Sunday, February 20, 2011


Blogger Bret M. Herholz said...

Hi Greg!! I didn't know how else to get in touch with you because I wanted to leave you a message personally rather than on the Comics Are Good comment area but I just wanted to let you know how much I liked your review.

I cannot fault you in any of your criticisms because I thought what you said was very fair and very unbiased. You talked about what you liked and what you didn't like about the book with equal measure. And as far as I am concerned that's a great review.

And as a Sherlock Holmes fan myself, I can understand we all have our own perception of how the character should look, act and feel.

When I started working on the project 10 years ago, Jeremy Brett was my inspiration for Sherlock Holmes. However, I had no publisher at the time and I was planning on having it produced as a play with my artwork as the set design. That never happened and when I had the opportunity to have the book published by Alterna it was a dream come true for me.

And if this is my only contribution to the world of Sherlock Holmes, then I'm satisfied. However, if I'm given an opportunity then great ;-)

As far as the play is concerned, most of the changes I had made were because of length, dialogue and pace.

Even though (admittingly) my graphic novel is still slow and plodding, original play is much slower and much more plodding. Sherlock Holmes doesn't even appear until halfway through Act One and Moriarty doesn't actually appear until Act II.

There were also a huge amount of unnecessary dialogue and characters that didn't do much for the narrative that I had to omit.

With the confines of a stage play, where you don't have the luxury of a cutaway, you really need to cram a lot of information in one act.

With a graphic novel, I have that luxury to weave a lot of the Moriarty scenes from Act II into Act I.

My only additions to the book were the scenes with Mycroft, Mrs. Hudson and Inspector Lestrade. None of those characters sadly appear in the original play. And like I said, if this is my only Sherlock Holmes graphic novel, then I'm going to go all out ;-)

I also downplayed the romance between Holmes and Alice Faulkner which Gillette had written in the play. Instead of omitting it completely I just made it subtle enough to leave it up to the readers.

You had mentioned not being familiar with the Gillette play. Here's a link to it:

Reading it again, I missed a few good lines with Moriarty. Oh well.

There were reasons I chose the play rather than going with a tale from the canon or making up my own story (which can sometimes be great but can sometimes be a disaster) is 1.) the New England connection. William Gillette was born in Connecticut and I was born in Massachusetts. So, I felt this kinship from someone from NE with a love for the character 2.)Gillette was really the first person to make the character famous with his performances from 1899 till 1935. I feel like without those performances maybe Holmes wouldn't be as famous as he was. Who knows. And 3.)I feel it's a great anthology of some of the best Sherlock Holmes stories. Gillette took elements from Sign of Four, A Scandal in Bohemia, The Final Problem and mixed them all together. I hope if someone enjoys my book maybe it will make them want to read the original stories.

But with all that said, thank you again for the great review and keep up the great work!!

6:49 PM  

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