Comic-Con

Elementary @ Comic-Con: Cast, Producers Say CBS' Sherlock Holmes Will Honor Predecessors

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Elementary Lucy Liu Jonny Lee MillerDie-hard Sherlock fans, fear not. The producers of CBS’ Elementary (starring Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu) have heard your qualms about their take on the famous detective. At the show’s Comic-Con panel held Thursday, the EPs and cast touched on the female question, the Will They/Won’t They worry and which familiar faces from famous cases viewers will see on the series. Read on for highlights from the discussion.

RELATED | Fall TV First Impression: CBS’ Elementary Finds a Holmes in New York City

MAN, SHE FEELS LIKE A WOMAN | “It made me laugh: What would be more trying for Sherlock Holmes than living with a Watson that [is] a woman?” EP Robert Doherty said of his decision to switch Watson’s gender. Although Sherlock’s sidekick is now played by Liu (Ally McBeal), “to a certain degree, it’s incidental that Watson is a woman” and “shouldn’t make a difference.” For her part, Liu credited Doherty with “thinking outside the box. The gender change creates a dynamic and chemistry [that you don't normally see]. I’m not saying that it’s romantic. It gives it a different shift – a bit of a tingle.”

FRIENDSHIP FIRST | Doherty assured the audience that the new male/female partnership was “not designed” to turn into a Will They/Won’t They romance. Instead, the series will “honor the relationship” between Sherlock and Watson, he promised, by focusing on what made the pairing special: their deep friendship. But first, they have to build them up to being friends.

A TALE OF TWO SHERLOCKS | What does Miller’s Frankenstein costar, Benedict Cumberbatch — a Sherlock himself in the PBS series — think of Miller’s take? “It was obviously a conversation that we had. He’s been very supportive,” said the actor. “We wanted to make sure [the two versions were] going to be very different.”

RELATED | Exclusive: CBS’ Elementary Sleuths Out Recurring Gig for Detroit 187‘s Jon Michael Hill

FAMILY TIES | While Doherty “might hold off” on introducing Sherlock’s brother Mycroft for a while, another familiar name might enter the mix. “It would be a great shame to do a Sherlock project and not have [Professor James] Moriarty appear at some time,” said the EP. “It’s somebody I’m really looking forward to writing.” Until then, the “mysterious, shadowy figure” of Holmes’ oft-mentioned, never-seen father “will cast a shadow over a lot of what we do,” he continued. “We’ll build and eventually make him part of the series”

MAKING THEIR CASE | Miller took to the Holmes novels for inspiration, but the writers will be pulling from their own imaginations for the cases of the week. “We love the original stories,” said Doherty. “At the same time, what we love is the relationship [and] the mythology. Primarily, we’re looking to craft new stories.”



Comments (34)

  • I’m really looking forward to this show, and I’m such a sucker for watching people who don’t get along initially become the best of friends. I’m not usually into procedurals (I currently watch none) but this has caught my attention for sure.

    Comment by Olivia – July 12, 2012 08:33 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Have you seen “Sherlock” – if not you should. It is on DVD and Netflix. It is more than just a “procedural” and from the earliest part of “Study In Pink” you would know it. It’s perfectly acted and there’s real wit and wonderful writing and beautifully filmed.
    Anyone can play the role Sherlock Holmes so no problem there. But then only a few are known for the role and Benedict is one of them. He is a good friend and thus will be for whatever Jonny Lee does.
    “Sherlock” does stick to the Doyle stories as an outline because the people who created it are such big Holmes fans and probably know more about the stories, etc. than anyone out there.
    Had seen a comment about “Sherlock” got the idea because of the movie with RDJ being out before it was seen on t.v. Moffat & Gadiss had been talking about a “modern day” Sherlock Holmes for YEARS before they ever got around to doing it.
    Also it was a copy of House, which is funny, since the creator of that said he made House – Sherlock Holmes as a Dr.

    Comment by B.B. – July 12, 2012 08:54 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • i will check it out on Netflix!

      Comment by Elyse – July 13, 2012 05:27 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • 2nd season 1st episode A Scandal in Belgravia is the best. Season 2 Ep3 ain’t bad either.

        Comment by saxyroro (@saxyroro) – July 14, 2012 09:08 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Im afraid Elementary might turn into a Monk sort of show if they do there own cases. I have mix feelings.

    Comment by Rachel – July 12, 2012 09:31 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Okay every single picture I’ve seen of Joan Watson has her in a cardigan…soooo super different from John’s jumpers!

    Comment by This – July 12, 2012 10:06 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • “Shouldn’t make a difference”? That’s why she’s a disgraced surgeon instead of a war hero with PTSD?

    Comment by Kati (@timotey) – July 13, 2012 12:04 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • The gender change creates a dynamic and chemistry [that you don't normally see]
    Have they not seen ‘Sherlock’?? There be chemistry there!!!!

    Comment by Carly – July 13, 2012 12:22 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Calm down. He is not saying there is no chemistry in Sherlock. He is saying it’s a different kind of chemistry.

      Comment by Aimee – July 13, 2012 04:21 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I’m looking forward to this show. I looks interesting and I think it has the potential to be very good.

    Comment by Sophie – July 13, 2012 04:25 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • While I’m excited for this show, (very excited even), the one thing that concerns me a little is: there are a whole bunch of shows out there whose main character could be described as kinda sherlocky. So I’m hoping that this series doesn’t just give us “yet another” of those.. derivitive (is that the right word to use) characters, but instead gives us loads of recognizable stuff from the original Sherlock stories – I’ve probably not explained this too well :(.

    Comment by Fido – July 13, 2012 04:37 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I sincerely hope you have watching the BBC’s “Sherlock”, then. If not, get thee to Netflix right now! It is awesome!

      Comment by Mindy – July 14, 2012 12:25 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Er, have *been* watching. Really need an “edit” function.

        Comment by Mindy – July 14, 2012 12:26 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This is the third time CBS has a produced a Sherlock Holmes project. There was a movie in 87 and one in 93 that showed Holmes waking up in the then-present. In both versions Watson was now a woman. That wasn’t too far out of the box when it comes to making Watspn a woman, heh.

    Comment by Michael Sacal – July 13, 2012 04:53 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I will test the waters with this show and see how much of it I can buy into. Going in I know that it won’t be able to measure up to Sherlock so it’s going to take me being able to accept that. Sherlock has the advantage of coming first, having one episode be the length of two, and with their being less the writing is top notch. There has yet to be a show that hasn’t suffered because twenty-two episodes mean things drag on far to long.

    Comment by Zak – July 13, 2012 05:21 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • this is one of the new shows i am most excited about for this fall. can’t wait!

    Comment by Elyse – July 13, 2012 05:28 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I hope we do eventually get Mycroft! And at least some references to canon. Otherwise it will just be a procedural with people who happen to be named Holmes and Watson. :(

    Comment by Michelle – July 13, 2012 05:51 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I wish I could edit my original post and put ^ in its place :D

      Comment by Fido – July 13, 2012 12:30 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I wish Watson isn’t Asian.

    Comment by heyromy (@heyromy) – July 13, 2012 06:02 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • why?

      Comment by Jane – July 13, 2012 08:02 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • You are one sick racist puppy. SEEK HELP.

      Comment by T. Troll – September 30, 2012 02:46 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • It NEVER works. It has never worked and it won’t work. They should do a sherlock Holmes and make it set in Victorian times like it’s supposed to be. This show should be Holme’s great grandson and Watson’s great grand daughter who both get thrown together somehow due to taking the same forensics class or something. Meanwhile the real sherlock Holmes series should star Hugh Laurie and Robert Sean Leonard as Holmes and Watson respectively. If they had to get away from Arthur Conan doyle stories at times Borrow from the Lord Darcy stories etc.

    Comment by Allan Scott Helgeson – July 13, 2012 06:27 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • You apparently haven’t seen Sherlock. Its on Netfix. It completely and totally works. Just watch it.

      Comment by Shannon – July 13, 2012 07:34 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • This point needs to be made even more strongly. If you think a modern Sherlock can’t work you MUST MUST MUST go to Netflix and watch the BBC’s “Sherlock”. It is amazing.

      Comment by Mindy – July 14, 2012 12:27 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • i really have mixed feelings about this. on one hand, i love lucy liu and everything she’s done. on the other, I’m a hardcore sherlock holmes fan who still refuse to see the robert downey jr movies and am always hesitant about new adaptations. we’ll see…

    Comment by jess – July 13, 2012 09:12 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Hmmm. It would work if they made watson a lesbian.
    No need to show anything, just make her a lesbian like Diana from USA network’s White Collar (You didn’t actually meet her partner until season 3, up until that point, they only mentioned it)

    Comment by liddad – July 13, 2012 11:04 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I love how there are so many “Sherlock” fans (and don’t get me wrong I love that show too) who are fearful and loathe the idea of a possible romance between Sherlock and Liu as Watson, when many of those same fans “ship” Watson/Sherlock from the BBC show romantically. Kind of like Dean and Castiel or Dean and Sam…it’s never going to happen. The hypocrisy just kind of makes me laugh. Hate on the possible shippers when many of them are shippers themselves. That all said, I look forward to this show. I love Jonny Lee Miller. He’s brilliant and I’m sure will do the character justice just as Cumberbatch does. There’s room for Sherlock in America as long as its entertaining.

    Comment by AT – July 13, 2012 11:52 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I’m a “Sherlock” fan. And I hate the idea of a romance between Sherlock and Liu’s Watson. However, I am not a shipper in any way, shape or form. I merely think it would violate the spirit of Sherlock Holmes for there to be a romance between the two main characters.

      Comment by Mindy – July 14, 2012 12:28 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Forget about a romantic relationship between the two. They won’t even have a buddy chemistry.

      Comment by heyromy (@heyromy) – July 14, 2012 02:42 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • We think that viewers should Boycott the show Elementary. It sounds terrible. It is an insult to the characters created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Hopefully the Yes on Prop 8 man can stop this series from even being shown on TV!

    Comment by Diana – July 17, 2012 04:39 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Is that the royal “WE?” And I hope the show’s a hit and runs for years just to piss off all of the haters.

      Comment by T. Troll – September 30, 2012 02:44 PM PDT  Reply To This Post

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