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Criticism | ‘The Baker Street Irregulars’ is a weak, predictable expansion of the Sherlock Holmes universe



Sherlock Holmes is one of the most well-known figures in the multi-faceted entertainment industry, constantly shifting from literature to film and television. Besides the countless productions inspired by the presence of the iconic detective, the anti-hero himself was the protagonist of works such as the incredible series “ Sherlock ”, films starring Robert Downey Jr. and even in the spin-off ‘Enola Holmes’, which brought in Henry Cavill for the investigator’s new outfit. Now Netflix is ​​back with another original attack that offers (or at least attempts to provide) a different perspective for a group that has already appeared in the writings of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle: ‘The Irregulars of Baker Street’.

The Irregulars first appeared in “The Sign of the Four,” a novel launched in 1888 that brought Wiggins in as the leader of the street children and teens who “saw and heard it all,” tasked with bringing information from the London “underworld” to Holmes and his partner, Dr Watson. In the streaming giant’s series, things change a bit of a spectrum: Beatrice “Bea” Cook (Thaddea Graham) orders four other destitute people and turns the worst of circumstances into moments of joy and humility – promoting the safety and well-being of all, especially sister, Jessie (Darci Shaw). Living in the slums of the English capital, they fall under the radar of cold and calculating Watson (Royce Pierreson) and his partner, Sherlock (Henry Lloyd-Hughes), who hire them to investigate murders and gruesome cases that tarnish the reputation of the place where they live.

Unlike other reinterpretations of Doyle’s universe, “The Irregulars” opens the door to a more supernatural and whimsical appreciation; in other words, teens, armed only with the trust they have in each other, face powerful villains who seek revenge and gain dark powers through a loophole that has emerged. opened somewhere in London. We have, for example, the master of birds (Rory McCann), who has not accepted the death of his wife and newborn daughter and spends the nights kidnapping babies in their homes; the Tooth Fairy (Sheila Atim), a young woman who has lost everyone she loved due to the incisive politics of the royal duchy and creates clones to spark deadly hypotheses among members of high society; and Patricia Coleman-Jones (Olivia Grant), a former actress and member of a secret society who wants to steal all of Jessie’s power.

Despite good intentions, the series is not strong enough or well structured enough to escape similarities with other constructs or formulas. Showrunner Tom Bidwell sought to bring Victorian-era narratives to more contemporary drapery, including the soundtrack, which draws elements of dubstep and electro-pop – which work to keep us alert to the twists and turns of the episodes. . However, other approaches sin in speed and predictability (which is reprehensible when you think of Doyle’s controversial claim): As cases unfold, Bidwell and his team of writers leave behind too obvious loopholes which lead us to understand the unfolding of the facts before the second act. chapters.

As Bea, Jessie, and the rest of the Irregulars gain an equal role – even more so with the arrival of Leopold (Harrison Osterfield), who goes into hiding to be the heir to the throne and masquerading as someone else to be. approach young people and integrate themselves somewhere. -, some classic Holmes pantheon characters, such as Mycroft and Inspector Lestrade, come across as cheap fan service that doesn’t help at all with intricate storylines and arches. Some choices also don’t make much sense in relation to the main image; sometimes the anthology base comes out anyway and looks like the same ‘Once Upon a Time’ and ‘Supernatural’ misconceptions, which speed up for no necessary reason.

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The sordid and understated photography is one of the few points that is preserved: there are references that extend to the works of Emmanuel Lubezki and the theatricality of “ The Legend of the Headless Horseman ” and “ Unfortunate Events in Series ” – all embellished with a palette that does not escape the obvious, but plays a fundamental role in the discovery of the rotten people who hide in the hovels, brothels and bars. Despite everything, there are amateur briefs that bet on the vibrant colors of British royalty in contrast to urban and professional life, in exhaustive repetition. Either way, the highlights are overshadowed by holes in the script and a forced shock process that tries to make an impact on viewers.

Spanning eight episodes of about an hour each, production comes and goes, ending up nowhere with revelations that are far from surprising. The romantic relationship between Bea and Leopold is premeditated from the first meeting by tireless and tiring charges – regardless of the performance of the two actors; Jessie, who carries the most arduous and well-constructed crossing of all, fights her former demons and sacrifices the possibility of reuniting her mother for greater good, even though she has been deceived by people she can trust; and maybe the only truly human episode is the season finale, with touching touches on friendship and the loss of a loved one.

“ The Baker Street Irregulars ” is a Netflix mistake, but it can be nice for those with plenty of time. Dying to be one of the best additions to the platform’s catalog, it’s interesting to see the chemistry of the youth group and their relationships – but I recommend ‘Enola Holmes’ as a more cohesive entertainment option in all aspects.

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