About I was once rather more proactive about selecting the title bars for this blog (click here to carry out some real blog archaeology and see some older examples in a different format. Look at those typos). I've decided to do something similar this year. A new illustration each week of whatever cultural event I've enjoyed or found most interesting with a post like this one at the end to explain myself. Firstly, Sherlock and an attempt to find a shot of him thinking, though on reflection I think this is the moment from the tail end of the first series when he deliberately tears up in order to extract some information from a witness.
My first thought after watching the opening episode of the second series was "Why isn't Doctor Who this clever?" then quickly felt a bit guilty since Moffat's reimagining of the key sci-fi franchise often is that clever, what with the jacket continuity error that wasn't last year and the messy timeline of River Song. His style is looser, more comfortable when writing for older viewers, perhaps even less straight jacketed by what's gone before because Sherlock's a page one reinvention rather than a continuation with all the baggage.
Almost within seconds of the episode finishing Twitter was filled with adoration but in the following hours and days some feminist criticism nearly overshadowed the achievement, largely centred around the treatment of The Woman or Irene Adler, turned, they saw, from the one woman who bested Holmes to someone not just bested by him but also unable to cope with her mission without the help of Moriarty, I've decided to hold off my opinion until all three have been broadcast. Almost.
Moffat for his part, has as ever has come out fighting with an interview to Wales on Sunday in which comes across as being deeply hurt by the accusations which have been flying around:
“I think it’s one thing to criticise a programme and another thing to invent motives out of amateur psychology for the writer and then accuse him of having those feelings,” he said.That's demonstrated in the episode with his protective attitude to Mrs Hudson. None of the commentary I've seen has noticed the fact that in defending his not a housekeeper, Sherlock threw her attacker out of the window several times and that it also became apparent that some of her understandable tears were a classic piece of misdirection on her part in order to hide something important making her a very strong female character indeed.
“I think that was beyond the pale and strayed from criticism to a defamation act.
“I’m certainly not a sexist, a misogynist and it was wrong.
“It’s not true and in terms of the character Sherlock Holmes, it is interesting. He has been referred to as being a bit misogynist.
“He’s not; the fact is one of the lovely threads of the original Sherlock Holmes is whatever he says, he cannot abide anyone being cruel to women – he actually becomes incensed and full of rage.”