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Hikari last won the day on September 21

Hikari had the most liked content!

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About Hikari

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    Ohio, USA
  • Favorite series 1 episode
    The Great Game
  • Favourite Series 2 Episode
    A Scandal In Belgravia
  • Favourite Series 3 Episode
    The Sign of Three
  • Favourite series 4 episode
    The Lying Detective

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  1. Definitely an homage to ACD's Holmes and Watson. Mr. Marcum is a purist non pareil and only recognizes the 'canonical' Holmes universe. He has dedicated his life to the Great Holmes Tapestry and 'discovering' new Holmes and Watson adventures--so long as they are plausibly within the era and the milieu created by ACD. Therefore Holmes and Watson must remain English gentlemen of the mid-late Victorian/Edwardian era, doing situationally appropriate things . . Sherlock Holmes therefore cannot morph into a Japanese woman, an inhabitant of the 21st century, blast off to Mars, etc. Mr Marcum also strenuously rejects the conception of Holmes as presented by Laurie R. King in her books. Laurie's got the era right but she's taken unforgiveable liberties in other areas, principally in having SH marry a half-American girl young enough to be his granddaughter and then promptly more or less disappear from the books altogether as time goes by. The story I mention, I think the title is aptly enough, "The Christmas Goose", is firmly in the ACD tradition. It is set early in the partnership, during one of the first Christmases the pair are at 221B. Initially the Christmas dinner was to be overseen by the kitchen girl, but she is trapped in quarantine after going to visit her family and is unable to come back to Baker Street to cook the goose that is rapidly in danger of going off. Under the circumstances the boys have no choice but to use Mrs. Hudson's kitchen, but rationalize that she wouldn't want them to starve. What does happen when she's gone she's better off not knowing and the duo and the Irregulars mostly have the place set to rights by the time she gets back.
  2. I can second my mate Herlock's recommendation of Denis O. Smith. For a wide selection of some of the best Holmes pastiche out there, try any volume of David Marcum's MX New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes anthologies. Collected in 32 volumes since 2015, averaging about 3 a year, that's over 700 new Holmes adventures to choose from. Quite a few of these are Denis's. I am still lost way back in the upper teens somewhere as I had to call a halt to my pastiche collecting. It was becoming obsessive and I've gotta say, these are all very thick books. 100% of the profits go to support Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's former home, Undershaw, which after having fallen into rack and ruin, has been renovated into a thriving school community for students with developmental disabilities, thanks in part to the proceeds from these books. There is also a Conan Doyle/Holmes museum/shrine on the site that welcomes the public when school is not in session. https://www.amazon.com/s?k=mx+sherlock+holmes&crid=29AWRQKU2P199&sprefix=MX+sherlock+ho%2Caps%2C81&ref=nb_sb_ss_ts-doa-p_1_14 The problem with choosing pastiches is not that there isn't enough to choose from--it's the reverse. There are seemingly dozens of new Sherlock Holmes projects being released annually in books, TV and film. Some of it stellar, a lot of it mediocre to terrible. I have zero interest in making Sherlock Holmes a space man on Mars, thank you. Off the top of my head, my very favorite story in the entire collection is in Book V: Christmas Adventures (2016) and details the carnage that ensues when Mrs. Hudson leaves her two bachelor tenants alone during the festive period because she's gone to see her niece who's having a baby. Left to their own devices, Sherlock and John decide that yes, a graduate chemist highly trained in forensic methodology and a top flight medical surgeon CAN handle preparing their own Christmas dinner with all the fixings. In this estimation, they are quite, quite wrong. Why is it that Sherlock Holmes can deduce a man's entire life history from his cuffs but firing up an oven stymies him altogether? Among his esoteric skills, cookery is not on the list, and Dr. Watson is equally hopeless. One might have expected a surgeon to have more fortitude when it came to cutting up a dead bird. Let's just say it's good that Mrs. Hudson was not at home to see what her two bachelors plus assorted street urchins did to the place while she was gone. Another favorite adventure, this from the collection "In the Company of Sherlock Holmes" (King and Klinger, eds.) is 'Dunkirk' by John Lescroart. During Operation Dynamo in May, 1940, a mysterious, very old but extremely vigorous gentleman, name of Sigerson, does his bit to evacuate the Dunkirk beaches to the amazement of everyone. Mark Rylance, who captained such a vessel in the Christopher Nolan movie of the same title really could have used Sigerson aboard and things would have turned out better for him and his crew.
  3. In the 1990s I taught English in Japanese middle schools for three years, introductory English for students in grades 7-9. My first year coincided with the debut of new English textbooks from the Japanese Ministry of Education, and the first lesson for the 7th graders was on mosquitoes, no lie. I actually learned something from this very basic lesson--that the female mosquitoes are the ones that bite because they need blood to lay their eggs. I thought it was a weird and less-than-engaging topic selection for a first lesson in English for 12-year-olds. Japan is a very humid country with lots of insects in the summer and rather sadistically in this 'gaijin's' opinion, they require their children to be in school until the end of July, in unairconditioned school buildings. So to be studying about mosquitoes in high summer was seasonally appropriate but not the kind of material that would make a kid say , "Wow, I love English!" I have A-type blood, so theoretically I should be the least delicious of all to mosquitoes. But I like to drink beer on my porch of a summer's evening so there's that. It's been so dry this summer I hardly saw any mosquitoes until the last few days after we finally got rain. Then they came right out like malignant fairies.
  4. My former next-door neighbor had poison ivy growing on the brick wall of the building next to his property, mixed in with the climbing ivy that he was trying to prune back because it was overgrowing into his area. He eschewed gloves and wound up with poison ivy all over his hands. His way of dealing with outbreaks of the stuff was to douse the affected areas in straight bleach. Yeah . . I was horrified too. How did he have any skin left? This is what 'first aid' looks like when you're a guy who grew up poor in the country.
  5. I didn't know that poison ivy doesn't grow in California so I learned something today. Would the resulting rash really look that different from poison oak? I'll leave that to Columbo. Thankfully, I've never had either but I don't get to do much hiking in woodsy areas. I think maybe ACD was surprised that the snake story was so popular. He puts it in his own top 10 but not even he thought it was his best work. Since he was writing to spec for magazine publication, he did have deadlines and also he was never that invested in his Holmes stories. I think he probably did more research for his historical novels which he was convinced would make his reputation. Holmes and Watson were just some ephemera that was going to end up in the bin or wrapping chips, so he thought. Joke's on him, because apart from 'The White Company', nobody much remembers his adventuring novels. He fancied himself the next Sir Walter Scott and I think Arthur was always rather miffed that he was best-known for the fictional detective he tried unsuccessfully to kill off. 'The LIon's Mane' is a pretty weak story as to the central 'crime' . . though as with a snake (or Jaws) I have a hard time blaming an animal for acting according to what comes naturally to it. In BAND, the true villain is Grimsby Rylott and the snake is only his weapon of choice. The Lion's Mane has no villain at all; just an unfortunate maritime accident. But I quite like the Lion's Mane because Sherlock narrates it and it shows a decidedly gentler fuzzier side to him. With no Watson around to show off for and be the 'thinking machine', Sherl is actually pretty down to earth in his retirement. I think daily swims and chatting up the neighbors got boring quite soon and SH went back into harness in Her Majesty's Secret Service. If ACD hadn't wanted to fold up the tent, we could have had lots more stories with Holmes. As it is, we have to rely on other authors to carry on and invent new adventures for Sherl.
  6. Hello . . not sure our new member has come back since the OP. I'd forgotten about the band of gypsies . . they are the red herring but the title itself, just like Conan Doyle did with 'The Lion's Mane' tells us upfront 'who' the killer is. I guess ACD was counting on the general ignorance of fauna when he came up with some of these titles. The Lion's Mane is an actual species of large jellyfish that inhabits the English channel among other places. Not having had the privilege of growing up in a marine area, I had no idea this animal existed but surely inhabitants of the English coast would be familiar? Hard to imagine ACD fooled his contemporary readers that had experience of sea life. Ditto this snake. I'm assuming the speckled band came from the subcontinent, seeing as there aren't any poisonous snakes native to the British Isles that I'm aware of. My herpetology is pretty non-existent, though. We've discussed before our mutual dislike of this story, I think. It's consistently ranked as the #1 fan favorite of the canon, and routinely appears in language arts textbooks geared to the middle school level. I think this is where I first read this story. I can see why it's chosen: It's a rip-roaring 'boys' adventure', and the case is much more simplistic than is usual in a Holmes tale. Most human beings have a natural aversion to snakes and this story conjures up a deliciously creepy/horrible scenario with a snake that can be enjoyed vicariously. The stepfather is a villain, but there is nothing that would be considered too risque for an audience of pre-teens. One does not tend to find Holmes fare like "The Solitary Cyclist" or "The Copper Beeches" so often in youth collections owing to the implication of sexual violence therein. Or heavens forfend, something like 'The Yellow Face'! There are some grand 'best friend bonding' moments between Holmes and Watson here but BAND is second-rate Holmes in my opinion, when it comes to the dialogue and the deductions. My favorite stories are more layered and complex and make the Great Detective work for his conclusions. In BAND it feels like Holmes sussed out the killer very soon and the rest of the story is him just padding it out for our (and Watson's) benefit.
  7. I agree. Season 2 with 'Lila' was particularly good. The reason we love Dexter is because, apart from his homicidal tendencies, he tries to be a good citizen. When Lila was stealing lawn ornaments from people's yards, Dex was soo uncomfortable. He can plan a meticulous knife murder, dismemberment and body disposal but he would never be all right with stealing stuff from people's yards. Dexter is only a danger to murderers--to the innocent, particularly women & children, he is he ultimate bodyguard. After the shocking finale of Season 4 (and its outstanding guest villain) the show started to go downhill. Season 5 was moderately interesting, with Lumen (and Jonny Lee Miller as the villain) but after that I really struggled to like anything that was going on. "Dexter"'s strength was its ensemble cast and I don't think the new show can compete on that level, but it might be interesting to see 'Harrison' grown up.
  8. Stumbling into this thread this morning is the first I've heard of the passing of Beryl Vertue. Beryl is a crystal that is found worldwide, but it seems to be a very popular girls' name in England. I had never really heard it before Beryl Markham (West with the Night) and then, Stephen's mother-in-law. And then I got into Sherlock Holmes stories and read "The Adventure of the Beryl Coronet", one of the lesser-known tales which was a Conan Doyle favorite if not highly ranked among the public. From a stone website . . I'm not into chakras and stuff but this was quite appropriate for Ms. Vertue, in consideration of the prominence she achieved in a male-dominated industry and singlehandedly remade a lot of it. Beryl is the stone of overcoming obstacles. It holds light and uplifting energies that will help you ease the stress and anxiety that you’re feeling. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Adventure_of_the_Beryl_Coronet
  9. Not my personal preference . . . my preference would be to have the whole gang back together, including Mrs. Hudson. Using my powers of deduction, I rate the *likelihood* that all our actors will be 1. available at the same time, and 2. desirous of reuniting for further Sherlock episodes to be very minimal, at best. There are so many moving parts to this production, it was like moving heaven and Earth to get everyone back together for four consecutive series back when the show was hot. It's now 5 years since Season 4 aired. The fandom, here and elsewhere is continually discussing 'when' Season 5 can be expected. I think it's very much a case of 'IF, ever,' any more Sherlock episodes are forthcoming. While the team hasn't said absolutely that it will never happen, neither have they provided any positive affirmation that it will happen, either. 5 years in show business is a very long time. The handling of the last season was furthermore so controversial that it seemed to me that Moffat and Co. were *literally* torching the ship so as to get out of doing any more. This is just my opinion of course but I think it's actually quite pointless to keep on hoping for a Series 5 or anything like regularity in new programs. We will be lucky to get a one-off that most likely will not have all of the living cast members reconvening. Maybe, if the price is right and the scheduling gods are with everyone. It would be simpler to do a Sherlock-only story in terms of moving parts. I really don't think Cumberbatch and Freeman are on such great terms any more, but professionalism might reign, for the right amount of money. Ben and Martin, to a lesser extent, are probably getting out of the reach economically in terms of what they can command, of a TV show with a relatively modest budget. I've got no insider intel; I'm just trying to be realistic.
  10. Ben is a current Oscar nominee for Power of the Dog and it's highly doubtful that, even if he had an enthusiastic desire to return to the small screen as Sherlock for a Series 5--a desire which it must be said has not been displayed by any of the principal cast or crew--his availability for shooting has got to be nil right now. That ostensible air date is only 6 months, give or take in the future. Without even a shooting script or verifiable commitments from any of the actors, I have to call this sheer fantasy. Even though this article was purported published only last month, it has the feel of something recycled from an earlier time. If Ben wins Best Actor, which is a plausible outcome, even though no amount of wild horses will ever drag me to see this film, I think it must be accepted that both principal actors and the Sherlock producing team have all firmly moved on to the next stage of their lives. "Sherlock" had its heyday and it was, for a brief and shining few years, one of the best things ever produced for television. I think it's firmly in the rear view for all parties concerned, except for its bereft and obsessive fans who can't let the dream die. Cumberbatch and Mofftiss have all made suitable noises at various times about reconvening for more episodes at some vague point in the future, perhaps when Holmes and Watson are 'in their 50s', as were the pair in the Granada TV series. Hope may spring eternal; in the meantime there's still money to be made in syndication deals & merch. I'm not sure that the headliner pair is keen to either reprise their signature roles or work together that closely again, but I may yet be surprised. At this point in time, my personal opinion is that we have got all the "Sherlock" we are going to get, unless a holiday special might be arranged, in the vein of "The Abominable Bride". That would be more likely than a return to shooting three features back to back to back. It's not uncommon for British TV shows, even great hits, to have long gaps in their production schedules (eg. "The Vicar of Dibley", who had a 20-year-run altogether, but factoring in the hiatuses of years at a time only ended up averaging one episode a year), but there was something very au courant about this iteration of Sherlock that I don't think will be repeated. Any more Sherlock episodes or stand-alones would take on the air of a tribute to our late, great Mrs. Hudson, so maybe they can squeeze out one more show in honor of Una. I said in an earlier comment that I wouldn't mind seeing Benedict 'move to Sussex' and take on the two Watson-free cases of the canon, "The Lion's Mane" and "The Blanched Soldier." Both cases are a bit too small on their own to make an entire feature length but they could be combined into one 90-minute holiday special. It'd be hilarious if Sherlock could run into his neighbor, Janine . . .and maybe Molly and her boyfriend du jour and Lestrade could all come on down for a week-end, even if Dr. Watson is a no-show. They could explain John's absence by saying that after Rosie went to boarding school full-time and he was a bit of an empty-nester, he decided to join Doctors Without Borders to scratch that itch for international adventure. If he were posted to Kabul or Kyiv or somewhere, he'd have to send his regrets over not joining the old gang. It's a nice idea. It's not going to happen like that, but it would if I were in charge of the writers' room.
  11. I watched the first episode of Dexter: New Blood since it was available for free. I was not impressed. I really loved the original show until it went off the rails in the final season. It might sound weird, considering that I was rooting for Dexter all along, but if he had died in the finale saving his loved ones, I could have said that was the best possible ending for him. I find that I just simply do not care now what happens because I had already killed him off in my mind.
  12. Even though I have Hulu and Amazon Prime, I spend most of my time aimlessly scrolling though YouTube videos every night. My concentration seems to be shot. I will begin a show or a movie and I either doze off after 20 minutes or I get bored and revert to YT or Facebook. Among an alleged wealth of choices . . .nothing appeals. I've taken to looking up old favorites available for free on YouTube like Foyle's War and Midsomer Murders. I tell myself every month I need to cancel the streaming because I'm certainly not getting my money's worth. Recently I re-watched a series I had purchased a couple of years ago--the Japanese HBO Asia "Miss Sherlock". Made with care and innovation by a team that obviously knows their Holmes canon, this contemporary adaptation with an all-female detective duo translates remarkably well. The edgy short format feels like "Elementary" but the partnership in that show never gelled for me. The crafting of the stories in "Miss Sherlock" as well as the chemistry among the cast feels more like the BBC Sherlock. It's the best of both recent adaptation predecessors, with a uniquely Japanese twist. Tragically, Yuko Tameuchi (Sherlock) took her own life in 2020 so there will be no more Miss Sherlock forthcoming.
  13. Have you? 🙃 I don't have 'scientific data' as such about this but I think the fact that tea is considerably less popular in the United States than coffee can be directly traced to the Incident in Boston Harbor, 1773. Actually that was the culmination of a long-simmering grievance against His Majesty King George III for the Stamp Act, enacted 8 years previously that made the price of certain goods imported from the mother country and her dominions exorbitantly expensive. I'm not sure why coffee was not likewise affected, since it comes from the same regions as tea. Neither crop is indigenous to North America. But ever since then, hardcore patriots eschewed tea as the beverage for Tory sympathizers and coffee became Americans' choice. In recent years, tea culture has really taken off in the States. "Downton Abbey" may have helped there, and I see that coffee is gaining traction in the UK. So maybe our two countries have in fact gotten past our little kerfluffle.
  14. That was me saying it, but Sherlock would have echoed those sentiments. Hate to break it to you, but despite being iconoclastic in other regards, SH was (is, if you play the Game) a monarchist. He shot a tribute to Victoria Regina in his sitting room wall (technically Mrs. Hudson's sitting room wall), and a lot of his cases were in support of the Crown, especially ones we didn't hear about. I'm confident that were SH around today (Gamers insist he still is), he would be a loyal subject to VR's successor, Elizabeth Regina, though he might be less keen on Charles. I'm an American, and so am an arch Republican, too. Just saying that ACD wrote Holmes to be a monarchist. He's not abrasively political and hectoring about it. Politics bores him, but he does love his Queen. Watch how he and Watson handle a bunch of Royal hecklers at the opera in "Murder by Decree". A love for the Queen is something the Baker Street flatmates have resolutely in common.
  15. Many happy returns of the day to Mr. Sherlock Holmes, 168 years old today. God save Her Majesty and her most devoted servant and consulting detective. Tonight I shall be finishing the "Blue Carbuncle" episode of Grenada Sherlock to celebrate.
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