When I first discovered Sherlock Holmes, it was on the printed page, but it couldn't have been at a better time in my life. It was the mid-1980s and there were a number of other outlets for my Sherlockian enjoyment. The Basil Rathbone-Nigel Bruce series was faithfully running on Saturday afternoon movie features on a local television station; the John Gielgud-Ralph Richardson old time radio series was available on cassette; and most importantly for me, the Granada series with Jeremy Brett was airing on PBS.
For me, Jeremy Brett has always been the consummate Holmes (up until the last dreadful series and long-form movies). Certainly, he was quirky; but so was Holmes. And he was blessed with such Canonically accurate settings, dialogue and wardrobe (at least in the beginning) that it felt like the stories came to life.
While I've long had a the series on video, pieced together through MPI productions and the original PBS airings from "Mystery!" with the inimitable Vincent Price giving the introductions, I've longed for a complete set on DVD. Well, that wait is over.
Now available from Amazon is Sherlock Holmes: The Complete Granada Television Series, a set of 12 DVDs with all 41 programs, for a total of 43 hours, from MPI Home Video. You'll find this handsome set tricked out with bonus features that include include three commentary tracks, interviews with Jeremy Brett and Edward Hardwicke, an interview with Adrian Conan Doyle, a
report on the Sherlock Holmes Museum, and subtitles in Spanish and English. While it doesn't have quite as many bells and whistles as one might hope for from such a handsome set, it's a worthy addition to any Sherlockian's multimedia collection.