The Faces of Sherlock Holmes

This deduction was made by DARKNITE!

Few characters have been as popular over one hundred years as the Victorian Era sleuth Sherlock Holmes. The brilliant creation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle has become a pop icon the world over, with a deer stalker hat and his trusted sidekick Dr. Watson he stalks the fog shrouded streets of London searching for the clues that most others would overlook. Naturally a protagonist this incredible is bound to be adapted to other medium, though he uses his brains over brute strength he has become the most unlikely of action heroes. Over the years many have played the role, and here they are.

Basil Rathbone: The famed British actor of films such as; Son of Frankenstein and Captain Blood, took on the role of Holmes for 14 films and 200 audio dramas during the period of World War II. With Nigel Bruce as a clumsy and buffoonish Watson, Rathbone set the standard for the how the detective has been played since.

Peter Cushing: When Hammer Studios took over the mantle of the studio making the best gothic horror flicks, it was inevitable that the top hero of gothic literature would make his leap to their studio. They made the solid choice of having one of their top actors, the legendary, Peter Cushing to take on the role. In The Hound of the Baskervilles, Cushing matched wits with his constant onscreen nemesis and real life good friend Christopher Lee. Following the success of the film he reprised the role numerous times on television, including the TV movie, The Masks of Death.

Jeremy Brett: While Rathbone set the standard for playing Holmes, but one talented actor of all those who played the role truly owned it, Jeremy Brett. In the long running 1980’s series The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes Brett along with David Burke and later Edward Hardwicke as Watson performed every one of Doyle’s story with an intensity and emotional depth that no other actor to play the role has matched. His own struggles with being bi-polar added extra depth to Holmes’ struggle with his own personal demons.

Robert Downey Jr: In an age where Hollywood is obsessed with remaking and rebooting every franchise imaginable it was inevitable that everyone’s favorite detective was due. To fill the role they picked bankable American actor, Robert Downey Jr. Lacking the ability to pull off the intellectual side of Holmes, Downey portrayed the detective in a more low brow and physical way than has been seen before.

Benedict Cumberbatch: With the passing of time came the need to create a Sherlock Holmes for a new generation, under the guidance of acclaimed writer, Steven Moffat, Cumberbatch is without a doubt, the definitive Holmes for the 21st century. Perfectly partnered with Martin Freeman as Dr. Watson; Cumberbatch trades in a magnifying glass and narcotics for a Smartphone and nicotine patches.  Contrasting with others before him Cumberbatch plays the role of Holmes as a man detached from society who’s brilliance allows him to solve impossible crimes in a way that makes him plenty of enemies.