Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Serendipity? I wonder…

by Rick Blechta

It’s late in the day to be posting, but I got held up by some “clientary” duties which I’ve finally managed to clean up.

So here I am.

The Castle Hotel in Chicago, circa 1896
The other night my darling wife and I watched the first two episodes in the fourth series of Sherlock on Netflix. Both were entertaining and thought-provoking, so we weren’t disappointed. (I feel this show is nothing short of brilliant – though others may disagree.)

Funny thing is, the second episode, “The Lying Detective”, really struck a chord with me. Why? Because I’d just read an article about one of the “background” characters.

The episode, based on Conan Doyle’s “The Dying Detective”, revolves around a serial killer whom Holmes is trying to unmask. During the course of the episode, this person talks about a famous mass murderer based in Chicago during the late 1800s.

So, here is the article: An infamous and sadistic American serial killer was hanged in 1896. Or was he?

For me, having the above prior knowledge made the Sherlock episode so much more real, considering that the killer as played by Toby Jones was a bit of a caricature of these most evil of people. He did pull it off admirably, but talking about H.H. Holmes in the way he did actually put a frisson of fear down my back. And that takes a lot of doing.

I won’t anything more to spoil the episode in case you haven’t yet seen it and would like to (I’ve really given nothing away), but it is well worth a viewing, especially if you’ve read the article above.

And to top it all off, is the very plausible theory that H.H. Holmes may have actually “gotten away with it”!

Stay tuned. I’m following this story avidly.

1 comment:

Sybil Johnson said...

The first time I heard about H.H. Holmes was when reading Erik Larson's book. Fascinating story. It will be interesting to see the DNA results.