On This Day 28th March

OTD 1994 The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes:The Red Circle season 4 episode 4 first aired.

The Red Circle (episode No. 39) is the 4th episode of season 6 of the Granada series: Sherlock Holmes (The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes), starring Jeremy Brett as Sherlock Holmes and Edward Hardwicke as Dr. Watson, aired on ITV on 28 march 1994. 51 min. The episode is an adaptation of Arthur Conan Doyle‘s short story : The Adventure of the Red Circle (1911). Arthur Conan Doyle‘s story is captivating but, once again, too thin to feed an episode. Adaptation first strengthened her by exploiting her comic potential. Mrs. Warren, whose original role was essentially functional, becomes a picturesque and comical character of a mistress woman governing and mothering her old husband. As for Mrs. Hudson, absent from the short story, she amuses us by cunning to soften her recalcitrant tenant. But it is above all the dramatic aspects of the story that adaptation has reinforced. His breathless prologue, enhanced by Patrick Gowers‘ music, hovers over the whole episode in the evil shadow of the Red Circle. Gennaro Lucca and Giordano, invisible protagonists of the short story, are clearly visible here. The first, sympathetic, interests us in his salvation. The second, bestial, brutal and cruel, makes us wish him well. But the most powerful tragic reinforcement is the addition of the character of Firmani, to whom we owe a striking sequence: while the singer repeats the sublime air of Isolde’s death, she suddenly sees with horror the unfortunate machinist hanging from the hangers, slashed. The script enriches the action, rare in the original, by sequences such as Giordano’s escape on the roofs and his fight with Leverton. But above all, Jeremy Brett, in relatively better condition, finds a remarkable play of expressiveness, variety and flexibility, his only mistake being perhaps the final image of Sherlock Holmes moved to tears. Very funny when, horrified at the prospect of an explosion of female hysteria, he uses his friend as a shield and laconically orders: “Manage, Watson”, the detective moves when silent, motionless and with a dark face, he meditates by the faint light of a candle on the death of the good Firmani. Brett embodies here an endearing Holmes, always ardent in hunting but less arrogant and more sensitive, as if age had softened his roughness.



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