Sherlock and why I kind of don’t care

So I suspect I’m going to be controversial, but I didn’t really enjoy this series of  Moffat’s Sherlock. Now before you have a freak out. Yes the acting was good. Very good. There is a lot of sharp dialogue that is delivered superbly. And I do like the clever tricks used to show text messages, and how Sherlock analysed people etc.  I thought that worked really well. But … but.

In fact at the time of writing this, I haven’t even finish watching the ep of Sherlock that was on on Sunday. Now granted it will be on iPlayer and I will probably watch the end, just to see what all the fuss was about… at somepoint.
Perhaps some of it is related to what I’ve read recently about how Moffat is not really that good at writing female characters. (In fact even before I’d read anything and had just watched A Scandal in Belgravia, I was querying Adler’s sudden confession. And also why the very very end bit was necessary.) But this is not what my blog post is about.
What this is about is the fact that I did not particularly like this iteration of Holmes. I find it a little hard to pinpoint exactly what it was, as Holmes has always been a very arrogant person that is hard to get along with. But I think Moffat’s version was just a little too extreme for me in every way possible. He’s just always seems so angry, so in your face ALL THE TIME.  Even my husband, in the early part of The Hounds of Baskerville commented that he preferred the first season, as Sherlock again began to spew his oh so awesome intellect in everyones faces. And both of went blah at the third episode.
I have read the books, and Holmes in that was a slightly more mellow person. He still looked down on people but he didn’t wave his arms around and rant at them like a maniac. Sophistication, I think the one in the books was a little bit more sophisticated with how he went about things. He understood people at least a little bit. (As opposed to new Sherlock, who doesn’t even seem to understand that you say thank you when someone gives you something. Even if you don’t care about the gift at all.)  Perhaps I’m, also projecting a little bit. The Sherlock Holmes I’ve seen most regularly on TV and can claim as ‘my’ Sherlock is the one portrayed by Jeremy Brett.  Who was a much calmer person. His anger was cold fury, as opposed to blazing inferno.
I can’t quite figure out why Watson remained friends with him either. Other Sherlocks’ that I’ve read and seen, give Watson something at times. A slight compliment, a feeling that they are fond of him. But I never really felt that from Moffat’s version.  It’s always disdain, and Watson asking him to at least be nice.  Hubby said that it felt like it was an abusive relationship. I have no idea if that was what was intended??  But whatever it was it just didn’t work for me, the man was almost too inhuman.
Yes I get that he’s supposed to be vastly intelligent then everyone else, I get that he’s supposed to be unlikable and that Watson is there to balance him out, to show a more human side to things. And that this is a modern retelling of it all.  But… there needs to be something about the main character that is likeable.
I think a friend of mine summed it up best when I saw his post on twitter, where he stated that he’d much rather have had 9 30 minute episodes of Sherlock, as opposed to 3 90 minute episodes. It was just too much all at once.

1 Comment

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One response to “Sherlock and why I kind of don’t care

  1. I thought pretty much the same, it might be my imagination but I don’t think Sherlock was quite so insufferable in the first series. It kind of feels like the writers agree with Sherlock that he’s just better than everyone else, rather than someone who’s incredible intelligence and unyielding rationality is a handicap as well as a gift. If you’re going to make him so antisocial and arrogant, it would be better to show the ways that he suffers for it instead of making excuses for him.
    Actually it might be interesting to play that up as the main theme, so Holmes is a genius but in such an obsessive fashion that he’s incapable of living in the outside world. With Watson as his handler, the man who has to keep him functional enough to keep solving crimes, but not so much that he loses what makes him such an amazing detective.

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