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Basil Rathbone as Sherlock Holmes

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Then I guess Ida Lupino made up for some of The Doctor's "American" companions!

 

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Oh dear. Just realised that scene I mentioned isn't Ida Lupino in 'Adventures' but the actress who plays Kitty in 'Voice of Terror'. :/

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I loved it when Sherlock dressed as a music hall singer! :D

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I haven't seen much of the Rathbone films but I've listened to a lot of the New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes  radio show, which were made after the film series ended, Rathbone left due to fear of being typecast and had to be replaced by 2 actors but Bruce would continue on until leaving the show himself (and got top billing when Basil left). While the radio series still followed the formula of Bruce's Watson, the radio version showed him as much more competent than the film series did by concentrating on his actual medical background.

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Yup, some people thought Bruce played the best Watson ever I have to keep my mouth shut and not roll my eyes to much. But he wasn't a bad actor by any stretch. I haven't seen any of the Holmes movies after Rathbone left. I suppose I'll have to look for them at some point. 

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I too enjoy the movies for Rathbone, but find the bumbling Doctor Watson a little  annoying.  

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The Rathbone movies were presumably the first Holmes adaptations I ever saw, and my father was a big fan, but I honestly don't recall anything about them.  I did see Basil Rathbone in person once, though, giving a talk.

 

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I have yet to see the Rathbone version of Sherlock except for in clips.  My son really likes the BBC version (at the very least TSOT) and when I gave him the option of reading The Speckled Band or watching a Rathbone Sherlock, he chose the book & then proceeded to fall asleep on me as I read it.  I will need to see if my library has any Rathbone Sherlock movies as Netflix streaming does not the last I checked.

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All the Basil and Nigel movies are available on youtube.

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Does anyone have recommendations for some of the best Rathbone-Bruce Holmes movies?

 

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As I recall, Hound of the Baskervilles was THE Sherlock Holmes movie when I was younger.

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As I recall, Hound of the Baskervilles was THE Sherlock Holmes movie when I was younger.

This is an amazing movie.

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Catching the last few minutes of Sherlock Holmes/Secret Weapon.  Just saw that it was on Retroplex (US cable channel)

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Catching the last few minutes of Sherlock Holmes/Secret Weapon.  Just saw that it was on Retroplex (US cable channel)

Is that the one with the Tobel bombsight?  Don't you just love the spray dust?  Yeah, I consider that one of the better ones.

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Yes it is.

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Have been watching these this week as time off and they are a lot of fun .I had seen a few of them before but don't remember much as it was so long ago.

 

I think the best so far are SH@ Hound of the B..SH@The woman in Green...SH@the spider woman..and SH @ the pearl of death.

You can watch them all now free on youtube and the quality is not too bad.

 

The ones where Watson is too much of a buffoon sadden me a little but are still entertaining.

The similarities in BBC version and the woman in green with Moriarty are striking , and the guy John thinks is a disguised Sherlock in TEH is almost an exact copy of a scene inSpiderwoman..the spider experts outfit is almost exact and lol@the beard pulling.

Also noticed in Woman in Green ..Watson mentions he last used his medical bag when he delivered Amelia Watson! Who is now a grown up pretty thing...Maybe they will pinch the name....but I don't know if this is a reference to Watsons own daughter as I don't remember a reference to it in earlier / other films .Does anyone else?

 

Seen about 11 so far so will keep watching.

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Have you seen The Scarlet Claw yet?  I think that's one of the best.

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Moftiss said somewhere that they took the Moriarty stair/violin scene they used in TRF from The Woman in Green.  I once caught the last few minutes of a Rathbone Holmes movie.  Will need to check out some others.

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Yes do.Thankyou Pam scarlet claw was brilliant I couldn't work out how they were doing that invisible glowing man thing, and so many references. The best actor in the world! lol?

So I have finished watching all of these now during my week off and Watson did grow on me quite a bit towards the end.Rathbone really was an exceptional Holmes.

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... in Woman in Green ..Watson mentions he last used his medical bag when he delivered Amelia Watson! Who is now a grown up pretty thing...Maybe they will pinch the name....but I don't know if this is a reference to Watsons own daughter as I don't remember a reference to it in earlier / other films .Does anyone else?

 

There seem to be two Amelia Watsons in Holmes adaptations.  One does seem to be the doctor's daughter (mentioned in this review of The Woman in Green), and the other is Watson's second wife (who stars in a recent series of novels by Michael Mallory).  Now I'm toying with the idea that -- because "everything is canon" -- Moftiss intend for Mary's real first name to be Amelia (which fits the initials A.G.R.A.), and also for that name to be given to Mary and John's daughter.

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Saw "Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon" last night.  It was my first Rathbone/Bruce episode, and I'm kind of torn.  I really liked Rathbone, and most particularly his hair.   :P  However, Bruce really got on my nerves. I have no doubt that he was following direction given and the characterization intended by the script, but his bumbling nature grated.  I think MF may have spoiled me for other Watsons.  

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I'd seen a few Rathbone & Bruce movies (on television) with my father, who was a big fan, but I don't recall much about that Watson.  Neither did I pay much attention to the Watson portrayed in the Jeremy Brett series. I had watched and enjoyed the show when it was originally on, but didn't even realize till recently that there were two (consecutive) Watsons, David Burke and Edward Hardwicke.

 

Martin Freeman was indeed the first Watson to catch my eye (though I assume part of the credit goes to the writers and directors).  We've since purchased the entire Brett series on DVD, and I now find those Watsons far more noticeable and enjoyable -- in fact, I seem to have become something of a Watson connoisseur!

 

While I approve of the Rathbone movies not being exclusively serious in tone, I do think it's a shame that the comic relief of that era was somewhat buffoonish.  I much prefer how Sherlock incorporates levity in a more organic way.

 

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A piece of trivia that occurred to me just now - did you know that Rathbone was actually older than Bruce? 

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I'd seen a few Rathbone & Bruce movies (on television) with my father, who was a big fan, but I don't recall much about that Watson.  Neither did I pay much attention to the Watson portrayed in the Jeremy Brett series. I had watched and enjoyed the show when it was originally on, but didn't even realize till recently that there were two (consecutive) Watsons, David Burke and Edward Hardwicke.

 

Martin Freeman was indeed the first Watson to catch my eye (though I assume part of the credit goes to the writers and directors).  We've since purchased the entire Brett series on DVD, and I now find those Watsons far more noticeable and enjoyable -- in fact, I seem to have become something of a Watson connoisseur!

 

While I approve of the Rathbone movies not being exclusively serious in tone, I do think it's a shame that the comic relief of that era was somewhat buffoonish.  I much prefer how Sherlock incorporates levity in a more organic way.

 

I think one thing that Sherlock (and, before that, House) spoiled me for is wanting to watch the relationship between the two men.  I really enjoy the Brett and Burke/Hardwicke relationship and am a little amazed two different actors could so seamlessly handle the Watson end of the chemistry.

 

I think my problem with the admittedly-limited sample of Rathbone & Bruce relationship is that it felt to me like they created the difference in intellect by making Bruce into a bit of a fool rather than making Rathbone feel so much smarter.  Our John seems very smart to me (as does Lestrade, for that matter), so it's really something special to see our Sherlock have to really seem that much smarter by comparison.  

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I really enjoy the Brett and Burke/Hardwicke relationship and am a little amazed two different actors could so seamlessly handle the Watson end of the chemistry.

 

That was certainly the intention, judging by interviews with Hardwicke.  He tried so hard to follow in Burke's footsteps that he was actually flattered when someone on set would absent-mindedly call him "David."

 

I do see a difference in the two portrayals, but again it may be due to the writing (Conan Doyle's and/or the screenwriters').  Burke's Watson seems more vocal in his admiration of Holmes's brilliance, as befits his portrayal of the early Watson.  By contrast, Hardwicke's Watson is more matter-of-fact about the whole thing, which is perfectly appropriate for that later stage in their association.

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