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Thursday, November 15, 2012

You got other detectives in my Sherlock!

These examples are both from season 1, so no spoilers.  

"Rachel" -- A Study in Pink

Dying clue.  Famously used and made popular by the fictional detective Ellery Queen, to have the murder victim scribble out a dying clue.  And yes, EQ used that a LOT.  

Grammar police scene -- The Great Game

Nero Wolfe.  I'm sure Wolfe does this more than once; Wolfe is a particularly snarky detective, much like our Sherlock.  I just reread one of Wolfe's famous bits with a suspect, as you can see by the link.

Ideally I'd have a third "this belongs to another detective" bit here, but I haven't.  Sorry.  If I get something from future reads, I'll add that in and link back here.

I could pretend that The Blind Banker wasn't all ACD, but I'd be lying.  Everyone loves to use the secret codes... written on walls.  :D

But the only other GAD detective I've read anywhere as much as Ellery or Wolfe... is Albert Campion.

-- If you haven't seen that, Peter Davison, the Fifth Doctor, played Campion.  Which is how I discovered Margery Allingham's series.  Peter was also in the first Hitchhikers Guide tv series -- and, for that matter, had a voice part in The Great Game.  Never say that the BBC leaves Doctor Who out of anything!  :b

I have a Thing for gentlemen detectives like Campion, Ellery Queen, and Rory Alleyn -- the Handsome Inspector of Ngaio Marsh.

Do realize that I'm not complaining.  I know that Steven and Mark are major fans of the Golden Age of Detection.  It's just funny to see some of these and know where they're actually from.  

They're from other author-fans of Sherlock Holmes whose own detectives were eccentric and different from Sherlock Holmes.  :D

I haven't been rereading all of ACD lately.  (I do have his vampire collection, but that doesn't help.)  Maybe I'm wrong, maybe Sherlock Holmes did take the time to correct clients' grammar and diction.  I don't remember it, but that doesn't mean it didn't happen -- but I do know this about Wolfe and Ellery Queen.  Dying clues are Ellery's.  He's infamous for 'em.

And Nero Wolfe?  Well, he's memorably burnt a dictionary because its word usage made him angry.  Don't ever use "contact" in a way of which Nero Wolfe does not approve.  You'll pay for it.

He might not take your case either.

1 comment:

  1. Actually, the whole idea of Sherlock was taken from Edgar Allen Poe. In Study in Scarlet, Sherlock said that Dupin(Poe's detective) isn't that cool because deducing his friend's thoughts is super easy. Later, ACD contradicts himself by having Sherlock do just that.