Holmes/Watson BBC

Great meta on "Scandal" and fannish reactions.

Stop everything & read this essay by jblum on fandom's odd reactions to Moffat and his adaptation of "A Scandal in Bohemia". It offers another reading of that final scene that I found fascinating and persuasive.

It also goes into the fannish impulse toward black & white interpretations that undoes the fannish experience of complex characters. The fannish woobification of evil-but-complex Spike is an example of the pattern in action here. Holmes is an ass; Lestrade calls him a great man who might someday be good. The series is us watching that transformation, not seeing the end result. (As with Spike, yes? The change is what's interesting. Always-been-good Spike is boring.)

Anyway, read it and discuss there or here in the safety of friends. Many thanks to snickfic for the link!
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Clearly I'm not doing something right because I really enjoyed A Scandal in Belgravia. It was the Hound of Baskerville that I disliked intensely.

Anyway, my biggest problem with "Scandal" was the fact that apparently Watson didn't notice that Holmes was gone when he (Holmes) went to rescue Irene.
Hey, wait a sec... good point! Obviously I need to pay more attention, stop browsing online while watching the show.
The Hound was purer pastiche, if that makes any sense. The elements of the original are all there sort of mixed up & modernized. The original is kind of a sucky mystery but a good horror story. Gatiss's adaptation is all about the horror aspects. I appreciate it better after my re-read yesterday.

"Scandal" was more *fun*, though. Not a horror story.
That was a good essay. Swayed me from my fannish instinct post that episode.
I haven't watched Sherlock yet, but I really enjoyed the jblum's essay in general: it was, as you pointed out, spot on about fandom going for the black & white interpretations that undoes the presentation of complex characters. Oh, how that plays out over and over and over again.

Oh, great essay. I liked the episode, saw her as an excellent, strong character, liked her as Sherlock's match, and now I like her even more, with jblum's comparison to the literary character.

I find it so frustrating the way fans so often have to assign villain/victim roles, or stretch entire shows over a single reading. To the point where Joss Whedon is described as anti-feminist or anti-lesbian and my head hits the desk.

I'm so glad he (and you) mentioned Spike-love. I've started following buffyconfessions, and I've got total love/hate for it. I hate how fans can latch onto a show and then hoover out all the delicious complexity because poor Spikey-Wikey can do no wrong or devotion to Buffy/Angel means declaring every other relationship meaningless or they want to paint Xander leaving Anya as some sociopathic cruelty.

Every now and then a confession rolls through to say 'Actually, I liked the show because all the characters were complex,' or 'I'm glad we got to see Buffy move through different kinds of relationships,' and I cheer.

At some point I'll be posting a rant about it.