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28 February 2012 @ 09:04 pm
Moar Elementary News  
Lucy Liu has been cast as Watson to Jonny Lee Miller's Holmes in Elementary which is to be a modernization of the Sherlock Holmes stories.


I honestly cannot tell if I'm reacting to the casting news or if I'm reacting to the fandom's reaction to the casting news. I think it's more the latter that's completely eclipsing how I feel about the former.

Frankly, it feels like the Sherlock Holmes canon is currently consisting of 99% slash fans who go crazy at the thought of a female Watson because it may mess up the Holmes/Watson slash. But you know what messes up the Holmes/Watson slash? The fact that there is no Holmes/Watson in the canon works. I've also found some of the comments people have posted about their dislike of the casting as rather misogynistic which leaves a very bad taste in my mouth. In my mind, Sherlock Holmes shouldn't be in a romantic relationship with a man or a woman. He's not built that way and I tend to roll my eyes at any adaptation that tries to do otherwise. I wasn't exactly pleased with the gender swap for Watson because I feared the show was then going to try for a romance between the two characters (which brings up all sorts of other things regarding homosexual couples in media).

But as long as the show keeps everyone in character, I don't know how strongly I feel about Watson being turned into a woman. I might ask why and hope the writers have a solid reason.

On a different note, I've more or less skipped all the comments that spoke to Lucy Liu not being just a woman but an Asian woman. Maybe I'm just being paranoid and all the comments were benign, but after the microaggressions-filled day I had, I don't trust myself not to engage in a shaming rant if someone posts something racist about Asian Americans.

 
 
 
X-parrotxparrot on February 29th, 2012 02:35 am (UTC)
I wasn't exactly pleased with the gender swap for Watson because I feared the show was then going to try for a romance between the two characters (which brings up all sorts of other things regarding homosexual couples in media).

Yeah, that was my reaction. Also that I'm a little iffy about Watson being the woman - Watson who is always shown to be the less intelligent one, in awe of his more brilliant companion. Though Holmes as super-clever super bitch could go equally awry...really, if they're going to gender-swap, I'd really rather they went all the way and swapped both of them. A female Holmes-Watson would be fascinating, but the gender dynamics of a mixed-sex match-up are very...risky? I think that they *could* be done well, but don't really trust TV to do so...

(actually an male!asexual!Holmes with a female!lesbian!Watson would be amazing, but I doubt that's where this is going?)
aelfgyfu_mead: Watson plotaelfgyfu_mead on February 29th, 2012 03:04 am (UTC)
Also that I'm a little iffy about Watson being the woman - Watson who is always shown to be the less intelligent one, in awe of his more brilliant companion
Yes! This!

Martin Freeman's Watson holds his own because he's a veteran and as stubborn as Sherlock and probably just as far from normal, if less obvious about it. But I read this piece on this Watson's background (DO NOT GO read it if you don't want spoilers), and I just thought, "Oh. No."

I didn't want to watch before I heard who was cast. Then I was a little tempted because Lucy Liu would be so different (though I haven't seen the actress in anything I can name, so I'm not talking about her personally). Then I thought some more about all the ways this could go wrong, and the temptation melted away as if it had never been.

Never saw the American Being Human. Saw the last ten minutes of the US Life on Mars, which ensured I will never see another moment of it. I just do not see the point of remaking shows this way.
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on March 1st, 2012 01:49 am (UTC)
O-kay.

That bio has more or less slammed in the final nail for that coffin.

I have a feeling I'll still watch it because I feel this need to give a chance to any show that features an Asian American actor. But I'm prepping myself to get angry and/or disappointed.
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on March 1st, 2012 01:47 am (UTC)
I think that they *could* be done well, but don't really trust TV to do so...

Yeah, my general massive distrust of TV and its writers has me thinking this is going to be a big disaster.
The Writer They Call Tay: SHERLOCK: Sherlock shockawanderingbard on February 29th, 2012 03:35 am (UTC)
The only thing I've ever seen Lucy Liu in is Kill Bill so I don't think I can make any judgements in regards to her suitability for the role. I don't know how I feel about this show in general. I feel it's unnecessary but that doesn't mean it can't also be good and I do like that they're at least mixing it up a little. But I'll wait and see.

Also word regarding Homes' sexuality. He does not swing either way. Read the opening paragraphs of Scandal in Bohemia, Watson will tell you. And he should know. I actually find it funny how much is made of the Homes/Adler relationship when Watson starts of the story by basically saying 'here is how much not in love with her Holmes is'.
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on March 1st, 2012 01:48 am (UTC)
I feel like this show is attempting to capitalize on the successes of Sherlock as well as the Guy Richie films. But I'm actually starting to get sick of seeing Sherlock Holmes.
The Writer They Call Tay: SHERLOCK: Watson's cute noseawanderingbard on March 1st, 2012 02:05 am (UTC)
I'm usually one for adaptations, I've seen all the adaptations of most of the Jane Austen oeuvre and Jane Eyre and The Scarlet Pimpernel and such, and I'm usually very excited when another version comes out, but I just son't see the point of this one. I give it props for trying to be a bit different, but I can't see it being as good as what's currently out there. I may be wrong.

I also don't think CBS needs another procedural, period.
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.: DTamers_BeautifulNightguardian_chaos on March 1st, 2012 03:15 am (UTC)
But I'm actually starting to get sick of seeing Sherlock Holmes.

Hmm. I have noticed that. Out of curiosity, are there any particular fandoms you are really into now? (aside from the delightful Being Human, of course! :)

Edited at 2012-03-01 03:16 am (UTC)
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on March 1st, 2012 03:30 am (UTC)
It's pretty much Being Human these days.

I've also gotten back into listening to Cabin Pressure but I don't think I'll ever end up contributing to that fandom.
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.: ST_FriendlyWordguardian_chaos on March 1st, 2012 04:14 am (UTC)
I have absolutely no idea what Cabin Pressure is. I keep hearing about it in various places, though. Maybe I should look into it.

And Being Human, I neeeeed to watch the next episode of soonish. It's good to have the Internet back for such things, now that I'm home again.
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on March 1st, 2012 04:15 am (UTC)
I predict you'll like Cabin Pressure. It's quaint British comedy at its best.

And Being Human, I neeeeed to watch the next episode of soonish.

Do you mean the one that's already aired or the one coming up?
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.: SPN_IDon'tUnderstandThatReferenceguardian_chaos on March 1st, 2012 04:21 am (UTC)
Do you recommend starting at the beginning, or at a certain episode? I do so like quaint British comedy. ^____^

The most recent one that aired. I just didn't bother activating Internet access in my hotel room, so I haven't seen it yet. Maybe soooooooon!!! Yes, let my repeated letters express my enthusiasm. *nods emphatically*

My e-mail keeps blinking in and out of functionality tonight, and I am annoyed. I keep getting kicked out of it. *is confounded*
formerly lifeinsomniac: HalDominosjoonscribble on March 1st, 2012 04:24 am (UTC)
I'd say start the beginning. You might as well get to know the characters from the get go. Although, I have to say that the last season was one of the best.

This channel has most of the episodes: http://www.youtube.com/user/CaptainMartinCrieff

And oh, yes, Benedict Cumberbatch is in it. Playing a decidedly non-Sherlocky character.

The most recent one that aired.

Let me tell you: IT WAS AWESOME OMG AMAZING!

Yes, let my all caps letters express my enthusiasm. :)
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.: BBT_NerdDance!guardian_chaos on February 29th, 2012 08:47 am (UTC)
Well, shame on anyone stupid enough to judge female!Watson on the basis of being Asian. If anything, this choice is making me think the show might have slightly more hope than I thought it would. Lucy Liu has more than enough toughness to stand on her own and not necessarily play the romantic shoe-in character. But then, I grant you, I don't know a ton about Lucy Liu, because I haven't paid a lot of attention to her career. So...grain of salt there.

In my mind, Sherlock Holmes shouldn't be in a romantic relationship with a man or a woman. He's not built that way and I tend to roll my eyes at any adaptation that tries to do otherwise.

So much agreement! Here's my headcanon: Sherlock Holmes and The Doctor from Doctor Who are both asexual characters who are frequently thought of as otherwise due to fanon interpretations of certain actions they may occasionally commit. I'm bothered by most fanfiction that goes beyond exploring alternate realities for these characters and into the realms of I'M RIGHT NO MATTER WHAT CANON SAYS. Just...goodness. So much hysteria.

Anyway, I want there to be more asexual characters out there in general, so it particularly bothers me when non-romantically-inclined characters are declared to be not so, and so forced into rather tacky, wrong-feeling relationships. That's most of my fear with the idea of female!Watson. But perhaps I could be pleasantly surprised, and female!Watson could be a brilliant idea with no romantic undertones whatsoever and the entire universe will align and the planets will create sweet, divine musical harmony in a happy little dance of utter perfection.

I dare to dream. XD
aelfgyfu_mead: Sherlock and Johnaelfgyfu_mead on March 1st, 2012 01:38 am (UTC)
Sherlock Holmes and The Doctor from Doctor Who are both asexual characters who are frequently thought of as otherwise due to fanon interpretations of certain actions they may occasionally commit.
Absofreakinglutely.
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.: Sherlock_Heart+Mindguardian_chaos on March 1st, 2012 03:17 am (UTC)
Absofreakinglutely.

Yesamundoutterly! We are of one mind. Hee! Also, nice icon. :D
aelfgyfu_mead: Sherlock and Johnaelfgyfu_mead on March 1st, 2012 03:40 am (UTC)
I got it from nrrrdy-grrrl; she shared them here.
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.: Sherlock_Polestarguardian_chaos on March 1st, 2012 04:12 am (UTC)
Hey! There are some really nice icons in that batch! Thank you for sharing. :)
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on March 1st, 2012 01:52 am (UTC)
Just...goodness. So much hysteria.

Hysteria! That's the word I was looking for!

But perhaps I could be pleasantly surprised, and female!Watson could be a brilliant idea with no romantic undertones whatsoever and the entire universe will align and the planets will create sweet, divine musical harmony in a happy little dance of utter perfection.

I also hear they found a real life unicorn today!
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.guardian_chaos on March 1st, 2012 04:10 am (UTC)
Hysteria! That's the word I was looking for!

Yay! I'm happy to have provided an answer. It seemed to fit.

I also hear they found a real life unicorn today!

Oh gosh, I read this comment via e-mail and it made me laugh really loudly at a completely inappropriate time. You may be comforted to know that my repeating of your comment stalled a growing fight in its tracks, and now all is calm. Hurray, unicorns. Oh geez. XD
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on March 1st, 2012 04:12 am (UTC)
Unicorns prevent violence and bring harmony!
Astoundingly fond of avocados and rainy weather.: TemptingFateguardian_chaos on March 1st, 2012 04:17 am (UTC)
Despite wielding a weapon of destruction on their forehead, yes! I suppose rainbows do a lot to negate feelings of hostility.
k is obviously for hurricanekatarzi on February 29th, 2012 10:47 am (UTC)
Yeah, I am...alarmed by this. But I had massive reservations about Sherlock as well, and I still look at RDJ!Holmes with complete and utter confusion (how was that a good idea?!). I really wish they'd cast a female Holmes as well. CBS is not really the network I would trust to pull of this dynamic without making it super-awkward...the only versions of Smart Male Consultant/Female Detective-Hanger-On I really like are The Mentalist (in which case Jane is basically too crazy for feelings to get in the way) and Castle (where feelings are in the way but instead you get Castle himself swanning after Beckett rather than the reverse, and Beckett is imo one of the strongest-written female characters on television, though I'll admit she tends towards a "one of the boys"-type Strong Female Character). The only reason those pairings work is that the "Watson" of those pairings has jurisdiction over her "Holmes" - she is technically in charge. Stripping her of that power by making her a disgraced ex-doctor with no military background possibly hired by Sherlock/his family as a "sober companion" (taken from one of the press releases - smacks of her being hired to do that, much like Sharona/Natalie on Monk) puts her in a very delicate situation...ostensibly she has control over whether or not he's sober but in reality I suspect she'll end up being used like a glorified maidservant, which I don't tolerate from writers of male!Watson and am not looking forward to seeing from this Watson, either.

...That was long. I think you can tell that I watch too many cop shows, lol (and definitely way too much of CBS's primetime programming rofl).
The Writer They Call Tay: BB: Oh No!awanderingbard on February 29th, 2012 03:00 pm (UTC)
Stripping her of that power by making her a disgraced ex-doctor with no military background possibly hired by Sherlock/his family as a "sober companion" (taken from one of the press releases...)

Ewww, really? So we're essentially taking away everything that makes Watson Watson? No military, no longer a doctor and pretty much with Holmes against her own will? One of Watson's best features is that he's friends with Holmes despite all the crap Holmes does. It just doesn't faze him. Having Watson hired is just...wrong.
k is obviously for hurricanekatarzi on February 29th, 2012 03:08 pm (UTC)
The hired bit is pure speculation on my part, but "sober companion" (voluntary or not) is in fact the wording used in one of the official announcements. So take from that what you will, but I'm not seeing anything good...
aelfgyfu_mead: Watson plotaelfgyfu_mead on March 1st, 2012 01:43 am (UTC)
possibly hired by Sherlock/his family as a "sober companion" (taken from one of the press releases)
So like the bit where Mycroft tries to bribe John, and John refuses, but exactly the opposite? Ugh.

Normally, I embrace non-traditional casting. I was glad Battlestar Galactica made Starbuck a woman!—but then everything else about that show disappointed me. The casting of Lucy Liu alone makes me want this show to succeed—really, because before that, I only wanted it to fail (for having the temerity to rip off My Show).

I don't want them to do non-traditional casting badly. There aren't a lot of good roles for Asian women as it is, and if they screw this up—

I want to think positive. I don't know Lucy Liu, but some of my friends think she's really good. If they screw it up, please let it be obvious it's the writers and not the audacity to cast someone unexpected. I like audacity in casting.

Best of all would be if they do it right, of course!
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on March 1st, 2012 01:54 am (UTC)
So like the bit where Mycroft tries to bribe John, and John refuses, but exactly the opposite? Ugh.

EXACTLY.

Best of all would be if they do it right, of course!

If they do, it'll restore my faith in so many things.
aelfgyfu_mead: Very angry indeedaelfgyfu_mead on March 1st, 2012 02:06 am (UTC)
These rumors are all really preliminary, of course; as far as I know, Lucy Liu was just cast. It's possible some execs will read comments such as we're making here (and which I suspect are appearing all over the web) and go, "Oh, wow—we'd better fix this before we go any farther!"

That has actually happened on some shows. I wish I could remember the details, but I know I've heard of cases where early leaked details were completely wrong or someone thought better of them. I know there are also plenty of shows where if one looks at the original press releases, they're very different from what actually happened. Greer on Stargate Universe was supposed to be nicknamed "Psycho" by other characters because he was, and when they then cast an African-American, a lot of us were really upset. They revised the character a bit. He was still angry, and maybe a little stereotyped in that way, but no one ever called him "Psycho," and he was not mentally ill. The actor was one of the best in the cast, and they'd clearly made some changes to his character since the first release. I heard later it was because they were originally going to cast the character as white, and when they didn't, someone realized the character notes needed revision!

So it's possible some of these notes predate the casting, and someone will think better.

If they still let you down, feel free to borrow Marvin the Martian here.