Sherlock Holmes Against Conan Doyle

Sherlock Holmes Against Conan Doyle

Thu, 08/15/2019 - 10:30pm - 11:30pm

Although Sherlock Holmes was by far author Arthur Conan Doyle's most famous creation, he tried, and ultimately failed, to distance himself from Sherlock-mania. 

Sherlock Holmes Against Conan Doyle, airing Thursday, August 15 at 10:30 p.m. on WXXI-TV, brings to light the struggle the writer had with trying to escape the mania caused by the public’s fascination with the character Sherlock Holmes. Beginning with A Study in Scarlet, published in 1887, Doyle would write four novels and more than 50 short stories featuring Holmes and his sidekick, Dr. James Watson.

Frustrated with not having enough time to work on other genres, Doyle tried creative measures to reduce his publisher’s demand for more Holmes. He tried raising his asking price to such an absurd amount that they would have to refuse him, but to his surprise they were willing to pay those large sums. Eventually, Doyle killed off Holmes in the short story “The Final Problem” in 1893. This reprieve would be short-lived, however, as public outcry forced him to write another Holmes novel in 1901.