SHERLOCK is my official new favourite TV show. These don't come along often - the last was Being Human - so I'm always elated to discover a pacey UK drama that's well acted and brilliantly scripted. Watson is a war vet wounded out of Afghanistan, Holmes is a psychopath (sorry, a functioning sociopath,) and a compulsive detector of data and detail. First episode shows him detecting that Martin Freeman's limping Watson is addicted to danger and will become his ally, flat-mate, and fellow fun-seeker. Watson himself is a bit slower on the uptake:
"Fun! There's a woman lying here dead!"
"Perfectly sound analysis, but I was hoping you'd go deeper."
All the mystery, glamour, and chases of a Bond movie, and a lot more texting, but I'm guessing the real allure of this new series will be the Odd Couple friendship.
The Brewery in Bristol has been offering a run of pre-Edinburgh shows, and the one I picked was 'Tis Pity She's a Whore, adapted from the 1633 John Ford script by UWW Independent Theatre Company with 'an experimental, multi-media theatrical perspective' which turned out to be slightly distracting intermittent slide projection. I'm not sure exactly what part of 'Revenge Tragedy' I managed to misunderstand, but I wasn't really prepared for the extent of gruesomeness, culminating in incestuous murderer Giovanni dashing around with his sister's heart on a dagger like a particularly unappetizing toffee-apple. It was as if Mr Ford had mused on the death scene in Romeo & Juliet and decided that Mr Shakespeare had spoiled a good idea by rushing it. This grimfest rectified all that. Gender politics and licentiousness versus repression, as the programmed noted, are still facets of our society, but this stolid production with didn't deliver any thought-provoking insights.
And now I'm zipping up the suitcase and clipping on the sunshine label that says
and heading off for a week in beautiful Andalusia, with another group of writers.
So there will now be a short intermission.