Jason OMahony - Irish political blogger, Irish politics, EU politics

Odds and Ends.

Posted by Jason O on Mar 30, 2011 in Just stuff

Someone told me recently that an anti-war group staged a demonstration against both NATO AND Colonel Gadaffi. I never quite understand the logic of the position they put forward on this. They support the uprising, yet oppose air support for the rebels (let’s call a spade a spade), so how do they propose the rebels defeat Gadaffi’s superior military machine? They seem to believe that through some type of political osmosis, Gadaffi’s military will turn on him. Yet surely that is far more likely if Gaddaffi’s actions have left the Libyan military getting the tar kicked out of them by NATO? This is a messy business, in that we don’t really know who the rebels are, and if Libya were to go in an Iranian direction post-Gaddaffi NATO might have to bomb them again, but the reality is that we’d be one dictator down, which is always a good day’s work. The far-left always seem to want an absolutely pure result, which humanity has never, ever delivered. But then, neither has the far left. Name one model nation run by far left principles. Oh, go on.

There’s a guy I know who has a friend on Facebook who is quite pretty. So pretty, in fact, that in nearly every photo she is in she turns her head to face the camera from an angle, showing what I assume she believes is her “good” side. The funny thing is, everytime I see a picture of her now I start giggling at the idea that she walks around like that, talking to people like she has a permanent crick in her neck. Then it occurred to me: maybe she does! I made discreet inquiries, because I realised that I could have been disgracefully mocking someone with a terrible affliction. Turns out she doesn’t. She just walks around at an angle.


Great TV: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

Posted by Jason O on Mar 30, 2011 in Movies/TV/DVDs

Jeremy Brett: The Holmesian's Holmes.

Jeremy Brett: The Holmesian's Holmes.

Browsing through my obscene DVD collection (I mean in size, not in content) I was reminded of the fact recently that if I never bought another DVD again I would not be too troubled. I was also reminded that I have some treasures that I have not watched in ages that are such a treat. Granada Television’s “The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” is one such gem. It’s available on DVD, and stars the late Jeremy Brett as Holmes and David Burke and Edward Hardwicke respectively as Watson.

Two words: Pure Quality. The period details are great, including an entire life size Baker Street set. It’s true to the original Conan Doyle stories, but the real meat is in the performances of Brett and his two co-stars. Brett, who suffered terrible psychological illnesses, is just stunning as Holmes, creating an eccentric, captivating character around the framework created by Conan Doyle. Every scene with him leaves you unable to take your eyes off him, with every twitch and flamboyant hand gesture and flinging of himself onto the floor of grand country houses looking for clues adding to the character’s depth. Both Burke and Hardwicke could easily have been blown off the screen given Brett’s performance, but both instead create a calming, grounding and very human foil to Brett, leaving the viewer with a very clear understanding that Holmes could not be Holmes without Watson, who although is not his intellectual equal, brings to the table human skills that Holmes does not possess, in particular Watson’s skills with women, a fearless willingness to get physical if necessary, and simple human decency.

The series was made over a ten year period beginning in 1984. 

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