Holidays seem to bring out the, well, binger in many of us. There’s usually feasting…
Sometimes there are lights…lots and lots of lights….
and sometimes, your city explodes so many fireworks that the smog lasts into the next day, as seen in this post-Diwali photo of Delhi, 2016:
Even now, in my house, I have a living room full of family (plus dog and cat), binge-watching “The Librarians,” and I myself may have consumed an entire cheese ball over the weekend.
Sherlock Holmes is a man dedicated to self-control, both in disciplining his mind and emotions, and in avoiding, say, romance, or too much food during a case. He followed some rather ascetic habits–except when he didn’t. I think we can all recall the ounce of shag in “The Man With the Twisted Lip.”
Many times we binge on something and end up thinking that we have just committed a terrible mistake. We will eat only carrots and drink water for the rest of our lives. We will never buy another inflatable snowman. And we are quitting smoking. Right Now. I have to say, however, that binge-reading (and binge-watching) don’t seem to lend themselves to those regrets. I binged on the Canon through a weekend and, I think, came out with a fuller picture of Sherlock Holmes than I would have had had I been limited to a story per month (or less), as his earliest fans were. TV binge-watching, while not necessarily good for the circulation (SERIOUSLY. GET UP AND MOVE EVERY HOUR), is excellent for long story-arcs and, I think, as series creators realize this, we’ve been getting better and better shows. Trust me, there is a massive difference between the television of my youth and that of today.
Binge-watching and Sherlock Holmes go hand-in-hand. Now, there are some franchises that don’t require you to keep up. The Rathbone-Bruce films can be enjoyed singly. The 1954 Ronald Howard series also has all stand-alone episodes. The Granada series makes for a fantastic binge, but you don’t have to remember important details from one season to the next. The 21st century remakes, however, carry plot lines and character arcs from episode to episode, season to season, making both BBC’s “Sherlock” and CBS’s “Elementary” quite, quite bingeable.
Of course, “Sherlock” is flashing onto our screens for another brief season in January, but “Elementary,” with Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu has been adding episode after episode and is now in its fifth year, with many devoted fans. If you’ve been thinking about giving it a watch, then perhaps this prize will help you.
For a chance to win the Elementary Season 4 DVD (or blu-ray), just send me the answer to this question:
In which story did Sherlock Holmes say, “Journeys end in lovers’ meetings, as the old play says”? What old play? And to whom did he quote it?
Ok. That’s 3 questions. But I’m sure you’ll forgive me a binge. It’s a holiday!
As always, send me your answers via blog comment, Facebook PM, or Twitter DM!
My son has just drawn the winning entry for Day 4, and the winner of “Detective Pusheen” is Jim McArthur! There were several possible correct answers. The ones I thought most likely were Watson having read Sir Richard Burton’s “One Thousand and One Nights,” or another translation, as there were versions done by Edward Lane, John Payne, and a very early one by Antoine Galland. Robert Louis Stevenson did his own stories using that theme, which appeared in the magazine “London,” and then in their own collection. While nowadays, you often find “The Arabian Nights” in children’s versions, during the late 19th century it was considered a very racy book. Watson may, as one respondent suggested, learned about it via reviews, or the newspaper, or, well, he may have read it himself.