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I thought of another meta discussion topic to help us get through the hiatus to the Christmas Special and hopefully soon after to Season 4.

 

I will assume that, for most of us, we consider the BBC version of Sherlock to be the best on many levels.  That is, we probably mostly consider Benedict Cumberbatch to be the best Sherlock Holmes.  (Or maybe you don't!  Maybe it's Jeremy Brett for you.) 

 

This is the place to discuss your favorites of characters, scenes, etc., assuming that you can't name a BBC version as your answer.  I suggest that everyone feel free to use their own criteria for judging; so, one person may pick his or her favorite non-BBC Watson based on ACD canon compliance, and the other may pick his or her Watson based on nose shape!  It's all fine!  

 

*****

 

I'll start.  My nominees for the "Best Non-BBC..."

 

Watson:  I'll pick James Wilson from House.  There was something delightful about making Holmes and Watson both be physicians and both be department heads that really showed that Wilson was an expert in his own right, in his own field (oncology).  And, although there were times at the beginning of the series that I really wanted Wilson to do a better job standing up to House, by the end I was completely sold on the idea that Wilson was 1) a completely irresistible babe magnet (hello, Robert Sean Leonard!), and 2) completely and platonically soul-bonded to House.

 

Irene Adler:  Irene Adler from Elementary.  Although she benefits from the "twist" regarding her background (which I'll spoiler tag below), Natalie Dormer plays Irene with a smoldering sexuality and absolutely modern confidence in her own abilities that makes me truly believe that she is what Irene would be in the current era.  She continually conveys a sense of being in control of her relationship with Sherlock, and, thanks also to Jonny Lee Miller's acting, it is heart-rendingly believable that this women nearly destroyed Sherlock emotionally.

 

 

Irene Adler is the pseudonym used by arch-villain Jamie Moriarty.

 

 

Lestrade:  Kind of going with a risky choice here, but I'm picking Lisa Cuddy from House.  As the Dean of Medicine, she's in charge of keeping House in line, which she does by imposing a series of "time outs" in the form of extra clinic duty.  She also deftly uses House's skills for the betterment of the hospital, making sure that House gets the really juicy cases that he wants while handing him those that no other department could solve on their own.  

 

"Shoot the Wall" Scene:  Robert Downey Jr. wins this one for me in Sherlock Holmes.  Sitting on the floor, surrounded by papers and experiments, with a haze of smoke hanging in the air from gunfire and probably not a small bit of smoking tobacco and God-knows-what-else, this Sherlock, has transcended frustrated and moved right along into abject despair.  Next stop is clearly lighting the curtains on fire to see what happens when they burn.

 

"Holmes and Watson First Meeting" Scene:  The Russian Sherlock Holmes (2013) for the most off-handed meeting ever.  If the BBC Sherlock treats the meeting with a combination of humor and gravity at this historic moment, the Russian version clearly could care less about how the men meet, which I find profoundly amusing.  Sherlock hands a piece of paper with "221B Baker Street" written on it to Watson, who he has just met, and suggests if Watson is looking for cheap lodgings he can rent a room there for half price.  When Watson finally moves in, it's clear that about half the town is also living there, so what's one more?

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Great idea Boton.  I've only read some of the ACD stories and have seen clips of a few non-bbc Sherlock stories (mostly Rathbone & Bruce) so I have no idea who I'd pick for anything.  Agreed on Robert Sean Leonard's looks (thanks to watching Dead Poets Society and Swing Kids).

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Well, if someone or something comes to mind, feel free to chime in!  We've got a lot of time to kill here!

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Great idea! Right now I only have a suggestion for Lestrade to add: Ben Reynolds, the FBI agent from Lie To Me. What I liked was that, even though he of course butted head with Cal Lightman over several issues, he was a valued member of the team and always portrayed as competent, a trait not all Lestrades share.

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Holmes and Watson -- Jeremy Brett and Edward Hardwicke for sure (with David Burke's first-season Watson a very close second).  And their colleague Charles Gray is the best canon-compliant Mycroft I've seen.

 

"Lestrade" -- Aiden Quinn's Gregson from Elementary.  (The show has a Lestrade too, and they've done some interesting things with the character, but to me Gregson seems more like a "real" Lestrade.)

 

If I watch a few more episodes of the Russian series, some of those characters might creep into my list.

 

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I agree about Aiden Quinn's Gregson-Lestrade from Elementary.  He's definitely what I think Lestrade would be if he were a NYC cop, which I guess is kind of the point!

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What an interesting idea! I joined today, on a friend's recommendation, and this forum offers so much to discuss my favourite character!

Dr House as Sherlock and Dr Wilson as Watson make perfect sense, but Dr Cuddy reminds me more of Mycroft, always trying to limit the damage and feeling responsible for the oddball genius.

Elementary has changed things too much, it is a bit like watching that film where Dr Watson was really solving all the cases and Holmes was a hired actor playing a part.

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Hello, jadpdr -- welcome to Sherlock Forum!  :welcome:

 

... it is a bit like watching that film where Dr Watson was really solving all the cases and Holmes was a hired actor playing a part.

 

I've heard of that movie, and it sounds intriguing.  Do you happen to recall the name of it?

 

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Hello! The film is called Without a clue, with Muchael Csine playing the hired actor to act as a front, a good spoof, but eminently forgettable.

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Thanks!  I see that this is a good time for your reminder, because the original DVD (which had only full-screen format) is no longer available, but it's about to be replaced (on the 15th of this month) by a new DVD with multiple formats.  (Hopefully they've also improved the picture and sound quality, which some customers found a bit lacking in the original.)

 

Judging by the customer comments on the movie itself, it's quite entertaining if one does not try to take it seriously.

 

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Dear Carol,

Sorry about the typing errors. Hope you like the film, Caine is his usual self, so it teeters between comedy and the ridiculous, until the moment something happens that forces him to become Sherlock.

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Sounds good!  I've got it on our wish list.

 

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The best non-BBC Sherlock series was the Granada one without question! You watch it, and whole scenes have been lifted from it into the BBC one, plus it has the advantage of great supporting actors. Irene Adler played by Gayle Hunnicut, Mary Morstan by Jenny Seagrove, at their most brilliant, beautiful best, not to forget Patricia Hodge (from Rumpole) as Lady Hilda Trelawney Hope; and you have a very young Jude Law in Shoscombe old Place and Peter Vaughn in The Boscombe Valley Mystery, while Robert Hardy (Harry Potter Minister for Magic) plays CAM with superb aplomb and creepy credibility.

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I will bring in 'Data' from 'Star Trek TNG' as he took the guise of Sherlock Holmes in one or two episodes. Data was an android who wanted to feel emotion and was always trying to be human. 

 

Elementary Dear Data

Edited by Carol the Dabbler
Pale text is nearly invisible against the white Mobile, IP.Board or SFW background
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I will bring in 'Data' from 'Star Trek TNG' as he took the guise of Sherlock Holmes in one or two episodes. Data was an android who wanted to feel emotion and was always trying to be human. 

 

Elementary Dear Data

 

There's definitely a special place for Data as Sherlock, especially given the fairly close relationship between Star Trek and Sherlock Holmes.  I really need to watch "Elementary, Dear Data" again; it's been an age.

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Diane Duane wrote a blog post on this, The Starship and the Upstairs Flat.

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I will bring in 'Data' from 'Star Trek TNG' as he took the guise of Sherlock Holmes in one or two episodes. Data was an android who wanted to feel emotion and was always trying to be human. 

 

Elementary Dear Data

 

From that same ST:TNG episode plus the sequel, "Ship in a Bottle," I'd like to nominate Daniel Davis as one of the most satisfying Moriartys I've ever seen.

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Diane Duane wrote a blog post on this, The Starship and the Upstairs Flat.

 

Yes, that's such a  good article!

 

I guess a nominee for the most unorthodox yet interesting Holmes/Watson relationship would be Dr. Who's Madame Vastra and Jenny Flint.  Somehow, the fact that they are an interspecies, same-sex couple set in the Victorian era still manages to be really believable.

 

For those who aren't Whovians, Wikipedia describes them as:

 

"Vastra is a female Silurian warrior from prehistoric Earth who was awakened from hibernation in the 19th century when her lair was disturbed during the construction of the London Underground.[8] Initially enraged, and after slaughtering five commuters, she was pacified by the Doctor and eventually overcame her race's hatred of humans to become a part of London society and a consulting detective to Scotland Yard and a possible inspiration for the Sherlock Holmes stories.[8] Among her unseen adventures is her capture of Jack the Ripper, whom she eats (she finds him "stringy, but tasty all the same"). She hired a maid, Jenny Flint, who assists her in her investigations."

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Oh? Then you should follow Caya's recommendation and go for the Star Trek novels she wrote! One of the Denebians captures a Romulan baddie in all its tentacles in My Enemy, My Ally and warns him that he will be devoured: "live it when prey struggles!" It's a highlight in the novel!

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Oh? Then you should follow Caya's recommendation and go for the Star Trek novels she wrote! One of the Denebians captures a Romulan baddie in all its tentacles in My Enemy, My Ally and warns him that he will be devoured: "live it when prey struggles!" It's a highlight in the novel!

 

I've read a number of Diane Duane's ST novels, but I kind of quit reading them around about 2000, when it stopped being practical to keep up with the novels in all of the ST universes.  I may have to go back and just pick up what I've missed from Duane!

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My favorite Non-BBC version is Vasily Livanov and Vitaly Solomin (Russian, 1979), whereupon Watson looks somewhat curious at the bubbling sounds coming from below, before culminating in an explosion.

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My favourite Non-BBC

 

Sherlock: Gonna have to say Ian McKellen in Mr. Holmes. I liked the take on what an older Sherlock would be like, and I think McKellen pulled it of beautifully. H/T to Brent Spiner. I love Data!

 

Watson: Ian Hart, The Hound of the Baskervilles. I don't know, I just loved his absolute so-done-with-your-crap attitude towards Holmes. (i guess I like Ian's in Sherlock Holmes adaptions)

 

Lestrade: Eddie Marsan, Sherlock Holmes. Just Yes! Close second is Sean Pertwee in Elementary, but I'm a sucker for anything Sean Pertwee.

 

Mycroft: RHYS IFANS!!! Elementary. Brilliantly pulled off, he is the very embodiment of fed up older brother. He is both cunning and smart and yet, isn't that wise. Honestly, I like Ifans even better than Gatiss. 

 

Irene: Idk, uhhh. Natalie Dormer, Elementary, I guess. I do't really like any incarnation of this character, never really done it for me, but this one at least made it believable that Sherlock could fall for her.

 

Moriarty: None. All are pale in comparison to Andrew Scott.

 

221b: House . I love how subtly they dropped it.

 

I have yet to watch the Sherlock Holmes with David Gareth-Lloyd (Ianto Jones, Torchwood) and Dominic Keating (Lt. Malcolm Reed, Star Trek: ENT) but I love both of them, so my opinion may change. Who knows?

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Watson: Ian Hart, The Hound of the Baskervilles. I don't know, I just loved his absolute so-done-with-your-crap attitude towards Holmes.

 

Thanks for the tip! I've become a bit of a Watson aficionado (thanks to Martin Freeman's performances), so I've added this TV movie to my Amazon wish list.

 

Boton's recommendation of Dr. Wilson from House is compelling also.

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Hi all, good suggestionfor a thread by the way.

For me the Granada series is miles ahead of everything that's ever been done Holmes-wise. Brett's is the finest Holmes. Burke and Hardwick are both superb Watsons. Rosalie Williams as Mrs Hudson was perfect as was Colin Jeavons as Lestrade. Finally, for me Charles Grey was brilliant as Mycroft and Eric Porter made a truly chilling Moriarty.

 

If I discount the Grenada series I'd go for Holmes - Rathbone (brilliant as the calculating machine detective.) Watson - Andre Morell (a sensitive performance in Hammer Horrors Hound Of The Baskervilles) Mrs Hudson - Irene Handl (a great, slightly comic performance in The Private Life Of SH) Mycroft - Charles Grey ( yes he was in the Grenada series but I can cheat

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... Charles Grey was brilliant as Mycroft ....

 

[....]

 

... did anyone else think that when they first saw Mycroft that he was actually Moriarty? Or was it just me?

 

I must admit that Charles Gray is my favorite canonical Mycroft.  Can't really compare him with Mark Gatiss's Mycroft, they're too different, but I enjoy them both.

 

    Of course I thought he was Moriarty -- and I thought I was so clever for figuring that out!  We were deliberately set up, you know: there was the whole kidnapping thing, the "arch-enemy" comment, and of course we were not expecting a thin Mycroft.  Oh, and Gatiss was omitted from the credits, so that nobody would know ahead of time that he'd be playing anybody.

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