Media Gurl, Super Heroine by day, Essayist by night!


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Sherlock: A Taste Of The 19th Century In The 21st (Part II)

Sherlock: A Taste Of The 19th Century In The 21st (Part II)

Sherlock Inspires, Fans Ignore.

Sherlock Holmes a name to conjure with when thinking about the art of the criminologist. Many a Detective has been compared to him in the annuals of history. Whether fictional or real. You can call people like these consulting detectives, CSI’s, PI’s, Gumshoes, or just plan genius when it comes to solving crimes. But before you nod your in agreeing that Sherlock is the be all and end all when thinking about a great detective I have to remind my audience that there was a detective created by one of the greatest fictional writers of the 19th century. The precursor to every fictional detective from Sherlock to Sam Spade; C. Auguste Dupin a creation of author Edgar Allan Poe. Why mention him if this is a study of Sherlock Holmes? Well to bring home my previous point. Many peoples number one complaint about the current spate of Sherlock Holmes Movies and Television shows is that it’s not exactly like the book. That it lacks the original pathos of the great detective. But forgetting that originality is a well disguised illusion brought by the idea that we as human beings are individuals with our own original ideas. We humans are individuals and none to alike but the idea that only original ideas come from one source and all others are mere copies takes away from the aforementioned individuality. Individuals take what they know and make it better. Invent fire? Well someone comes along and makes a fireplace. Make a fireplace? Well someone comes along and invents the stove. Make up a story about a brilliant detective? Well someone will come along and create a tale of a genius detective that has such thrilling adventures that will inspires others to create television and movies about him.

Edgar Allan inspired Sir Colon Doyle who was also inspired by his Medical Professor and Agatha Christie thought she could do better with Poirot. Dashiell Hammett went gritty and tough with Sam Spade. Then many writers followed with many other characters that inspired many more writers. (and a few real life detectives as well. So when looking into the character of Sherlock Holmes we must always remember what came before and after before falling in love and becoming a fanatic. A judgmental fanatic worst of all!

Who is Sherlock Holmes? Well from all the stories I have read I’ve gather some impressions of the great detective. A scientist who makes a study of crime visa-vi the detection of said crime. Expert in anatomy, chemistry, poisons, and various esoteric knowledge not usual known in the society in which he is a member.
However in everyday common knowledge he is unaware or chooses to be un aware. (See A Study in Scarlet; Chapter 2, paragraphs and sentence 6-11. Site: Webpage 2 of

Is good at such hobbies of his time such as Billiards, Boxing, Sword fighting, fencing and the playing of the Violin passably well. Sherlock is also well-verse in a western-European martial art called Single stick. Singlestick: It began as a way of training soldiers in the use of swords such as the Saber. As well as the Japanese martial art baritsu (Japanese wrestling). Mr. Holmes has been known to use such weapons in some of his cases. In most cases these weapons of choice vary from the unconventional to the common weapons of choice in the 19th century. Sherlock’s weapons used in some of his cases are: Canes, Riding crop, Swords, and sometimes a pistol.

Mr. Holmes has been observed by another character. Dr. John H. Watson. “Few men were capable of greater muscular effort.” Which one can take to mean that Holmes; despite his habit of smoking tobacco and imbibing of certain drugs, is in good physical condition of his times.

Offender Profiler And Investigative Psychologist. (I wonder what books he's read as a child?)

In summary this detective can be as cerebral as Poirot and just as active as Sam Spade; all starting from a Doctor’s need to improve criminal detection in the 19th century in real life. Did this doctor had any idea that he would inspire two writers to create an inspiration that would inspire people all around the world to fight crime , out smart the psychopaths,  and the not so slick criminals out there. Beats me! But it kinds of make you think doesn’t it. I sure do hope so fans and fanatics. Because in my next installment I’m going to look into the much controversial topic when discussing Sherlock Holmes. The “romance” between him and the infamous Irene Adler.

Till next time…..

Media Gurl Out!


Thursday, November 29, 2012

So Sorry, Stay Tuned

Some may be wonder where I've been for the last eight months or so; then again some just might not give a tinker's damn. But tho those who where interested to see where I as an author was going with my premise visa vi my treatises on Sherlock Holmes the movie and current critics who have commented on it's inaccuracies. Though when I say current at this point the popular movie has moved on toward movie history however criticised and filled with controversy. None the less as it is part of the the movie goers subconscious my attempt to explain my opinion has to continue. So I write this apologies for the delay with none of the paltry excuses. I set myself to a task and because one thing or another delays happen.

So next week or so with the attempt to complete my article for the few who await the completion of the series I will do so with the purpose to inform  and entertain. Then as time and schedule permits add on new articles with the self same purpose. While you my readers are waiting please by all means enjoy the other articles and videos of my fellow conspirator MRClueUin. I promise you will not be disappointed. Although she is working on catching up on all her projects her past work is worth a second look. Thank you for your patience and....

Media Gurl Out!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Sherlock Holmes- A Taste of The 19th Century In The 21st


 When going to a movie or seeing a television show based on a story in literature one just has to be prepared for a butchering on epic proportions. It’s been done on so many of our favorite books from our youth and some of our favorite books that we have gotten into now that it has become a knee jerk reaction to complain and find fault. It has gotten so bad that when creative people that practice the art of movies have to be braver than brave to even attempt to recreate a literary character and place him or her on screen for the world to see.

Now I’m not here to defend the schlock misters who bring us garbage on a yearly basis. Those suckers are on their own. Nor I’m I writing this article to defend any and all of those creative people who do their best to bring our favorite literary characters to life. They’ve got mouths and are quite capable of defending themselves. No, my motivation on writing this actually came out of reading and observing the many commentators on blogs, Youtube, and other sites where freedom of speech rain supreme.

Some commentators are amusing, some are pretty damn creative themselves, and some commentators are quite responsible in how they address themselves. So hats off to those of you who make surfing the net so darn enjoyable. However there are bunches of commentators who are highly opinionated; which isn’t a bad thing in and of it’s self. After all an opinion is just that an opinion and everyone has a right to express it. But damn it all back it up!

So that’s my problem with the commentators who have viewed either just the trailer or have seen some of the current offerings of creators of the Sherlock Holmes movies. They either don’t back up their opinions or their opinions are just automatic knee jerk reactions to seeing a film or any other media offering that doesn’t always follow their idea of the character. I liked the two movies and found some echoes of the character in the portrayals by the actors in the movies Sherlock Holmes and Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows.

I also love the portrayals by the actors in the current television show Sherlock. So of course as an avid fan of both I am always on the look out for websites, web vlogs, and videos. So what do you think I found there. More detractors for the television show. Which lead me to have this thought. How many movies, television shows, and even fan fic have been boo hooed by these detractors purely based on their knee-jerk reaction on how the stories and characters in Sherlock Holmes have been portrayed? There are many objections that vary from decade to decade at every try by creative media to bring the character Sherlock Holmes to life. Which of course gave me the idea to answer some of these objections in this article.

My object is to show to some detractors why I disagree with most of their opinions. As well as to show some examples to back up my opinion. What is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander after all. If I want people with different opinions to back theirs up I must do the same.

This article is going to be a bit long. In researching all the information on the character Sherlock Holmes; written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, I have found a whole butt load of facts and organizing all of this takes time. So I have decided to write a series of articles. Firstly I will tidy up this introduction. Tie up loose ends so to speak and of course own up to some flaws about the movie, Sherlock Holmes.

I am not going to sit here and write this article with the idea that I am going to profess that the movies do not have any flaws what so ever. That would not be a good critique and that would just leave the door open for anyone reading this to point out all the flaws in my argument based on me missing them. There is no such thing as perfection and this movie is not it. My argument is not how gee, golly, wonderful the movie is as much as I am trying to point out that the main argument that I have read on many a comment page is that the Sherlock Holmes movie doesn’t do justice to the character Sherlock Holmes.

The plot holes in the first movie; Sherlock Holmes though subtle are there for all to see. For instance there was a scene where Sherlock Holmes (played by Robert Downey Jr.), tells Detective Lestrade that if he waited until he received Lestrade’s signal that there would be nothing but a corpse to clean up and that he Lestrade would be chasing after a rumor. First off, where were Lestrade and the London Police officers at parallel to where Holmes was? Why not show the previous conversation with them agreeing to a set upon signal. The action that shows up in the first scene where Sherlock is sneaking into the Temple would then show Sherlock’s disregard for Scotland Yard police procedure if that scene had preceded it.

The next plot hole is very subtle; if you’re not paying attention you miss it. It’s right after Sherlock complains that there are no cases that interest him, (save the one jibe at his Landlady-The Case of the Absentee Landlady), Watson (played by Jude Law) offers to take him out to dinner at the Royal. However when Dr. Watson mentions that his fiancĂ©e will be joining then Sherlock tries to decline. Any one that watched this movie knows this scene however no mention, heck no scene what so ever even mentions Dr. Watson falling in love, meeting, or what have you. No the audience is suppose is glean from that conversation that Dr. Watson has been engaged somewhere in between the Temple case and this scene.

Yes I know this is a vehicle for the Main Character and the focus is on Robert Downey’s portrayal of Sherlock Holmes. But hello! Jude Law is the co-star right? So understanding his character portrayal of Dr. Watson and who he is as a person should be just as important.

These are the two plot holes that stand out to me. Not being a nitpicker; I am not about to go from scene to scene of the movie and point them out for you. They’re subtle damn it not glaring and that’s how I go about watch an enjoyable movie. I can forgive some plot holes and enjoy the ride for what it is. A roller coaster ride that when it’s over it leaves you breathless. Not to say that there aren’t any other flaws in the movie.

One of them will most probably thrill the douche mick nitpicks out there who love to point out the differences between the movie and the books by Sir Doyle. The character of Mrs. Hudson. Oh god those scenes that she is in while playing off of Sherlock does not fit. Happy now? Yeah this need for Sherlock to call her Nanny and slag her so does not compute. There I said it! If I continue to point out the flaws in characterization from movie to book the paragraph wouldn’t be all that long.

Yes there is a point in the movie where they introduce Irene Adler outside of her one appearance in the short story; A Scandal In Bohemia. So? Artistic license anyone? So I think I’ll focus on the movie’s flaws instead. Now there is a scene that could be argued that it was not needed and if so it was put out of order. Dr. Watson is berating Sherlock for having Irene Adler in for tea. So I was lead to think until Sherlock says the line, “If you would just let me explain.” So then it comes to the next scene where I’m assuming it was meant to be a flashback. Hmm, so no transition to indicate that this scene is a flashback and the juxtaposition between scenes a bit jarring to say the least. Nothing wrong with the scene where the chase is on; just a case of a misstep of introducing it. In plain English? What the hell! What just happen here? Not horrible, just jarring.

In the characterization of Irene Adler; again not to nitpick but hey reinventing her as this character that floats in and out of Sherlock Holmes life. I do think that the writer of this screenplay has invented her from the ground up because in no way was the character of Irene Adler this genius thief, con artist, and femme fatal that the creators of this movie wish to portray her. Where did they get this idea from? I have no idea but is she an interesting character for this movie? Well, let’s just say if there had to be a “Love interest” for a character not known to show any passionate interest in the opposite sex much less for the same sex. Well I guess it should be her. But I will point out that glaring flaw in more detail during the following weeks of this article. Let me just say that it really doesn’t detract to much from the character of Sherlock Holmes because it is shown in some scenes that he not so enamored of Ms. Irene Adler that he loses any of his rational senses. I mean hey in the first scene with her he checks the safe, starts looking around for missing articles, and then precedes to sniff the tea she offers him. So trust issues abound and Sherlock is no dumb dupe to fall for a pretty face. So the movie definitely covers that pretty well. No spoilers for those of you who haven’t seen the end of the movie.

Whatever the audiences expectations of the film one must realize that the producer Lionel Wigram was trying to convey more the spirit of the character of Sherlock Holmes. A reimagining of Holmes, not a line by line note for note reading in order to satisfy the fans of the novel. I mean who doesn’t know in detail if not memory the riveting adventures of Sherlock Holmes? Sure there are some who never picked up a book in there life outside of school but surely unless you were buried under a rock, one has seen a TV show, movie, or play depicting the deerstalker cap wearing detective who staked the London streets. By the way, for those of you not in the know, no where in any of the Sherlock stories in literature mentions him wearing that iconic hat. Maybe once but then I’d have to research detail on that and I’m just not about to do that. So, yeah, no. Moving on.

Guy Richie the director of course gets it in the neck as well for using his trademark style of making a movie action pack. Ahhh, oh my god! How dare he direct a movie with Sherlock Holmes using guns, jumping out of windows, and punching people in the face. That genteel character would never rise up and strut around like some mere cockney commoner! Please get real and go read some of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s short stories! God! Then when your though wiping egg off your face re-read what I have stated above in reference to what the producer was trying to convey. This reimaging of Holmes didn’t just come out of the sky. As a young man how much do you want to bet that both Guy Richie and Lionel Wigram read the stories? Don’t bet against it because you’d lose money for sure! In fact Wigram is quoted to have said, "A lot of the action that Conan Doyle refers to was actually made manifest in our film. Very often, Sherlock Holmes will say things like, 'If I hadn't been such an expert short stick person, I would have died in that' or he would refer to a fight off screen. We're putting those fights on screen."  So hope you didn’t just bet the farm there nitpicky.

So as a vehicle that re-imagines the most famous fictional character as this sociopath with a sharp mind and even sharper fighting skills I say that Sherlock Holmes the movie isn’t to far behind the original character written in Sir Conan Doyle’s stories. But does that mean I’m finished back up my argument. Oh no my dear readers. The game is still afoot!

Tune in next week or so when I delve deep into the Character of Sherlock Holmes pulling apart those rose-colored glasses that nitpickers and whiners have been wearing to reveal the truth behind the character we all know and appreciate.

Media Gurl Out!

Portrait Of Robert Downey Jr. As Sherlock Holmes by Vitania (Fond at Fanpop)
Portrait of Sherlock Holmes By Sidney Pager (Inspired by his younger brother)