Central London overfloweth with gorgeous, intelligent women with a thirst for murder. The Baker Street Babes: The Web's Only All Female Sherlock Holmes Podcast. Eat your heart out Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Saturday 6 October 2012

Tuesday 28 August 2012

Sherlock Holmes gets modern treatment in two TV shows

Kristina is quoted in this article, and if that didn't give you reason enough to read it, it's also a fabulous article.

By Carol Memmott, USA TODAY

Sherlock Holmes may not be the first name that comes to mind when you think "superhero." But based on his recent TV and big-screen track record, the world's most famous literary detective, at the very least, is a globe-trotting time traveler.

The world's love affair with Holmes in all his mutations — be it in films, on TV or re-imagined in new novels — is cyclical. And "we seem to be at the peak of another wave," says Leslie Klinger, a Holmesian scholar and member of the Baker Street Irregulars, an organization of Holmes devotees.
"Every age takes something different from Sherlock Holmes," says Klinger, who worked as a consultant on the 2009 and 2011 films that starred Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law as Holmes and Dr. John Watson (a third installment is in development). Klinger cites Guinness World Records, which lists Holmes as the most portrayed movie character; 75 actors have played the part in more than 200 films.

"There is something that every actor brings to this role," says Benedict Cumberbatch, who is up for an Emmy for lead actor in a miniseries for his work on Sherlock, in a phone interview from London. "Like Hamlet, if you're any good, you bring enough of your own personality and talent to bear that you will make it your own."

"There is nothing new under the sun. It has all been done before," Holmes says in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's 1887 A Study in Scarlet, but the notion hasn't stopped filmmakers from experimenting with new interpretations of the Holmes legacy.

Sherlock, which premiered in 2010, has had fans swooning over Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman as Holmes and Watson.

And whether CBS' Elementary, which premieres Sept. 27 (10 ET/PT) and stars Jonny Lee Miller as Holmes and Lucy Liu as Joan Watson, is a misstep or a stroke of genius is a case waiting to be cracked.

"Every vision of Holmes is a legitimate one," Klinger says. And great actors, including Downey, Basil Rathbone and Jeremy Brett, who starred in the acclaimed Granada television series The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (1984-1994) in England, have found the role irresistible and inspiring.

Men for all seasons

Placing Holmes and Watson in the 21st century is not the first time the detectives have been shifted to an era other than the Victorian period in which they were first written. Universal Studios' 12 movies starring Rathbone all took place in the 1940s, the decade in which they were made. He's seen driving a car and even goes head-to-head against the Nazis.

From these films grew the iconic image of Holmes (in part because of Rathbone's Shakespearean training) as a suave English gentleman decked out in a Deerstalker cap and Inverness cape. The films also are why Watson (as portrayed by Nigel Bruce) is considered by many to be a bumbling fool. But Conan Doyle envisioned him as a competent surgeon and excellent marksman, and quite intelligent.
As for the original Holmes, created in the 19th century and featured in four novels and more than 50 short stories, he was famous for his logic, disguises, a tobacco fetish and the occasional use of cocaine and opiates.

Current novels range from The House of Silk by Anthony Horowitz, a period piece that was authorized by the Conan Doyle estate, to Laurie R. King's Mary Russell novels, which give Holmes a wife who also solves mysteries.

In film, Downey buffed Holmes into more of an action-adventure hero who brings mixed-martial-arts chops to his bare-chested street fights. On television, Cumberbatch's Sherlock is a nicotine-patch-wearing, tech savvy, fast-talking, antisocial genius whose brain analyzes clues at lightning speed. Elementary's Sherlock is a man with self-doubts, a secret past and a Watson described as his "sober companion."

Cumberbatch's drama may be set in modern times, but, he says, "we came from a place of absolute reverence for the original. So it was always going to be an interpretation of the original, however much Sherlock fiddles with an iPhone or fusses around with modern graphics. 

"Obviously there are some witty adaptations of certain ideas, but an awful lot of the material we use is from the canon. And the references are rich throughout," he says. "I guess that's why we're scoring high. We're appealing on both of those levels, and the traditionalists love the updates."

Masterpiece executive producer Rebecca Eaton says she isn't sure there's room for two modern-day Sherlocks on TV. "It's already a crowded field. … I think (CBS is) skating a little close to the risky edge, because there's already such a successful TV show out there."

She acknowledges, however, that "there are a lot of Sherlock Holmes fans out there. I don't know how those people will react to another Sherlock. Either they could be quite dismissive, or they could welcome any bit of Sherlock in the drought between our last season and the next one."

Elementary executive producer Robert Doherty says: "Sherlock has broad shoulders, and I believe he can carry us all. I've seen Sherlock in other novels, in comic books, in television shows, in movies, in TV movies. Some are better than others, but nobody has managed to ruin the franchise. It's a credit to what Conan Doyle did in the very beginning."

Overall, Doherty says, it's a good time to be in the Sherlock business, "but you also want to make sure that you're telling your own story, and that you can sit down and be excited about your vision for the show and not think about the others."

Room for everyone

Don't expect a Cumberbatch vs. Miller smackdown over the franchise. The actors are friends who co-starred in Danny Boyle's theatrical production of Frankenstein. And Miller called Cumberbatch before accepting Elementary. "Benedict has been very supportive, and I wanted to reassure him about how different this script was and project was," Miller told reporters in July. "All of the other differences will kind of be apparent."

"I genuinely, as a friend, wish him all the luck in the world," Cumberbatch says. "It's a wonderful role, and I hope it's as enjoyable for him as it has been for me. I think there's room for both of us, (but if) his takes over, then I've had a fantastic time doing it and I wouldn't bear any grudge. I adore Jonny."

"It is a great honor to be asked to play such a rich character," Miller says via e-mail, "and I felt there were many differences in Rob Doherty's great script to anything I had seen previously. I particularly like the darker struggles our version of Sherlock is dealing with."

As to how he'll make Holmes his own, Miller says: "I used the books. There is so much material there that you can try to find aspects that maybe haven't been seen so much. You can also discard what you feel has been seen a lot. I am trying to show some conflict and difficulty in Sherlock's life, so he seems a little at odds with the world."

For now, while Sherlock balances its story lines atop Conan Doyle's body of work including The Hound of the Baskervilles, Elementary will devise new Holmes stories.

"We're really trying to embrace our setting, trying to embrace our Watson," Doherty says. "That's not to say we won't ever take something from the canon and try to make it an episode, but it's not what's really driving us."

In the end, it will be up to fans to decide whether there's room for two modern-day Holmes/Watson teams on TV.

Kristina Manente, who last year founded the London-based fan group Baker Street Babes (bakerstreetbabes.com), says Sherlock "is so brilliant, but when I first heard about it, I didn't like the idea of modernizing it. But it makes so much sense: Holmes was always a modern man. The acting and writing is flawless."

And she's "quite open-minded about Elementary. I love Jonny Lee Miller. I'm definitely going to check it out.

"To be fair, BBC's Sherlock has brilliantly used the canon as its base, so (Elementary) can't really mimic that. They have to do something new for it not to be thought of as a copycat."



SHERLOPALOOZA is the Baker Street Babes inaugural (hope to be) annual Sherlock Holmes screening and Q&A extravagaza! This year it’s on November 17th and is Sherlock series 2! Our amazing Q&A will feature Sherlock composer Michael Price and blogger Joe Lidster*.  The Q&A will be recorded as a live podcast that will be made available along with small interviewed with some of YOU!
We will also be having a raffle where you can win tons of amazing Sherlock and Sherlock Holmes goodies including artwork, books, and more.
The entire event will take place at the fantastic Prince Charles Cinema in Leicester Square in London. Feel free to dress up as your favourite character, wear themed t-shirts, or just come as yourself. Just be prepared to be SHERlocked!

* Please note that more guests may be added at a later date.


This is a preliminary schedule and may be subject to change.
10:00  Doors open
11:00  “A Scandal In Belgravia”
12:30  Break for lunch
13:15  Back in cinema
13:20  “Hounds of Baskerville”
14:50  Break
15:00  Q&A
16:30  Break for dinner
17:30  “The Reichenbach Fall”
19:00  Raffle
20:00  Door Close


All information and contact details about SHERLOPALOOZA can be found at sherlopalooza.tumblr.com. You may also contact The Baker Street Babes at events@bakerstreetbabes.com


Friday 24 August 2012

Series 3, What Could It Be?

Much like last time, Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss have released three words to give us a clue as to what the next three stories will be in Sherlock. This time around they are...


Ah ha. This will probably change as we think more about it, but here are some thoughts, wants, and general flailing on our part. Sue Vertue has confirmed that Series 3 will air next fall, possibly late summer after rumours surfaced this morning of the same. Huzzah for that!

Pastiche, The Giant Rat of Sumatra. We know that The Empty House will be the first episode, but they always conflate numerous stories into one. Curly is silently hoping for Rattigan.

Fairly obviously this'll be The Sign of Four with Mary Morstan (WHO IS AWESOME, CALM YOUR TITS). Could have elements of Charles Augustus Milverton where Holmes gets engaged to a maid to get info and then.. leaves... a wedding was also threatened in Charles Augustus Milverton (John & Mary's wedding threatened (not by a cockblocking Sherlock?)), and a bride went AWOL in The Noble Bachelor. The Illustrious Client also has wedding trouble in it. AND Solitary Cyclist had wedding stuff. SO MANY WEDDINGS!

Immediately think of His Last Bow, which is the last Holmes story and he goes to chill out with some bees. However, they've all said they want to keep doing them, so I refuse to believe this is it.
Mattias pointed out this may be referencing the Bow Street Runners, which were the first police force in London.
Also, not sure of the pronunciation, but what if it's a part of a tree or the front of a boat? SO MANY QUESTIONS!
The inflection was apparently like taking a bow. #sobs

BUT! His Last Bow is the title of a COLLECTION of stories and this includes The Dying Detective... if we wanted to kill Sherlock... again...

However the amazing Kristen McHugh just tweeted this to us... AND I CANNOT TELL YOU HOW MUCH I WANT THIS!
@kristenmchugh22  @BakerStBabes What if Moran/Morstan are the same, & there's a Rat at the Wedding in more ways than one? #sherlock
And more thoughts from you fine folk:

thenorwoodbuilder said: “Rat” was also partial for “(Balla)rat” in BOSC. And they could use part of the plot from his last bow, but not make it the end of the show… 

bakerstreetbarricades: They never take the ACD stories literally - so what if “Bow” simply means that they will be doing kind of a spy story?

aurora-boreali said: OMG! Wedding could very well be The Solitary Cyclist, one of my faves! 

cranberryloops said: I’m now convinced the first episode will start with Sherlock being on a ship, making his childhood dream come true and being a PIRATE.

Thursday 9 August 2012

Episode 30: The Episode of Dubious Legality—Betsy Rosenblatt, the OTW, and Fanworks

Fandom Summer is upon us!

To kick it off, Babes ArdyLyndsayTaylor and Amy chat it up with Betsy Rosenblatt, who works with the Legal committee of the Organization for Transformative Works.

The OTW runs a lot of fandom-based projects, including the Archive of our Own, a scholarly journal about fan cultures, and a fandom wiki—and they also provide legal advice and advocacy for and on behalf of fannish creators, which is where Betsy (and people like her on the committee) comes in.

We talk to her about the legal issues surrounding fanworks, how much trouble they can potentially get you into, and we discuss listener questions such as the reasons why people create them in the first place, and what it is that makes fandoms like Sherlock Holmes so enduring. Also, we really want to know: what drove her to invest much of her time in this project and how successful is it?

The answer to all these questions lies but a click and a listen away. Enjoy, and let us know your own thoughts on these issues, if you feel so inclined—we love getting listener mail :)

Wednesday 8 August 2012

The Babes on The Today Show!

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


Curly and Kafers were interviewed for a bit on Sherlock Holmes for The Today Show! It was a fantastic day and the crew was just lovely. There was a lot more that was filmed, but it's still very exciting to see two of our girls on national television!

Wednesday 25 July 2012

Review: The Illustrated Speckled Band

The Illustrated Speckled Band
Ed. by Leslie S. Klinger
Reviewed by Amy Thomas
The Baker Street Babes

The idea of Sherlock Holmes in the theater tends to bring images of William Gillette to mind, the actor whose play Sherlock Holmes and portrayal of the detective garnered acclaim that continues to this day. Less well known to current Sherlockians is the fact that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle himself successfully dramatized one of his most popular stories, “The Speckled Band.” Thankfully, The Illustrated Speckled Band provides a comprehensive overview of this tantalizing piece of Holmesian trivia.

The book consists of four main elements: the text of the play, photographs of the original stage production, an original review of the production, and an essay that relates the play to the short story. For those familiar with the text of the story, the play reads a bit like a movie script taken from a print source—it follows the same general pattern, but many of the details have been changed for dramatic effect and convention. Conan Doyle’s ability as a dramatist is immediately apparent in the masterful use of humor and foreshadowing.

The photos, placed alongside the text where they naturally occurred in the production, are a rare treat. They not only shed light on direction and staging, but they also reveal something of the Adelphi Theater acting style just after the turn of the century.

The critical review, from The Playgoer and Society Illustrated, is a charming window into the journalism of the period and the popular opinion of Conan Doyle. The paper’s short biographical articles about the main castmembers are also included and contain such gems as this amusingly purple quote from Christine Silver, who played the lead female character: “You will say this is very feminine. Well, I admit the soft impeachment; it’s a woman’s privilege. A man lives and forgets; a woman lives and remembers.”

Finally, the essay by R. Dixon Smith does an excellent job of illuminating the circumstances that surrounded the writing of the play and the ways in which it compares and contrasts with the source story. It’s a satisfying way to conclude a very unusual volume.

The Illustrated Speckled Band is appealing in three particular ways. Its obvious Holmesian appeal lies in the rarity of what is included and the extensive presentation of a little-known piece of Sherlockiana. Additionally, it offers an unusually detailed look at British theater in 1910. Finally, for historians, it gives a glimpse of the ideas and attitudes of actors and reviewers during Conan Doyle’s time. It’s an enjoyable book to read, but its beautiful cover design also makes it a great addition to the bookshelf or coffee table of any Sherlock Holmes lover.

A copy of this book was provided for consideration by Gasogene Books