The Hound of the Baskervilles

The Hound of the Baskervilles The clever adaptation of BBC's "Sherlock"

There have been many adaptations of the Sherlock Holmes stories over the years, many of which are quite unique or anachronistic. However, one of the most recent, innovative and successful of these adaptations is the BBC show Sherlock, starring Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes and Martin Freeman as Doctor John Watson. Set in contemporary London but maintaing much of the atmosphere and approach of Doyle's original stories, the series has proved a massive hit.

Perhaps most interesting is the way the series uses Doyle's original material in updated ways. In episode 2 of season 2, the show adapted The Hound of the Baskervilles, in a story about the the possible existence of a spectral hound that haunts a small town. In this telling, the beast is believed to be the product of a government experiment. Throughout the investigation, even Sherlock is led to consider its existence. Ultimately, the hound's terrible appearance is found to be the product of a chemical gas. Interestingly, the story uses the same conflicts - fear of the unknown, the distinction between city and country life - in a contemporary way. People are less afraid of supernatural causes, and more afraid of scientific experiment in a post-atomic age.