Review: The Irregulars of Baker Street, the Sherlock Holmes succession is here
Little nose with access to the plethora of information circulating the streets of London, Irregulars of Baker Street is reworked in a series of mixing, puzzle, fantasy, and supernatural investigations.
The making of this series is up to Tom Bidwell, with 100% British production and cast. In particular, Les Irréguliers features young teens, offering their talents and easy access to information from London in the service of Sherlock Holmes and his business partner, Doctor John Watson. Therefore, it is not the latter who ends up being the main protagonist.
Jessie, Béa, Spike and Billy form a thriving band of rookie investigators in London that threatens to cast a shadow over the young characters. The street kids from the original work gave way to teenagers who not only gathered important information, but also brought a critical look at events and turned out to be much smarter than expected. They find themselves having to investigate occult and paranormal phenomena, which find their origins in the “breakthrough”, the passage between the worlds of the living and the worlds of the dead.
As with Sherlock Holmes news, each episode has its own investigation, though a thread of mysterious misconduct connects them all. At the same time as deriving from a classic, and a genre completely shifting from the original, The Irregulars of Baker Street manages to convince us that the next generation of Sherlock Holmes has arrived.
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In terms of genre, the series is a stark contrast to the work of Arthur Conan Doyle, but this isn’t the first time a spinoff has been produced from the world of Sherlock Holmes. After being romanticized and peppered with a lot of action in Guy Ritchie’s films, or brought into the contemporary era with the BBC series, the Sherlock Holmes universe is The series doesn’t hide it, the fantastic is at the heart of the plot. The investigation revolves around supernatural events that most often involve magic from another world. Whether going or taking a break, it’s a bold bias that we think fits the world of youth.
We still appreciate some of the details that draw on traditional detective fiction, such as the first investigation to take a crime code in an enclosed space. Beyond that, Les Irréguliers de Baker Street offers a total return visit, on a less streamlined tone but much more entertaining in its own right.
Sherlock Holmes was almost completely erased from the series, giving voice to the young people in the neighborhood who became the true heroes of the story. They bring a new and youthful look to works that are over a hundred years old. On the production side, some of the naughty special effects sometimes have a hard time convincing us. Luckily we counted it on the fingers of one hand for this first season and, once we got past it, the series really plunged us into its atmosphere. The zoom effect makes this series truly more dynamic without being overly mature.
The transitions are quite confusing, the scene often shifting from rooster to donkey without warning. If it’s surprising at first, it actually adds originality to a series that ultimately doesn’t take itself too seriously. It’s even quite funny when you go from a somewhat daring scene to a horror scene in the blink of an eye. Apart from that, this aspect of the series also contributes to its originality. Juggling between somewhat bloody scenes and jump scares from time to time, the little horror side of the series fully engages the audience’s emotions. In this respect, the series is reminiscent of John Logan’s Penny Dreadful, a Netflix series that also takes its Victorian literary code from a horror angle, even if The Irregulars of Baker Street is much more affordable for the most sensitive audience.
Featuring a five-star British lead, some of the actors stand out more than others in their interpretation of their roles. Special mention is given to Thaddea Graham (Us) who plays Bea, the leader of a small group of investigators and the intermediary between them and Watson. Independent and strong, she managed to make us cry at times.
David McKell (Snatch), who plays Spike, brings a nice breath of fresh air to the series between the two scary scenes. She interprets her roles superbly, bringing a light touch to the dramatic tone of the series.
However, the true essence of the series remains an adaptation of karakter John Watson, played brilliantly by Royce Pierreson (The Witcher). Far from the image of a doctor who is rarely involved and a bit modest, Watson here is a man far more mysterious and committed because he speaks to himself on behalf of his partner. In addition, his manipulative, violent, and dark side proves the depth of the character is very convincing.