Thursday, March 28, 2013

Conan Doyle, Holmes & Watson – An Enduring Friendship: Guest post by Chris Allen (author of Intrepid series)


Dear Readers, please join me in welcoming Chris Allen, author of Intrepid series. Chris is a fan of Arthur Conan Doyle's stories and has contributed this guest post about the same. Over to you, Chris:

Chris Allen, author of Intrepid series
Chris Allen
One of the great pleasures in my life to date has been in watching directors, producers and screenwriters re-interpret the great writing of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle as new productions are brought to the big and small screens. I literally count the days until the next Robert Downey/Jude Law collaboration hits the box office, and I always attempt to create a quiet environment at home when it's time to take in the BBC Sherlock series and the new US take on Holmes, Elementary. I collect the DVDs (special edition if possible) and watch them at my leisure, all the while re-reading at least one of Conan Doyle’s stories each week. Such is my obsession enjoyment of these stories and the literary inspiration I derive from them. It is indeed a pleasure to see them out again in the mainstream media for our general consumption.

One of the things I like to reflect upon when I’m viewing one or other of the latest iterations is the variety of ways in which the main characters, Sherlock Holmes and John Watson have been presented to us over the years.

Before the recent adaptations, many people only knew of Holmes through the old black & white movies of the late 30's/early 40's, featuring Basil Rathbone. Fans of those movies will kill me for saying this, but I feel they were clichés.  Rathbone's Holmes was too perfect, the ultimate version, I suppose, rather than the complex, flawed, sometimes opiated, routinely depressed yet highly intelligent character we see on Conan Doyle’s pages.

Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes
Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes
That said, my greatest bugbear with the older versions was the reduction of Dr. John Watson, as portrayed by Nigel Bruce, to little more than a bumbling oafish sidekick. I appreciate that the 'straight man & comic relief' pairing probably reflected the times, especially considering audience familiarity with the Crosby & Hope, Abbott & Costello, Martin & Lewis partnerships. In the books however, John Watson is nothing like that at all. Conan Doyle had put so much of himself into Watson’s history and character that you can’t help but admire them – they were incredible men, one real, the other fictional but steeped in reality. Note: In fairness to Rathbone & Bruce, both men saw action during World War 1. Rathbone was awarded the Military Cross for bravery and Bruce was shot and severely wounded.

Probably my favourite element of the original stories was that they were all written from Watson’s perspective, which was very effectively captured - in a contemporary sense - in BBC's Sherlock via Watson's blog, something that viewers of the US Elementary series may not realise.

Click on the link below to buy the book:


Holmes is so reliant on his partnership with Watson. In fact, in the books Holmes often states that he is so much better off when he has his trusted friend and ally at his side. If it wasn’t Holmes saving the day with some well-paced judo moves, then it would be Watson with his revolver. I love the duo. They are much more like Bodie and Doyle from The Professionals than Batman and Robin, if you know what I mean: a much more equal pairing than the old movies ever gave them credit for.

Robert Downey Jr and Jude Law in Sherlock Holmes (2009)
Robert Downey Jr and Jude Law in Sherlock Holmes (2009)
Although the stories have been done many times over, the real resurgence of interest in Sherlock Holmes in recent years has been due to, I think, directors and producers of my age who loved the books throughout their lives and imagined them as similarly vividly as I always have. I really got into the Sherlock Holmes (2009) movie with Robert Downey Jnr. and Jude Law. While they gave the camaraderie between the two characters a great treatment, they also gave the story more of a modern edge, particularly in terms of the banter between them. It’s perhaps not as gentlemanly, but still in the same vein as Conan Doyle’s original. Then the movie sequel to the 2009 hit became more slapstick again, and took it a bit far from Conan Doyle’s books for my personal preference, but I still enjoyed the interplay between Downey Jnr and Law across both films.

Since then, obviously, we've had two equally interesting but vastly different treatments of Sherlock Holmes: BBC’s dark but modern-day Sherlock (2010) and CBS’s quirky and equally contemporary Elementary (2012). BBC’s Sherlock, with Benedict Cumberbatch (Holmes) and Martin Freeman (Watson) came pretty close to the originals of Holmes and Watson and stayed true to the stories. They established a great equal relationship between the two men.

Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman in BBC Sherlock
Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman in BBC Sherlock
Next to Sherlock, I’m equally enamoured with CBS’s Elementary, featuring Johnny Lee Miller as Holmes and Lucy Liu as Joan Watson. It’s a great take on the complexity and eccentricity of Holmes counterbalanced by the thorough, no-nonsense medical professionalism that is Watson. It’s such a thought-provoking angle with a man and a woman, and it really breathed new life into this incredibly enduring story.

In terms of my own writing, I also enjoyed the camaraderie inherent to military life, just as Conan Doyle obviously did. I've tried to replicate that in my stories, with regard to the banter and conversational exchanges between my protagonist Alex Morgan and his colleagues, the way they are and the way they interact with each other. It reflects my view that no one is an island; we are all reliant on each other in some way and there are people you must and can trust during times of adversity. I guess that’s what I love most in Conan Doyle’s stories and probably the reason I try to bring it out in my own humble offerings.

In this day and age, I don’t want to have just male agents in my thriller novels; Alex Morgan and his compadres are great, but they need some female energy in the mix. Just as we’ve seen Lucy Liu acting as Joan Watson in Elementary, I’m writing a new key character in the latest book, Avenger. She’ll be the first female Intrepid agent to be introduced to the legions of Intrepid and Alex Morgan fans currently amassing across the globe! She sure knows her stuff, but I can’t tell you her name or anything else just yet.

Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes and Lucy Liu as Joan Watson in CBS Elementary
Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes and Lucy Liu as Joan Watson in CBS Elementary
I’d love to hear your thoughts on your preferred adaptation of Sherlock – or maybe you can’t beat the books? We know, for example, that our good friend B2B (Is CBS Elementary a good adaptation of Sherlock Holmes?) is a fan of Basil Rathborne and doesn’t believe that Elementary will hit cult status. Leave your comment below!

A former Paratrooper, Government Security and Counter-Terrorism expert, and - most recently - the Sheriff of New South Wales, Chris Allen's series of thriller novels feature Interpol's ultra-secret sub-directorate Intrepid and star agent Alex Morgan. His experience of the publishing revolution has been up close and personal, self-publishing before being signed to Pan Macmillan's digital imprint, Momentum Books. Defender and Hunter have become instant eBook sensations with traditional print deals and a film franchise underway.

Defender Intrepid 1 by Chris Allen
Hunter Intrepid 2 by Chris Allen

For more information visit www.intrepidallen.com, or say g’day to Chris at www.facebook.com/intrepidallen.

To read a sample of Defender: http://intrepidallen.com/getdefender/ to read a sample of Hunter: http://intrepidallen.com/gethunter/

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Image Sources: CBS, BBC, Warner Bros, Wikimedia

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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Happy Birthday Richard Dawkins!


Richard Dawkins quote



Richard Dawkins was born on this day in 1941.

He is the world's most renowned atheist and the author of international best seller, The God Delusion. He has made the popular documentaries, The Root of All Evil? and The Enemies of Reason.

He is also an evolutionary biologist and has written several books on the subject, including The Selfish Gene.

Richard continues to be an agent of reason and understanding, and is one of my role models.

I wish him the very best of life ahead!

To know more about Richard and his work, please visit his website: Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science.

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Thursday, March 21, 2013

FREE Redbox Movie rental codes giveaway!


Free Redbox Movie rental codes giveaway promotional codes movie tickets coupons blog

Movie lovers, rejoice!

I am happy to host a movie rental codes giveaway, thanks to the kind folks at Redbox.

The giveaway ends on Thursday, April 04 2013. Winners will be randomly chosen on April 05 2013. 4 lucky winners will each get 5 FREE Redbox codes.

I will post another entry listing the winners. Winners need to send me their email addresses, to which the rental codes will be sent.

To enter the giveaway:
  1. Follow my blog either here publicly with Google Friend Connect on the right sidebar (or) Like Buddy2Blogger on Facebook. Leave a comment mentioning that you did. If you are already following my blog here or on Facebook, mention that as well.
  2. Also specify in the comment, the movies you are interested in watching, should you win the codes.
Note:
The offer is valid through July and can be used only once. Further, the codes work only for movies and not video games. These codes can be used in Continental US only.

Announcement: This giveaway is closed as of April 04 2013. Click here to see the lucky winners. Thanks for participating!

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Image Source: Wikipedia

Disclosure:  I am not getting paid for giving away these codes by Redbox. The codes have been supplied to me by Performics (on behalf of Redbox).

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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Mark Gatiss reveals the title of the first episode of Sherlock Season 3


BBC Sherlock Season 3 Episode One named The Empty Hearse

The name of the first episode of Season 3 has been revealed by Mark Gatiss: "The Empty Hearse".

The name is a play on the original story The Adventure of the Empty House. In the Canon, this story follows The Final Problem. Holmes is back from his self-imposed exile after his confrontation with Professor Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls. He takes on Colonel Sebastian Moran, Moriarty's own Watson.

The ending episode of Season 2 "The Reichenbach Fall" was based on The Final Problem and it is a logical choice to start off the third season with an adaptation of The Empty House.

This announcement officially marks the beginning of Season 3 filming. I eagerly look forward to further developments and hope for an early announcement of the actual airing dates.

Click here to read all my posts about BBC Sherlock.

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Sherlock

Sunday, March 17, 2013

TV Review: Elementary Episode # 18 - Deja Vu All Over Again


Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes in CBS Elementary Episode # 18 Deja Vu All Over Again
Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes
The episode opens 6 months back as a woman is waiting to board her subway train. She is offered a bouquet of flowers by a hooded stranger. Her joy is short lived as she is soon pushed to her death right in front of the approaching train.

Meanwhile, Joan Watson is dining out with her friends when she receives a call about a possible client. Joan is intrigued with her client’s name – Sherlock.

We move back to the present. Sherlock’s sponsor Alfredo Llamosa (Ato Essandoh) has started teaching Joan “street skills”. In turn, Holmes spends couple of hours with Alfredo for each hour, he “mentors” Joan.

As readers might remember, Holmes had borrowed 2.2 million USD from his father. It is payback time and Holmes has to help a woman who works for his dad’s attorney.

Click on the link below to buy your copy of Season 1:



Rebecca Burrell (Geneva Carr)’s sister Callie Burrell (Roxanna Hope) has been missing for 6 months.  Rebecca believes her brother-in-law, Drew Gardner (Josh Hamilton) forced Callie to make a confession video and then killed her. Callie mentions that she is disturbed with the aforementioned subway death and is thinking of leaving her husband.

Holmes pushes Watson to take this up as her first case. Holmes takes the case of the subway killer, as he had lost an informant in a similar crime.

Lucy Liu as Joan Watson in CBS Elementary Episode # 18 Deja Vu All Over Again
Joan Watson (Lucy Liu) takes up her first case as a Consulting Detective
Joan follows Drew around and breaks into his car to investigate the trunk, despite Alfredo’s strong protests. This lands Joan in jail and Holmes bails her out.

Holmes too is hot on the trail of a suspect, Anson Samuels (Jim True-Frost), who used to work with the subway victim, Vivian Tulley (Penny McNamee) and stalked her regularly.

Holmes is certain that these 2 cases are related just as Joan is convinced that Drew murdered his wife.

I will leave it to the readers to discover the solution for themselves.

Canonical References

1. Inside the attorney’s office, Holmes mentions about the glass being made of six inch polycarbonate – Reference to Watson’s listing of Holmes’s skills in A Study in Scarlet: “Knowledge of Chemistry. - Profound”.

2. Holmes’ remark: “There is no aspect more neglected than the art of tracking footsteps” – Direct reference to this statement by the Canonical Holmes from A Study in Scarlet: “There is no branch of detective science which is so important and so much neglected as the art of tracing footsteps.”

Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes and Jon Michael Hall as Detective Bell in CBS Elementary Episode # 18 Deja Vu All Over Again
Sherlock Holmes (Jonny Lee Miller) approaches a fellow violin enthusiast
3. Holmes recognizes the tune being played by a violinist in the subway footage and tells Captain Gregson that he plays violin - Reference to Watson’s listing of Holmes’s skills in A Study in Scarlet: “Plays the violin well.”.

4. Captain Gregson’s comment to Holmes about not noticing him eat on that particular day – The Canonical Holmes is known to skip food when he is working hard on a case.

5. Miller’s Holmes quotes the eminent psychologist, Silvan Solomon Tomkins’ infamous line – “The face is like the penis”. This seeming indifference to Joan’s sensitivity reminded me of the deductions made by Holmes about Watson’s brother from his watch in The Sign of the Four. Yes, it is a bit tenuous connection and I can say it in no better way than to quote Holmes himself from Silver Blaze: “A long shot, Watson; a very long shot!”

This was one of the better episodes. There were a lot of fun moments.

Holmes’ statement: “Fortune favors the bold” was very Sherlockian in nature. His usage of the term “Tube pushers” was a nod to his British nature and a nice touch too. Holmes’ reaction to Joan’s intention to settle with Drew to drop his charges was a fine piece of acting by Miller.

Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes and Aidan Quinn as Captain Gregson in CBS Elementary Episode # 18 Deja Vu All Over Again
Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes and Aidan Quinn as Captain Gregson 
I also liked Holmes and Gregson working together while interrogating Drew. This aspect of their relationship is similar to the great chemistry between Basil Rathbone's Holmes and Dennis Hoey's Lestrade.

Homes’ meeting with the imprisoned Joan was a pivotal moment and showed the level of passion with which Joan has taken to her detective work. Joan’s Columbo impression was funny too.

There were a couple of weak points though. Joan approaches Drew and introduces herself as being interested in solving the mystery of his missing wife. She proceeds to ask a number of questions about his personal life. Drew answering personal questions about his missing wife to a stranger (who did not present any official credentials or credentials of any kind) was not a believable sight.

As good as it was to see Joan gain the confidence of being a good detective, the closing scene of her updating her status as a “Consulting Detective” on her social media profile was a bit clichéd and induced some unintentional laughs.

Oscar Wilde said in his 1889 essay The Decay of Lying - "Life imitates art far more than art imitates Life." This episode reminded me of the subway tragedies in NYC towards the end of 2012.

On the whole, a good episode (by Elementary’s standards). The question is: Can they maintain this quality for the rest of the season?

Trivia

Holmes refers to Gas Light, a 1938 play by Patrick Hamilton. He makes this point during his discussion about “gaslighting”, a psychological form of making a person doubt his/her own sanity and beliefs.

Click here to read all my posts about CBS Elementary.

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Friday, March 15, 2013

Movie Review: Oz the Great and Powerful (2013)


Oz the Great and Powerful (2013). Directed by Sam Raimi. Starring James Franco, Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams


The movie starts in black and white and we meet Oz (James Franco), a magician with a flair for seducing women. He dreams of acquiring fame and money and is willing to sacrifice the love of his life Annie (Michelle Williams) to realize his ambitions.

But fate has different plans for Oz and he is forced to flee in a hot air balloon. He is magically transported to the Land of Oz.

Oz meets lovely Theodora (Mila Kunis) and is upto his old tricks again. She falls for him and believes him to be the wizard, who according to a prophecy, will save the Land of Oz from the Bad Witch.

James Franco and Mila Kunis in Oz the Great and Powerful (2013)
James Franco and Mila Kunis in Oz the Great and Powerful
Theodora's sister, Evanora (Rachel Weisz) is less welcoming and informs Oz that he needs to kill the aforementioned witch before he can start enjoying a life of riches. Oz also picks up a talking monkey, Finley (Zach Braff) and China Girl (Joey King).

We then meet the Good Witch, Glinda (Michelle Williams). Glinda is able to see through the character of Oz for the selfish coward that he actually is. Still, she introduces Oz as the savior to the people and privately asks Oz to keep up the show.

Evanora is revealed to be the Bad Witch and she manipulates Theodora into attacking Oz and Glinda. Theodora is transformed into an ugly witch, thanks to Evanora.

Rachel Weisz as Evanora in Oz the Great and Powerful (2013)
Rachel Weisz as Evanora
The rest of the movie deals with how Oz lives up his prophecy and saves Glinda and her people from the combined onslaught of Evanora and Theodora.

I have enjoyed all of Sam Raimi's movies (Evil Dead trilogy, Spiderman trilogy and Drag me to Hell) I have seen so far. This movie proved to be the exception.

This is a typical summer blockbuster movie. While there is nothing wrong with that, it deprives the movie of the humor and wit that Sam Raimi is known for.

All his trademarks are there: the fast camera movements (in a couple of scenes), cameos by Bruce Campbell and Ted Raimi and the Evil Dead hand scene reference. But they seem more like obligatory nods to his fans.

Oz the Great and Powerful has some excellent CGI work

The movie boasts of some excellent CGI work, as can be expected from a big budget movie from a top notch director and the biggest movie studio. What the movie lacks is originality. There are some clever touches here and there, but I was reminded of Avatar, Lord of the Rings and Alice in Wonderland more than once.

I also felt that the actors were kind of lost in the green screens they had to work with. The digital imagery takes precedence. This need not be the case. The Lord of the Rings trilogy is an example of fantasy movie making where both the imaginary landscapes and the actors complement each other to present the ultimate immersive experience for the viewer. Peter Jackson's movies transported us to Middle Earth during the movies' running time. Unfortunately, this is not the case with this movie.

I have never been a big fan of James Franco's acting and this movie does not help his case. Just as it was in Rise of the Planet of the Apes, he continues to be upstaged by the computer generated cast members. Andy Serkis stole the show as Ceasar, the chimp in that movie. Here, it is Zach Braff as Finley and Joey King as China Girl who make the best impression.

Joey King as China Girl and Zach Braff as Finley in Oz the Great and Powerful (2013)
Joey King as China Girl and Zach Braff as Finley 
These 2 characters breathe more life into the movie than the rest of the cast combined and the visual effects team deserves full credit. Both Zach and Joey do some excellent voice work and are more appealing in their computerized representations than as flesh and blood characters.

Zach has some of the funniest lines in the movie and he delivers them to great comedic effect. His exchange with Oz about stereotypes was probably the best. Speaking of stereotypes, the movie also pokes fun at the general perception of witches being ugly and riding on broomsticks.

Click on the link below to buy your copy:


Mila Kunis, Rachel Weisz and Michelle Williams are here to collect their pay checks. Tony Cox and Bruce Campbell fare much better in their much briefer roles.

I have enjoyed a lot of Disney movies in the past: The Lion King, The Incredibles, Finding Nemo and the Pirates of the Caribbean series. I believe there are 2 types of Disney movies: one for mass consumption and the second one, I prefer to call Disney movies for kids. This one unfortunately falls in the second category.

Oz the Great and Powerful (2013) is a Disney family movie for kids
Yes, this is a Disney movie for kids
This is a predictable Disney family movie that delivers exactly what a Disney family movie always does.

Fans of Sam Raimi would probably do better by rewatching his earlier movies. Fans of fantasy genre have the Lord of the Rings trilogy and/or the Harry Potter series.

I would recommend this movie strictly to die hard fans of Disney movies.

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Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Benedict Cumberbatch confirms Sherlock season 4


Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes in BBC Sherlock - Season 4 confirmed

As a fan of the BBC Series, I am happy to share this information.

Benedict Cumberbatch has proven to be a great modern version of the Victorian detective. He is one of the best casting choices in a long time, when it comes to Sherlock Holmes based adaptations.

Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat are well-versed in Arthur Conan Doyle's stories and have incorporated several nods to the Canon. I especially liked Gatiss' retelling of The Hound of the Baskervilles.

The exact dates of airing are yet to be revealed. Rest assured, I will keep you updated with the latest news.

Here's wishing the best to the BBC Sherlock team.

Click here to read all my posts about BBC Sherlock.

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Canonical Nods in "The Empty Hearse"
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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Is CBS Elementary a good adaptation of Sherlock Holmes?


Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu as Sherlock Holmes and Joan Watson in CBS Elementary
Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu as Sherlock Holmes and Joan Watson in Elementary
I have been having an interesting conversation about the CBS show with James C. O'Leary.

I decided to post my thoughts about this discussion as a separate post, so that other readers can join the discussion as well. Here is a screenshot of James' comment:



I agree with James that I am expressing my thoughts about Elementary, based on what I expect from an adaptation, irrespective of whether it is based on the Canon or just the characters.

Miller and Liu do make a good Holmes-Watson. I like the sense of humor that Miller brings to his performance. That is very much Canonical in nature and something common to all of my favorite Holmes actors (Vasily Livanov, Basil Rathbone, Peter Cushing and Arthur Wontner). I also like the smarter than your average Watson as portrayed by Liu.

Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes in CBS Elementary
Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes in CBS Elementary

It is the characterization and the writing in general that leave a lot to be desired. Out of the 17 episodes so far, only 3 have managed to hold my interest from start to finish: Child PredatorM and The Deductionist. That means Elementary is successful only 17% of the time. Not an impressive statistic for a show based on Sherlock Holmes in its very first season.

There are certain quintessential Sherlockian traits that I look forward to in any onscreen representation of Holmes: his aversion to women being one of them. This is what is missing in Elementary and the Robert Downey Jr movies as well. Cumberbatch's version also walked the thin line and came out relatively unscathed. When I see an adaptation that has Holmes having intimate encounters/relationships with women, that is a big turnoff for me.

James gave the example of The Adventure of the Charles Augustus Milverton, where Holmes gets engaged to Charles’ maid Alice. I believe the engagement was forced on Holmes by Alice and he just played along to get the information, he needed to help his client. Holmes uses Social Engineering tactics many times in the Canon to solve cases and I believe this is just another instance.

Click on the link below to buy your copy of Season 1:


As James pointed out, Holmes after retirement may have let "the softer passions" play a more active role in his life. I would cite the movie The Seven-Per-Cent Solution as a good example of portraying this probable development in Holmes’ personal life. The ending scene suggests this possibility in a subtle and nuanced manner. The movie by the way is amazing.

James then discusses about Arthur Conan Doyle’s interest in writing the Sherlock Holmes stories only for monetary incentives.

There is always the financial motive that makes people do many of the things they do and Arthur Conan Doyle was no exception. Yes, Doyle wrote most part of the Canon for money.

Conan Doyle had a strong disdain towards his creation. He could not wait to wash his hands of Holmes.

But what he gave us is one of the enduring classics of literature and a character who will stand the test of time as the archetype of fictional detectives.

Unlike Doyle, I however am a fan of Holmes and expect a good level of fun quotient in an adaptation of my all-time favorite literary character.

Arthur Wontner and Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes
Arthur Wontner and Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes
Yes, there have been instances where more than one Sherlock Holmes adaptations competed at the same time for viewer’s attention (and wallets). Arthur Wontner’s movie Silver Blaze (released in the UK in 1937) was renamed Murder at the Baskervilles and released in the US in 1941 to cash in on the popularity of the 1939 adaptation starring Basil Rathbone.

Both Wontner and Rathbone gave two of the best performances ever.

Coming back to CBS Elementary - Yes, it is cheaper for CBS to make their series in the US. My personal and humble opinion is that there is no reason for the show to exist in the first place.

Both the Downey Jr movies and the BBC series have been well received internationally. Downey Jr’s version brought a blockbuster flavor to the legendary detective. Cumberbatch’s version places him in the 21st century with all the modern gadgets and technology at his disposal.

Robert Downey Jr and Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes
Robert Downey Jr and Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes

Both these adaptations are not 100% Canonical takes by any stretch of the imagination. What they do have is a sense of humor and have been made by people with a good understanding and knowledge of the original stories. This is especially true of the BBC series.

Elementary does not bring anything new to the table that has not already been covered by the BBC series and the Downey Jr movies (not to mention countless ones before).

On the contrary, Elementary has Holmes doing things that are patently not Sherlockian. I am referring to his habit of having “fun” with random women in nearly every other episode. They might as well call him and Watson by some other name and drop the few Canonical nods that crop up now and then. The Canonical nods and the character’s names are the show’s only tenuous links to the Canon.

I expect at least some semblance of resemblance to the Canon and a sense of fun in an adaptation of Sherlock Holmes. I personally find both of these lacking in Elementary.

The attempts at humor in Elementary often fall flat. A good example would be the Pink Panther style attacks conducted by Holmes on Joan in Episode # 16 - Details.

Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu as Sherlock Holmes and Joan Watson in CBS Elementary
Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu as Sherlock Holmes and Joan Watson in CBS Elementary
I can understand people who are unfamiliar with the original stories, taking a liking to the CBS show. Miller and Liu are doubtless charismatic performers, who are a joy to watch on the screen.  I am sure that the show will turn a decent profit for CBS. I am just not sure if Elementary will attain a cult status among fans of Arthur Conan Doyle’s original stories.

Click here and here to read the reviews of season finale episodes "The Woman" and "Heroine".

Click here to read all my posts about CBS Elementary.

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