Shop now Shop now Shop now See more Shop all Amazon Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Learn More Shop now DIYED Shop now Shop Fire Shop now Shop now Shop now


Your rating(Clear)Rate this item
Share your thoughts with other customers

There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

on 8 February 2003
In their effort to dramatize the entire Sherlock Holmes canon the BBC and chief adapter, Bert Coules, have had to do a few of the "lesser" stories as well as the "very best." SIGN OF THE FOUR has always fallen somewhere between these points for me. Not bad, but not great. However, Doyle's command of the English language manages to bring the least of his stories at least a notch higher.
In my effort to own the entire BBC Sherlock Holmes canon I've listened to some episodes that were not as good as others. I approached SIGN OF THE FOUR with a soft step- and was blown away by it. Writer, Bert Coules, has taken a story I always thought of as average and turned it into a splendid radio show.
Using less of the time manipulations than he did in A STUDY IN SCARLET and THE VALLEY OF FEAR, Coules tells the story in a more straightforward narative, losing none of the charm of his other adaptations. SIGN OF THE FOUR was, arguably, the most romantic of the Doyle canon, and this production retains that element as well. Watson's love for Mary Morstan is clearly portrayed by one of the finest actors to ever grace the theater of the mind; Michael Williams.
Clive Merrison as Holmes is a triumph as well. He captures elements of the character that John Gielgud and Carleton Hobbs never attempted. The bipolar mood swings and the effects of his drug addiction are played so well that they seem very natural. Where other adaptations focus on the lurid aspects of the character (using cocaine), the BBC made a great choice to present it, but not make it primary to the character- just as Doyle did.
Brian Blessed as Jonathan Small is another casting coup. Blessed has been a favorite of mine for many years and his appearance here adds greatly to the overall quality of the show.
My wife, who reads less than I do, has been discovering Holmes from these BBC adaptations and the Jeremy Brett televised movies. She enjoys the radio versions as well as I do and has begun reading the books as a result. High praise indeed.
I recommend these cassettes/cd's to anyone who hasn't read the books, as well as to those who have read them 100 times.
0Comment| 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 3 April 2003
I've been listening to this BBC dramatized version of Sherlock Holmes 'The Sign of Four' and it's marvelous! Clive Merrison is the voice of Sherlock Holmes and his Holmes is passionate! Emotional! He has violent mood swings and he's constantly mocking Watson! He is very unlike suave Poirot or calm Dalgliesh.
Of course, the rest of the cast is damn good, too. I've never thought a voice like Moir Leslie (Mary Morstan) could exist. Her voice is amazingly beautiful.
It frustrates me that other BBC Shelock Holmes dramatization are only available on tapes (execept the Hound of Baskervilles). I want to buy cds! Waahh.
0Comment| 5 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 2 March 2009
Settle down and enjoy the audio CD of a tremendous tale-adventure and mystery.Great characters-you could forget those eccentric brothers-but also the way the actors carry you along in this exciting story.I love the way there are so many first class actors used-Clive Merrison is just exceptional as Holmes,Watson is played just right and there is also romance in the air-I will say no more-you must listen to it yourself.You will not be disappointed.
0Comment| 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 14 December 2010
I've been listening to the Clive Merrison series for years and I am usually impressed, but alas not this time. Contrary to previous reviews this is probably one of the best tales in the entire canon, and certainly the best long story. It contains everything you could wish from a hunt through London to Eastern romance and extreme elements of the macabre. This adaptation doesn't do it full justice, however, particularly with Watson's love interest which I think is rather over played whereas in the book it is inferred but Conan Doyle doesn't see fit to go too deeply into it. This dramatisation presents it as the most awfully sugary romantic melodrama, although Holmes' reaction to the match makes up for much of this. Added to other problems Merrison also plays Holmes' violent moods as a little too whiny and irritating and doesn't convey enough melancholy. Watson, however, is perfect in his chivalrous oafery. Brian Blessed as Jonathan Small could conceivably be brilliant, but apart from the expensive name tag he really isn't worth the price. All this is subject to personal opinion and here is mine for what it's worth. Buy it by all means but don't go expecting the fireworks of The Final Problem or The Hound of the Baskervilles.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 3 April 2003
I've been listening to this BBC dramatized version of Sherlock Holmes 'The Sign of Four' and it's marvelous! Clive Merrison is the voice of Sherlock Holmes and his Holmes is passionate! Emotional! He has violent mood swings and he's constantly mocking Watson! He is very unlike suave Poirot or calm Dalgliesh.
Of course, the rest of the cast is damn good, too. I've never thought a voice like Moir Leslie (Mary Morstan) could exist. Her voice is amazingly beautiful.
It frustrates me that other BBC Shelock Holmes dramatization are only available on tapes (execept the Hound of Baskervilles). I want to buy cds! Waahh.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse