What did you think of when you saw this title?
Maybe pictures of Benedict Cumberbatch uttering his best-man speech flashed through your mind. For the oldest amongst us, possibly you imagined Christopher Lee exhibiting the legendary Deerstalker hat. Or perhaps you suddenly envision Robert Downey Jr. dashing through the shadowy London streets.
With the recent contemporary BBC television program and the American series ‘Elementary’, this Great British hero has received a flood of renewed attention even though his story has been going strong for more than a century.
4 novels and 56 short stories later, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s late 19th century fictional creation is known as perhaps the most famous detective in the world, and indeed one of the best known and most universally recognizable literary characters in existence. An icon of British film, the Guinness World Records has consistently listed this Englishman as the “most portrayed movie character” with more than 70 actors playing the part in over 200 films.
So why is he so popular? Why does everyone love the one-and-only Sherlock Holmes?
Holmes knows he’s special. And his assurance in his skills and abilities just makes him even more unique.
His Insane Sarcasm
His rudeness is riveting. Always rude and dismissive towards others, the ‘Study in Scarlet’ star is a hopelessly contradictive character that you don’t know whether to love or hate. A bit like Simon Cowell?
His Unnatural Cleverness
It seems Mr. Mystery can deduce up any person’s life, personality and character from the slightest bit of evidence, simply by using logic and astute observation. On top of that, he is always proved right.
“It’s our party we can do what we want to,
It’s our house we can love whom we want to,
It’s our song we can sing if we want to,
It’s my mouth I can say what I want to…”
Sherlock Holmes has learnt from Miley Cyrus and is no follower of the rules. He sets his own way of life and is at ease with or without everyone else’s approval.
Under the cold, unemotional exterior, we all can see that Sherlock is one of the world’s best friends to Watson. Their love and friendship for one and other is simply delightful. Mr. Holmes is willing even to put his own safety at risk and willing to sacrifice everything for him and their clients.
Patriotism had to come in somewhere.
To our Baker-Street detective, satisfaction comes not from fame and financial reward, but the fulfillment of solving a mystery. He loves what he does and his work is his greatest reward.
His Brutal Honesty
It is invigorating how blunt Sherlock is.
When Holmes starts work on a mystery, he never stops until the end. He throws himself into each and every crime with the entire and best motive.
When experiencing Sherlock Holmes, each one of us goes through a roller coaster of an emotional adventure of our own.
The ‘Hounds of Baskervilles’ star is no ordinary goody-goody two shoes protagonist. Holmes isn’t afraid to break the law.
His Social Awkwardness
We all secretly find Sherlock’s difficulty in comprehending human emotions amusing, and I’m sure you giggle when discovering how he responds to social situations.
Is it this quirk that makes him so compelling? Is it because we fantasize being as intellectual as him? Or is it simply because he is different?
I’m quite sure it’s all of these things that make Sherlock Holmes the maverick character he is. He may not see himself as a hero, or even as a high functioning sociopath, but this is exactly why we still love and continue to love Sherlock Holmes.