On My Holmes
Series, Inspired by an original
“The Holmes Parodies”
I was inspired to create this radio series, first from reading Conan Doyle's stories. I tried to fill the scripts with sly references to the original "Canon," as it s called. Even th Baker Street Irregulars and other Holmesian groups and scholars have enjoyed this about my series.
My second inspiration, as you might have guessed was ... Daws Butler, the great voice actor and my mentor. In 1976, Daws wrote a script called "Sherlock Holmes in Trouble," which portrayed Holmes as a booby and Watson as a selfish intellectual using Holmes. It led to several other scripts some if which were produced, including "This Here is Your Life, Sherlock Holmes," written and performed by Daws and his acting workshop.
The third inspiration came when I met a group of actors I met in the summer of 1982. I was acting in an Off-Broadway play, "Spider's Web" by Lucille Fletcher, author of the great radio play. "Sorry, Wrong Number." I was the mysterious Butler (I didn't do it.) and the cast was rounded out by Brit Vernon Morris, and an American cast of wonderful actors I grew to love over the months we performed for the Meat & Potatoes Company, with no air condition!
All the characters in "Spider's Web" had their Holmesian counterparts. I quickly decided to write a ten-part radio drama series, built around the first Daws Butler script, which eventually served as episode three in th plot arc of my series, starring this cast.
The Misadentures of Sherlock Holmes premiered in October 1983 on WBAI and ran through 1985. By the time, we were finished, we had ten great, inspired half-hours. They have since played on public radio stations across the United States, in Canada, England, Australia and New Zealand. Mostly, recently, they aired on XM Radio, since 2003.
Vernon Morris was an amazing Holmes, playing him more like Stan Laurel than Basil Rathbone. Henry J. Quinn, though not English, played his Watson as a pompous, lying egotist, the opposite of the Nigel Bruce booby interpretation of the character from the 1940s movies. Henry was a retired FBI agent, who took up acting late and was often seen in sketches on David Letterman. The late Jan Meredith of North Carolina was the nutty but jovial Mrs. Hudson, played as an Irish woman. English actress Gwendolyn Lewis played Holmes's secret love, Irene Adler, as a sexy tone-deaf tart who dreamed of being an opera singer.
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