espanolbot: (Default)
[personal profile] espanolbot posting in [community profile] scans_daily
Okay, the more recent bit first. As quite a lot of you might know, there is kind of an overlap between the people of this community and the fandom of Stephen Moffat's non-Doctor Who tv show, Sherlock. For those of you that don't know what it is, it's a modern day adaption of the Arthur Conan Doyle novels, not exactly a straight adaption but it's still a very entertaining, visually original show with two very good leads in the form of Benedict Cumberbatch (voice of Smaug in the upcoming Hobbit movies as well as the villain in the next Star Trek one) as Holmes and Martin Freeman (who will actually be starring as the titular Hobbit) as Watson.

The show has done both very well in the UK and abroad, particularly in the US and in Korea, though in the latter case they are putting a different spin on how they're marketing it.

Anyways, as is seemingly standard for shows made in the UK now, the BBC attempted to pitch an American-based adaption to an American channel, specifically CBS. This isn't really anything new, as there have been numerous British shows that have been remade for the American market, such as the Office, Steptoe and Son, Being Human, Life on Mars, Shameless, Skins, Misfits (yes, that's getting a remake too) etc. etc. BUT, some time after BBC pitched the show to NBC, they announced that they were going to be making a modern-adaption of Sherlock Holmes based in New York, under the title Elementary.

Fair enough, I might hear you cry, but that's to be expected surely, as what with Sherlock Holmes being in the public domain, everyone has the right to use him in their own works (hence that movie by the Asylum made to cash in on the first Robert Downey Jr. Holmes film), and what with the success of both Sherlock and Sherlock Holmes: A Games of Shadows, there can't really be anything more going on with Elementary other than it being another Holmes adaption in a contemporary setting? After all, basing Holmes stories in the present isn't exactly a new concept, there were versions based in the 1940s and even one where he settled in San Francisco in the 1991 movie... Sherlock Holmes in San Francisco.

Well the BBC seem to think so, are are launching legal proceedings against CBS, not because it's an adaption of Sherlock Holmes, but because it's an adaption of SHERLOCK. The main issues seem to be that the American version will use elements from the Sherlock series that are unique to that series, such as the inserts Sherlock uses, the text messages appearing on screen, the look they chose for the Holmes brothers and John, and the editing style.

These elements appear to have been introduced into Elementary after the BBC pitched their version of Sherlock to them.

Whether it's true or not I can't say, as I haven't yet seen Elementary, but's definately interesting from my perspective anyways.

Anyway, on with the legality, with a piece from one of the more surprising stories to feature Holmes, Ian Edginton's Victorian Undead. It is a Sherlock Holmes mystery based during a zombie apocalypse and... No, wait! Come back, it's good, really!

Containing the same close plotting and sharp script from Edgintons' other Victorian-based works Stickleback (2000AD) and the Scarlet Traces Trilogy (Dark Horse), the writer manages to successfully combine several different ideas (including the germ theory work by Dr John Snow and Reverend Whitehead with The Dynamics of An Asteroid) into not only a good Holmes mystery, but also a good horror-based adventure comic that actually justifies why the more steampunk trappings are introduced later in both the story and in the sequel series (featuring Dracula).

The idea seems ridiculous (more so when you know who the villain is), but it's all harmless fun, and Holmes etc. all remain in-character despite the increasingly outlandish proceedings that surround them.

Here is a section from the first issue, where Holmes is tinkering with the head of a remote-control android that hypnotised a politician into handing over some secret documents (makes sense in context), where they get a call to Scotland Yard to investigate a mysterious prisoner...

Don't be silly, Edison couldn't make a robot in 1898! That would require someone else making one and him stealing credit first, like what happened in Jonah Hex!

And if you're still interested in me talking about Sherlock Holmes, you might be interested in my comparision between the Professor Moriarty in the book, with the ones from Game of Shadows and Sherlock.

Contains loads of spoilers though.

Date: 2012-01-27 01:38 am (UTC)
aeka: (Huntress [computer]:)
From: [personal profile] aeka
I truthfully never understood the US needing to remake British shows to make them 'more relatable' to the American audience, since the show taking place in another country doesn't take away from either the story's relevance, nor does it make its characters any less 'relatable.'

I remember Showtime or Starz also wanted to remake Billie Piper's show Secret Diary of a Call Girl at one point, but opted to licence the British original for American airwaves when they couldn't find a high profile actress who was willing to appear nude on telly.

On an unrelated note, I totally read 'BBC vs CBS' as 'BBC vs CBC' thinking there was going to be a Canadian remake.

Date: 2012-01-27 02:11 am (UTC)
turtlefu: (Default)
From: [personal profile] turtlefu
Sometimes its valid. The Office (US) has become something COMPLETELY different from The Office (UK).

That being said, I am very tired of Sherlock adaptations, none of which have any of the spirit of the original stories. The Big-Screen Sherlock especially, that must make Doyle spin in his grave.

Date: 2012-01-27 02:36 am (UTC)
glimmung: (Default)
From: [personal profile] glimmung
It is due to a little known law that was passed following the revolutionary war. Basically all imported British popular culture must be made safe for our consumption lest we cravenly ask to be re-admited into the empire.

Date: 2012-01-27 03:06 am (UTC)
aeka: (Huntress [glasses]:)
From: [personal profile] aeka
So that's the story behind the changing the spelling of 'colour' to 'color' and 'realise' to 'realize.' Gotcha!

Date: 2012-01-27 03:17 am (UTC)
darkblade: (Default)
From: [personal profile] darkblade
I totally read 'BBC vs CBS' as 'BBC vs CBC' thinking there was going to be a Canadian remake.

If asked the BBC would look at you confused before asking what is a CBC.

Date: 2012-01-27 06:24 am (UTC)
biod: Cute Galactus (Default)
From: [personal profile] biod
Edison probably could make a robot, but would just wait for someone else to make it for him to steal anyway, because he was that much of a dick

Date: 2012-01-27 06:25 am (UTC)
biod: Cute Galactus (Default)
From: [personal profile] biod

Date: 2012-01-27 06:30 am (UTC)
skjam: (Communications)
From: [personal profile] skjam
Can you underline in a telegram, let alone double-underline?

Date: 2012-01-27 06:34 am (UTC)
harbringer: (Default)
From: [personal profile] harbringer
i still don't get why they're setting it in new york

i mean do they really not think americans know that sherlock holmes is a british thing? do they think if people have to watch a show taking place somewhere other than the US there will be mass riots in the street?

Date: 2012-01-27 06:39 am (UTC)
kenn_el: Northstar_Hmm (Default)
From: [personal profile] kenn_el
A lot of viewers don't like having to use their closed captioning.

Re: Sherlock Adaptions: I have Views.

Date: 2012-01-27 09:38 am (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
Indeed, the story goes that when the American actor/writer William Gillette, who wrote a very popular play about Holmes wrote to Doyle to ask permission to have Holmes get married in the play.

Doyle sent back a telegram that said: 'You may marry him or murder him or do whatever you like with him!"

Basically, if he got the money for it, so be it.

Date: 2012-01-27 09:39 am (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
If they were setting it in Glasgow or Newcastle that might be a bit more valid, but "Sherlock" has a plummy voiced Holmes of the sort American's love.

Date: 2012-01-27 09:40 am (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
That struck me too, no I don't think you could.

Date: 2012-01-27 09:41 am (UTC)
icon_uk: (Robin oh THIS is going to end well)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
Yes, warn Holmes off with a smug grin, that ALWAYS works....

Date: 2012-01-27 11:32 am (UTC)
bewareofgeek: (Default)
From: [personal profile] bewareofgeek
If ot's not Edison, it clearly must be Tesla.

ATOMIC ROBO version 1.0?

As for the Sherlock kerfluffle... I enjoy the BBC version immensely. I don't watch network TV at all.

Guess which side I'm on? ;)

Date: 2012-01-27 11:34 am (UTC)
greenmask: (Default)
From: [personal profile] greenmask
If that happened I don't think we'd take them (you?).

Date: 2012-01-27 11:37 am (UTC)
greenmask: (Default)
From: [personal profile] greenmask
"Send more horses stop underline must be chestnut no line stop come back soon stop underline underline dont forget the horses no line stop"?

Date: 2012-01-27 01:49 pm (UTC)
aeka: (Huntress [computer]:)
From: [personal profile] aeka
This just reminded me of a conversation I had with a co-worker last year who was convinced he could 'speak for most Americans' in that most could understand 'a British accent' yet he's never actually been to UK.

Date: 2012-01-27 02:29 pm (UTC)
skjam: Man in blue suit and fedora, wearing an eyeless mask emblazoned with the scales of justice (Default)
From: [personal profile] skjam
That is what happened in the books--a Scotland Yard person would come in person or send a messenger, and I think only that because Mr. Conan Doyle (or Mr. Watson) refused to acknowlege the existence of the telephone.

Date: 2012-01-27 03:53 pm (UTC)
filthysize: (pic#1999253)
From: [personal profile] filthysize
It's actually a fairly straightforward reason: British shows don't have enough episodes to fill a whole season on American network TV, which is scheduled differently. They would be done in 6 weeks, and then cause problems for the network to fill the remaining timeslot, since we don't make 6 episode network shows. Here, Sherlock is aired on PBS as episodes of Masterpiece Mystery!, an anthology series made up of several British crime dramas running all season under one show title.

Cable channels can air British shows more easily because of their short order seasons (10-13 episodes instead of 22-24), and they do: HBO airing Ricky Gervais shows, Adult Swim airing Garth Marenghi and Mighty Boosh, or A&E airing Spooks.

Beyond that, I think it's more cultural reasons, especially with shows like Queer as Folk or Shameless. The characters can easily be relateable across the pond, but the social and political commentary will be less relevant than if they just remake the shows and talk about actual gay and blue collar issues in America.

Re: Sherlock Adaptions: I have Views.

Date: 2012-01-27 04:03 pm (UTC)
hopeofdawn: (godlike)
From: [personal profile] hopeofdawn
Hear hear--thank you for saying this, and much better than I ever could!

Date: 2012-01-27 07:46 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
There's also The Return of Sherlock Holmes from 1987

Date: 2012-01-27 07:47 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
Very true.

Re: Sherlock Adaptions: I have Views.

Date: 2012-01-27 09:25 pm (UTC)
turtlefu: (Default)
From: [personal profile] turtlefu
Yes, the details are similar but the presentation is completely wrong.
For one, there is nothing cerebral about the Ritchie films. Furthermore, they have more in common with buddy cop movies than any classic Holmes novel.
The details are there, sure, but those are just window dressing.

I admit that it is WELL MADE sure, but you can't help but think the average person must have been more intelligent in Victorian England than now based on how Holmes is presented in the two media.

Date: 2012-01-27 09:26 pm (UTC)
turtlefu: (Default)
From: [personal profile] turtlefu
Now THAT I would watch!

Date: 2012-01-27 09:26 pm (UTC)
stubbleupdate: (Default)
From: [personal profile] stubbleupdate
If you watch Scandal in Belgravia it's pretty clear that it's available to be cut into 3 episodes of half an hour each. I think that Hound of the Baskervilles might follow the same pattern

Date: 2012-01-28 12:00 am (UTC)
filthysize: (Default)
From: [personal profile] filthysize
What for? As I said, Sherlock airs on PBS in the US as episodes of Masterpiece Mystery for 3 weeks. They show it in full the way it's intended to be.

Date: 2012-01-28 12:20 am (UTC)
stubbleupdate: (Default)
From: [personal profile] stubbleupdate
That won't be the only television channel that will be showing Sherlock overseas.

We've all seen the Korean trailer for Sherlock, haven't we?

Date: 2012-01-29 04:04 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] gerardotejada
First Jhona Hex gains a Watson (dr. arkaham) and becomes Sherlock Holmes on Gotham, Now Sherlock Holmes becames Batman! Curious going Curioser! Yay!


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