Why I Love What I Love: A Study in Sherlock

I hope that clever title hasn’t become cliche. Most of the so-called brilliant things I think I come up with have already been… come up with. 😛

So as you probably guessed, today’s post is about the world’s only consulting detective and one of the greatest- if not the greatest- detective ever– Mr. Sherlock Holmes of Baker Street.


(Sidney Paget illustration found on http://www.blogs.telegraph.co.uk)

(BBC Sherlock and John image found on http://www.bbc.co.uk)

How I discovered this fandom: Ever since being forced to (Okay, not really. ;)) watch the first episode of BBC’s Sherlock- A Study in Pink– a few weeks ago, I’ve been going on a bit of a Holmes kick (and my family bursts into laughter at “a bit”).

But becoming a Sherlockian didn’t begin with BBC for me.

I can’t remember the exact date, but I think it happened last spring, when my family and I went for a walk. As it often happens when we go for walks, we stopped by our friends’ house a few blocks from ours.

I’m not entirely sure how the subject came about, but I think it the dads started talking about Sherlock (BBC) when our friends’ dad asked mine if he had seen it.

I (who often hops between the moms’ convos and the dads’) said I had heard of it- a lot of my Whovian friends were also into it.

I remember mentioning I had been interested in reading the Sherlock Holmes books for a while, having heard about the legendary detective for some time, but still hadn’t gotten around to looking him up at the library.

Our friends said they had a copy of a collection of some of the stories, and offered to lend it to me. I accepted it eagerly, and as we started walking home, I embarked on my first adventure with Holmes and Watson- A Scandal in Bohemia.

I devoured the rest of that copy, thrilled until I reached the last story in the volume- the Final Problem. (For the BBC Sherlockians- the equivalent of the Reichenbach Fall.) I closed the book in horror and depression after it ended. (Spoiler warning. If you haven’t read the Sherlock Holmes books, or seen The Reichenbach Fall, skip until you see “end of spoiler.”)

I couldn’t believe it.

I couldn’t believe he was actually dead.

I remember going into mourning (as I do sometimes when characters I love die). But I knew my adventures with Holmes hadn’t ended, that there were other Sherlock stories out there that hadn’t been included in my edition, so next time I went to the library, I checked out a different edition.

This edition included more that one Holmes “series”, the first being titled “The Return of Sherlock Holmes.” I held my breath, hardly daring to hope. The first story was titled The Empty House. I started reading and discovered with nearly as much joy as Watson himself that indeed there was a Return of Sherlock Holmes!


When I became obsessed: I can’t remember when Holmes hit crazy fangirl mode for me. I’ve read most of the stories, some more than once, now. Sadly, the only screen adaption I’ve seen so far is BBC. Well, that isn’t counting the Great Mouse Detective which has to be one of my favorite Disney movies now. I positively squealed with joy while watching it- the parallels to the books are wonderful! (Maybe I shall write up a review someday…)

BBC has definitely helped solidify my station as a Sherlockian- and may actually be the reason I am now a crazy Sherlockian. 😀

My favorite book or episode: Hard. Question.

For the books: Probably either The Final Problem/The Empty House, or The Hound of the Baskervilles. The Speckled Band was also brilliant (but then again, they all are. XD).

For BBC episodes: Ergh. Even harder to pick. I love Study in Pink because of John and Sherlock’s first meeting, and definitely set up the rest of the series-es very well. (And it left out the thirty-plus pages of boringness in the middle of A Study in Scarlet. 😛 XD) The Great Game was also fantastic, and so was The Hounds of Baskerville. I haven’t seen The Reichenbach Fall yet, but am actually going to do so tomorrow. (I am both very excited and terrified at the same time)

Why I love it: I will start out with why I love Sherlock Holmes as a whole. The stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle are absolutely brilliant. Seriously. The brilliance of Sherlock Holmes, and how he makes the deductions he does is just… brilliant. And it takes an amazing mind to be able to pull it off in writing. I don’t think that I could write Holmes realistically. Watson, probably yes. And that brings me to the second reason I love Sherlock Holmes: John Watson.

John Watson is probably the second best friend you could ever have (Samwise Gamgee being the first :)). His loyalty is unending. He is probably the reason Holmes is bearable.  Without him, I doubt the Sherlock Holmes books would be as enjoyable as they are now. They would be books about an egotistical sociopath who goes around and offends people and solves crimes that baffle the police. (But in the book Holmes’ defense, he’s actually much politer than the BBC Sherlock. XD) Watson brings humanity, relatability to the stories. Where we may have a hard time feeling for Holmes (which I’m not saying it doesn’t happen, I love him. He’s just not the easiest character to relate to most of the time), we can completely understand Watson’s perplexed feelings when Holmes deduces something that seems impossible that he could have known. With John, the Sherlock Holmes books are stories about an egotistical sociopath who goes around and offends people and solves crimes that baffle the police, with his sidekick, chronicler and best friend  Dr. Watson. (You know, I’m not sure that made much sense. It seemed like it was going to be profound… To quote the eleventh Doctor “Funny how you can say something in your head and it sounds fine.” :P)

(Oh, and my love for John made me super happy when I found out that I have the same personality as Dr. Watson. :D)

Overall, the books feature some of the most complex and brilliant story plots, and two of the most fascinating characters in all of fiction.

Now on to what I love about BBC’s Sherlock.

Gah. Okay. Give me a moment to get my feels out of the way so I can form comprehensive sentences. 😛 Or at least somewhat comprehensive sentences.

Let’s start with the plots. They add an extra layer of excitement, IMHO, with all of the parallels to the books. The plots like Study or Hound that are based on a specific book are similar enough to the book to be recognizable, but there are so many plot twists and turns that even for someone who has read the books they are still surprising.

The characters. As I said before, the Sherlock Holmes books feature two of the most fascinating fictional characters ever. BBC’s Sherlock somehow manages to enlarge that. Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman were both cast perfectly, IMHO. All of the supporting characters- Lestrade, Mrs. Hudson, Mycroft, Molly- are also excellent. And we won’t even go into how absolutely perfectly insane and brilliant Moriarty is. GAH. Yay for awesome villains!!

This post is starting to get a bit long, so I won’t continue to ramble about the perfectness of BBC’s Sherlock. I think I will have to do a character dissection post focusing on the characters, because they are so wonderfully complex. I love them all so much! 😀 (Yes, even Moriarty.)

So I do believe I rambled on long enough. I applaud you for making it to the end of this long post! As I mentioned previously, I am going to watch The Reichenbach Fall tomorrow with some friends. I’m super excited, but also terrified. I’m also sad that there aren’t anymore episodes for a while. D: But Series 3 has started filming, so YAY! 😀

What are your thoughts on the adventures of the two from 221B Baker street? Do you have a favorite Holmes or Watson incarnation? A favorite book, movie or episode?

The game is afoot!



7 thoughts on “Why I Love What I Love: A Study in Sherlock

  1. Kellyn (Grey Havens) says:

    Holmes and Watson’ friendship is probably my favorite in literature, after Frodo and Sam’s. I love how Watson brings out the humanity in Holmes. 🙂
    If you’re interested, you should check out The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes TV show from the ’80s with Jeremy Brett and David Burke. They are the most accurate Holmes and Watson I have ever seen, and the mysteries are also really close to the books. ^_^

  2. narniahannah says:

    Same here! 🙂 I’m thinking I’m going to do a post on brotherly love in characters sometime, because I love characters like that. 🙂 (And it drives me up the wall when people make jokes about Holmes and Watson or Frodo and Sam being gay. 😡 )
    Ooh, yes, I have heard of those! I will have to check my library for them. 😀

  3. Kelly Darnell says:

    Well, now we’ve both seen The Reichenbach Fall…AHHHHHH. Yeah that is pretty much my only thought concerning Sherlock at the moment!

  4. Kelly Darnell says:

    Yay!!! You can put my emotions into words for me…:)

  5. […] been meaning to do another of the “Why I Love What I Love” posts like I did for Sherlock a few months […]

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