Case File: Hammer Horror's Hound of the Baskervilles
However Improbable
by However Improbable
7M ago
The Hound of the Baskervilles is the closest that Arthur Conan Doyle comes to writing a real supernatural horror story (in his Holmes tales anyway) and one adaptation stands above the rest by truly committing to that idea. Happy Halloween and welcome to our case file on Hammer Film’s Hound of the Baskervilles! Released in 1959 by Hammer Film Ltd., this horror-ified take on Doyle's classic story wasn't a commercial success at the time, but has gained cult status for its star-studded cast, moody scenic design, and over-the-top movie posters (A SIGHT TO STUN THE NERVES!) We talk about our love fo ..read more
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The Valley of Fear: Chapters 1 & 2
However Improbable
by However Improbable
8M ago
The Valley of Fear, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle - Part 1: The Tragedy of Birlstone Chapter 1: The Warning Chapter 2: Sherlock Holmes Discourses  "The greatest schemer of all time, the organizer of every deviltry, the controlling brain of the underworld, a brain which might have made or marred the destiny of nations—that's the man!" This episode is narrated by Sarah Kolb. Sarah is a Colorado-based writer, podcaster, and arts marketer, with a passion for unconventional storytelling, detective stories, and rude women. Needless to say, she's the co-host and co-creator of this podcast. Find her ..read more
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Case File: Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes
However Improbable
by However Improbable
8M ago
To wrap up our one-year anniversary month, we indulged in gin and “Sherlock Holmes,” (2009) dir. Guy Ritchie. It was Marisa’s first introduction to the Holmes and Watson, and reviewers have described it as either “disturbingly bad” or a “fresh reinvention” of an old classic. This steampunk roller coaster ride of a film raises some interesting questions about how we value adaptations of stories we understand to be enshrined in a literary canon. We talk about its versions of these iconic characters, why it’s mean to bisexuals, what it gets right and wrong about occultism in the Victorian era, an ..read more
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One Year Anniversary!
However Improbable
by However Improbable
8M ago
It’s hard to believe, but it’s been an entire year since we aired the first chapters of A Study in Scarlet. Since then, we’ve followed Holmes and Watson on adventures ranging from slapstick to sinister, and we couldn’t have done it without you. Thank you so much for listening this year! We took a moment to reflect back on our first experiences with Holmes - and think about why this character and the stories have such a hold on our imaginations. Plus, we share listener and narrator stories about the first Holmes adaptations they remember - from Barbie video games and The Great Mouse Detective t ..read more
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All that is bizarre: Red-Headed League discussion
However Improbable
by However Improbable
8M ago
Underpaid employees, bank heists, and Spanish violin virtuosos. “The Red-Headed League” is the second story in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, part heist, part comedy, and all-around good time. We discuss perhaps the canon's best and least represented villain, Holmes's mental health, and the inherent sexual tension between a gentleman thief and the police detective who wants to arrest him.  Content warning: Watson carries a gun in this episode, and there are some tense moments of drama and classism. Find recommended reading, more stories, info about the show and more on our website: ht ..read more
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Exceptional violence: The Five Orange Pips discussion
However Improbable
by However Improbable
8M ago
From The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, "The Five Orange Pips" connects vanishing ships, the American Civil War, and what happens when Holmes’s considerable powers are not enough to save the day. Sarah and Marisa discuss Doyle’s depiction of the KKK and his contentious relationship with racism, the kinds of adaptations we’re excited to see in the future, the hand of God, and why Lovecraft sucks. Content warning: This episode contains death by drowning, murder and threats of murder, discussions of suicide, and a backstory about American slavery and the KKK. A transcript of this episode is avail ..read more
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Most absolute fool in Europe: Twisted Lip discussion
However Improbable
by However Improbable
8M ago
In this short story with a title straight out of a Western, Holmes hosts a sleepover and gives a man a bath. "The Man with the Twisted Lip" is perplexing not only for where it's ended up in our chronology, but for its red herring plot twist full of questionable decisions. What does the opium den represent in the Victorian imagination, and is it as racist as it sounds? How does this story explore the malleability of British social class and identity? Should the New Yorker unionize? And why on earth does everyone think Watson's middle name is HAMISH? All these answers and more in today's episode ..read more
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Book Club Case File: My Dearest Holmes
However Improbable
by However Improbable
8M ago
Book Club Case File: My Dearest Holmes, by Rohase Piercy First published in 1988 by the Gay Men’s Press, My Dearest Holmes by Rohase Piercy is a very special pastiche that boasts something very rare—it’s one of the very few and certainly among the earliest published gay pastiches about the great detective and his good doctor. It celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2018. We're thrilled to have Rohase on the podcast today in our very first interview! We discuss her her depiction of a Holmes and Watson romance, it's reception, how queer readings have and haven't changed since the 1980s, and lots m ..read more
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Diplomacy was needed: Reigate Squire discussion
However Improbable
by However Improbable
8M ago
Holmes and Watson go on a much-deserved vacation—and naturally, crime follows them. “The Adventure of the Reigate Squire” introduces us to one of Watson’s old friends, and an unusual case of burglary, amateur theatrics, and how minutiae can solve murder. We discuss Holmes's health and Watson's desire to do something about it, as well as handwriting, holiday tropes, Essie Davis, and the meta experience of interactive detective fiction. Content warning: This episode contains some falsehoods Holmes intentionally directs at Watson. We have a conversation about Holmes's mental health. A transcript ..read more
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Old world mystery: The Hound of the Baskervilles discussion
However Improbable
by However Improbable
8M ago
A family curse. A desolate moor. An unexplained death. A monstrous dog. Arguably one of the most famous short stories of all time, The Hound of the Baskervilles is the third of four novellas about the great detective, and the first story Doyle wrote after Holmes’s (spoilers!) apparent demise in “The Final Problem.” It all comes together into a spine-tingling mystery that Watson's writing turns into a horror tale.  We discuss Watson's turn as a Gothic heroine, the genre-hopping joy of Hound, Dracula Daily, and how Sir Henry should have ended up with Beryl at the end of this one, actually ..read more
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