A gathering of the JHWS next Saturday, April 24!

The John H. Watson Society will Zoom again on Saturday, April 24 at 10 AM PDT, 11 AM MDT, 12 Noon CDT, 1 PM EDT, 6 PM BST, 7 PM CEST, etc. (At least we think that’s how the time zones will work!)

This time out we’re breaking our toasting free of those same three monthlies, so bring toasts on anything Watson-related if you got ’em. Also, we’ll be doing a deep dive into that page that Watson says is missing from his letters to Holmes at the start of Chapter Eight of The Hound of the Baskervilles. What was Watson hiding from his reading public? Where did that page go? We’ll be entertaining all theories or any “found text” versions of that page you might have found (or claim to have found), so bring everything you’ve got on this Watsonian mystery we’re going to try to solve!

If you need the Zoom invitation, please send a request to podcast@johnhwatsonsociety.com and we’ll get you the link.

And if you just want some good Watson to warm up for the meeting, this week’s episode of The Watsonian Weekly, our club’s official podcast, is on the e-air once again. Check it out at https://watsonianweekly.libsyn.com/april-19-2021-gorilla-hardwicke-strychnine or on Apple podcasts or Spotify!

One hundred Watsonian Weeklies!

As if there weren’t enough to occupy your time on a Saturday in spring, including a virtual 221B Con, today at noon Central Standard Time, the Watsonian Weekly will be recording it’s 100th episode! Not the best weekend for it to happen, but one hundred is one hundred, and if you’d like to be present for the live recording and hear all the stuff that gets edited out before it gets edited out, just toss an email to podcast@johnhwatsonsociety.com for the Zoom link. We only hit one hundred once, so stop by and get a rare look at podcast history in the making!

Don’t panic! The meeting’s in two weeks!

Just in case you missed the earlier notice, the John H. Watson Society’s monthly Zooms are springing forward a couple weeks to the fourth Saturday, which seems like a less-trafficked Zoom day. Invitations aren’t out yet, but be sure to update your calendar to March 27th. Hope to see you then!

Congratulations to Larry Albert on 150 episodes portraying Doctor Watson

ATC30: The Adventures of Harry Nile & Larry Albert Interview | Audio  Theatre Central

Larry Albert, who plays Dr. Watson for Aural Vision Productions with John Patrick Lowrie as Holmes, recently celebrated the 23rd year of The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, making this longest running full cast audio series devoted to the adventures of the world’s greatest detective! With over 150 original Sherlock Holmes scripts being produced, that’s something of a milestone for all involved.

Happy International Women’s Day, Doctor Watson

Lucy Liu | Anne Marie Lepretre make-up artist

In 1941, famous author Rex Stout opined that Watson was a woman. His evidence is largely pulling out language that makes it clear that Holmes and Watson are a couple. In his mind that “proved” Watson was a woman. In the 21st century we tend to think it proves something else but nonetheless, the idea of a female Watson has long percolated. The American actor Lucy Liu arguably portrays the most famous female Watson. She received three People’s Choice Award nominations for the role, and directed six episodes of the show, Elementary. Even the artwork we see in Watson’s apartment was painted by Liu. Her Watson is notable for her independence from Holmes. In particular, Elementary shows us more of the late/post partnership period of Holmes and Watson’s lives than most adaptations. Ultimately a detective in her own right, we send our warmest regards to Lucy Liu and her Watson.

Watson Goes To Mars

When NASA’s Perseverance rover landed on Mars, it brought along Watson and Sherlock. Or WATSON and SHERLOC, anyway.

The Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman & Luminescence for Organics & Chemicals has a nickname: SHERLOC. Mounted on the rover’s robotic arm, SHERLOC uses cameras, spectrometers, and a laser to search for organics and minerals that have been altered by watery environments and may be signs of past microbial life. In addition to its black-and-white context camera, SHERLOC is assisted by WATSON, a color camera for taking close-up images of rock grains and surface textures.[…]

Dr. John H. Watson was Holmes’ partner in solving mysteries. WATSON the camera assists SHERLOC as it helps solve mysteries about life on Mars.

With its camera sidekick WATSON (Wide Angle Topographic Sensor for Operations and eNgineering), SHERLOC even has a modern version of the hand-lens magnifying glass used by the classic British detective!

NASA Science

A clarification: Royce Pierreson is not attending the next JHWS meeting

While he would be EXTREMELY WELCOME (hello Royce if you Google yourself) we have no expectations of Mr. Pierreson attending the next meeting. We are just excited to start talking about the latest, greatest Watson. If you would like to attend this meeting and start swooning over Mr. Pierreson with us, please contact podcast@johnhwatsonsociety.com to be put on the list to receive the Zoom link.

Everything you need to know about Netflix's The Irregulars

Time to care for our Bullpups and have an important discussion

Hello all, I am very happy to be the Buttons of JHWS, the fun Watsonian society. In that role I haven’t felt a need to address you formally as Sampson Buttons. Today one of our own, Chris Aa Bakkane, published this essay and I am asking you to read it, to give it serious consideration, and to join me in finding concrete ways we, as a Sherlockian community, can do better. Because we need to do better. Let’s begin doing the work.


A Dickensian Tidbit: The Answers

Last week, Chips asked:

In my readings, I have found two editors working together who came up with 3 possible connections between Dickens and Sherlock Holmes and/or Arthur Conan Doyle.

One connection involves a quote.

Of the other two, one requires some comparisons and the other requires a visit from the Afterlife. 

Illustration by Sidney Paget for The Strand, 1904

The answers are:

The quote, from The Adventure of Charles Augustus Milverton (CHAS): “Charles Augustus Milverton was a man of fifty, with a large, intellectual head, a round, plump, hairless face, a perpetual frozen smile, and two keen gray eyes, which gleamed brightly from behind broad, gold-rimmed glasses. There was something of Mr. Pickwick’s benevolence in his appearance, marred only by the insincerity of the fixed smile and by the hard glitter of those restless and penetrating eyes.”

The comparisons, from the entry for February 7 in A Curious Collection of Dates: Through the Year with Sherlock Holmes, by Leah Guinn and Jaime N. Mahoney: “Sherlockians can also thank Dickens for Bleak House‘s Inspector Bucket, the first police detective in English literature who, in his various investigations, provides the template for Inspector Lestrade and every policeman who consults the detective at 221B.”

The visit from the Afterlife, also mentioned in the same entry: During at least two seances Arthur Conan Doyle attended, Dickens’s spirit allegedly made contact and said that Drood (of his unfinished The Mystery of Edwin Drood) was not dead, but he still didn’t provide the answer to the mystery.