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10/10: You better like it otherwise...
Friday, February 28, 2014

You better like it otherwise he will come after you, the sociopath This series is essential to understand what is happening to any cultural product with time. Nothing is eternal, nothing is ever understood the same, nothing can outlast time itself. To say tat sounds like a common place statement, and yet so many people are still speaking of Shakespeare as being eternal, though he did not exist before his first play was performed. Not to speak of the Bible, the Quran, the Dhammapada, etc. All these books were written on one particular date and occasion, and this writing was a long process, at times a whole collection of various writings, with the exclusion of many others though similar and from the same people or source.Conan Doyle is eternal, isn't he? Sherlock Holmes is eternal isn't he? John Watson is eternal, isn't he? And yet the BBC is doing with this fictional character what it did...

8/10: A British Institution The Brits...
Saturday, July 7, 2012

A British Institution The Brits have their institutions that they carry on with for centuries - the monarchy, the Parliament, Shakespeare, fish&chips, etc. Some say that their adherence to tradition is what keeps those alive, I say yes, it is tradition, but combined with the will or at least the recognition that traditions need to be combined with a dose of novelty, and this is to the same extent as the Conservative philosophy what maintains institutions alive over centuries. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's 'Sherlock Holmes' has become one of these traditions and it includes tens of variants of bringing them to screen. The latest on big screens (starring Robert Downey Jr.) and the BBC (another British institution on its own) series 'Sherlock' are I believe one more example. It's probably the most daring version and an update of the Holmes stories to modern times, and it's pretty good.Let me say from the start that it took...

10/10: Camp,clever,tricky as a...
Monday, July 26, 2010

Camp,clever,tricky as a sack of weasels - meet the new Sherlock Holmes The sacred texts are dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st century in a BBC production so brilliant that it almost makes me regret some of the terrible things I've said about the Corporation in the past. The hansom cab,the 7% solution,the gasogene have been consigned to history at last,the horses' hooves,the shouting newsboys,the London Omnibus no longer provide the soundtrack. The Marylebone Road now echoes with police sirens and "Bradshaw" has been replaced by the internet.Congratulations are due to the writers who had the courage to perform this long overdue procedure. The Ulster and the deerstalker were becoming just a little fusty,I fear. Much like "Bleak House" in 2005 "Sherlock" is slightly afflicted by differential focus and B.C.U.s perhaps best suited to selling expensive motor cars,but it's a small price to pay for...

2/10: Tried too hard to be...
Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Tried too hard to be edgy This series started strong, with a good cast, interesting adaptations of classic plots and intriguing photography, but went south amazingly fast. From the introduction of Moriarty there were no more clever investigations but mainly idiotic, meandering plots those only purpose seemed to enhance the bromance of the all-male leads.The beginning of the end was the demise of Moriarty in an episode that seemed to last hours, devoid of investigation and filled with mini plots going nowhere. Even worse was the introduction of the insufferable Mary of the perennial smirk.This character hijacked the series, with episode after episode about her questionable past (of zero interest for me) until the "tragic" demise... unfortunately Mary kept nagging John and Sherlock even from the hereafter.The fourth series was an unmitigated disaster, from the introduction with an abominable episode set partially in Victorian London and its risible plot of KKK suffragettes plus memories of the...

10/10: 'All lives end; all hearts...
Monday, January 2, 2017

'All lives end; all hearts are broken. Caring is not an advantage, Sherlock.' For those fascinated by the master sleuth Sherlock Holmes who have not yet seen this series in the past four seasons, prepare yourself for a very satisfying obsession. In this modernized version of the Conan Doyle characters, using his detective plots, Sherlock Holmes Benedict Cumberbatch) lives in early 21st century London and acts more cocky towards Scotland Yard's detective inspector Lestrade (Rupert Graves) because he's actually less confident. Doctor Watson (Martin Freeman) is now a fairly young veteran of the Afghan war, less adoring and more active, and married to Mary Morstan/Mary Watson (Amanda Abbington). The various characters continue – Sherlock's brother Mycroft Holmes (Mark Gatiss) and of course the infamous Moriarty (Andrew Scott).The plot lines continue to overlap and the dialogue is so fast the subtitles are a must, but the pacing and the concepts remain fertile. It is an excellent series...

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