Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Sherlock Experience

Before I get into the post, let me say… I'm grateful my aunt is in my life. 60 years of bringing love, light, support, culture, and literature to our family. What a blessing. This post is in honor of her, on her birthday.

So, January was a big month for my parents and I. But, if I must be honest, it all started in December…

Pre-Christmas: I found my dad wrapping gifts for his older sister… what were they? Seasons 1 and 2 of a certain little show most of you know and love, called Sherlock. Shocked and more than a little jealous, I told him I'd love to see them with her sometime! Fast forward to when she received it, Christmas Day: When I expressed my intense interest to see them and spend time with her, and my parents had expressed curiosity, she said "Why don't we all have a Sherlock night?"  I was a little annoyed that I had to "share her", but figured "Oh, why not?!"

Fast forward again, to January 3rd, the four of us in the living room watching season one. We adored it, and so, seeing as some of us had been sleepy and missed details, she left them both at our house. (so we could rewatch, and see the next season) Before I get on with the post, and my further delving into the show, let me say this

Wow… I had always figured I would love it, but… wow! Even to this day, I struggle to properly describe my reaction to it. I guess the closest I can come is… brilliant. Crazy. Fast paced, and beautiful. And I found myself wanting more. As I told a friend later, "It's a thinkin' show.", which is something there is not a lot of, and I desperately look for. Don't get me wrong, I love action and comedy and such as much as anyone. But what is the most fun and fulfilling for me, are the shows and films that make me think. So, in the course of a very short time, I became more obsessed with, and immersed in, all things related to Holmes than I ever had been before.

I knew about the character, of course. There were different adaptations, be they film or television all over the place, my whole life. I admit I haven't read the stories too much, and have barely even touched the myriad of adaptations out there. But I vividly recall the times Data, Geordi, and even Captain Picard would go on the holodeck and enter his world (yay, Star Trek: the Next Generation!) And I've followed Elementary with great interest, as well. So, again… me liking this came as no huge shock. What shocked me was the extent it overtook me!

Anyway, for months because of commercials, I had been aware of the fact that the International Sherlock Holmes Exhibition was at the Science Center. (from October to guess when!). I had wanted to go all along, but health had prevented me from doing so. But by Christmas, I figured it was now or never… it was packing up and leaving January 5th. It took some pleading and figuring, but lo and behold, on January 4th, my parents and I set out for the adventure of a lifetime.

Am I being a little dramatic? Possibly, but being a story person, and by extension, a theatre person… let's just say it's in my personality makeup to get overenthusiastic about cool things and events. So sue me! :P (I had only had one similar experience before… for "Star Trek: the Exhibition". For my thoughts on that, go here.)

Author's Note:
Remember, all of this was over a month ago, so my memory could be a little foggy. Please bear with me, and I will do my best to recount what I experienced. :) Also, pictures are limited, as I didn't think we were allowed. Later I found out we were, so all I have are the few my mom took. :(

Anyway, when we walked up the sidewalk, you could see footprints. We followed them to the building, and outside saw this...

Anyway, we walked in and got our tickets, and got in a long line. The line moved decently quickly, though was long enough for that dang T-Rex to keep staring at me, just as when I was a kid. As we got closer, we saw some things in the distance, but before getting there… we saw Star Trek Barbies in a case (ahhhh, I want!!!), and a real life axolotl like we had learned about in VBS last summer!!

Then, we saw…

Finally we were inside the Exhibit's area.

The first thing we noticed, was there were a whole bunch of displays talking about the history of the author. And more interestingly, about someone he knew, who he later based Holmes on! It was very fascinating stuff to me, though most people didn't pay too much attention to all of it. I was different, and scoured everything because a) we wouldn't get another chance and it was cool, and b) you never knew what would be important later on. ;)

We even got to see some first editions of the books, and some pages from letters and stories in the author's own handwriting! For a budding writer, and lifelong bookworm, this was especially and awesomely cool!

So, there was a lot of this, and then following all of the in-depth history, was the part that we all can admit is the reason we went. See, we (me and everyone else that bought tickets) wanted to be like/work with Sherlock Holmes, right?!

Yep, that's right… we were gonna work to solve a murder!!!

Holmes wasn't there, obviously, but he had left us recordings and notes. It was cool, we had these little books. And every stop of the interactive thing that we hit, we would get a stamp for our books. I'd love to go super into detail, but on the off chance any of you can go, I don't want to ruin it. But I will say, that I did NOT expect what really happened, and was only a tiny bit close in probably one or two aspects. (which really confused me, as I had paid tons of attention to everything I saw and heard in that whole exhibit.)

Following the interactive portion, was the place where you could see things from… pretty much every adaptation you can think of! Old movies, the new movies, Elementary, Sherlock… it was crazy, man! I got to see a really cool old typewriter…

And what was really weird, was when I found myself standing in front of something very familiar, but it took me a minute to place it. (turns out it was from Sherlock's brownstone in Elementary!) Talk about surreal… an actual prop (I think) right in front of me, from something I see every week!

After exploring all of that, was the "gift shop" part of the exhibit. Mom got a white hat, I got: a hat, scarf, two of the three pics they took of us at the beginning, and the Official Exhibition Guide. (Hey, I had saved up! Luckily, since it was right after Christmas, and was the last day, things were super marked down. That's probably a good part of why I was able to get all that!) I have pictures of them, and the little book I mentioned from the interactive part… but I don't have them uploaded on my laptop yet. Hopefully I can get them uploaded and on here soon, so keep checking back!

In the car, when leaving the parking lot, they pointed out that on the roof of the one building (which kept changing colors), it had Sherlock's silhouette! Wish we could have taken a picture of that!

Right, so, when we got home, the three of us watched season 2… which… THAT ENDING! GAH! And a few weeks later, on the 26th, we watched two of the three episodes of season 3. (what, did I forget to mention that I had bought season 3 at best buy sometime in between there? Hehe, oops!) Now, all I have to do, is find a time to sit down with my parents and watch the final episode available. I'm sure I'll like it too!

Hope this was an enjoyable post, if a little on the long side, and that you can get a chance to see the Exhibit! If not, and you want to learn more about what I kept hidden about the murder mystery… message me! Until next time… notice everything, and enjoy life!


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