Thursday, October 11, 2012

Sherlock Holmes

I was watching Elementary, a new take on Sherlock Holmes on CBS this season, over the weekend and realized there seems to be a resurgence in showing Sherlock some love. 

Sherlock, Watson and I go way back. Thankfully my mom and brother instilled in me a love of reading and mysteries were, and are, a favorite. I was a teenager when I first read the stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. 

I tried to watch the Basil Rathbone's Sherlock but that didn't match my imagination.  It wasn't until Jeremy Brett played Holmes on PBS did, finally, someone match exactly what played in my head as I read the book.  Brett was masterful.  Sadly Mr. Brett died before performing in all the stories.

Still I had my books.  Yes I own several Sherlock Holmes books and I read them every few years or so.  

2009 brought to the big screen Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law as Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson.  I enjoy Mr. Downey's acting but really thought playing Sherlock Holmes was going to be a huge stretch.  Gotta say, in this case, loved being wrong.  I think it is the on screen relationship between Holmes and Watson that made this movie a keeper for me.  I always worry that I am going to watch something that will tarnish the pedestal I keep these stories on.  The sequel didn't squelch that either.

In 2011 PBS Masterpiece produced Sherlock, starring Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock and Martin Freeman, as a much more energetic Dr. Watson.  I have to say I watched with much skepticism since I really couldn't imagine anyone outshining Mr. Brett. I can admit I was sucked in and enthralled after watching the first episode.  This adaptation brings Sherlock and Watson into modern day England with modern day conveniences like cell phones, laps tops and even a blog written by Dr. Watson.  The most challenging part for me is having only 3 episodes in Season 1 and 2 and now waiting for Season 3. It really is brilliant.

Which brings us to the here and now.  Elementary is the newest take and while I didn't love it madly I did watched the 2nd show and will continue to watch as the actors, Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes and, in a twist, Dr. John Watson is now Dr. Joan Watson played by Lucy Lu settle into their roles.

I hope there is a whole new generation of fans that will pick up the books, after seeing any of the above adaptations, read the stories while letting their own imagination take over. 

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