Sherlock Season One
An Emily Blunt Review

 










Bluntly Speaking?
The BBC’s three-movie resurrection of Sherlock Holmes has made a sort of thunder across the Atlantic. This brilliant update of Holmes will please aficionados, and, perhaps, make the Victorian-phobe electronics culture dip in.

Sherlock has a website, Watson a blog. Yet, Sir Conan Doyle’s lads – and stories – have everything they need. There are even nods through out the films to the original stories. You can tell (feel) the creators love Holmes as much as his followers.

The DVD kit has the three films in what one hopes is a first season to be followed by many more. With the films, you get the pilot that got the producers the high-production-value nod from BBC, and a doc on how they went about updating Holmes and Watson for the 21st Century. They’ve properly de-fogged him, but added a bit of mystery, as you watch in wonder (if you know the works), how they’ve adapted the tales, and characters.

Study in Pink is the first film. The pilot on the DVD is Study in Pink as well - with uncanny Dr. Who music...hmm. TIP: Watch the pilot after the high-end production. In fact, I suggest viewing the three films then the doc, then the pilot. Layer the tastes!

As I was typing…SIP introduces us to Watson, and Holmes. Holmes is asked by Lestrade to help on an odd bit of suicides that have gripped Londontown. Folks without a worry (it seems) are committing suicide, in random places, in the very same manner – and they do not have any connections, that the police can find.Enter Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch). He’s a tall, eccentric fellow who likes to store severed heads, and whip cadavers in his spare time to further his deductive skills. This possible serial murder spree in the guise of suicide is just the sort of thing that gets him going.

Just as he’s to jump into the investigation, an acquaintance has introduced him to Dr. John Watson (Martin Freeman). They may share a central London flat – over at 221B Baker.

Then, faster then you can say, “How are they gonna work in a deerstalker?” the duo take on a clever killer and Sherlock and Watson appear to have always been here - now. You may well read their web-thingies daily via RSS.

The next film isThe Blinded Banker. The way they’ve spun the tale of – I think – The Dancing Men to fit into the current era is magical. If it’s not that update, it’s still freakin’ brilliant; all ciphers and foreign drug smugglers. Watson gets a gal pal, and Sherlock manipulates another.

This one’s very much going to thrill mystery viewers of any sorts. There’s just a mélange of parts that puff up into a hearty stew of viewing; rich and robust.

Finally there is The Great Game. Ah, missing treaty papers do smoothly reshape into missile plans, sadly. War is the same in any century.

We get to meet Mycroft (Mark “co-creator” Gatiss) and Moriaty (Andrew Scott). It’s the season’s cliff hanger and it should leave you sufficiently stunned – and praying there’s another season to come!

The reason Sherlock works is two-fold really. The casting of Martin Freeman and Benedict Cumberbatch is spot on. It needed to be. This is a bromance people take very seriously. The players need to be quite spectacular to work. They do, it does...

Freeman is known (here in USA at least) for comedy delivered with that subtle British “thing” they do…Freeman’s got that everyman look that director’s love. But, he works his face like a concert pianist (immediately order the under-loved, absolutely hilarious, “The Robinsons” for a visual lecture on acting with the face). Little remarks wash across, and the watcher can read his character’s soul. The man’s amazing frankly.

Not too shabby is the lad beside him either. Benedict Cumberbatch, for all his manly looks, can not escape his deep DNA. He looks as though he’s walked off a fox hunt, bullied the stable keeper and could do those fancy ball dances so “in” back in 1890. Hell, even his name is a tad pompous. That said, he is scruffed up a bit here (really just the hair), and is perfect for the eccentric genius. Though, he's as talented as he is tall. Yummi.

The two have a chemistry that is rarely found proper these days. And, they are both swell on the eyes. Not as pretty as in Guy Ritchie’s first ass-biting movie version, which had the beautiful Jude Law and Robert Downey Jr., swell, but the man-loving among us will get it…

Then there’s the two who bring us the update themselves…co-creators Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat. They are clever Dr. Who sorts to begin with. But, honestly, they’ve pulled off a remarkable feat here. Sherlock is like a sacred character to many of us. There’s an assumed brilliance, mixed with a bit of arrogance. Mix the two improperly, and you’ve got a jerk. The team behind this project mixed like mixologists at a contest for the best bar tenders of the world. The result is a cocktail of awe.

And, you'll see London quite differently then any Sherlock before has. Watson and Sherlock run around in a 100% now arena. And they use that "now" in everyway. At each moment you know, this Sherlock is part of the modern city, and the modern technology. He uses the apps on his phone to assist him, the way a currently listed world's only consulting detective would…

Even the theme and ambience music is worthy!

Snack recommendation: Chinese Take Away; to be including, lotus scented rice, and tea from 500 year old clay pots please. Splurge a bit.


 
 




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