Jump to content


  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

19 Good

About lvijay

  • Rank
    Detective Sergeant

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Favorite series 1 episode
    A Study In Pink
  • Favourite Series 2 Episode
    A Scandal In Belgravia
  • Favourite Series 3 Episode
    The Empty Hearse
  • Favourite series 4 episode
    The Abominable Bride
  1. Moriarty was innocent

    I haven't watched this episode but even going merely by the canon, Holmes is, if not a murderer, certainly a killer. The difference between them being intent. If x wants y killed and achieves said ends‡, one can say x is a murderer; but if x is, say, driving a car, falls asleep, crashes, and passenger y dies, x is a killer but not a murderer. (I'm not a lawyer so usual disclaimers apply.) If we merely take the events of Reichenbach at face value—Moriarty sent Holmes a note, they met, Holmes escaped because he knew “baritsu”, he's, at minimum, a killer. ‡ the whole murder vs kill takes interesting turns in the philosophical of ethics. A really short sample: Alice wants to murder Bob. She takes poisoned coffee to Bob's house. Bob actually hates coffee so, unbeknownst to Alice, dumps the coffee into his yard. The chicken in his yard eats these grounds. Lays an egg. Bob eats said egg for breakfast. Dies. The chicken dies later. Question: did Alice murder Bob? Is Alice even responsible for his death? Modified hypothetical: Alice wants to murder Bob. She takes poisoned coffee to Bob's house. Alice, inexplicably changes her mind so rather than giving Bob his coffee dumps it coffee into his yard. The chicken in his yard eats these grounds. Lays an egg. Bob eats said egg for breakfast. Dies. The chicken dies later. Question: did Alice murder Bob? Is Alice even responsible for his death? I made up this example but the literature goes along these lines.
  2. That's a great comparison. TBH, this puts me off most TV shows. Having no extra insight into the matter see this as a cliche of modern television writing and perhaps it increases interest in the TV show. Personally, I think a romance only distracts one from the plot. The Ellery Queen TV series, Murder She Wrote, Columbo, Monk etc never got into it and that was a good thing, imo.
  3. Moriarty was innocent

    Thank you Carol for the moderation and your inputs. And also the correction wrt the definition of ad hominem. (For the record, I'm 100% with Artemis wrt Holmes being described a sociopath. imo it doesn't follow from the books.) It turns out I'm not even the first to address my thesis in these lines :-) As Hikari points out Michael Dibdin got there before I was born. Based on my very slim exposure from other Holmes fans, I got a few anonymous commentators (not on this forum) saying they had the very same idea. While I believe the thesis is original (as in arrived at independently), I won't claim I was the first to it. Not by 39 years at least :-) Perhaps others had the idea even earlier. My own inspiration came, as I say in the piece, from comparing Holmes with Fight Club. I wanted to see how far I could take it. Regarding: is it true that Holmes was a master criminal I really do not (for lack of a better word) speculate. Bill Watterson, the author of the comic Calvin and Hobbes, when asked about the "reality" of Hobbes refused to even entertain the question. He said, “The resolution of the question of whether Hobbes is real or not doesn’t concern me or interest me”. The way I see it, Dibdin's (and my) thesis can be regarded as interesting and possible while at the same time not needing for it to be consistent.
  4. Big fan of Psych here. The earlier seasons tried to concentrate more on the detective part and, imo, displayed Shawn's investigative method well—purely on the basis of observation. Mentalist never describes how he infers what he does. With the later seasons they cut loose and concentrated more on humor. If it hasn't already been mentioned, you may also like the TV show Monk. He too uses a deductive style.
  5. Moriarty was innocent

    Thank you, Carol. I agree. Had someone described Holmes as a psychopath or a sociopath ten years ago, the messenger would've been called a troll. Today, the BBC Holmes describes himself as a sociopath with pride. Additionally, if I describe Holmes as a murderer, which I do, is that ad hominem? Even when there's sufficient evidence to support the claim? My opinion, for what it's worth, is that we keep our emotions to the side in the course of analyses. Holmes himself called for just this so it's a little contrarian to the Holmesian spirit to have "sacred cows".
  6. Moriarty was innocent

    “There's a fine line between partisanship and extremism. Too bad it's not a fence.” — anon I have been open and honest from day 1: http://www.sherlockforum.com/forum/topic/3688-a-holmes-fan-finds-forum/?p=138985 It's true that I've been surprised by the reaction here. Because my idea of being a fan of something does not involve a blind love of a fictional character, rather one more welcoming of analyses. Very much like Mr. Michael Dibdin's love of Sherlock Holmes. The irony is that Mr. Dibdin actually attributes schizophrenia to Sherlock Holmes. His work sells copies, he's called a contributor to the Sherlock Holmes literature, but I'm called names and a troll. I recently also discovered that Jeremy Paul wrote a play along lines similar to mine. To me, there's zero ego deflation that others have had an idea similar to mine. It's a sign that I've done something right, that the idea is defensible. A reprehensible thing would be for me to (a) claim no other such works exist or (b) plagiarize the works of others. I have done neither. If this forum is the place where threatening people with violence is considered a good thing, I really should leave.
  7. Moriarty was innocent

    Were this true every defendant in history would be incarcerated. Since that's obviously untrue, your thesis breaks down. In this account, I’m going to take Dr. Watson’s narration as honest and Holmes’s as deserving skepticism. I can’t doubt everything. I see this as the most natural stance to take for any narration. It's why I even have the quip about Descartes. If I doubted everything, I'd have nothing to say and the entire post would be: Moriarty was Innocent We all know Sherlock Holmes is fiction. It follows then that Moriarty was too. Fictional characters are neither guilty nor innocent. Therefore Moriarty was innocent. The end. We know the following: That was allegedly the first time they met—a few days before Holmes and Watson went gallivanting through Europe. Holmes is a big time phrenologist. In The Blue Carbuncle he attributes intelligence to a man merely on account of his large hat. Moriarty's alleged statement about "more frontal development" indicates he too held phrenologistic views. They'd been tussling for several months prior. Given that Holmes regards his enemy with such high regard (and vice versa) and places great weight to physical appearance wrt intelligence, it stretches the imagination that these two would now know what the other looked like. As to why he didn't nemesis earlier, the answer is obvious. First he had no cause to mention or introduce him earlier. When you're creating a bogeyman obviously you don't want to make specific claims about said bogeyman because when the time comes to cash your chips you don't want your earlier statements to be falsifiable. When the time arose, he could present literally anyone and name them Moriarty. Where had he earlier told Watson that Moriarty was a young, stout, short man it would narrow Holmes's choice of actors to young-ish, stout, short men. By saying nothing all Holmes needed to do was to hire first and describe later. (This is why you find a larger range of actors in Shakespearean plans where the characters are not described in great detail but lesser so in, say, Shavian ones.) There are several reasons why people don't come forth. I offer a few below and more can be postulated. I like to keep speculation to the minimum. Moriarty was dead (by Holmes's hand or otherwise, it does not matter). Moriarty had moved to some other place (the Amazon, say) Moriarty did not want to come forth—perhaps he owed large debts and was in hiding, and felt that if he showed himself he'd be in more trouble than winning a libel suit. Also we don't know what his brother wrote. Watson's too distraught to elaborate. So glad you agree with me. Rank speculation. I have nothing to say. Irrelevant. Involves considerations of personality and how nice he seemed. I do not speculate. Finally we have this: We should be rich men if we had £1,000 for every poor devil who has been done to death in that den. It is the vilest murder-trap on the whole riverside. £1,000 is a remarkably large and specific amount. In The Valley of Fear, Holmes remarks that the Prime Minister only makes £6,000 a year. In other stories, people are quite happy to get even a fraction of that £1,000 as annual earnings. This can mean only 2 things: (1) Holmes knows how many bodies are buried and is obliquely hinting at an exact number or (2) Holmes is so rich (through his criminal activities) he doesn't think of £1,000 as much money. Note that (2) does not exclude (1). I Google'd for what the value of £1000 is in today's amount and this website says it's £120,865 ($166,000). That's huge. Jeremy Corbyn's platform to tax anyone earning more than £80,000 was welcomed by Labour.
  8. Holmes the murderer.

    So you agree that Holmes could've committed many a crime and the police would've turned a blind eye.
  9. Holmes the murderer.

    Let's say I'm a respected private detective (in modern day parlance). If I'm caught doing a crime, of course I'm going to claim it was in the service of some investigation. A serious judge would disregard this and concentrate more on the act itself. Enron's employees were caught shredding important documents. If the employee under question said the shredding was because s/he wanted recycle the paper would any judge take his/her word for it? Even if said employee had a reputation for being environmentally conscious? I cannot take seriously any accounts of Holmes's personality. The law's fairness stems from its disregard of things like personality.
  10. Moriarty was innocent

    I refuse to speculate on psyche. People are complex and multivaried. One can be the nicest person to some while utterly indifferent to the pain and suffering of others, both concurrently. I wouldn't impugn knowledge of Holmes at such an intimate level certainly not when no such descriptions of his exist in the canon. And when they do they're by his close friend and companion. Or so says Holmes, who's words (as I say in the piece) should be considered suspect. If I were interviewing Bob to work at my firm I wouldn't take Bob's word that he's an honest man (though if he said he was a dishonest man, I would). It's the reason we ask for references in job interviews etc. Through the entire Sherlock Holmes literature as regards Moriarty, we hear from only one side. Moriarty's case isn't once presented. We know from Watson that Col. James Moriarty defends his brother's name but Watson doesn't get into details either. If Col. Moriarty sued Watson for defamation, and all Watson had on offer was the evidence presented in The Final Problem, it's guaranteed that a fair judge would favor Moriarty. But we never know how he quit the habit. I offered an explanation that's consistent with the facts available. Being consistent with the facts does not a proof make. With all historical analyses one can merely conjecture, never prove and what's true of history is doubly true of fiction. As I say in the piece, "I cannot prove that Holmes was the criminal mastermind, I shall merely present facts that point in that direction".
  11. Moriarty was innocent

    Your assertion is absolutely accurate. I say nothing at all about Moriarty because we know nothing about him¹. I went with “Moriarty was innocent” because it was a more pithy than “Moriarty was innocent of Holmes's accusations”. For all we know, Moriarty was guilty of other charges (maybe he never returned his library books). ¹ I start off my section "Watson Fooled" with this Were it not for this one sentence… from The Final Problem, independently corroborating the existence of Mr. Moriarty, I’d argue that such a man didn’t actually exist but was a fiction invented by Sherlock Holmes. In the footnotes, I compare Moriarty to "Bunbury" a fictional character from Oscar Wilde's play. Wilde and ACD were good friends (at least at that time).
  12. Moriarty was innocent

    All of which we know only thru Watson's rose tinted glasses. How can you be sure that Watson saw things through rose-tinted glasses? Why couldn’t he just be telling the truth as he saw it with his own eyes? Everything that we’ve come to learn about Watson shows him as honest and dependable. I do say in my blog post that In this account, I’m going to take Dr. Watson’s narration as honest and Holmes’s as deserving skepticism. Watson is honest and dependable certainly but he was biased towards his friend. As I say in the blog, "Watson only assumes the best of his friend". I'd analogize the situation like watching a sports game. When an ardent fan of (pick your sport) describes a game everything reported might be true but also biased: "at this stage of the game that happened, it was horrible, and it was a poor judgement from the referee, then they unfairly took the advantage but…". I see Watson in the same vein.
  13. Moriarty was innocent

    Oh, I make quite clear in my blog post that In this account, I’m going to take Dr. Watson’s narration as honest and Holmes’s as deserving skepticism. But it is undeniable that (a) Watson greatly admired his friend, (b) Watson was often (almost always) wrong about his own interpretation of a situation. So it's quite possible that Watson honestly reported what he himself observed while also missing the larger picture.
  14. Moriarty was innocent

    I can quite honestly say that I have not analyzed my position in so many words. First, though I do love the works, I don't see any connection between my feelings and an alternate explanation. Second, though I present my hypothesis, it's merely that. I believe it's a wholly defensible based solely on ACD's canon. Does that mean it's true? Who knows. Philosophers can't make up their minds about whether the number 19 exists. I'd hardly try to discuss this :-) I'm reminded of the famous duck-rabbit optical illusion. The image can be seen as either duck or rabbit but not both concurrently. To ask whether it is a duck or a rabbit isn't a question one can entertain fully, I think. Mine's the same. I'm able to read the stories at face value and they're wonderful. I'm also able to interpret it my way and (if I may say so) it's pretty cool too. I don't know. This society has been quite welcoming :-)
  15. Moriarty was innocent

    All of which we know only thru Watson's rose tinted glasses.

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of UseWe have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.Privacy PolicyGuidelines.