Sherlock Holmes Marathon Through My Day
In my Sherlock Holmes marathon, I covered a lot of ground and went dizzy with Sherlock Holmes. I watched Benedict Cumberbatch be overdramatic, I watched Jeremy Brett be hyper, and I watched several other movies and television shows about Sherlock Holmes. I started with my personal collection of Sherlock Holmes, dusting off the Jeremy Brett episodes for a warm-up.
I started with “The Second Stain” as I brushed my teeth, first broadcast in 1986. It was directed by John Bruce, a familiar name to the cast, and he brought the same friendly style to the episode. It is personal and has many touching moments, where the camera zooms in just at the right moment to see Jeremy Brett consoling someone or Lady Hilda pouting in dismay.
It is a great episode, and I think the best part is probably at the beginning when Sherlock roots out the hidden manuscript from under the carpet. Hidden in the floorboards, Jeremy Brett dives to the floor at one point to try to find the secret panel, unaware of exactly where it is, but he knows it is there, somewhere. Jeremy Brett commented once that he tried not to discover it too quickly because overcoming Sherlock’s superhuman powers of deduction was always a challenge. He delayed just long enough, I think. At lunch, I listened to the podcast “I Hear of Sherlock Everywhere”, which you should really seek out if you’re as geeky and obsessive-compulsive as me. I had a tuna sandwich btw.
After work, I was off to Minsk next with Benedict Cumberbatch. This episode typifies how Benedict Cumberbatch plays Sherlock, as he corrects some guy’s grammar at the beginning of the episode. He is more restless in this one episode than Jeremy Brett ever was, as he complains about Watson’s blog and whines about not having any work. This episode has details from “The Bruce-Partington Plans” and other Doyle stories. On the bright side, the details give this series a great boost, as the science, murder, dialogue, and story carry it. Moriarty is the one true highlight.
I watched the trailer for Mr. Holmes (2015), starring Sir Ian McKellen, on my phone. It has the same whimsical music as Sherlock starring Cumberbutt, but Ian McKellen corrects grammar with a wink and a smile instead of an annoying smirk. He delights a little kid, and shows the humanity of Sherlock Holmes, which I hope will make it a good movie. Hopefully. It was an alright trailer, if you like a 90 year old man hobbling around.
Anyway, during dinner, I watched Basil Rathbone on my phone and then I bought groceries. It is a good film version of The Hound of the Baskervilles, and it is fairly entertaining, with good dialogue. It doesn’t have the stupid wit of Cumberbutt, although Nigel Bruce does have his fair share of stupid things to say, so we can all have a chuckle. As I loaded my trunk with fruit, Basil Rathbone uncovered the killer’s motives and sent him packing. Yeah, he literally sent him packing, because the villain takes off like a sprinter and disappears into the moor. He’s never caught, but that doesn’t stop Rathbone from smirking and playing through his happy ending.
At home, I had some coffee as some women were killed in a London fog. The Case of the Silk Stocking sure has a lot of fog. Don’t worry, that’s not all I noticed about it, although this is the second time I saw the darn the thing. The one thing about this movie is that it could be even more fantastic than the Cumberbutt series, as it throws in twins for a twist ending. I changed the DVD to “The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” starring Basil Rathbone so I could watch Holmes argue with Moriarty at the beginning. That’s the best part of the movie for me, although Rathbone trying to climb the tower of London is a close second.
Lastly, I watched the Masks of Death, in full this time. This is from 1984, although it plays more like Agatha Christie than Sherlock Holmes. Holmes is at a dinner party and somebody is a murderer at one point. Where have we seen that before? He also encounters Irene Adler as the police ask him to investigate ANOTHER murder, so he’s not able to enjoy retirement for too long. Poor guy. Peter Cushing plays Holmes with some restraint this time around, because I’ve always thought he was too excited and on-edge in The Hound of the Baskervilles (1959). This is a better outing, although it has a much slower pace.
My day was a long one, but I hope I squeezed enough Holmes in for this blog post. Whew.