"Data! Data! Data!" he cried impatiently. "I can't make bricks without clay."
-- "The Adventure of the Copper Beeches."
This quote reminds me of Data the android and the classic Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes "Elementary, My Dear Data" and "Ship in a Bottle." In my library I have a painting of Data as Holmes and Geordi LaForge as Dr. Watson.
What is it about Sherlock Holmes and science fiction, anyway? Many years ago I was looking through Holmes books at a department store and the elderly clerk asked me if I were also a Star Trek fan. The answer was yes, but I have no idea why she asked the question.
Many of the folks that I follow on Twitter are both Dr. Who and Holmes fans. I love the episode where Tom Baker wears a deerstalker. Perhaps there was more than one such. And didn't Tom Baker once play Holmes in live theater?
Of all the dozens of Holmes pastiches on my shelves, my favorites owe as much to Jules Verne and his descendants as to Arthur Conan Doyle. The collection called Sherlock Holmes in Orbit, 26 then-new stories edited by Mike Resnick and Martin H. Greenberg, springs to mind immediately. (Note that the cover of the edition I own boldly proclaims "Authorized by Dame Jean Conan Doyle.")
I don't know if Sherlock Holmes and science fiction could be called a natural combination, but it's certainly a very felicitious one.
Happy New Year! What's on your Sherlock Holmes agenda for the year ahead?