The Return of Sherlock Holmes Collection
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Disc One: THE EMPTY HOUSE & THE ABBEY GRANGE
Disc Two: THE SECOND STAIN & THE SIX NAPOLEONS
Disc Three: THE PRIORY SCHOOL & WISTERIA LODGE
Disc Four: THE DEVILS FOOT, SILVER BLAZE & THE BRUCE PARTINGTON PLANS
Disc Five: THE MUSGRAVE RITUAL & THE MAN WITH THE TWISTED LIP
-"Elementary, My Dear Watson: An Interview With Edward Hardwicke"
- Director's Commentary with John Madden
- Production Notes
Counselor Troi from Star Trek: The Next Generation--or rather actress Marina Sirtis--is part of the cast of "The Six Napoleons," a wild mystery that suggests that a madman with a grudge against Napoleon Bonaparte is smashing clay busts of his likeness all over London. "The Priory School," one of the most interesting stories from Doyle's Holmes canon, makes for a particularly taut and exciting episode in which Holmes and Watson are summoned by the desperate founder of an exclusive prep school for boys to locate the missing son of a duke. An extreme rarity in the Holmes canon, a policeman of real competence named Inspector Baynes (Freddie Jones), is also on the case in "Wisteria Lodge," making this tale all the more interesting for Holmes fans interested in comparing and contrasting investigative styles. "The Devil's Foot" finds Watson pressuring the exhausted sleuth into joining him on a vacation on the Cornish coast. Instead of relaxation, however, Holmes and Watson encounter one of the most horrifying multiple murders they have yet come across.
Doyle caught a fair amount of flak for getting a lot of details wrong in "Silver Blaze," a story about the training and racing of horses. Nevertheless, it is one of his most popular yarns and makes a fine basis for a keen mystery with one of Doyle's most inventive solutions. A strong story with some of the sleuth's most impressive investigatory work, "The Bruce Partington Plans" also saw the return of Mycroft Holmes (Charles Gray), brother of the Great Detective and indispensable repository of government business. Holmes's methodical approach to the arcane problem in "The Musgrave Ritual" is a lot of fun, and Brett and Hardwicke seem to be having a particularly good time outdoors, pursuing the solution under a bit of sunshine. "The Man with the Twisted Lip" is one of the most ingenious of the Holmes stories, satisfying from beginning to end, with a witty conclusion and unexpected moral about class pressures. --Tom Keogh
Top Customer Reviews
In this series of 11 episodes however, both the writing and the production are top notch all the way, and it is arguably the best collection of the whole group.
Doyle purists may prefer the Adventures, and with good reason, for the stories were fresh, creative and Doyle had not yet tired of writing about his famous detective.
But was it luck or theatrical Fate that brought Edward Hardwicke into the series, precisely at the point where Holmes and Watson's relationship necessarily becomes more personal and complex - right from the first episode where Watson displays a range of emotions upon finding Holmes alive in "The Empty House"?
Although David Burke does an admirable job in the first series, it is Hardwicke who is able to take us further into the personal ups and downs of their friendship with all the humor and understanding that fully fleshes out the two main characters.
Hardwicke's subtle psychological insight into Watson's role is only one of the rewards of this magnificent series.
Where else will you see the humanity of Holmes so revealed as in "The Devil's Foot" - the only time Holmes ever addresses Watson as "John" - as he battles his cocaine addiction? Where else will you see a more mature and compassionate Holmes comforting women in distress, as in "The Man With the Twisted Lip"?Read more ›
All of the high-production values, including excellent location shootings and costumes and such, are carried over along with the cast. Granada Television really put care into this series, and it shows.
There are some great episodes here, such as "Silver Blaze" with Holmes and Watson investigating a missing race horse, "The Devil's Foot" with Holmes battle against his own addiction as well as crime, the wonderful "The Six Napoleons" and the eerie "The Musgrave Ritual." Actually, they are all top-quality.
This series is the finest Sherlock Holmes adaptation, bar none, and the high quality contines in this set.
Jeremy Brett was the only actor who ever managed to perfectly portray Holmes's imperiousness, bitingly ironic sense of humor and apparently indestructible self-control without at the same time neglecting his genuine friendship towards Dr. Watson and the weaknesses hidden below a surface dominated by his overarching intellectual powers. The series takes the titles of its four cycles of shorter episodes - "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes," "The Return of Sherlock Holmes," "The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes" and "The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes" - from four of the five short story collections featuring London's self-appointed only "consulting detective" (published 1892, 1905, 1894 and 1927, respectively).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very poor quality CD. It looks like a bad VCR recording. Is this the best they can do? I am very disappointed and will send it back.Published 3 months ago by dan w carmichael
There was only one Sherlock Holmes and Jeremy Brett was him. Great series.Published 11 months ago by John Edward Elsegood