Friday, January 30, 2015

Sherlock Deductions


Life is too short to re-watch a television show.  Well, unless it's Sherlock.



If you're not familiar with the show, it's a British drama that modernizes Conan Doyle's famous mysteries.  It's brilliantly written and popular enough to make Benedict Cumberbatch famous.  I've been re-watching episodes of Sherlock over the past few weeks.  It's good to distract myself from all the working out I do.

Before and after pictures of me.
Anyway, one of the famous bits about Sherlock Holmes (that they do brilliantly in the show) is his ability to observe people and deduce things about them.  I always liked those parts, so I tried to write one.  Here goes:



INT. SHERLOCK AND JOHN'S FLAT - DAY

               SHERLOCK, churlish, stands looking out a window at the street
               below.  WATSON sits in his chair, pretending to read the
               paper but secretly watching Sherlock.

               Finally, John can't take the tension anymore.

                                   JOHN
                         Look, is this still about the
                         scarf.

               Sherlock turns from the window, but says nothing.

                                   JOHN (CONT'D)
                         I just moved it to a different
                         hook.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         I put my scarf there every night.

                                   JOHN
                         I moved it three inches to the
                         left.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         "A place for every thing and
                         everything in its place."

                                   JOHN
                         Now you're quoting American
                         ministers at me?  You must be
                         angry.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         Sometimes even the Church gets
                         things right.

               Sherlock crosses the room and sits in his chair.

                                   SHERLOCK (CONT'D)
                         You're doing this one.

                                   JOHN
                         What?

                                   SHERLOCK
                         New client coming up the stairs. 
                         You're doing it this time.

                                   JOHN
                         What?  No.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         "Stop showing off, Sherlock."
                         "Nobody is impressed by your parlor
                         tricks, Sherlock."

                                   JOHN
                         Christ sake, I moved it one hook
                         over.

               There's a knock at the door.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         Come in.

               Chris, wrapped in a thick coat, hat, and gloves enters.  He
               has a raspy, but high voice.

                                   CHRIS
                         Mr. Holmes?  (He nods.)  I'm Chris
                         Shenwick. I was wondering if you
                         could help me.  I have...  I have a
                         problem.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         Do sit down.

               Chris opens his coat, revealing a large chest, but slight
               frame.

                                   SHERLOCK (CONT'D)
                         No, stop.  Don't remove your gloves
                         or hat just yet.  Please sit down
                         and let my colleague Dr. Watson
                         deduce what he can about you.

                                   JOHN
                         Sherlock!

               Chris smiles.

                                   CHRIS
                         Oh, I've heard about this.  You're
                         famous for figuring things out
                         about a person by the way they sit
                         and the like.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         Yes, only I'm training my assistant
                         in it.  It's much like the animal
                         trainer at a circus would teach a
                         poodle to juggle, only instead of
                         doggie treats I reward John by
                         doing the washing up.

                                   JOHN
                         You never do the washing up.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         Which gives you some idea of how
                         well it's going.

               John crosses his arms, angrily.

                                   CHRIS
                         Oh, come on, please.  I was looking
                         forward to it.

               Sherlock waits.  John gives in.

                                   JOHN
                             (whispering to Sherlock as
                              he gets up)
                         You could have just moved it back!

               John walks over to Chris.  He leans forward, examining his
               face closely, inhaling deeply.  He steps back and tilts his
               head from side to side, looking at him one way and then
               another.  Finally he backs up and sits down next to Sherlock.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         Well?  What do you observe?

                                   JOHN
                         Chris is pale, has very little
                         facial hair apart from a wispy
                         moustache, and walks with a wide
                         gait.  His chest is unusually
                         large, while the rest of him is
                         slim.  He smells of whiskey, which
                         covers the faint aroma of perfume,
                         a woman's perfume. 

                                   SHERLOCK
                         Good, good.  So, what can you
                         deduce?

                                   JOHN
                         Chris hit puberty late.  I'm
                         guessing he's around 15. Judging
                         from the wideness of his stance,
                         and how much he works out his
                         chest, I'm guessing-

                                   SHERLOCK
                         Deducing.

                                   JOHN
                         Deducing he's trying to act older,
                         more masculine.  It obviously
                         works, as he was able to buy
                         whiskey and, judging from the
                         perfume, gain the attentions of a
                         lady.

               Chris's eyes are wide with shock.  Sherlock smiles thinly.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         That's good.  Very good.  However,
                         you completely missed the razor.

                                   JOHN
                         Razor?  (to Chris) You've got a
                         knife?

                                   SHERLOCK
                         No, Occam's Razor.  It's a
                         theoretical concept.  In lay terms,
                         it means "the simplest answer is
                         usually correct."

                                   JOHN
                         I don't-

                                   SHERLOCK
                         Woman's perfume. Slightly wider
                         hips.  No facial hair.  Miss
                         Shenwick, would you mind removing
                         your hat?

                                   JOHN
                         Miss?

               Chris removes her hat, revealing a cascade of long, brown
               hair.

                                   JOHN (CONT'D)
                         Oh.  Oh my God.  I am so... So
                         sorry.

               Chris touches her upper lip self-consciously.

                                   CHRIS
                         I didn't get around to waxing this
                         week.

                                   SHERLOCK
                         And that is why our dishes are so
                         sparkly clean.

                                   JOHN
                         Chris.  Short for Christine.

                                   CHRIS
                             (slightly pleased)
                         You really think I'm slim with a
                         big chest?

No comments: