Friday, May 22, 2009

"Elementary, my dear Jane."

And now we come to an extraordinarily relevant holiday: the 150th anniversary of the birth of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes.

This day is important to our fandom and indeed to all media fandoms because Sherlock Holmes was the first major subject of fanfiction and fan clubs in modern times. Loads of people have written about him, professionally and otherwise. Non-canonical works written about him could fill libraries. Fan speculation about him has been rampant since his name first appeared in print. If you think this fandom is loony and overboard, have a good look at Sherlock's. Or, for that matter, Doctor Who's or Harry Potter's or Star Trek's. We're practically boring in comparison.

The difference, of course, is that you can make a ton of money writing about Sherlock Holmes because the copyright on him has expired. He's public domain, and everyone wants him. Daria.... um, well, has somewhat less of a public standing, but at least her copyright is airtight. We write about her for fun, not for profit, which I for one think is a damn good thing. Getting paid for your hobby sucks all the life out of it.

Have there been Daria/Sherlock Holmes crossovers? MMan did one recently, an excellent little tale called "The Adventure of the Chinese Restaurant," but that's the only one. Lots of fanfics use the name "Sherlock" in a derisive manner, and a number have Daria or Jane utter lines like, "Elementary, my dear Watson." And in "Look Back in Annoyance," Jane asks Daria, "Did you mean Holmes like Sherlock or homes like 'Yo, yo, yo, what up, homes?'" Plus, we do have these nice alter egos, the Daria one from the Sick, Sad Life Planner and Kevin from Daria's Inferno. I haven't checked yet for fan art.

Relax and read some Sherlock Holmes today for fun. Think about how great it was that Sherlock Holmes helped make being smart look cool. Daria's right there with him, carrying on the great tradition.

  • John Lane 40: Starry Eyes Open, by Richard Lobinske (Part 3): "I need real jewelry for the ball, not costume. Even I'm not going to push Mom's gold card that far. I'll have to get a dress that matches the good jewelry I already have." "If you say so," Sandi said. "I really like the color," Stacy said. "I say go with it." "Yeah," Tiffany said. "Nobody wears coral the way you do."
  • Rings and Things That Cannot Go Together, by Ranger Thorne (continued): The star system was a young one, with a star that was just settling down after coming to light for the first time. Light from it would not reach Earth for thousands of years. A single ring of debris leftover from the star’s formation circled it from just inside the zone where liquid water could exist. A green ball of energy suddenly appeared within the ring and began to draw the contents of the ring to it. A few seconds later a second ball appeared on the far side of the solar system. Within a few minutes almost a dozen were sucking in the contents of the ring.


Anonymous said...

Just think, in 90 years or whatever the copyright on Daria will expire and we can all publish our fanfics and be rich!

E. A. Smith said...

I wrote Sherlock Holmes fanfiction before I even knew what fanfiction was. Admittedly, that was when I was in middle school, and there's no way I would ever let anyone see them now.

The Angst Guy said...

For several years I was addicted to these books. My favorite was The Hound of the Baskervilles. That was such a cool book.

E. A. Smith said...

I pretty much memorized the Sherlock Holmes stories when I was around 10. I still love to go back and reread them every now and again. It's too bad the upcoming movie looks likes its going to be an absolute travesty.