Friday Sherlock Links Compendium (October 13 - October 19, 2012)
Before this week’s links, I just wanted to mention how much I’m looking forward to the next few weekends: tomorrow in NYC is the Adventuresses of Sherlock Holmes’ ASH Luncheon followed by Sunday’s the Priory Scholars of NYC Back to School Session Fall 2012. Next Friday October 26th is Sons of the Copper Beeches in Philadelphia. The first weekend in November I’m going for a Sherlockian double-header first attending an event in Baltimore on Saturday morning called A Saturday With Sherlock Holmes then hopping a train with fellow Sherlockians so we can be in NYC by 6pm for The Montague Street Lodgers of Brooklyn. An action-packed three weeks in which I hope to see many of my East Coast compatriots as well as make some new acquaintances along the way. If you’re looking for a scion event in your area, don’t forget to check-in with the invaluable Sherlockian Calendar. Be seeing you…
I Hear of Sherlock Everywhere episode 46, ‘Elementary My Dear CBS’ tackles questions such as “exactly how much of the Canon does [Elementary] include or reference. And how faithful are the characters to what we know? Or does that even matter…join us as we debate and discuss the relative merits and attributes of the latest addition of Holmes to the small screen.” I very much agree with many of the comments which - not to spoil anything - criticize the behavior of this latest incarnation of the Great Detective. Before Elementary fans send Steve Dixie to rough us up for criticizing the show, take a moment to listen to IHOSE and remember that hosts Burt Wolder and Scott Monty are deep into the Sherlockian world and have enormous love and respect for the Canon and beyond.
[The IHOSE crew opine on Elementary.]
The Guardian - speaking of Elementary - posted a piece by Victoria Coren about CBS’s Elementary: ’Lucy Liu playing Doctor Watson: put that in your pipe and smoke it - Outrage doesn’t even begin to cover my reaction to the idea’..and that’s just the title. I’m a sucker for impassioned defenses of the Canon, especially when they are made against major media conglomerates in the midst of an insanely huge media blitz (Walking around Manhattan I see an Elementary billboard or advertisement around 8 to 10 times a day.). Some choice quotes from Ms Coren include: “But there is nothing, literally nothing in the world, that I want to watch less than Lucy Liu as Doctor Watson. I’d sooner see Jeremy Clarkson play Hamlet” or “The idea of introducing not just a mindlessly trendy piece of feminising, but a knee-jerk “Will they, won’t they?” angle, makes me want to throw their zeitgeisty Sherlock over London Bridge in a leaded sack and see if he wants to investigate that mystery” or perhaps my favorite: “So these people are trying to turn Conan Doyle’s great oeuvre into a latterday When Harry Met Sally? Really? Honestly? When Sherlock Met Joan? Perhaps we will soon be seeing Mrs Hudson’s approving smile as Doctor Watson has a big fake orgasm over the curried fowl.” Oh snap, my dear Watson!
[After re-reading this article I get the sense that Ms Coren probably could have continued the zinging well until the bees came home.]
Baker Street Journal Autumn 2012 (Vol. 62 No. 3) is out and editor Steve Rothman delivers yet another excellent issue featuring articles by two of my favorite Sherlockians Mattias Bostrom and fellow Priory Scholar Judith Freeman along with Mysterious Bookshop owner Otto Penzler, Peter Calamai, Mia Stampe Lagergaard, James Zych, Laurie Fraser Manifold, Julie McKuras, David Marcum, Basil Chap and Maria Fleischhack as well as the regular edifying and informative BSJ sections. Continuing the trend of unique and attractive color covers, this issue features a classic shot of the Master on the precipice of the Reichenbach. Four times a year (five if you include the BSJ Xmas Annual) my entire day is made by the arrival of a BSJ and today is one of those most excellent of days!
[If you don’t already subscribe to the BSJ, consider it your duty as a Sherlockian. Subscribe today!]
Dan Andriacco reviews one of my favorite Sherlockian books of all time, Karen Murdock’s terribly absorbing and infinitely useful Sherlock Alive: Sherlockian Excerpts From VS’s ‘Books Alive’ Column in the Chicago Tribune 1942 - 1967. It should be no secret that I covet all things Vincent Starrett, and coming across Ms Murdock’s edited book via George A. Vanderburgh’s The Battered Silicon Dispatch Box a few years ago was a life changer. As I’m sure you can deduce from the subtitle, Murdock has collected 25 years (!) worth of Sherlock-related pieces from Starrett’s ‘Books Alive’ column: that adds up to about 500 pages of text including Murdock’s wonderfully detailed Appendices (A - L) and a masterful introduction by one of my Sherlockian mentors, fellow Starrettian Susan Rice. After reading Mr Andriacco’s post I’m now doubly inspired to crank out a worthy review.
[An essential addition to every Sherlockian/Starrettian library. Click on the image to order a copy from the BSDB.]
Mattias Bostrom presents some Sherlock Holmes books and magazines bought on a recent trip to Japan (October 2012). If you are unfamiliar with Mattias Bostrom, check out his various blogs, in English: Re: Sherlock Holmes & Conan Doyle: Mattias Boström, BSI, on all things Sherlockian, Holmesian and Doylean and The Swedish Pathological Society; and in Swedish: SherlockHolmes.se. Let’s hope Mr Bostrom decides to continue to make YouTube-style Sherlockian review videos. In related news, Mr Bostrom has been hard at work on a book about Arthur Conan Doyle. I’ll be waiting in intense anticipation for it’s release (and translation into English). In the meantime, check out Mr Bostrom’s article on Victorian-style spoilers related to the original publication of “The Final Problem” in the fun, well-argued ‘The Leak’ in this Fall’s issue of the Baker Street Journal.
[Click above image for Mattias Bostrom’s ‘Sherlockian Books I Found in Japan’ video. Fun stuff!]
Quick Sherlock Links:
Scintillation of Scions reminds everyone that “early registration for A Scintillation of Scions VI ends on December 31! Register NOW for the early discount!” While you’re at it, just block out your calendar for June 7 - 9, 2013 because the only place to be that weekend is the Hilton Garden Inn, Baltimore/Arundel Mills, Hanover, MD. Speakers include: Lyndsay Faye BSI, ASH, Brad Keefauver BSI, Matt Laffey (yay!), Dan Andriacco, Regina Stinson BSI, ASH, Sherlock NYC, Sherlock DC, Donna Andrews, Dana Cameron, + more to be announced.
[Click the above SoS logo for full information about the Sherlockian weekend symposium that will kick off everyone’s 2013 Summer with a boom!]
The Stormy Petrels published a lengthy and fascinating interview with Sherlockian ‘Mentalist’ Joe Riggs. Whether or not you’re familiar with resident Sherlockian mentalist and author of The Real Sherlock Holmes, this is a must read interview.
Sherlock Everywhere passed the word that Friends of the College of Staten Island are hosting a literary brunch featuring a talk by Francine and Richard Kitts of the Baker Street Irregulars on “the history of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s iconic detective, Sherlock Holmes.” Also, in response to a certain quote by a certain presidential candidate about a certain binder, Sherlock Everywhere created what is perhaps one of the most hilarious images to emerge from the Sherlockian camp during this election cycle:
[“You know who else had binders full of women?”]
Markings, a blog by Ray Wilcockson that should be in everyone’s RSS feeds, laments what-could-have-been if Sir Oswald Stoll (Stoll Studios was responsible for 45 shorts and 2 feature-length Sherlock Holmes films) had the foresight to cast a young 29 year old Basil ‘the Baz’ Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes instead of Eille Norwood. The Baz of course had to wait another 18 years until shouldering the mantle of Holmes. True to his quirky yet erudite blogging style, Mr Wilcokson ends his post with the opening lines of Burnt Norton from The Four Quartets by T.S. Eliot.
[The Baz in his youth in the film The Fruitful Vine (!921).]
Blog Critics posted a review of Laurie R King and Leslie S Klinger’s excellent collection of Holmes pastiches/stories A Study in Sherlock - a book that’s been out for a little while now but should be essential for anyone interested in reading a few quality pastiches from a few high quality writers.
Seattle Pi - in a less critical Elementary entry for this week’s Friday Sherlock Links Compendium - suggests “Five Sherlock Holmes Characters We Want on Elementary” with suggestions on which actors should play them. My favorite suggestion is that John Barrowman, aka Captain Jack Harkness to Doctor Who fans, should play Sherlock’s older brother Mycroft. A truly horrible idea that might just work.
Baker Street Blog, in a guest blog post by James C O’Leary, summarizes the recent ‘controversy’ vis-à-vis various (mis)quoted Benedict Cumberbatch statements about Jonny Lee Miller and Elementary along with the author’s opinion on “who wears the Sherlockian scarf the best.”
Better Holmes & Gardens reminds us about the ongoing “project on my Twitter feed, I’m delivering stories from the Sherlock Holmes canon in tiny installments of 140 characters or less.” If you didn’t know, Ms. Jaime Mahoney is a Sherlockian blogger to be reckoned with.
Chris Redmond announced on twitter that he “made a minor update to the “games” page on sherlockian.net, the first in about 3 years.” If you are somehow unfamiliar with Mr Redmond’s Sherlockian.net, my first suggestion is that you drop what you’re doing and begin clicking through the Sherlock Holmes website which has been in existence since 1994. If you haven’t been living in a monastery in Lhassa hanging with the head ‘lama‘ for the last 18 years then I’ll assume you are already acquainted with Sherlockian.net and it’s importance/usefulness. If you have a certain knowledge of Sherlock Holmes-related games, help Mr Redmond out by suggesting “additions and improvements to this ‘games’ page? Please write to firstname.lastname@example.org.”
[A not-so-recent Sherlock Holmes-themed game.]
Drivel By the Casketful (“An inconsistent blog full of art, sexy gents and British crap”) reminded me just how special Granada’s adaptation of Sherlock Holmes is to me. This random, seemingly inconspicuous still of Holmes and Watson (JB & Michael Hardwicke) had the power to, for a few moments, transport me to a time and place - known to me only through history books, stories from The Strand and a certain poem by Vincent Starrett - which true Sherlockians might all claim residency.
[Holmes & Watson being awesome.]
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