Monday, September 12, 2011

adaptation: Sherlock

Sherlock television series

Sherlock was recommended to us earlier this year by our friend Chris,1 but Russell and I hadn't had a chance to see it until recently. Our local public television station played the first two episodes--"A Study in Pink" and "The Blind Banker"--during a fund drive. Two episodes doesn't seem like much, but each episode is 90 minutes long and each season consists of only three episodes. So, despite having only seen two episodes, we've seen two-thirds of season one.

Sherlock reimagines Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's legendary characters in a contemporary setting. The series stars Benedict Cumberbatch as an extremely tech-saavy, slightly Auspergian Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman as the wonderfully ordinary war veteran, John Watson.

"A Study in Pink" (remember that A Study in Scarlet is what introduced Holmes to the world) is the series opener. In it, Dr. Watson, recently returned from Afghanistan and suffering from PTSD, is introduced to Sherlock Holmes when a mutual acquaintance finds out they are both in need of a flatmate. In short order, Watson moves into 221B Baker Street, which is still owned by Mrs. Hudson (who incorrectly assumes that Watson is Holmes' new live-in boyfriend). PI Lestrade (Rupert Graves) seeks assistance from "unofficial consultant" Holmes after one suspicious suicide becomes a series and Watson is kidnapped by a man claiming to be Holmes' archenemy.

I liked Sherlock, so much so that I could have watched all six episodes in a row if I'd had access to them. I think the series is fresh and interesting, yet still very authentic-feeling. Russell is much more of a purist so his thoughts on the show may be a bit more meaningful to die-hard Doyle fans. Though updated, Russell thought that Sherlock remained true to the original especially with regard to the main characters, their personalities, and histories.
  1. Chris is also a blog reader. Hi, Chris!


  1. Hi Karen! I'll be interested to hear what you think of the third episode. It kind of felt the least pure to me, but maybe that's because I thought it a bit "goofy" at times. But if Russ didn't find the timed crossbow in The Blind Banker too "goofy", then maybe he won't mind. :)

    Bonus actor info: In the upcoming Hobbit movies, Martin Freeman plays Bilbo and Benedict Cumberbatch does the voice of Smaug.

  2. I'll let you know once we've seen it :)