Elementary Mentoring from Sherlock

I started reading Arthur Conan Doyle’s books as a child – back then I fell in love with the amazing detective and his particular methods to fight injustice. Several years ago I rediscovered the main character and I confess I was surprised at the things I didn’t notice in my earlier readings.

Of course that my passion still has everything to do with the main character, the one and only Holmes. I don’t only admire Sherlock’s sharp judgement and his superior intellect. They are lovable, indeed, but would be so damn perfect if it weren’t for his other side. I love that he is so human, not your typical superhero. I am rather bored and annoyed by this trend in films and books – you know, each superhero possessing a dark secret or a flaw which paradoxically makes him/her more sensually intriguing, a side which he/she romantically hides but not well enough for people around not to notice and fall in love with.

Well, I don’t like modern superheros that much. I like Him. Of course, it has something to do with the fact that I find in him a correspondent of several of my traits: I feel Sherlock’s constant need for novelty, his compulsive, addictive nature and his incapacity to deal with boredom in a mature way, the tantrums, the selfishness, the arrogance, the weakness and awkwardness; I wish I had his intellect, his wittiness and his soft sense of humor.


I like Arthur Conan Doyle’s masterful sketch of Sherlock: showing his real, undisguised flaws, not  romantically half covered and subsequently annoyingly exploited. I admire that Sherlock showed his inoffensive selfishness doubled by his desire for care and company, and the way he expressed this desire unspoiled by manners or by moral norms, just being himself . I did have an argument with my friend Claude once about such a situation and I thought about Sherlock and I suddenly understood that I would love my small group of friends to feel free and not judged around me, so that if needed, they could send me a text message saying “Come at once if convenient. If inconvenient, come all the same.” Of course, I would also reserve my right to actually not go :).

Most of all, I like that Sherlock didn’t really comply with the rules of the world he lived in, that he dared to defy the pressure and generally established norms of society. He dared to be not different, but himself, not taken in by a global reference system. It takes some courage to show your true face – and he did that fully and openly.  It’s this lesson that I appreciate the most, this state that I yearn for – just being myself and not being afraid of the world’s reaction at it, not thinking about what both my family & friends and the passers-by of my life would think at the parade of my curious hedonist/hermit nature.

If you ask me who portrays the best Sherlock on screen… oh, don’t get me started! As a true admirer, I watched as many films as I could get my hands on, both documentaries and TV series; and although I enjoy Benedict Cumberbatch’s modern version of Sherlock, I think the real deal will always be Jeremy Brett, whereas the charming Robert Downey Jr. seemed to me as a feeble attempt to portray the detective in a wonderful Jules Verne steam-punk scenery.

Besides the cute leading actor, BBC’s modern version of Sherlock’s adventures also has the best soundtrack: I believe that Camille Saint-Saëns’ s Danse Macabre is indeed the best choice for reading a Sherlock Holmes book or for watching the master at work on screen . So let the violins (no pun intended, I assure you) play. Here’s to Sherlock and to being true to ourselves!



Image source: here