”.

The accepted wisdom is that James the Elder was in the military (have seen the ranks of both Major and Colonel mooted), and James the Younger was a station master, possibly in Devon or Cornwall.  The younger James is also often referred to as not being as bright as his brothers, so he is not likely to be the James that Moffat and Gatiss possibly utilize.  They would also have to dramatically change his profession, because if England is anything like Australia, there aren’t any station masters left!  Apart from the Fat Controller of Thomas the Tank Engine! :p

So we are possibly looking at James the Elder seeking retribution against Sherlock, John, and Mycroft.  In my mind, the most logical military post for him would be Military Intelligence.  This would give him the skill set necessary to even begin to take on the two greatest brains in England… and one pissed off ex-army doctor.

The game, as Sherlock says, is on.

%d bloggers like this: