Friday, 29 August 2014

Book review: The Complete Sherlock Holmes vol.2

Having read the first three Sherlock Holmes books last year, I returned to Arthur Conan Doyle this summer for the second volume of the collected works, as I re-read them all to make sure I've caught everything. This one comprises two books, the first a short story collection, Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, with a couple of well-known stories like "The Crooked Man" but for the most part they're not mysteries that have seen frequent adaptation ("The Yellow Face" is quite spectacularly racist, although not in the way the title might suggest, so it's not the basis for that episode of Sherlock.) This is the collection that ends with Sherlock Holmes' apparent death, and there's moments in the stories leading up to it that feel like Conan Doyle was tiring of his famous creation - but then "The Final Problem" actually leaves things pretty open-ended to allow the author to resurrect the detective.

He doesn't technically do that in the next book, as The Hound of the Baskervilles is a flashback to before Holmes' encounter with Moriarty. It's the most famous Holmes novel but deservedly so, its spoookiness something that's become associated with the whole series, and I found it fun to re-read despite its familiarity.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Twitaceous Era 24: Emily Fruitcrisps

This week on my Twitter feed: Hardly anything. Turns out a rainy weekend with no theatre doesn't inspire me to share much.

Kelly Brook's vagina is basically a finishing school for people who want to be on reality TV.
12:05 PM - 20 Aug 2014

"Every dog has its day: Get your coat, you've pulled." The man wearing this shirt was holding hands with an ACTUAL HUMAN WOMAN :(
2:42 PM - 20 Aug 2014

@rudemrlang Emily Fruitcrisps would be my new drag name, if I wasn't already Nicki Minge.
4:43 PM - 20 Aug 2014

Monday, 25 August 2014

The marital McMarrieds of Marriagetown

It's been creeping around the schedules every year but, to coincide with the arrival of Peter Capaldi, Doctor Who is back to the traditional autumn run it's obviously been being nudged towards for the last few years. Hopefully this means no more of the on-and-off scheduling that made it feels simultaneously as if Matt Smith had been the Doctor forever, and like he'd barely got there before he was gone.

"Deep Breath" by Steven Moffat, directed by Ben Wheatley. Spoilers after the cut.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Twitaceous Era 23: You bitches be jealous

This week on my Twitter feed: Imrie! And disturbing overheard phone conversations.

Dogfight production photos are all fully-clothed. I feel like some unspoken contract has been broken.
11:42 AM - 13 Aug 2014

Richard Schiff will be in Speed-the-Plow, in flagrant disregard of the "everyone involved is called Lindsay" theme.
1:45 PM - 13 Aug 2014

Cast photos for Teh Internet Is Srs Bsns are up. … Excuse me while I stare at my screen for the rest of the day.
11:42 AM - 14 Aug 2014

Monday, 18 August 2014

Book review: The Fault In Our Stars

John Green's The Fault In Our Stars is one of those books that you feel you ought to read because so many people feel strongly about it. It's a love story about teenagers with cancer - the narrator, Hazel, has a terminal case, but new drugs have given her a fair few years longer than originally expected. In a church support group she doesn't actually think does her a huge amount of good, she meets Augustus, who's lost a leg to a cancer that's currently in remission. The two bond over a cancer memoir that Hazel feels is the only one to accurately reflect her own experience, and despite the constant care Hazel needs they resolve to go to Amsterdam and seek out its reclusive author.

It's ironic that The Fault In Our Stars deals in part with a novel that's become a touchstone to its heroine, when the book itself has gone on to become so well-loved. It's quite moving but not overly sentimental and doesn't paint cancer patients as saints which may be why it's been as successful as it has; although of course the idealised love story is another reason it would have acquired so many fans.

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Twitaceous Era 22: Electric Boogaloo

This week on my Twitter feed: Strallens, sequels and Scissor Sisters.

Caved and got a standing ticket to see Celia Imrie do cabaret next week, because of course I did.
12:03 PM - 6 Aug 2014

I may have enjoyed this for reasons other than the Buzzfeed parody: … via @clickhole
4:04 PM - 6 Aug 2014

Why yes, I *have* continued to amuse myself since last night by thinking of new Strallen names.It's hard to come up with an implausible one.
5:23 PM - 6 Aug 2014

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Twitaceous Era 21: Guardian-Readers of the Galaxy

This week on my Twitter feed, the Commonwealth Games continue to be mainly exist for the purposes of innuendo.

Whitlock's on top but Purvis is coming up behind him *bow chica bow* #gymnastics
2:10 PM - 30 Jul 2014

Theatrical Spot: Edward Killingback (yeah!) them motherfuckers don't know how to act (yeah!) on the South Bank.
6:49 PM - 30 Jul 2014

Hmmm. Dogfight could be interesting, I suppose.
5:42 PM - 31 Jul 2014

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Book review: The Hanged Man Rises

A bit of light relief with a children's/teen novel, although "light" maybe isn't exactly the word for a book about a serial child killer. Sarah Naughton's The Hanged Man Rises is a Victorian ghost story that sees a number of slum children murdered, and the killings continue after the killer is hanged. I can't see it being a big kids'/adult crossover book because the story is pretty simple and predictable, but it should be popular with kids who like something a bit dark and gory - it's surprisingly full-on when it gets to the actual public hanging.