Lucy Liu cast as Watson in CBS' Sherlock Holmes show

Discussion in 'TV & Media' started by Dream, Feb 28, 2012.

  1. the G-man

    the G-man Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Location:
    to your immediate right
    Which is pretty ironic when you consider Kelley's shows have all (with the exception of Boston Public) starred white actors in the lead roles.
     
  2. Hound of UIster

    Hound of UIster Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 26, 2002
    Depends on who the creators are. Robert Doherty however doesn't exactly inspire much confidence.
     
  3. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2003
    Location:
    RJDiogenes of Boston
    Good thing I never said anything like that. :rommie:

    That's all true, but has nothing to do with the point of "re-imagining" characters to the point where they're entirely new characters.
     
  4. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    I was addressing the "they're just doing this to cash on those other Holmes projects" argument--which doesn't strike me as a good enough reason to dismiss a show or movie sight unseen.

    One more example: Just about every beloved sixties spy series, from The Avengers to The Man From U.N.C.L.E., was an attempt to "cash in" on the massive success of the early Bond films. But that doesn't mean that the shows' creators didn't take pride in their work and make shows worth watching.

    Is CBS trying to cash in on Sherlock and the Downey movies. Probably. So what? Has nothing to do with how the show is executed . . . .

    How far you can reinterpret classic characters and stories before you lose their essence is a whole other issue. I have a fairly laissez-faire attitude towards such things, but I understand that others are more protective of the original versions.

    (Heck, my first professional sale--to Amazing Stories decades ago--was a tongue-in-cheek mashup of Peter Pan and The Tempest, so I'm a big believer in messing with classic characters!)
     
  5. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2003
    Location:
    RJDiogenes of Boston
    Oh, okay. I completely agree with that.

    Aside from the issue of artistic integrity, my point is that once you re-imagine something to be totally different from the source material, then you've got something new. Monk would not have been a better show if they called him Holmes; Buffy would have looked ridiculous if she called herself Spider-Man; Lost would not have been improved if it were named Gilligan's Island.

    Well, that's an homage or a pastiche. No problem there. As I've said before, there's no problem with Forbidden Planet being inspired by The Tempest-- but if they had called it The Tempest and slavishly named the characters after Shakespeare's, it would lack the unique sparkle that it has.
     
  6. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Location:
    I said out, dammit!
    I like when Greg called Vampire Diaries. "VD."

    Fitting. :lol:
     
  7. Captaindemotion

    Captaindemotion Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 26, 2001
    Location:
    Ireland
    ^ Because it's a load of clap?
     
  8. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2000
    Location:
    In the lap of squalor I assure you.
    They had an advertising campaign which included such slogans as "Got VD?" or "Get Wood."

    I did the immersion thing.

    Put almost 3 seasons of vampire Diaries under my belt in 4 days.

    Campy melodrama but it has a strict rolling continuity like nothing I've seen since Roswell.
     
  9. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 1999
    Location:
    Tatoinne
    No, he's right. It will be shit to those of us who don't care for the CBS style. You can be as open-minded as you like, but it's still true that CBS has a certain style, which certain people really go for, but those people don't tend to frequent sci fi BBSes like this one. People who come to places like this tend to also be the people who hate the CBS style.

    The point is, CBS is making something that is very well adapted to the tastes of their customers. And why shouldn't they? They wouldn't be doing nearly as well if they set their sights on making stuff their customers don't like. This wouldn't be the first time a corporation eschewed "art" or "goodness" in favor of filthy lucre.

    Excellent point. Twilight gives me hives, but I watched 2 seasons of VD ;) and was well into the third before I finally got bored and gave up. Like CBS, the CW style is generally not to my tastes either, but sometimes a show has additional inducements that allow me to ignore that for a time.

    The Robert Downey Jr movies, maybe. I wouldn't bet any money that the average CBS viewer has ever heard of the BBC, and if they have, they think it's all shows about people in hoop skirts. But none of that is even relevant. What's relevant is that they'll see the ads for this show on CBS and recognize the CBS style that they've come to enjoy, and then they'll watch.

    Which will be something that approximately 0% of CBS viewers will know.

    We're talking CBS. They don't do art.
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2012
  10. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    I think you're over-generalizing here. I wasn't aware that this site was a bastion of CBS haters. I mean, I spend way too much time here and I watch CSI, Big Bang Theory, etc.

    We get that you think CBS isn't cutting-edge enough or whatever, but don't assume that being a scifi fan and watching CBS is somehow incompatible.

    Oh, I can't resist asking: what channels are us Trekkie types supposed to be watching? PBS? AMC? Syfy? TCM? Or just the pricy premium channels?
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2012
  11. Foxhot

    Foxhot Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2011
    Location:
    Foxhot
    This just in: Jude Law, Robert Duvall and the portly sidekick from YOUNG SHERLOCK HOLMES have been cast as CHARLIE'S ANGELS. Bosley is now Octavia Spencer. Madonna is the voice of Charlie. Perhaps it ''looks like America'' when combined. That's such a slippery-slope concept anyhow.
     
  12. DarthPipes

    DarthPipes Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2006
    God, if CBS wants a good version of Sherlock to be on the air, they should pay the BBC to do more episodes of their show. Otherwise, they should leave this classic alone.

    I will not watch CBS do an intentionally generic and shitty version of a great show.
     
  13. Foxhot

    Foxhot Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2011
    Location:
    Foxhot
    In similar fashion, I haven't seen Guy Ritchie's SHERLOCK films out of principle. Even though I've been a Downey fan since IRON MAN, and I've usually enjoyed Jude Law as well as Ritchie's films, there comes a point where classic characters and their situations are getting warped beyond belief just for the sake of coolness and/or popularity. I've no desire to see Holmes become Action Hero #448 with MATRIX-style action. Good film or not, I don't see much source material left. They also recently turned ALICE IN WONDERLAND's heroine into a kick-butt warrior, as the original's so 1800s. I can't wait to see what weapons Dorothy will be carrying in the future WIZARD OF OZ re-remake. If this is what it means to be relevant to today's culture, gimme irrelevance now and forever.
     
  14. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    But every adaptation invariably "warps" the original to some degree. The 1931 Boris Karloff version of Frankenstein bears little or no resemblance to Mary Shelley's novel, but that doesn't mean it's not a classic in its own right or lacks "artistic integrity." Ditto the classic George Pal version of War of the Worlds (which shifted the setting from Victorian England to 1950's California and changed Wells' iconic tripods into futuristic flying saucers). The Charles Laughton version of The Hunchback of the Notre Dame completely changed the ending of the novel, but is still regarded as the best movie version to date. And so on and so on . . . .

    Fidelity to the original source can be a virtue, but it's not the only consideration when it comes to adapting classic works, or even the most important one.

    Heh. I'm suddenly envisioning the fannish response to Frankenstein, if the internet had existed in 1931:

    "WTF? Have those hacks at Universal even read the novel? A hunchbacked assistant, an abnormal brain, villagers with torches, a burning windmill? Where did that come from? And how come the creature can't even talk--and has stupid-looking bolts in his neck? None of that was in the book. Hell, they didn't even get the main character's name right? "Henry Frankenstein?" Everyone knows it's supposed to be Victor.

    "Where was the whole arctic finale? How come Elizabeth didn't die? Where was the whole subplot about Justine? And the murder of Victor's little brother? If they were going to make up a whole new plot, why even bother calling it Frankenstein? The whole movie is a slap in the face to Mary Shelley and everyone who has actually read the book.

    "But obviously Universal doesn't care about that. They just wanted to churn out some gruesome piece of schlock to cash in on the success of their so-called Dracula with that weird Hungarian dude. Never mind that they're warping classic characters beyond recognition.

    "Boycott!"
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2012
  15. Gov Kodos

    Gov Kodos Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2004
    Location:
    Gov Kodos on Mohammed's Radio, WZVN Boston
    Good points, and as I thought Moffatt's Sherlock would be awful, it is premature to think a re-imagining will be bad sight unseen and my predictive powers need better tarot cards. That said, re-imagining takes talent on par with those who made the original. I expect such works have a failure to success rate not unlike original works, but due to being beholden to past successful work the failure gets greater attention than the failure of a new piece of work.
     
  16. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    Exactly. I've personally converted a handful of friends and acquaintances who were suspicious of Sherlock and inclined to reject a modern-day update of Holmes on principle.

    They all loved it once I talked them into watching it.
     
  17. Allyn Gibson

    Allyn Gibson Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2000
    Location:
    South Pennsyltucky
    The first Downey movie does its own thing. It's a "Holmes vs. the supernatural" in the vein of The Hound of the Baskervilles.

    The second film, Game of Shadows, though, is a solidly entertaining expansion of "The Final Problem" and it has what is undoubtedly the version of the Reichenbach Falls incident ever committed to film. Yes, it's done, like the first film, with a modern visual and narrative style, but the story is in the right place.

    There's a lot about both of the Downey films that makes me think, "Hey, this is the Jeremy Brett series, done for today and with a budget."

    Downey's performance as Holmes is compelling. (He doesn't look the part, but for that matter, neither does Benedict Cumberbatch.) He does amplify one aspect of Holmes' characterization -- the manic cocaine addict of the early stories -- but otherwise he's not far removed from Jeremy Brett whose Holmes, though often sedate, was prone to manic outbursts. If Downey falls outside of previous characterizations, it's that his Holmes is more physically active than that of other actors, and he tends to get the snot beaten out of him. And yet none of that that's uncanonical; Doyle's Holmes was a boxing champion and a crack shot, and mixing it up with ruffians was something that he did.

    While I know what I would do for a third Downey film (basically, mash "The Empty House" and "The Bruce-Partington Plans" together; the former because it follows "The Final Problem," the latter because it's a logical extension of the events of A Game of Shadows), I really think I'd like to see Downey try and do a sedate Holmes, with scenes in the sitting room of 221B Baker Street, clients upon the stair, Holmes consulting and solving trifling affairs (like purloined letters) without even leaving his chair.
     
  18. gblews

    gblews Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Location:
    So. Cal.
    I don't care about Watson being female, I'm just hoping they find a way to get Lucy into outfits that show her legs.
     
  19. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2003
    Location:
    RJDiogenes of Boston
    No network intentionally creates art-- it's always accidental. But I was talking about the topic of "re-imaginings" in general, not about CBS.

    At this point, I wouldn't be surprised at all to see this. :rommie:

    Nice. :rommie: You make a good point, though. It hardly matters after 80 years and the movie version has become the more culturally iconic of the two versions, but I do agree that it would have been better to rename the characters and make the movie completely independent of the novel; or at least I would have at the time. You miss the mark at the end, though, because both Frankenstein and Dracula were great movies, so I wouldn't have leveled that criticism.
     
  20. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2000
    Location:
    In the lap of squalor I assure you.
    I used to think she was sexy because she spent a whole movie punching Mel Gibson in the face back when he was beloved.

    His relatively new position as public enemy number one has shot her sex appeal through the roof.