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Hypable

After months of controversial characters and passive aggressive feuds with the cast and crew of Sherlock, Elementary, the modern-day adaptation of Arthur Conan Doyle’s famous detective stories just finished airing – and we want your thoughts!

Over a year ago, CBS announced it was to produce a television series about Sherlock Holmes. Months later, Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu were cast as the super sleuth and his assistant Dr. Joan Watson respectively. While the gender bending of one of literature’s most beloved characters certainly got purists riled up, it was the news that the adaptation would be set in a modern day New York City that angered fans most – as this was seen as rip-off of the critically acclaimed Sherlock, itself set in a contemporary city. The makers of the show weren’t best pleased either, with Executive Producer Sue Vertue even threatening the broadcaster with legal action should too many similarities arise.

As the months have gone on, the backlash subdued and eventually mellowed to indifference and (in some cases) curiosity. Tonight, the speculation and trepidation finally came to an end – as we watched recovering drug addict Sherlock Holmes meet sober companion (and disgraced surgeon) Joan Watson and take her on an adventure of mystery and crime through the mean streets of New York City. Now the episode has finished airing, we want to hear your thoughts!

How did Elementary fare? Does it hold its own, or does it pale in comparison to Sherlock? Should they stop being held up to one another now that we’ve seen what Elementary can do? What do you think of Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu in the lead roles? Share all of your thoughts – the highs, the lows and the downright absurd in the comments below and join the debate!

What did you think of Elementary?

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Will you watch Elementary next week?

  • http://twitter.com/Dillon_Mays Dillon Mays

    I thought it was rather enjoyable. Different than Sherlock, but somewhat almost good.

  • theaterboy1

    I loved this pilot episode!! I can’t wait to see more!

  • Jacob

    I loved it! It’s not original but it’s a cool take on the beloved classic. I also liked the new take on Watson I think Lucy Liu plays the character well. I’ll be definitely tuning in for the next episode.

  • http://www.hypable.com/author/lauracristiano/ LauraBC

    I really really wanted to like this. I really did. I was even OK with the Watson as a woman thing. I thought it could be an interesting platonic relationship.

    On the positive, I thought that both Johnny Lee Miller and Aiden Quinn were interesting and layered characters both vocally and visually expressive. I could see those characters growing over time and enjoying them. I also really liked the villan tonight, he’s just as good as a totally different type of character on The Good Wife (he plays Alicia;s brother on and off) .

    Lucy Lui on the other hand in my opinion was very one note and not expressive. She was just flat and boring. No sense of assertion or spunk that you might expect in a doctor, even one going through a tough time. I’ll give it another try next week, but I really hope the chemistry ( and I don’t mean romantic) between Watson and Holmes improves. he’s just on a whole different level than she is.

    • Evan

      Do you think we could get a Sherlcok Holmes podcast going? I love WhoHype, and now that there is another Sherlcok show, it could make for a great podcast. Just a thought!

  • Stacie

    Voted for “good and I’ll tune in again.” Like someone else commented, yeah, it’s not original, but I still liked the slightly different take on things. I didn’t get bored like I thought I would. Right now, I think Johnny Lee Miller is doing just fine. I do like Lucy Liu, but I think she needs to grow on me a bit more. I think I’m most looking forward to how the show handles Irene and Moriarty.

  • Guest

    Personally, I think that if you take out Jonny Lee Miller and Lucy Liu as Sherlock and Watson it’s pretty much just another average US crime show. The deductions were nowhere near as amazing as the ones in BBC’s Sherlock and definitely not as detailed. I will keep watching, but only for the two leads. Their relationship is really interesting.

  • lostinthegray

    I think I would have liked this more if I hadn’t ever seen Sherlock. I’ll watch it again though.

  • TheHamburglar

    I actually found it quite entertaining. It will never be a fan favorite because of the BBC Sherlock elitists, but it can still be good. My friend made a good analogy: the Mets can win the World Series, but they still aren’t the Yankees. And yes, he said that before the end of the episode aired :P

  • bethanny23

    I’ve never seen the BBC show Sherlock so I cant make any comparisons.
    But I thought it was quite good. I do watch other crime shows and I liked the way this show was done. Its got a different style. I really enjoyed it, and I will definitely tune in next week :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/TreeKisser Jessica White

    I thought it was too much of a psych/CSI kind of thing going on….Didn’t feel like Sherlock Holmes…

  • Darcy

    The problem with the poll is that “pales in comparison to Sherlock” and “Great! I’m hooked already!” are two different options. Of course it pales to Sherlock, but so would anything similar. That does not mean it’s not a fantastic show, one which I will anxiously await each episode. You don’t have to be “Team Sherlock” or “Team Elementary” – this doesn’t need to be a competition. The way I see it is that Sherlock airs a measly 3 times a year – so why not view this as a supplementary treat? Plus – JLM shirtless – amiright?

  • rdh014

    I am just interested in how Miller plans to portray this drug-addict Holmes. Otherwise I was bored.

  • Ana

    The most disappointing thing about Elementary is not the fact that Watson is a woman, or that Holmes has anger problems and daddy issues and sexual needs. It isn’t that Sherlock is transplanted from his natural London habitat and placed in such a different city as New York. It’s not the fact that the pilot was only slightly interesting, or the fact that they basically say that Watson is an incompetent surgeon with no nerves of steel. It’s not the fact that the only thing that they share in common with Doyle’s stories is in name and method only. The most disappointing thing about Elementary is the fact that it just isn’t special. By now, everyone knows how Sherlock Holmes operates, so when those expectations are met, we sometimes look over some of the more glaring issues. When rated on its own merit as a television show, without drawing any comparisons to Doyle’s stories or any past iterations of Sherlock Holmes, the fact remains that it does not stand out against every other schlock crime drama out there. If any other name were to be used for these characters, it would be a carbon-copy clone of anything on any other network. It needs to be fresh and strong enough to really make us believe that these are Holmes and Watson in a modern setting. If the show cannot stand out against other crime dramas on its own network, then how is it expected to fair against shows like NCIS, Hawaii 5-0, or even CSI? The Sherlock Holmes method is so ingrained into our cultural psyche concerning how crimes should be solved, that the very thing that had once made him extraordinary and special, simply is average anymore. It’s cookie-cutter, and I see no longevity in the pilot, which are typically the weakest of a series episodes. People aren’t tuning in to see Sherlock Holmes solve boring everyday crimes. They’re tuning in to see Sherlock Holmes in Sherlock Holmes cases. I understand that there are a finite number of stories in Doyle’s canon, and that may limit the number of episodes beyond a certain number, but without playing to the hallmarks of Sherlock Holmes beyond slapping the characters in whatever wacky situation they can conjure up this week, there is little incentive to keep people tuning in or getting interested in the original material. The reason that BBC’s Sherlock works so well is because it does nearly everything right. People may complain about certain deus ex machina, things out of left field and poor writing of female characters, but the fact that it does dig deep, deep into the source material is its greatest strength. Fans of the very original work will notice things that the uninitiated will not. Lines and nods from the stories. Sherlock is written by fans for fans. Elementary seems to be fond of Doyle’s work, but seems to want to distance itself from it as much as possible, which can be a good thing in certain respects, and it is certainly a bold and audacious move (certainly one that the Sherlockian Society will disapprove of). When drawing the inevitable line between BBC’s Sherlock and CBS’s Elementary, the only real comparison that can be made is their portrayals of Sherlock Holmes. Cumberbatch’s Holmes relies on cold, distant calculation with a rapid-fire delivery aimed at impressing everyone in the room, where as Miller’s uses the same methods, of course, with the same expectation that everyone is keeping up with him that Cumberbatch does, but his plays to the more manic side of Holmes that we aren’t used to seeing in adaptations. He’s energetic and frightfully interested in everything, not just as an observer, but in piecing things together bit by bit on the scene. His portrayal is certainly the best thing that the show has to offer, and it is a sad thing that everything else around him is so bland. Even Lucy Liu’s Watson, who plays the part very well, and is written to exactly counter and complement Holmes’ shortcomings and faults and be exactly what he needs, is disappointing if only in the fact that they’ve taken one of the most characteristic and remarkable things about Dr. John Watson and erased it entirely; military service and the injury that forced his retirement from service. Anyone who has watched any medical drama at all (specifically House MD, another modern Sherlock Holmes remix), they will know that everyone, especially surgeons, will lose patients, and that malpractice insurance is a necessity for doctors specifically for that reason. So unless the doctor is extremely incompetent, shows up to work drunk, or gets into a lot of trouble, there is no reason for he or she to be fired merely on the fact that a patient died in their care. The lack of military service in her background is a massive disappointment, in that being in the unique position of being a woman in the military, I feel it has robbed her of some very interesting background and past development that would help her fill in the gaps in her character. I understand that they want to be different from the established canon, but it is difficult, however, to imagine her taking crack shots out of the side of a speedboat when her established background has painted her as an empathetic, gentle, yet sometimes woman, who is a failure of a surgeon. My deepest hope for her character is that there is much more, especially in the bureaucracy of hospital politics that led to her firing than the scenario which I have described. It was, however, extremely refreshing to see her excited over her favorite sports team. My final conclusion is that if someone had decided to watch Elementary with no knowledge of any incarnation of Sherlock Holmes, be it in print, film, television, radio, or play, that there would be little to keep them coming back when they could get very much the same from any other crime drama, though with noticeably less cool visuals. The characters are interesting enough, even if they don’t exactly feel perfectly like Holmes and Watson, their chemistry is incredible and shows a lot of promise between them, even if the cases that the show may tackle are not. Fans of the BBC series and the stories are likely to be disappointed in the stories, and to make 1:1 comparisons with Sherlock and Elementary are truly unfair to Elementary, as the two are entirely different animals. The show does show some promise, and watching further episodes is definitely required, since a definite opinion cannot be made on pilot alone. Such a thing would be foolish. I would not count it out just yet, but my hopes for longevity are not high for this show.

    • louis

      Holy smokes! A Book!,
      In the end, and after the fulness of time, i find the acting and stories compelling and engaging. The interaction of the characters, the clearly odd-ball Holmes, The City Police, the sober, over focused and shell shocked Watson.
      It fulfilled my humble criteria and having Watson portrayed by a conservative, stuffy Asian, is a nice touch.

  • gcw07

    It wasn’t great but it wasn’t bad either. I enjoyed it for the most part. It was on par with the first episode of Sherlock. That show got a lot better over time, hopefully this one will too.

  • Amy F.

    I’m missing the “I’m insulted in my fandom and my intelligence as well as my EVERYTHING by this horrible butchering of a brilliant collection of stories and I’m sure that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is currently working on making his way back from the afterlife to haunt the shit out of the people who committed this crime against literature and all of humanity.” option in this poll.

    • d3erudite

      I know exactly how you feel. This show is a disgrace . Arthur Conan Doyle fans unite!

    • Amy S

      I absolutely agree! I hated it, this really shouldn’t exist.

      • d3erudite

        I agree. Just out of curiosity , do you like Sherlock? ( The BBC show not the character )

    • TheHamburglar

      I’m missing the part where you were funny.

      • Amy F.

        Yeah, because obviously that’s what I was trying to accomplish… xD

      • d3erudite

        What makes you think we’re joking?

        • TheHamburglar

          I responded to one person, there should be no “we”
          But I do find it comical how butthurt people are getting over a show that they don’t have to watch. I’m POSITIVE commenting on Hypable about how much you hate the show will lead it to be canceled. Cause after all, you opinion is the only one that truthfully matters!

          • d3erudite

            ( Raises middle finger)

    • Evan

      I agree in some ways, but I like the show separtly from Sherlock. There is no way that this show is anywhere near as good as Sherlcok (as we can all agree), but it was worth watching as a show. Not as much as a Sherlock Holmes comparison.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jonathan.baldwin.169 Jonathan Baldwin

      Sherlock is keeping bees at the end of the episode, it means it’s after the books. Yes i understand it’s an adaptation, but it could also be a sequel to all we know, and Jane can simply be a relative of John. I know it’s a stretch and that plot could be really cheesy, but it would make everything a whole lot better. Jonny Lee Miller does a great job, and this show rocks already. Your too stuck on the books to see the fun of what Sherlock is. A crime solver, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle loved crime solving and I think he would be honored at the character’s clever crime solving and that’s what we should focus on. The Joy of Sherlock’s incredible skills of Observation and Deduction.

  • http://www.facebook.com/alex.boden1 Alex Boden

    The issue is that Sherlock is a top tier show I think a good equivalent to a US show is Breaking Bad and coming from someone England I would hate it if England try and re make Breaking Bad. So I don’t like the fact that trying to copy such a great show. Although I did thought the episode was alright , I thought Miller was ok and intreating choice for sherlock but Liu isn’t very good. I check out the rest of the season to see what turns out like to have a final impression. But first impression is that meh borderlining on good.

  • d3erudite

    It was awful . You don’t make these ridiculous changes to Sherlock Holmes . At least Sherlock knows its boundarys. Hope this series is canceled.

    • Museaholic

      When people say “Hope this series is canceled” I find this an incredibly selfish statement. Obviously some people like this show, so just don’t watch if you don’t like it. It’s just horrible to wish something like that. Be a little empathetic and less self-centered please.

  • http://twitter.com/potterfan92 Raina

    I actually liked it. Yes Sherlock is better but for what Elementary did I quite liked what they accomplished. I just wish the plot was more complicated. As someone said in the comments if you take Sherlock and Watson out of the show it would be another American TV crime show. I do like Jonny and Lucy. They did a great job. I have to say that this show did have the strongest pilot than other shows this season. Hopefully it gets better.

  • upper_westsider

    So far, so good. I didn’t expect to, but I liked it. I was wary because I thought NBC’s incarnation of “Prime Suspect” really missed the mark. But I liked this first episode and I’ll be back for more.

  • pygmypuff22

    I really don’t think we should be comparing Elementary and Sherlock but rather both of them yo ACD’s original stories. That said I really liked the premiere and I think the show will get even better as time goes on. :)

  • Jason

    I saw it yesterday- and as a Sherlock fan, I’m pleased. We only get two episode every two years, and I think that this will work as a good way to satiate fans in-between seasons.

  • Alison

    Ugh. Horrible. Watching it now but I don’t know if I can get through it.

    • d3erudite

      Welcome to the club. This show sucks and is a disgrace . Its nothing compared to Arthur Conan Doyle’s masterpieces .

  • rosieb328

    It was alright and I will probably watch the next episode but it is nowhere as good as Sherlock. I wanted it to be almost close, but.. it wasn’t up to snuff. But I had fun.

  • http://twitter.com/Hmarjus2 Martrel A. Howard

    I loved the premiere for the simple fact that Holmes and Watson have genuine chemistry , there is a budding love story there. Yes this is CSI new York meets Rizzoli & Isles but who care the writing was well done. The people that are up and arms about BBC’s Sherlock need to realize they are in no way connect other than having the lore of Sherlock Holmes. American television doesn’t film and express things the same way everywhere else in the world does. Its a good show. Love it for what it is.

  • Denise

    The show just plain stunk!

  • http://www.facebook.com/jonathan.baldwin.169 Jonathan Baldwin

    I would have to agree to Darcy, that in having Elementary, we don’t have to wait a year to experience the fantastic character of Sherlock Holmes. I also have a theory that may be a bit cheesy, but it might please the purist in a way. I think Johnny Lee Miller does a fantastic job as sherlock, and seeing the second episode, I’m hooked, and before I even watched the second episode, I was wondering what could they possibly do to help the spectators look past the character change of Watson. The only way they can gain the purists attention is to make Jane Watson a relative of John Watson. Sherlock himself tends to gain some curiosity about his past in london on the second episode, and Jane finds out that Sherlock has been in New York a little longer than stated which would give him time to find a relative of Watson for some reason. I have no idea what that reason would be, but I think it would be a great twist on things, and possibly gain the interest of a greater crowd. Anyways I’m hooked, and I already forgive the fact that their in NY, John is “possibly” Jane, and it’s not as flashy as Sherlock. If you read a lot of his books, a lot of the adventures of Sherlock were solved just sitting back on his coach. Sherlock truly isn’t as flashy, “special” or heroic as the bbc “Sherlock” put’s on, and I believe they have shown this in Elementary. I am truly in love with the character, “no homo” , and I believe the cases and clues are what bring out the originality of Sherlock Holmes. I JUST LIKE SHERLOCK HOLMES. Good job Elementary, keep it up.

  • charlton

    I guess my biggest thing is Johnnie Lee Miller is actually British.

  • BritishViewer

    As an offering of drama. Its OK. Ive seen worse. But Sherlock Holmes should be done by the British. The characterisation is hopeless, the only thing in common with Doyles masterpiece being the names. Its not completely terrible its just nothing special. I’m not horrified, I’m not even that dissapointed as i’ve always said that british characters should be left to the british, but I cant see myself watching past the pilot.

  • emmybm15

    To be honest I am a huge Sherlock fan and yes I was dead against it when I first herd about it BUT I did see it and ehhh I did not quite think it felt very Sherlock Holmes ehhh is it bad that I say that? I probably would have liked it if it was Fem!Sherlock like Lucy and JLM had switched? It didn’t feel very special either…

  • Jill

    I really like Elementary, think it’s well written and Johnny Lee Miller is great but I don’t feel there’s enough chemistry between him and Lucy Liu. I really like the chemistry on shows like the Mentalist, Castle, Lois and Clark and while it doesn’t have to be romantic such as on “The Mentalist”, I feel like there should be more chemistry between them.

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