Thursday, March 24, 2016

Experiment #6 - "Sherlock Holmes Faces Death" (1943)

In which we discover Nancy Drew has been around for a long time, Basil and Nigel become “bros”, and Holmes...faces death.


Catharine has told Nick something which makes him very happy…

Nick: You told me something about Nigel Bruce which really made me smile and I would like to have this in writing so it may be forever preserved on the Internet.

Cat: Of course you would...anything for the good of the Internet: I told Nick the other day that, after watching the subject of today’s post, I’ve found it in my heart to actually like Nigel Bruce as Watson. I don’t know how, but he wormed his way in there somehow.

Nick: You don’t know how good that makes me feel. I told Catharine that she would come to love Nigel Bruce and so she has!

Cat: And so I have. I think it took time for me to understand and accept that he wasn’t going to be much of a badass. Sad as that makes me, I now feel a need to protect the bumbling child that he is. (And, contrary to what you might be thinking, Nick didn’t play any part in this change of heart. He was very good about letting me come to my own conclusion!)

Nick: Yes. Let it be known that I did not convince Catharine to say that in any way. She is praising the one and only Nigel Bruce on her own accord. Well, Nigel I think fares pretty well in today’s feature so I say that we ought to dive right in…

Vital Statistics:
Sherlock Holmes Faces Death (1943)
Major motion picture
Starring Basil Rathbone (Sherlock Holmes), Nigel Bruce (Dr. Watson), Dennis Hoey (Inspector Lestrade), Arthur Margretson (Dr. Sexton), Hillary Brooke (Sally Musgrave)
68 minutes, black-and-white


Nick: So, to put it mildly, Sherlock Holmes Faces Death couldn’t be more dissimilar to the previous Sherlock Holmes in Washington. The latter, a slick, fast-moving very modern story has almost nothing in common with the atmospheric and creepy mystery which this film presents us. It’s clear that the “Nazi Trilogy” is over. And, though I do have a soft spot for some of those early movies, I think this middle section of Rathbone’s tenure as Holmes which begins here, are by far his best movies.

Cat: It was just awesome. I’m not going to try to even mildly cover up my enjoyment for this movie. It was just really, really awesome and brilliant and I just really really liked it.

Nick: I don’t think anyone will hold your enthusiasm against you. Well, onto actual discussion points: This movie’s tone. My goodness is it great! I love the creepy, old-dark-haunted-house vibe which you get from this movie. It’s so atmospheric. It really gets under your skin. Universal specialized in haunted house horror movies of this kind, but this one feels superior to be completely honest.

Cat: Agreed. In my opinion, it really added to the actual mystery going on as well. There was something about that house and that family that always kept you guessing… And I should just say now that I love mysteries like that. This one was really fun to both sit back and enjoy, but also try to “play along at home” with.

Nick: So true. There’s some vaguely Clue-esque about this movie what with the assorted personalities in the mansion (with a few secret passages) and an assortment of murder weapons. It’s really unlike anything out of the Holmes Canon (despite the fact that this movie is based on the story “The Musgrave Ritual”) and more like...I don’t know how to describe it. You likened it to Nancy Drew which I thought was spot on. (By the way, did you know that Nancy Drew first appeared in print in 1930! I didn’t know that.)

Nancy Drew has been around FOREVER

Cat: Neither did I, actually! (Shows what I know…) But yes, it felt very Nancy Drew-esque to me. And it didn’t even remind me of the general character of the Nancy Drew stories; it felt a lot like one of the computer games (which I love). I could list out scenes that could have been translated into puzzles you would’ve had to complete and probably get so frustrated that you cheat a little bit with by looking at a walkthrough. (I’m referring, of course, to the chess board scene, but we’ll get to that later.) I personally think that strong similarity to something that I’ve enjoyed for a while might have biased my opinion of the movie a tiny bit, but it truly worked to the film’s advantage here.

Nick: I have no knowledge of the Nancy Drew computer games (I am severely lacking in Nancy Drew knowledge despite a love for all things mystery) but I can certainly understand how that might have made you like this one quite a bit. Sometime I’ll have to share my experiences with the Sherlock Holmes computer games I’ve come across. Anyhow, the other really great thing about this movie is its tone. It is REALLY creepy. I love all the talk about ghosts.

Cat: Ghost stories are always fun, no matter the situation. Add Sherlock Holmes into the mix and they get significantly cooler. The creepiness and general feeling of unease that lingers around the movie is really fun and it starts to make you wonder whether or not there is a ghost causing trouble…

Ghosts and blood-sniffing ravens...

Nick: I love the talk about the different ghosts haunting the different parts of the house (and how Brunton the butler is so well up on what parts of the house each one haunts). The other thing which always sticks in my mind when watching this movie is the clock which strikes 13 times foretelling death. So creepy and ominous...and a really big plothole. It’s never explained why the clock does that. Maybe the ghosts are real…

Cat: Or they just have some really bizarre clocks that they should probably get looked at. (I’m more in favor of the ghost theory though. It’s more fun.) Though that does beg the question (in my mind, at least): how exactly does one make a clock strike thirteen times, in general? Is it hard to do or to engineer a clock that does that regularly (as opposed to just for the purpose of foretelling death)? I’m asking the real questions here, obviously.

Nick: You never cease to ask questions which I cannot adequately answer Catharine. As to the ghosts being real...that really has no place in the ultra-rational world of Sherlock Holmes which is a problem which a lot of Sherlock Holmes fans have with this movie. I am more willing to overlook it than some because I feel like there’s enough merit here.

Cat: Asking out-there questions is one of my special skills. I can see why that would bug people, but I also can overlook it. It didn’t feel like it was really focused on once things became more rational and the mystery was unraveled, which I think helped a lot. And, to be honest, I can live with a bit of the unknown in my Sherlock Holmes media. I do understand why some people would detest it, but I think it’s kind of fun when there are some things left unresolved or open-ended. After all,  that’s how it is in the real world sometimes, and though some would argue the fact, Sherlock Holmes is not God and just because he is ultra-logical does not necessarily mean the world around him is.

Nick: Well put...and good work for tying Sherlock Holmes Faces Death into the cold, harsh reality of the real world. Well, I say that we move onto the people of this drama because the characters are great. And, I suggest that we begin with Nigel Bruce because he’s actually rather competent this time around (or at least more so than usual.)

Cat: You know, I wonder if that helped confirm my appreciation of him at all? Because he is actually very competent in this! Well. He’s still no great genius, but you get to see him in his element in the beginning of the film where he’s taking care of people, and I thought it was really sweet because he was really good at it. And I think this was a great movie that showcased the insanely incredible on-screen chemistry between him and Basil Rathbone.Words can’t describe how much I loved the brief scene where they reunited in Baker Street!

Nick: They are especially good in this movie. Rathbone’s Holmes is (for the lack of a better word) sort of grumpy in this movie so Bruce’s softer, more comforting Watson really suits the bill here. And I agree that it’s great to see Watson in his element as a doctor here. I once heard an interview with a Sherlock Holmes author and expert and he said one of the reasons he loathed Nigel Bruce’s Watson is that it made no sense to him why Holmes would let “an idiot” write down the accounts of his adventures. And, Bruce’s Watson is hardly the brightest bulb in the pack, but he’s surely no idiot in this movie. His medical knowledge comes in handy more than once. (Oh, and about that reuniting scene in Baker Street; any time we get to see Holmes shoot holes in the walls is a lot of fun.)

Friends! Chums! Comrades! Pals! (And other synonyms!)

Cat: It was just adorable! They were such PALS! I couldn’t keep the smile off my face the entire scene, honestly. And though I do see that point, Holmes and Watson have always had a nice balance where he finds something endearing in his idiodicy. I think that’s one of the many things that makes them work, really. Either way, I loved it. I totally ate it up. They’re the original bros.

Nick: They really are...Interesting bit of information here. The actress who plays Sally Musgrave (Hillary Brooke) had already appeared in one of the Sherlock Holmes films with Rathbone and Bruce. She had the part of their driver in Sherlock Holmes and the Voice of Terror. She would be back to play the titular Woman in Green (1945). (Also, that scene where she’s almost struck by lightning - it’s so weird but pretty creepy.)

Cat: Really? I didn’t even pick up on that!

Nick: But, I think the real scene-stealer of this movie is Halliwell Hobbs as Brunton, the drunken butler. He is fantastic in this movie. Hobbs more-or-less made a career out of playing butlers but his performance here is great.

Cat: Agreed. He was absolutely hilarious. I do love fun butler characters like him, and he never failed to amuse with every second he was on screen.

Nick: Okay...well,we’re kind of ignoring the elephant in the room: The Musgrave Ritual itself and the subsequent game of human chess which I believe is one of this film’s greatest bits. It’s really ingenious and I just love the way that that scene plays out as Holmes has each of the characters assume the role of a chess piece to act out the Ritual. It’s very clever.

Cat: Indeed it is. This was the one scene that I could see translating perfectly to a ND computer game, by the way. It was really nifty, really. Though it does make you wonder, are all floors with black and white tiles secretly chessboards? (I think so.) But what if the family had decided to redecorate the whole house and change the flooring at some point in history? What if the ritual became meaningless? I think that was a really risky way to ensure this important message got passed down through the generations, to be entirely honest. But it did make it possible for the audience (namely, us) to enjoy Sherlock Holmes orchestrating a human game of chess. That was cool.

Nick: Well, the ritual of this movie is quite different than the Canonical ritual (no references to chess in the original) so when we get around to a closer adaptation of the story you’ll see how what you just brought up is addressed. And, moving on from the chess match we get the very exciting finale in the crypt beneath the house. As the newcomer who had never seen this movie before, I want to know your reaction to that climax!

Sherlock Holmes (quite literally) Faces Death

Cat: I am not exaggerating when I say that I was literally on the edge of my seat! When Watson got distracted from his post (as expected), where I would normally roll my eyes, I actually got concerned for his safety! (That’s when I really, really knew that I had warmed up to him.) I thought the whole thing was just a fine example of Holmes’s genius at work though. As usual, I didn’t see who the culprit was coming (though I did find it odd when Dr. Sexton used a very specific chess reference during the human chess game after proclaiming to know nothing about chess) - HOWEVER, I did have a minor heart attack when he showed his true colors and attempted to shoot the Sherlock Holmes! Of course I knew he wasn’t going to actually be dead or seriously injured, but STILL! Seeing Basil Rathbone fall to the ground like that physically pained me!! Tell me I’m not alone in this, Nick!

Nick: I had the exact same reaction when I saw this movie for the first time forever ago. I knew that Holmes wasn’t dead but my heart was still in my throat seeing him appear to be shot. That whole confrontation between Dr. Sexton and Holmes in the crypt was really well done and it even included a flashback or two (I love movies which include flashbacks - especially when they come in the the revealing of clues to a mystery). Overall, it was just a really exciting ending.

Cat: It really was. I also really loved how you could tell that Holmes had some kind of a plan in motion when he was talking to Sexton too, with the way that he sounded like he was pleading for his life but you knew he wasn’t. It was awesome to see that all play out. Though seeing Basil Rathbone almost get shot will forever scar me, because wow was that hard to watch. But it was really just an awesome conclusion to an awesome movie, in my opinion.

It’s time for Final Thoughts:

Nick: Since she has sort of already alluded to her overall thoughts in the above paragraph, I say Cat should give Final Thoughts first.

Cat: Oh boy, what haven’t I said about this movie so far? It was just a really, really fun movie, and I loved it. It was different from the other Sherlock Holmes movies we’ve watched so far. It might be a bit early to say this, but it’s definitely going to be one of my favorites, I’m almost sure of that. I loved the tone of the movie and the character interactions and that climax was really what did it for me, honestly. It. Was. Awesome. Nick, your thoughts?

Nick: I am a big fan of this movie. I love the tone; the creepiness factor is great and it really helps set this movie apart from the others in the series (even the subsequent creepy Holmes films have a very different vibe). Rathbone and Bruce are great together (as always) and every aspect of this movie just fits seamlessly together. I may always have a soft spot for some of the early Rathbone/Bruce films but this is the movie where the series really started getting especially good. How many deerstalkers would you give this one?

Cat: This one is a definite 4.5 deerstalkers from me. It just rocked, honestly. What about you, Nick?

Nick: I’m going to give it 4 out of 5. This one’s really good. And I’m certainly glad that you liked this one so much because that means that the next few films in the series will be right up your alley!

Cat: Yay! I’m so excited! I know you’re excited to get to Peter Cushing, Nick, but I can’t stress how content I am to stay in Basil-Rathbone-and-Nigel-Bruce Land.

Nick: In a word: Fantastic!

Nick's Rating

Catharine's Rating

Next Time: A female Moriarty...well, sort of...we haven’t gotten to Elementary quite yet.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Experiment #5 - "Sherlock Holmes in Washington" (1943)

In which Holmes and Watson travel to America in search of a single match folder. Watson, meanwhile, wants to know “what’s cooking.” We, on the other hand, are more interested in Indiana Jones.


Nick: Well, just as quickly as it began, the “Nazi Trilogy” is coming to an end. So far I think it’s fair to say that the previous two entrees in Universal’s attempts to pit Sherlock Holmes against the Third Reich have been a fairly mixed bag. Would you agree?

Cat: I think that’s a very accurate statement, to be entirely honest.

Nick: Not quite the Indiana Jones-level adventures you at first suspected?

Cat: Well...no. But, out of all of them...this chapter in the Nazi Trilogy felt the most Indiana Jones-y to me? Maybe the missing factor was America.

Nick: Well, to go off on a tangent, I found this picture after a quick Google search and I think it’s an interesting topic worthy of discussion:

Cat: OH MY GOD. NO. I physically cannot do that. That is...NO. That’s the worst kind of ultimatum possible. I mean, wow, is that hard. There are eight things on there I’d want to pick. EIGHT. Nick, this is the worst tangent you could put us on because now this is going to plague my mind. Whatever were you searching for anyway? And, of course, what three things would you pick? (Well...I know it’s more like two because Sherlock Holmes wouldn’t even be a question.)

Nick: I wanted to see if I could find a funny Sherlock Holmes meets Indiana Jones picture to go along with this portion of the review but, surprisingly, nothing exists. Anyway, I don’t find this to be all that difficult because - to be honest - I haven’t seen a majority of the things on this list or they’re not my cup of tea. So, Sherlock Holmes is obvious. And then I’d go with Doctor Who and last but not least Indiana Jones. If I could pick four, I’d also select Batman The Animated Series. Just so you know Catharine, I’ll expect an answer by the end of this post…[Insert evil Vincent Price laughter here]

Cat: Nick, I thought we were friends. I feel so betrayed. (Also, Batman over Star Wars?! I can’t believe you.) ANYWAYS, we have a topic to get back to. One that does not involve totally hypothetical but still morally challenging questions.

Vital Statistics:
Sherlock Holmes in Washington (1943)
Major motion picture
Starring: Basil Rathbone (Sherlock Holmes), Nigel Bruce (Dr. Watson), Marjorie Lord (Nancy Partridge), George Zucco (Richard Stanley)
71 minutes, black-and-white


Nick: Well...uh...what can I say? This one’s interesting. I’m not even really sure where to start. How about the central idea behind this film’s plot: Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson traveling to the United States in pursuit of a single match folder. That is, in itself, a pretty cool concept.

Cat: Well, I’m glad you think so. When you told me that was the basic premise of the movie, I kinda lost it. Saying it outloud makes me giggle. To be honest, my expectations for what this movie was going to be, just based off that quick summary, were totally met, if not exceeded.

Dat hair...and dat microfilm (I'll stop trying to be cool)

Nick: The idea that the detective duo fly across the Atlantic in search of a single document and end up in Washington D.C. is neat and, for the most part, the plot of this movie is handled pretty well. We get some really neat bits of investigation from Holmes while he’s still in London, there are some rumblings about an evil criminal society at work (*cough* the Nazis *cough*) and then it’s off. In terms of breakneck pacing, this does rather fit the bill.

Cat: I actually really did like the pacing and styling of this movie, and how it didn’t start with Holmes and Watson. You don’t see them for roughly the first ten minutes. I thought that was actually pretty cool. With the opening scene on the train, because Holmes wasn’t there (though I will be the first to admit that I was scrutinizing every character to see if he was there in disguise - I’m going to be overly vigilant about that now), you didn’t really know where it was going. I actually liked that.

Nick: Well, while we’re talking about the plot of this movie it is interesting to think that this movie was the first in the Rathbone/Bruce series (and one of the few of the Universal films overall) which feature no elements whatsoever from an original Arthur Conan Doyle story/novel. Voice of Terror was inspired by the story “His Last Bow” and Secret Weapon featured not only the character of Moriarty but also a plot inspired by “The Dancing Men.” (It’s interesting to note that one of the screenwriters for this film was a man named Bertram Millhauser who, in the early ‘30s, wrote a script for a movie simply entitled Sherlock Holmes. I’ve never seen the thing all the way through - it’s very hard to come by - but it’s generally not well regarded amongst fellow Sherlockian aficionados.)

There are a few elephants in the room which need to be discussed:

Nick: I think it’s fair to say that Nigel Bruce’s Watson doesn’t fare so well in this movie. Is that statement an accurate one?

Cat: When isn’t it? I know I always harp on him, but really. Wow. Not to jump to the end too quickly, but we see him shoot and kill a man on screen and he’s STILL a bumbling idiot! I hate with love, though. He’s still a charming idiot, though an idiot nonetheless. However, he was a bit more idiot here than normal. I didn’t know that seeing Watson as a tourist in America was something that was missing in my life, but it was. If only he had had a straw hat and an ugly Hawaiian shirt, then he’d REALLY look the part. Nick, I’ll leave you the honor: why don’t you tell everyone about what is honestly the greatest Nigel Bruce Watson moment ever?

Nick: Why, thank you...and Watson with a Hawaiian shirt, cargo shorts, and a big camera around his neck is a mental image I really don’t want to think about ever again. Anyway, the GREATEST thing which I think I have ever heard come out of Bruce’s mouth occurs when Holmes and Watson are greeted by the Washington D.C. police after arriving in America. Watson, trying to be as American as possible says to one of the officers: “Hello buddy, what’s cooking.” HONESTLY. HONESTLY, that is the best thing that Bruce’s Watson ever says and I never cease to burst into uncontrollable laughter whenever I watch this movie and hear that line. Nigel Bruce is amazing.

Watson, go home

Cat: Watson also strikes me as the kind of person who would wear socks with sandals...just to further destroy your perceptions of one of your most cherished favorite characters. :) So Nick built up for me that this movie contained his most favorite Nigel Bruce moment in it. I don’t know WHAT I expected to happen, but it wasn’t that. But I was not disappointed in ANY WAY. It was legitimately fantastic. I feel like that moment sums up the tone of the movie (for me, anyway) pretty well: it’s unexpected, but hilariously so!

Nick: Catharine, that is an evil thing to do: I DO NOT want to picture Watson wearing socks and sandals. That is awful. Actually awful. And, you’re absolutely right: This movie is filled with all manner of strange surprises. But, this is the kind of movie which you need to know is really strange before going in. Unlike a lot of the Rathbone/Bruce films you cannot take this one seriously at all. And I guess that’s where the vaguely Indiana Jones-esque vibe comes from. It’s an unashamedly entertaining movie.

Cat: I’m convinced that this wasn’t a drama or a mystery or anything, this was legitimately a straight up comedy. I honestly loved every second of it. Now, we also marathoned all of the Nazi Trilogy in one day, so by this point, I might have been a bit unable to take anything seriously, but I think that only made this movie better.

Nick: I agree. By the time we got around to this, the Mystery Science Theatre 3000 comments were flying left and right and this is honestly the perfect film to watch in that frame of mind. So, let’s talk about one or two of the other things which make this movie just so crazy: Case-in-point, Basil Rathbone impersonating a prissy art collector. OH MY GOODNESS...that scene is wonderful.

I want Rathbone to appraise art in every film

Cat: Yeah, that was pretty freaking amazing. I think my favorite part was Watson casually watching from outside the antique store? Something about him idly sitting by while this happened really amused me. But that whole scene was pretty amazing, and wonderfully out-there.

Nick: And, that whole scene leads up to the confrontation with the villain of the piece: The one, the only George Zucco. Only, Zucco’s up to no good as an agent of the Third Reich and not the Napoleon of Crime. However, just like his earlier turn as Moriarty, Zucco’s great and he really hams it up which is totally in keeping with the over-the-top tone of this movie. I mean, he tries to kill Holmes with a crossbow hidden inside an antique chest! Surely not the most efficient means of killing the great detective, but so out there you can’t help but find the whole scenerio fun. Any scenes that we’re forgetting which really ought to be mentioned?

Cat: There’s not much that I can think of right now, no. That was sort of an odd thing about this movie. I have NO idea if this is going to make any sort of sense, but this movie felt very American. No duh, I know it was in America, so that’s to be expected, but I mean that the writing and pacing felt very American. They didn’t really hold on any one scene for awhile, and I felt like some of the other movies leading up to this point did that much more frequently and that they just flowed in an entirely different way. But that could just me. (I’m never any good at knowing when I’m actually onto something when talking seriously about films or if I’m just reading too deeply into things. And again, this was the third movie in a row and I had eaten way too many Swedish Fish by this point - so it’s highly likely that I’m not making any sense here.)

Nick: That does make a lot of sense. This movie feels very different from both Voice and Terror and Secret Weapon. It feels sleeker and faster moving - almost as if it were a serial from the same period. There are even scenes which could be cliffhangers leading into the next installment. I’m personally not a big fan of this style so the subsequent films in the Universal series which are far closer in tone to the previous entries are rather more up my alley.

Perhaps this is a tangent...perhaps it’s a conspiracy theory...perhaps it’s neither, but Cat has stumbled into something which links Sherlock Holmes in Washington to a film franchise which we’ve been discussing multiple times throughout this post:

Nick: For the purposes of this post you’re the Indiana Jones expert Cat, so...the stage is yours.

What if the Baz played Indiana Jones?
(Credit to: Lisa Halverson and found on basilrathbone.net)

Cat: Alright. Everyone, prepare to have your minds BLOWN. This movie could in fact be an inspiration for Indiana Jones. Or the result of time-traveling and a crossover. Or some third, equally implausible option that links everyone’s favorite adventurer/archaeologist to everyone’s favorite consulting detective. Let’s review the facts.

  1. They’re both fighting Nazis. An obvious observation, but an important one nonetheless. Whereas Indy literally beats the crap out of the Third Reich, Holmes is a bit less physical.
  2. The art collector scene. Much like the scene in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, both heroes pose as fancy-schmancy art people in order to sneak into the bad guy’s hideout. It is hilarious in both scenarios. (And yes, this does theoretically make Watson the equivalent of Elsa - the “lovely assistant”)
  3. Nancy Partridge’s party pass around. In the scene leading up to Nancy Partridge’s kidnapping (a character/plot point we didn’t really mention much about), she’s in the middle of a party celebrating her engagement. Little does she know, but she has been slipped the elusive matchbook and unwittingly passes around the important little object. It passes hands of seemingly EVERYONE at this party in a very frustrating exchange where you want to pick the thing up before someone else touches it. What is this like? The scene in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom where Willie and Indy are both trying to find and secure something in a huge crowd (a diamond and antidote, respectively).
  4. The aforementioned antique chest of death. You wouldn’t think that Sherlock Holmes and Indiana Jones have death traps in common, but they do. In Last Crusade, Indiana has to avoid decapitation from god-knows-how-old saw blades in the Temple of the Grail. Here, Holmes is faced with an antique chest with an oddly specific purpose. They both outsmart the device and keep their heads. (Literally and figuratively). Weird, but true. And, finally….
  5. Both heroes have bizarre names. At least Indiana Jones has an excuse, but really, what kind of name is Sherlock anyway? Mr. and Mrs. Holmes (and ACD) had a very strange book of baby names….

Nick: I’d also like to add that both characters wear very cool hats….but I digress. Anyhow, I don’t think the similarities are coincidences. Steven Spielberg and George Lucas admitted that Indiana Jones is based off of characters from the serials of the 1930s and ‘40s and as we both said, there is something decidedly serial-like about Sherlock Holmes in Washington. And, if you thought that is movie is like an Indiana Jones film...well...wait until until we get to another film down the line. The similarities are even more obvious.

It’s time for Final Thoughts:

Nick: This one is a hard one to talk about. It’s hard to take it seriously and it’s way over-the-top in places but it is entertaining. Watson, I think,is at his loveable, buffoonish best and Rathbone’s Holmes is great too. His scenes with Zucco’s villain are scintillating. I honestly cannot think of that much to say about this one that we haven’t covered already. It’s a fun, entertaining way to end something as crazy as “The Nazi Trilogy” but it really isn’t much more than that. And you Cat?

Cat: I think that I enjoyed this way more than I should have. Now, I have no idea if I would enjoy it as much without someone to make ridiculous comments with, but this was definitely as off-kilter and over-the-top as I could have hoped it would have been. I didn’t expect to actually find this as amusing as I did. Because it certainly isn’t anything super amazing, but it’s so freaking hysterical that you don’t mind at all. (Holmes praising America at the end was the figurative cherry on top of the fantastically crazy sundae for me.)

Nick: So, what would your official deerstalker rating be then?

Cat: Mine is a 3 out of 5. It’s hilarious and fun, but extremely difficult to take seriously. Not exactly good, but certainly not bad. And you, Nick?

Nick: The same. My sentiments mirror yours exactly.

There is one piece of unfinished business left:

Nick: You’re only allowed to pick three series. I’m going to be completely evil and ask you once more what they’ll be…

Cat: Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and Doctor Who. I hate you. (My loophole? One of my other best friends would pick Lord of the Rings, Star Trek, and Sherlock Holmes. ;) Much like Captain James T. Kirk, I don’t believe in no-win scenarios.)

Nick: How very clever Catharine. I promise I won’t ask you anymore impossible questions.

Nick’s fingers are crossed behind his back…

Nick's Rating

Catharine's Rating

Next Time: Ghosts, ravens, and chessboards