I love Sherlock Holmes as a character. I really enjoy reading the stories, even when the mysteries are stupid, and I’ve liked the movies I’ve seen (only a tiny fraction of the number of movies made) that feature the character. But my favourite take on Holmes by far is BBC’s Sherlock.
Why? Well, for starters, it’s probably the best-written and best-acted TV show I’ve ever seen. Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock) and Martin Freeman (John Watson) have both landed some well-deserved starring roles in Hollywood, but this show brings out their talents more than anything else I’ve seen them do. The dialogue is witty and hilarious, the mysteries are fascinating, and the characters–even the ones created just for the show–are unforgettable.
And then, as an adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s work, I think it’s brilliant. Sherlock takes place in the 21st century, which naturally leads to some changes (instead of writing down Sherlock’s adventures, Watson blogs about them, and Sherlock gets some of his data from a smartphone), but it’s surprising how well the detective fits in here. He still lives at 221B Baker Street, plays the violin, has a lazy brother named Mycroft, and doesn’t know that the earth goes around the sun. Most of the episodes are based on cases from the original stories, and the plots are always similar, but with a modern twist. The show also resolves some of the inconsistencies in the stories. For example, Watson says in A Study in Scarlet that his career as a war doctor ended with a shoulder injury, but in the next story, he says it was his leg. In the Sherlock pilot episode, A Study in Pink, Watson reveals that he was shot in the shoulder, but he walks with a psychosomatic limp. It’s little things like that that make it such a fun show for nerds like me. Oh, and I love that John Watson is a more active, developed character in Sherlock. In the stories he’s a bit of a bore, but in this show I love him just as much as Sherlock.
And guess what? SHERLOCK SEASON THREE IS ALMOST HERE!! The biggest downside to being a fan of this show is that you only get three episodes per season, and only one season per year (if you’re lucky). They’re long episodes, but still. And both seasons so far have ended on cliffhangers. But the third season is finally out in the UK, and though I lack the computer skills and weak conscience required to watch it illegally here, I only have a couple more weeks to wait. Speculation and reviews will follow. Namarie!