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Episode 1.0, The Unaired Pilot (60-min. "Study in Pink")


Carol the Dabbler

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9 hours ago, besleybean said:

Do you mean major plot features, some of the daft asides or what?

The major-est ones are the most likely to bug me, I guess.

I think Harry being John's sister is clever (and allows for a really funny reaction from Sherlock).  I'm (grudgingly!) willing to accept their interpretation of Irene as a dominatrix (though that episode -- and especially That Scene -- make it difficult to recommend the show to a few of my more strait-laced acquaintances).

But Mary as a former hired gun is completely contrary to everything we know about the original Mrs. Watson.  It's like they offered me a glass of herbal tea on a hot day, so I took a big swig -- only to discover it was actually straight Scotch.  At which point they would of course laugh hilariously and say ha-ha we fooled you.  No, they didn't fool me, they lied to me.  I am not amused.  If they want to do that sort of story, fine, just don't advertise it as Sherlock Holmes.

Admittedly they're not the only ones doing this sort of thing nowadays.  I found Elementary very enjoyable at first, but when they started throwing similar curved balls (and apparently thinking that Big Reveals were equivalent to actual plots), I stopped watching.

 

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I'm not mad on Irene being presented as she was, but not sure how else they could have done it...

They did take liberties with Mary, but they were trying to push stronger female characters.

My family are all mad on Elementary.

I find BBC Sherlock much more faithful.

I like Elementary, but to me it is CSI, whereas Sherlock is more like real Sherlock Holmes.

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2 hours ago, besleybean said:

I'm not mad on Irene being presented as she was, but not sure how else they could have done it...

Since professional singers are no longer ipso facto considered shady characters, you mean?  Hmm, maybe a singer who works in some sort of shady establishment (say, a run-down casino) while dressed accordingly -- so that she herself could (like the original Irene) still be perfectly honorable, though few people would believe that?

2 hours ago, besleybean said:

They did take liberties with Mary, but they were trying to push stronger female characters.

Well then, they could have queried some real-life females of their acquaintance as to what makes a woman "strong."  Hey, guys, they don't all have to be criminals (or whatever Mary was supposed to be)!

2 hours ago, besleybean said:

I like Elementary, but to me it is CSI, whereas Sherlock is more like real Sherlock Holmes.

I won't argue with that!  I think Elementary lost me completely when they made Joan into Sherlock's full partner, able to make deductions equivalent to his.  Of course the original Holmes frequently said to his Watson, "You know my methods" -- but then the dear doctor would proceed to prove that even so, he was definitely NOT Sherlock Holmes!  Sherlock is definitely truer to the original in that regard.

 

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Excuse you, Mary worked for our government! Ha.

 

Surely BBC Sherlock is truer than Elementary in many regards!

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3 hours ago, besleybean said:

Mary worked for our government!

There were varying reports on that, but OK, call her a government secret agent.  That's still a far cry from ACD's Mary Morstan, and surely not the only way to make a character "strong."

The Moftisses seem quite capable of making strong male characters in any number of styles, but somehow their female characters all seem to become more interesting by being naughty in some way -- a high-ranking sex worker or wife of a drug lord or some sort of hired killer.

 

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I think Molly is pretty strong and we can't really blame her for being in love with Sherlock!

Incidentally, one of my pet hates:

Mark and Steven are two separate individuals and deserve credit as such.

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36 minutes ago, besleybean said:

I think Molly is pretty strong ....

I agree!  But the creators don't seem to think of her that way.  Apparently it was Loo Brealey's idea for Molly to scold Sherlock in Scandal.

36 minutes ago, besleybean said:

Mark and Steven are two separate individuals and deserve credit as such.

My apologies, but I have a heck of a time telling which idea came from which of them.  They even seem to finish each other's sentences.

In cases where I can determine which one I'm talking about, I do make an effort to give individual credit (or blame), but that doesn't happen very often.

If you're saying that I should therefore refer to them as "Moffat and/or Gatiss" or the like, I plead laziness.

 

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I guess we all suffer the latter occasionally, but I loathe the Mofftiss thing.

Yes I remember hearing that about Loo but, she scolds him more in HLV!

She made a lovely tribute to Una.

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10 hours ago, besleybean said:

I loathe the Mofftiss thing.

I can understand that (even though I do not, personally, share your pain), but seriously cannot think of a good alternative.  "Moffat and/or Gatiss" is accurate, but would be tedious to read frequently, let alone type.  "M/G" is unfamiliar (and could be construed as indicating a more intimate relationship).  "Moftiss" is sufficiently compact and is already familiar (perhaps too familiar?) to most fans.  I sympathize, Bev, but don't really see what could be done.

 

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1 hour ago, besleybean said:

I just say Mark and Steven.

Well, that's a couple letters shorter than "Moffat and Gatiss," but still a bit cumbersome.

Oddly enough, your use of their first names annoys me a bit.  I realize it's very common usage nowadays, but I still hesitate to call strangers by their first name.  (The only actor I feel comfortable calling by his first name is George Takei, and that's only because that's how he signed his letters when we carried on a bit of a correspondence some years back.)  Just call me old-fashioned!

So I guess we'll just each have to go on with what feels right to us.

 

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I can kind of get what you mean.

To their face, I would obvioulsy use 'Mr Moffatt' or 'Mr Gatiss'.

I have a real issue even with people saying Ben, or(worse) Benny...

as I point out to them, the actor's name is Benedict Cumberbatch and as they are not family or a close friend- that is what they should call him!

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9 minutes ago, besleybean said:

I have a real issue even with people saying Ben, or(worse) Benny...

as I point out to them, the actor's name is Benedict Cumberbatch and as they are not family or a close friend- that is what they should call him!

That reminds me of something I was pondering just the other day.  There are some actors that I tend to think of as nickname+surname.  Oddly enough, most of them are named (and billed as) James, but I think of / refer to them as Jim Garner, Jimmy Stewart, Jimmy Doohan, and so on.  I suspect it's mostly because that's how their co-workers refer to them in interviews, though in the case of Mr. Doohan, I've heard fans who met him say that he always insisted they just call him Jimmy.

As for Mr. Cumberbatch, although I'm aware that his co-workers call him Ben, I tend to think of him as either the full Benedict Cumberbatch or just (Mr.) Cumberbatch, and tend to refer to him in writing as "BC" (following a fannish tradition that goes back at least to the early days of Star Trek).

 

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Yeah I think many of us say BC and that is fine...

I think back to the Mark/Steven thing, it was the conflating two people that I didn't really like...

for me a silly thing that somebody invented and others fell into using.

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4 minutes ago, besleybean said:

it was the conflating two people that I didn't really like...

for me a silly thing that somebody invented and others fell into using.

I don't generally care for that sort of thing myself.  But in situations where two people work so closely together that I seriously have trouble remembering or even figuring out which of the two did or said what, it does seem like a logical workaround.

I suppose I could say "M&G" but then I'd probably have to explain what I meant.  People are, as you point out, already familiar with the other term.

 

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  • 1 month later...
On 10/16/2021 at 4:27 PM, Carol the Dabbler said:

Hubby rewatched The Pilot the other day, and says he thinks the 60-minute format would have worked fine, it would merely have been different.

For one thing, he says, maybe they wouldn't have felt the need to come up with "all that nonsense" for Series 3 and 4.  (I assume he means stuff like ninja!Mary.)  What do y'all think?

 

To get back to the original question (albeit a few months late :smile: ) ... I think a 60 minute format could've worked fine, but I'll bet the show would have had a less cinematic feel, and would therefore not have made the same impact. The very rareness of the show (three episodes every few years!) ensured each episode was an "event", whether you cared for the episode or not, methinks.

I also think the "nonsense" would have remained, because that's how the writers think. The length of the show wouldn't change their views on the characters or what they considered an interesting plot development.

I think this is interesting in light of the video you posted in the Star Trek thread [here], about how "children" are running the entertainment industry now. The description certainly applies to Moftiss  (sorry, Bev!) in many ways; they freely admit to a childlike delight in their obsession with Holmes, and in the beginning especially he does not come across as a very mature individual. Yet we lapped it up anyway. I think there's room for both approaches (as well as others), and I for one don't really feel the need to rate one above the other. Sometimes a more mature story is more interesting, and sometimes the kiddie stuff is just more fun. It's all good when it's done well.

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On 12/9/2021 at 3:25 AM, Arcadia said:

I think this is interesting in light of the video you posted in the Star Trek thread [here], about how "children" are running the entertainment industry now. The description certainly applies to Moftiss  (sorry, Bev!) in many ways; they freely admit to a childlike delight in their obsession with Holmes, and in the beginning especially he does not come across as a very mature individual. Yet we lapped it up anyway.

That's not the "childlike" part that bothered me.  They were intending to show a relatively early Holmes, and he's not exactly unlike the Holmes shown in Study in Scarlet, especially assuming that Victorian Watson would likely not have chronicled the childish outbursts.

The "childlike" part that bothers me is the (to me) rather bizarre stuff in seasons 3 and 4, especially considering that they were presenting it in somewhat of a bigger-faster-louder style, which is what mostly bothers me about a lot of current stuff (that, plus if it's loud enough, then a plot is apparently optional).

 

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On 12/9/2021 at 4:58 AM, Carol the Dabbler said:

The "childlike" part that bothers me is the (to me) rather bizarre stuff in seasons 3 and 4, especially considering that they were presenting it in somewhat of a bigger-faster-louder style, which is what mostly bothers me about a lot of current stuff (that, plus if it's loud enough, then a plot is apparently optional).

Got it, and I agree with the bigger-faster-louder complaint; if a story doesn't work, explosions aren't going to fix it. 

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  • 1 year later...

Hello! It's hard to believe, but in 2010-2017 this whole series passed me by. I first watched it in 2023 and mistakenly started with the pilot episode. That is, I am the only person who got to know Sherlock from the pilot, and not from the broadcast versions.
I really liked the pilot. Deduction, modern details like telephones, young actors, unlike the elderly Holmes and Watson familiar from other film adaptations of ACD books - I really liked all this, and I continued to watch the series with pleasure.
I watched the broadcast version of Study in Pink in full only after season 4. Undoubtedly, technically SiP is made much better. It is a gift of fate that the first series had to be reshot, because the authors saw and corrected their shortcomings. However, the script is more harmonious in the UP. I consider the late insertions - the press conference, John and Mycroft's dialogue, the taxi chase, the drug bust - successful on their own but rather unnaturally inserted into the context of the first episode.
Sherlock in the UP is completely different - smiling, charming and calm. However, his appearance is less attractive. Although he is wearing the same coat, shaggy hair and jeans exclude the idea of impeccable style, which is inherent in his on-air episodes. The camera does not try to choose the most advantageous angle for BC's face, as we see it in the series itself.
However, I like both versions of Sherlock - the pilot and the broadcast one. It is a joy to see the very young Martin and Benedict in their roles. I do like one little moment at the very end, when they leave for dinner, Mrs. Hudson shouts something after them, and John answers, barely holding back laughter, it turned out very sincerely.

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The roof scene is fab...

the difference with the aired version is Paul McGuigan and I prefer it...oh and Mycroft, of course.

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Hello, Ioanna, and welcome to Sherlock Forum!   :welcome:  Thanks for jumping right in with your opinion!

1 hour ago, Ioanna said:

Undoubtedly, technically SiP is made much better.  [....]  However, the script is more harmonious in the UP. I consider the late insertions - the press conference, John and Mycroft's dialogue, the taxi chase, the drug bust - successful on their own but rather unnaturally inserted into the context of the first episode.

I agree.

I believe I've gone on at length about this point earlier in this thread, so I'll just say that the thing that bothers me most about the pilot is the color scheme in their living room -- all that red!  And the thing that bothers me most about the 90-minute version is Sherlock's failure to deduce (as he had in the pilot) "who hunts in a crowd."

As Besleybean says, the 90-minute director created a very good tone, as he did in the other episodes he directed.  Also I like the cinematography better in the 90-minute.  But the writers did tend to get carried away sometimes!

 

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