Monday, 29 June 2015

TV Series Review: Sherlock

Usually on a Saturday Mr Click and I will watch a film in the afternoon but a couple of months ago we didn't really feel in the mood for any of the hundreds of DVDs or blu-rays in our collection (go figure). We'd both recently finished reading Sherlock: Chronicles by Steve Tribe about the making of BBC's Sherlock.

One thing that struck us as we read it was how much of the TV series we'd forgotten. We've both watched series one a couple of times, but both series two and three we'd only seen once (when they originally aired); and we watched at least two episodes of series two at my in-laws' we missed bits of those as well. I remembered more about it than Mr Click did, but there were still gaps in my memories.

So a rewatch was in order.

And as each episode is about as long as your average film, it filled our Saturday slot quite nicely.

I've really enjoyed rewatching the series. I was pretty familiar with series one having seen it more than once so I don't think I noticed anything hugely new there, but series two and three were like whole new series! I think that series three is probably one of my favourites now; series two did some of the bigger stories which I enjoyed because they were super familiar, but series three just feels cleverer in the way that the stories were adapted.

Last time around I decided that The Sign of Three was my favourite episode but watching them all again just confirmed it for me. I always love it when a TV series departs from the norm and puts its characters in a new or unexpected situation, so Sherlock solving crimes during a wedding speech was always going to appeal to me. I also like the way that we get to see Sherlock out of sorts (read: drunk). It's clever how they play around with things that are expected, like the onscreen text, and use it to show Sherlock's intoxication (sitty thing).

That is one of my all time favourite things about Sherlock; the way we see how he thinks. I like the little trips into his memory palace and how hints are embedded in early episodes which come up much later (like the first time he meets Mary Morstan and one of the words we see surrounding her is 'liar'). It's very clever and it allows the viewer to feel clever because we can think along the same lines as Sherlock. I don't know about you, but I like feeling smart.

We've now started watching the American TV series, Elementary, which basically takes the same premise and sets it in America with a female Watson. It's hard not to draw parallels between the two, but once you stop trying to compare them and accept that they're different interpretations of the same character. Personally I think Sherlock (the series) is a more original take on the modern Sherlock (the character), whereas Elementary is more stock American procedural detective show.

But both are enjoyable in their own way. I'll share more thoughts on Elementary when we finish the series.

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