Moderator: Chief Couch Potato Kylie
Who: “Sherlock” is a crime drama series based upon Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes detective stories that airs on the BBC in the United Kingdom and on PBS in the USA; it is currently on hiatus (should the producers decide to make more episodes, an ongoing mystery for this unique fandom).
What: “Sherlock” was created by Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss and stars Benedict Cumberbatch as the title character and Martin Freeman as Doctor John Watson. The series is set in the present day, while a one-off special features a Victorian period fantasy resembling the original Holmes stories.
When: Series One aired in the USA from October 27, 2010, to November 7, 2010, while Series Two aired from January 1, 2012, to January 15, 2012, on public broadcasting or PBS.
Where: This show is primarily set in London, England, United Kingdom, with occasional visits to London’s surrounds.
Why: To find out why individual podcast panelists started watching this show, listen to the podcast episode via the link below – though it bears mentioning that Sherlock may very well be the most popular and most requested panel/show to discuss since the inception of this humble little podcast and aside from (as previously published) Stranger Things.
How – as in How Was It?
The CPU! “First Look” rating scale:
***** – I HAVE TO WATCH EVERYTHING. HOLY SMOKES!
**** – Well, it certainly seems intriguing. I’m going to keep watching, but I see possible pitfalls in the premise.
*** – I will give it [limited] episodes and see what happens. There are things I like, and things I don’t. We’ll see which “things” are allowed to flourish.
** – I will give it [even fewer] episodes. Chances are, I’m mainly bored, but there is some intrigue or fascination that could hold it together. No matter how unlikely.
* – Pass on this one, guys. It’s a snoozer/not funny/not interesting/not my cup of tea… there are too many options to waste time on this one.
Sherlock = 5, by average of the podcast panel.
Sherlock depicts “consulting detective” Sherlock Holmes (Cumberbatch) solving various mysteries in modern-day London. Holmes is assisted by his flatmate and friend, Dr John Watson (Freeman), who has returned from military service in Afghanistan with the Royal Army Medical Corps. Although Metropolitan Police Service Detective Inspector Greg Lestrade (Rupert Graves) and others are at first suspicious of Holmes, over time his exceptional intellect and bold powers of observation persuade them of his value. In part through Watson’s blog documenting their adventures, Holmes becomes a reluctant celebrity with the press reporting on his cases and eccentric personal life. Both ordinary people and the British government ask for his help.
Although the series depicts a variety of crimes and perpetrators, Holmes’ conflict with nemesis Jim Moriarty (Andrew Scott) is a recurring feature. Molly Hooper (Louise Brealey), a pathologist at St. Bart’s Hospital, occasionally assists Holmes in his cases. Other recurring roles include Una Stubbs as Mrs. Hudson, Holmes and Watson’s landlady, and series co-creator Mark Gatiss as Holmes’ elder brother Mycroft.
How – as in How Was It? – THOUGHTS
Do you follow our CPU! social media accounts? Did you ever see a posting or advertisement for panelists at large to join this panel? No, you didn’t. Because so many CPU! core panelists advocated for a Sherlock panel, I had to oblige and subsequently draw lots, since we had more volunteers than actual room on the panel – we have limits around here; it’s easier on the ears and on the Chief CP’s editing efforts.
With that kind of popular appeal, I was again afforded the opportunity to appreciate the luxury of demand and (fairly) select a sampling of those requesting to discuss Sherlock to form this panel of CPU! faithful. The winners were some of our most frequent panelists, including Kristen (L), Nick, Hilary, Kyle, and Spencer as well as occasional TV viewer (and Spencer’s significant other), Kristin T, returning after a long absence since the conclusion of our Downton Abbey series. In this episode, these enthusiastic six begin a lavish and effusive singing of praises for this widely acclaimed and internationally honored modern adaptation of the Sherlock Holmes canon.
In the episode linked below, this panel spent most of the chat gushing about this series’ first and second seasons (or series, if you’re British). There was little bad or negative to say because everyone universally agreed that Sherlock is television of the highest quality, from performances to writing to direction to every other facet available. The panelists noted, unanimously, that while there are relatively weaker episodes within the thirteen total episodes produced, Sherlock’s weakest efforts are far superior to the strongest examples of other shows on television currently. In fact, our resident Sherlockians agree that the narrative is woven tightly, with a loving eye to adaptive detail spearheaded by recognized “Sherlock” expert Gatiss at the helm; that the visual presence from art direction to cinematography is perfection; and that the performances are no less than stellar, garnering nominations for BAFTAs, Emmys, and a Golden Globe as well as some bona fide wins. If you are part of the Sherlock fan club, this discussion will only serve to validate your commonly held adoration for this sparsely produced but richly produced international juggernaut. With all that said, have I convinced you to listen via the embedded link below?
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Remember, new episodes and blog posts are published weekly! Next Wednesday, two panelists will return to Look Back at a criminally underrated five season crime drama that aired on CBS and evolved into so much more, including a high octane action adventure story as well as high concept science fiction: Person of Interest. Stay tuned!
Our CPU! Sherlock panelists are “Sher-locked” over Sherlock and indubitably recommend watching this show to anyone who breathes – or, at least, to anyone who watches and enjoys television. Period. The general consensus among the panelists is that this well crafted, well written, well directed, and well performed piece offers “something for everyone” and can appeal to young and old, man and woman, and everything in between. What’s more, any self-respecting Sherlock Holmes fan will no doubt marvel, as several Holmes fans on this panel have, at the excellence of this series, including the loving attention to detail hailing from the source material. The only caution raised by the panel is that any new viewer will have to learn patience to appreciate Sherlock, as new series are created as the show-runners and cast have time. Also, a standard series contains only three film-length episodes generally, aside from the solitary Christmas special produced after Series 3. The creators certainly know how to keep their audience coming back for more, though, and the panel universally agrees that each return to a new series is well worth the wait (and the watch – and re-watch!).
The CPU! Sherlock panel will return later this spring to address – probably even more excitedly – Series 3 and 4 of this acclaimed program. In the meantime, Series 4 finished airing in the USA earlier in 2017, though no announcement related to a potential Series 5 has yet been made, if it will be made at all. Still, should the BBC and/or Gatiss and Moffat succeed in collecting the cast and crew for another go-round, CPU! will undoubtedly pounce upon such potential future developments! Until that time, Sherlock is available on the Netflix streaming service to be watched repeatedly and to one’s heart’s content (and Series 4 is set to be released to the streaming library in question on May 15, 2017). Stay tuned for Episode Two in this CPU! series, coming soon!