3 Replies to “Weekly Forum:  September 23, 2014”

  1. I guess it depends: is this measured by objective success in deductions and arrests made in the canon? Or should this be measured by Sherlock Holmes’ sharp observation of who is the best and brightest, taking in his subjective views of their potential, personality, and ability?

    As this is likely going to be a lively debate with very valid points from our Watsonian scholars (which I won’t be able to keep up with due to my time this week being greatly taken up by a JHWS-related project), I’m going to simply put in my utterly subjective choice of Inspector Lestrade.

    Perhaps he would not measure up to either objective nor Holmesian criteria for greatness, but I appreciate him as ‘the best’ simply because he is the one from Scotland Yard most strongly associated with our dear Detective, both in the Canon and in the many iterations over the century that followed. And with the incredible actors who have taken up the role of Lestrade on stage, TV, radio and film, he tends to be one of my favorite elements to a fun mystery.

    (…and the “Six Nepoleons” episode in the Granada series gives me a warm, happy feeling every time I watch it due to the portrayal of Lestrade’s friendship to Holmes and Watson…)

    1. I have to agree, especially with the Granada SIXN, the beginning with the cigar smoking and general air of ‘chattiness’ always makes me happy–and the scene with Watson and Lestrade trying to figure out why the bust was broken where it was, and Holmes points at the street light fixture always makes me a laugh even though I’ve seen it a zillion times. Morarity and Adler—for all their merits as great characters—are not as important, in some ways, as good ‘ole Lestrade. “Carla” I like the way you think!

  2. “Carla” . . . Everyone’s thoughts and opinions are able to “keep up” and are equally valid here. All Sherlockian/Watsonian “scholars” are, indeed, tongue-in-cheek, pseudo-scholars. And all learn something new every day from others.

    Both you and “Gwen” have effectively expressed and touched on something that runs through the entire Canon: human qualities that we all like. There is a very old maxim in business: “We buy from people we like.” The same seems to be true with Holmes, Watson and all of the characters from the Canon: “We read about people we like.”

    Lestrade is made very real by the Brett series. That portrayal is who I see and hear when Lestrade is speaking on the page. He is balanced in that he understands Holmes and doesn’t understand Holmes; he believes and yet disbelieves; he supports Holmes’ methods and also is loyal to the Yard’s methods. It is his balance that gives him credibility, and he is always a solid, reliable, if somewhat “by the book,” professional. Again, a superb contrast for Holmes very ably drawn by Doctor Watson.

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