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    Sherlock Holmes Gay? Sequel Threatened

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    gmanfromheck

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    Edited By gmanfromheck

    No Caption Provided

    No Caption Provided
    Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes is still at the top of the box office charts.  People are loving Robert Downey Jr as Holmes and Jude Law as Watson, but there might not be a sequel if Holmes loves Watson.  Could Holmes be gay?
     
    According to Total Film, in an interview with David Lettermen, Robert Downey Jr wondered if Holmes was actually a "very butch homosexual."  This comment did not sit well with Andrea Plunket, holder of the U.S. copyright to Sherlock Holmes.

    “I hope this is just an example of Mr Downey's black sense of humour," she says. "It would be drastic, but I would withdraw permission for more films to be made if they feel that is a theme they wish to bring out in the future.

    "I am not hostile to homosexuals, but I am to anyone who is not true to the spirit of the books.”

    No Caption Provided
    Would it make a difference if Holmes were portrayed as a homosexual?  Is this untrue to the "spirit of the books"?  If it is, then is Wildstorm's current Victorian Undead comic, in which Holmes fights zombies, also untrue to his original spirit?
     
    Sherlock Holmes was never involved with anyone romantically in the original stories, and even the new movie eschewed straight-up romance.  Maybe Sherlock's sexual orientation will have to remain an unsolved mystery.
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    #1  Edited By Icon

    I think Ms. Plunket is overreacting. 

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    Overguardian

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    #2  Edited By Overguardian

    Because putting a new spin on a possibly stale property so it can be viewed from a new and interesting perspective is the LAST thing anybody wants.

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    Aronmorales

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    #3  Edited By Aronmorales

    I never even saw the movie, so I wouldn't know how bad it would be if he's gay.

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    Timm

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    #4  Edited By Timm

    i wonder if the joke was at least funny cause the rest of this story is not.
     
    edit:
    as a huge fan of the books, i thought the romance in the plot was slightly eluded to with Irene Adler in "A scandal in Bohemia", but not in a traditional kissy-kissy sense that we witnessed in the movie. Sherlock is enchanted with the woman's ability to not only elude him, but also utterly outsmart him. the antithesis to Watson's Mary. Also he was directly interested in Violet Hunter in one book (i cant remember the title or her full name). I think he just didnt like her anymore after the case was over. He has a short attention span. either way. the gay thing was a stupid comment and such a change might just ruin the stories regardless of the infrequencies of any Holmes romances.

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    danhimself

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    #5  Edited By danhimself

    I agree with Plunket here...if you're going to use characters that someone else has already established then you should keep them as true to the source material as possible...and as holder of the copyrights she should have every right to withdraw if she feels that they are mistreating the character

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    Aronmorales

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    #6  Edited By Aronmorales
    @danhimself said:
    " I agree with Plunket here...if you're going to use characters that someone else has already established then you should keep them as true to the source material as possible...and as holder of the copyrights she should have every right to withdraw if she feels that they are mistreating the character "
    Very agreeable.
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    sora_thekey

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    #7  Edited By sora_thekey
    @danhimself: Couldn't have said it better myself!
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    Kane

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    #8  Edited By Kane

    Every character you've heard of in Sherlock Holmes is out of copyright and anybody can legally do whatever they want with it.  Robert Downey Jr can make his own gay Sherlock movie and upload it to youtube if he wants to. 
     
     http://www.sherlockholmesonline.org/LicensingInfo/index.htm 
    According to the official website, the only stuff still in copyright is what was published after 1922. 
     In other words, you only need Ms. Plunket's permission to adapt these:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Case-Book_of_Sherlock_Holmes 
      
    So while it's probably illegal to make "the retired Colour-man" or "the Sussex vampire" gay, like it or not Mr. Holmes is fair game, at least legally.

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    Nova`Prime`

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    #9  Edited By Nova`Prime`

    I think it was just Downey trying to bring more attention to the movie. Anyone watching the movie could see that Watson and Holmes weren't in a relationship. I don't understand why you would want to make Sherlock Holems gay, you would be drastically cutting a huge audience out of buying a ticket, especially if it is over the top. I believe where people are getting it is because the way Downey portrayed the character as having an unhealthy dependence on Watson and Law's Watson couldn't leave Holmes because his life would be boring. Now does that make the two men gay, no it doesn't.
     
    So please someone tell me why making Sherlock Holmes gay is a good thing?

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    Mbecks14

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    #10  Edited By Mbecks14
    @Icon said:
    " I think Ms. Plunket is overreacting.  "
    i agree.
     
    I think there were some slight gay undertones. but they can easily be explained as bromantic. and understandable, his best friend who's like a brother to him is getting married and moving on with his life without him.  I've been in a similar situation, and its kinda depressing.
     
    I really liked the movie so i want a sequel.
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    Red L.A.M.P.

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    #11  Edited By Red L.A.M.P.

    In the 19th century it was not uncommon for unmarried men to live together in boarding houses, or to even share a bed. Abraham Lincoln shared a bed with his best buddy Joshua Speed, and yes some historians have claimed he too was homosexual.  So, I don't think what some people may see as homosexual undertones between Holmes and Watson was incongruous with behavior of the time period.  My guess is that Downey is aware of this 19th century male bonding and was just portraying it.  Im rambling.

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    TheOmegaMan

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    #12  Edited By TheOmegaMan
    @danhimself:
    I agree. Especially on a comic site like this one. People are always whining about staying true to the story when movies are made. Who in their right mind would want to see a gay Sherlock Holmes?!
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    Hamz

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    #13  Edited By Hamz

    I have to agree with her. To make a film and have the character portrayed as being openly homosexual seems a slight betrayal of the source material which always left the question of Sherlock's sexuality open to interpretation. We never quite knew was he gay or was he simply far to obsessed and involved in his work and choice of lifestyle to really have time or interest in pursuing romantic relationships with women. 
     
    There are plenty people in today's society that don't involve themselves in romantic or intimate situations with members of the same or opposite sex because they focus too much, one might say unhealthily, in their own work and pursuits.
     
    I say leave it open to interpretation, after all it is just one of those many mysteries surrounding the character himself.

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    Omega The Supreme Being

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    make him gay just to piss people off

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    crazed_h3ro

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    #15  Edited By crazed_h3ro

    This is not what people expect from this awesome movie.Why does he have to be gay just to make a sequal? i just don't get it. I'm not saying i don't like gay people,i just mean why Holmes have to be gay? thats all.

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    ArachKnight

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    #16  Edited By ArachKnight

    " I am not hostile to homosexuals, but I am to anyone who is not true to the spirit of the books" So.....If we need to be so true to the books - Shouldn't we include Sherlock's cocaine addiction?  I rememeber it mentions this in a couple of the original stories........
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    Erik

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    #17  Edited By Erik

    Well he was slapping that guy in the arena the entire time.... Until he was spit on of course.

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    Dark Cell

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    #18  Edited By Dark Cell

    Yes it would impact the films performance if it where gay themed .
     
     Plus it isnt appropriate if you concider how meany kids are going to see this .

       
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    Erik

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    #19  Edited By Erik

    It is just a bromance, no big deal. That and Holmes is obviously very resistant to social change, which is what he feared would happen if Watson was wed. 

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    Gregomasta

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    #20  Edited By Gregomasta

    It was a joke that she didn't get.  Tho right on for her making sure Holmes is on the straight and narrow.

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    MrCipher

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    #21  Edited By MrCipher

    @danhimself:
    I agree. I belive it is all about honoring the characters and preserving the tone and continuity of a character does exactly that.
    To drastically reinterpret a series or a character or a movie doesn't honor it's original intent and a sort of purtiy has been lost.  
    @G-Man 
    I'd have to make that a yes. If a character has no business in that setting then you are not honoring that character. In my opinion, I believe we're doing a great disservice to anyone who has come up with an original idea by placing their creation in a "what if" type scenario that goes far beyond the original scope of the character and it's setting. And I also believe that it not only muddles the character in question, it also steals a little of that creative spirit new readers and writers should have when imagining new ideas - they see it as perfectly acceptable to take something already fully formed and warp it into what they want instead of being inspired by the subject to bring something entirely new into the world. It says loads about our culture I think - It seems we're quickly becoming a culture of dilettantes and poseurs and less a culture of fertile imagination. I'm being harsh I guess, but I've seen very few truly new and original offerings in the realms of sci-fi and fantasty in the past 15 - 18 years and I am saddened by that. We need more writers like Herbert, Lieber, Moorcock and Bradbury from the 50s - 70s right now in the 21st century to inject a fresh new outlook into those genres. Sorry G-Man I write too much :)

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    Red L.A.M.P.

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    #22  Edited By Red L.A.M.P.
    @Dark Cell said:
    "  Plus it isnt appropriate if you concider how meany kids are going to see this .    "
    I don't understand that logic.  To me that is no different than saying it would be inappropriate to be dating a woman because kids might see.  
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    Kane

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    #23  Edited By Kane
    @Gregomasta: In the books, he doesn't have much interest in woman either.  And "narrow" is not a word I'd use for such an unorthodox personality!
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    PrinceIMC

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    #24  Edited By PrinceIMC

    I think its more a joke on the Holmes/Watson dynamic. They definitely have a bromance type dynamic.

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    gmanfromheck

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    #25  Edited By gmanfromheck
    @MrCipher: Was giving Spider-Man organic webs true to the original spirit of the character? (Sure he had them in the comics for a bit but that's been erased).  Is having Superman become a deadbeat dad true to the original spirit?  What about Harvey Dent dying in The Dark Knight?  All characters seem to get tweaked and don't stay true to their original "spirit."
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    Erik

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    #26  Edited By Erik
    @Kane said:
    " @Gregomasta: In the books, he doesn't have much interest in woman either.  And "narrow" is not a word I'd use for such an unorthodox personality! "
    Irene Alder and Violet Hunter as well as any other woman that brought him an interesting case. Gregory House seems to be very much inspired by Holmes, even to the point where he has only had one main love interest, one that never flourished and only being romantically interested in women so long as they are puzzles. 
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    deactivated-5ffc7df6492da

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    If he is gay then I just died a little inside and now hate that movie

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    NightFang3

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    #28  Edited By NightFang3

    Why do people get made at the dumbest things????

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    GreenGriffin

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    #29  Edited By GreenGriffin
    @reaper2923:
    why though, it doesn't matter to me if he is or isn't. 
     
    It sounds like in the books Holmes didn't think much for having a sex life.
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    deactivated-5ffc7df6492da

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    @GreenGriffin:  
    Are u as homophobic as I am?
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    Erik

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    #31  Edited By Erik
    @GreenGriffin said:
    " @reaper2923: why though, it doesn't matter to me if he is or isn't.  It sounds like in the books Holmes didn't think much for having a sex life. "
    There are plenty of characters in literature that think of sex as either gross or a waste of time. That does not mean homosexual. Most of the time, these characters were out of touch with the rest of society and unbalanced in some way. Why even Dexter thought sex was messy and undignified in the first season of the series. Lack of interest in the opposite sex is NOT homosexuality. A sexual interest in the same sex is. 
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    Kane

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    #32  Edited By Kane
    @erik: Lack of sex drive has nothing to do with homosexuality...but it has just as little to do with heterosexuality.
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    FoxxFireArt

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    #33  Edited By FoxxFireArt
    @Red L.A.M.P. said:
    " @Dark Cell said:
    "  Plus it isnt appropriate if you concider how meany kids are going to see this .    "
    I don't understand that logic.  To me that is no different than saying it would be inappropriate to be dating a woman because kids might see.   "

    You have to love the irony in talking about saying it would be inappropriate for "the children" see two people loving each other, but acceptable for those same kids to watch the death and violence.
     
    People got in a big huff after Rowling revealed after the last Harry potter book was released that Dumbledore was gay. I didn't see the big deal. It didn't change what he did or the person he was in the books.

    @G-Man:
    I thought that the Superman being  a deadbeat dad was too wildly off the mark. The organic webbing for Spidey was walking the edge. The Two Face events felt alright, because the movie really wasn't about Batman and Two Face.

    People just seem to have a hard time grasping that Holmes' personality was just an eccentric sort of person. For the movie he just didn't want Watson to leave. I just thought it was a funny little twist to events. Most likely Robert Downey Jr. is just trying to be funny and people are getting all uptight. I haven't seen this Letterman episode, but it's highly likely that he was joking. 
     
    I had people on my devArt page questioning my sexuality after I drew that beefcake filled 4koma for Babs.
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    No_Name_

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    #34  Edited By No_Name_
    @Kane said:
    " @erik: Lack of sex drive has nothing to do with homosexuality...but it has just as little to do with heterosexuality. "
    I <3 your icon. :D
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    Erik

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    #35  Edited By Erik
    @Kane said:
    " @erik: Lack of sex drive has nothing to do with homosexuality...but it has just as little to do with heterosexuality. "
    Agreed. But most of these characters in literature with said lack of interest still had a heterosexual sensibility towards people as a whole. I would assume a character with such disinterest to be asexual. In the case of Holmes however, it seems that his issue is that of trust and whether or not a woman is interesting enough for his highly complex mind. 
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    Kane

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    #36  Edited By Kane
    @erik: I'm not sure what it means exactly to be asexual but have a "heterosexual sensibility," especially since, as Red Lamp pointed out, the mores associated with being homosexual have changed over the years. 
     
    I'm not saying that Holmes is gay in the books.  But he also doesn't fight Aleister Crowley atop an exploding bridge in the books.  It's not like it's an outrage.
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    MrCipher

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    #37  Edited By MrCipher
    @G-Man:
    Umm (again simply my opinion) but I would have to say yes to Spider-Man, I think it was ok because he was bitten by a biological spider, no to Superman, that was totally against character, and no again to Dent/Two-Face (mostly because he really has been a recurring foil to Batman in the comics). I get the gist of what you're saying though; each character undergoes a change, evolution or tweak as they get placed in different scenarios. I guess I am talking about massive character chages though. Superman as a deadbeat dad is an excellent example of that; there are justified circumstances keeping him from being with his kid, but it was still very much against his honorable, boyscout-like character to write that into the story. It's not as terrible as turning him into a dark vigilante but it doesn't really fit his concept and it does take something from him as a whole. Were the writers attepting to throw some human-like flaws into his character to bring him down to mortal levels? Maybe, but it definitely didn't sit well with a lot of people who watched Superman Returns - at least everyone I've spoken with. 
    Please don't get me wrong, I don't mean to attack anyone. Sorry if I came off as offensive to you.
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    Erik

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    #38  Edited By Erik
    @Kane said:
    " @erik: I'm not sure what it means exactly to be asexual but have a "heterosexual sensibility," especially since, as Red Lamp pointed out, the mores associated with being homosexual have changed over the years.  I'm not saying that Holmes is gay in the books.  But he also doesn't fight Aleister Crowley atop an exploding bridge in the books.  It's not like it's an outrage. "
    I think you may have misunderstood my intention for posting. I actually have no problem with the possibility either way. I just am saying there was never any indication at all that Holmes is homosexual. There have been far more indications that he is heterosexual both in the books and in the new movie, subtle as they were. My intention for posting in the first place (my initial joke aside) was to make sure that people clearly understood that no sex life does not mean gay, as it seemed to be the basis of at least one argument. 
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    sellarsji

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    #39  Edited By sellarsji

    In her attempt to not sound homophobic...she sounded pretty homophobic. For someone who declares a degree of knowledge about Doyle's work, to deliver the threat of not allowing a sequel is stupid; especially when scholars have been questioning the relationship between Holmes and Watson about a much as the relationship between Achilles and Patroclus. Downey Jr. was making a joke. For her to overreact like this is a damn shame. Truth be told, I would love an "inside" joke about the two of them being lovers in the next sequel. Nothing serious, but just a nod to centuries of scholarly research.
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    Timm

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    #40  Edited By Timm
    @G-Man said:
    " @MrCipher: Was giving Spider-Man organic webs true to the original spirit of the character? (Sure he had them in the comics for a bit but that's been erased).  Is having Superman become a deadbeat dad true to the original spirit?  What about Harvey Dent dying in The Dark Knight?  All characters seem to get tweaked and don't stay true to their original "spirit." "
    none of those examples had to do with the character's personality or actions. Spiderman's organic webbing made more sense than a 16 year old kid doing what biochemists still couldn't figure out how to do.
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    MrCipher

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    #41  Edited By MrCipher
    @Timm:
    Good point about Spider-Man, Timm. I would say that the example about Superman definitely had to do with his actions, but I do get what you're trying to say. Whats your take on making huge changes to characters or dropping them in foreign settings that alter their original intent? Such as placing them against foes they would never encounter in their original setting, or changing their nature from light to dark (or vice versa)?
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    Marshal Victory

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    #42  Edited By Marshal Victory
    @TheOmegaMan said:

    "@danhimself: I agree. Especially on a comic site like this one. People are always whining about staying true to the story when movies are made. Who in their right mind would want to see a gay Sherlock Holmes?! "


    err it would be "Who in their LEFT mind would want to see a gay Sherlock Holmes ." 
     I belive that would answer that question imho.Tho some yall dont get the joke.Gay is the punchline.RDJ may have told a joke in bad tase. An some yall want to make the cannon that holmes come from changed.
    Why i ask? 
     
    But again more evidence of how hollywood treats it source material.Make him gay ,"short person" of color!hmm throw in transgender an you may have a oscar nomiatnion for RDJ just on that alone! 
     
    Err reguarding the historian an ol Abe Lincon,some are historians only in that they just research /read old newspapers an retread ol gosip.Much like what was done to Jefferson.A lie long enuff an loud enuff an all that jazz.Mostly political smearing then become truth today?/bleh
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    Caligula

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    #43  Edited By Caligula

    I don't see a problem with him being gay, why are people so touchy about the whole gay thing? 
     
    If someone is gay, why does anyone even think twice or care about? If someone has an on screen heterosexual romance no one cares, but as soon as the otherside (and yes I said the otherside, because i'm not gay) has one everyone trips out. 
     
    Plus the more gay dudes there are out there, the more Babes it leaves availible for me :D
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    greenenvy

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    #44  Edited By greenenvy

    Sherlock Holmes had a arch villian but instead it was fake cult guy called Lord Blackwood and at the end the real criminal turned out to be the actual villian from the books. So I am looking forward to the sequel more than the first one but the first one was good of course.
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    DMC

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    #45  Edited By DMC

    I'm with Plunket on this one

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    gmanfromheck

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    #46  Edited By gmanfromheck
    @Timm: I'm not saying the organic webbing doesn't make more sense, but that's not how he was created. Also I'd say Superman being a deadbeat dad (and trying to mess around with an engaged woman with a kid that he didn't know was his) is dealing with his personality and actions.
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    Kane

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    #47  Edited By Kane
    @Marshal Victory: Can you give an example of a movie adapting a classic novel and changing a character in the way you describe that then got an Oscar? 
     
    And if y'all hate revisionist takes on older characters so much, does that mean you can't read Watchmen?
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    Marshal Victory

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    #48  Edited By Marshal Victory
    @Kane said:

    " @Marshal Victory: Can you give an example of a movie adapting a classic novel and changing a character in the way you describe that then got an Oscar? 
     
    And if y'all hate revisionist takes on older characters so much, does that mean you can't read Watchmen? "


    Nope i was being silly (academy award maybe ).. kinda like oh i dont know gay being funny.Tho i fail to se the humor of the joke.But i do see the" lets see if we can piss off some one wing".  

    Err you mean watch the watchmen? Atm i have the ultamate editon on dvd on order.Already know they changed the ending.But from reports was slavishly acurate other than that. 

    Im in the camp of be true to source material as posible.Arts an crafts are at 10 dont be late! 
     
    Just makeing holmes to be gay "just cause" is lame.Ignoring the other readers of the clasic who point out he did have romantic intrest in a few woman ,is as bad as my spelling. an that is bad.Gee wonder why he didnt make the joke about Iron Man?Oh wait theirs all that comic book history that would beg to differ. 
     
    as of 1/3/2010 Sherlock Holmes 
    Total US Gross$138,715,437
    International Gross$88,300,000
    Worldwide Gross$227,015,437
       from http://www.the-numbers.com/movies/2009/SHOLM.php    
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    Red L.A.M.P.

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    #49  Edited By Red L.A.M.P.
    @Caligula said:
    " I don't see a problem with him being gay, why are people so touchy about the whole gay thing?  If someone is gay, why does anyone even think twice or care about? If someone has an on screen heterosexual romance no one cares, but as soon as the otherside (and yes I said the otherside, because i'm not gay) has one everyone trips out.  Plus the more gay dudes there are out there, the more Babes it leaves availible for me :D "
    here, here.  Logic escapes most people.
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    mrlogical

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    #50  Edited By mrlogical

    I too support the (apparently mildly controversial) idea that it is not at all offensive or wrong to consider the possibility of a version of a Sherlock Holmes film in which he is portrayed as a gay man.   Are people really that concerned with Holmes being portrayed "accurately"?  If so, there are already dozens of films, tv movies, tv series, radio plays, comic books, etc., etc., that closely adapt the original material.  Not to mention the fact that this isn't actually going to happen.  Downey was just randomly speculating about the character on Letterman, it's not like he showed up with a new screenplay he'd written.  Those who continue to freak out about this comment, please learn the lesson of Larry Craig, Ted Haggart, Mark Foley, and all the rest--if you're really worked up about the idea of gay people out there gaying it up, you probably have your own issues to work through and should leave everyone else alone. 
     
    Incidentally, this whole discussion calls to mind an article from Wired a few months back, explaining how Conan Doyle and the Sherlock Holmes stories spawned the first "fan fiction."  The Sherlock Holmes stories *invented* the idea of taking someone else's character and putting your own spin on it.  The article is worth a read:  http://www.wired.com/techbiz/people/magazine/17-05/pl_brown

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