Author Topic: Sherlock  (Read 2679 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline blspro

  • Sparkles in Sunlight
  • *
  • Posts: 65
  • Liked: 7
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #30 on: January 14, 2018, 08:46:25 AM »
THE FINAL PROBLEM
Here we get the climactic reveal the season had been building toward:  “Mycroft told me you’d rewritten your memories.  He didn’t tell me you’d written me out completely.”  Sherlock doesn’t understand Eurus’ statement: “What do you mean, “rewritten”?”  In the episode, Sherlock discovers he told himself a “better story” about his entire childhood.  Having experienced such a devastating emotional trauma related to the murder of his best friend, Sherlock repressed his childhood memories, corrupting them to such a degree that the friend became a dog in Sherlock mind: “What a funny little memory, Sherlock.  You were upset - so you told yourself a better story.  But we never had a dog.”

This secret trauma caused Sherlock to erase his sister from his mind completely and led him to isolate himself from others emotionally if not physically.  His entire past was “a lie that’s preferable to the truth”.  It is an elaborate fiction Sherlock himself created - a self-deception - which Mycroft (and presumably his parents) were co-conspirators in maintaining.

Of course, Mycroft created a fiction of his own as well.  He told his parents a “story” that Eurus had died, when in fact Mycroft had isolated and imprisoned her.  “I was trying to be kind” he tells his parents when the truth is finally revealed.  “Kind?  Kind?!  You told us that our daughter was DEAD!” to which Mycroft sadly states: “Better that than tell you what she had become.”

WHY FICTIONS?
Why use fictions - lies - as a thematic motif?  What is the thematic relevance of “corrupted” memories - of self-deception?  The writers’ reason for this motif can be gleaned from Sherlock’s words to Watson in TAB:  “There are no ghosts in this world, save those we make for ourselves.”  Watson is unclear as to the meaning of this statement, so Sherlock elaborates: “We all have a past Watson.  Ghosts.  They are the shadows that define our every sunny day.”  And, in TFP, Mycroft tells Sherlock: “The roads we walk have demons beneath and yours have been waiting for a very long time.” The ghost, that demon, is Eurus - a devastating truth Sherlock didn’t want to face and so wiped from his mind completely.  But one cannot escape the truth.  Like a ghost, it’s still there even if you do not see it.  As Mycroft explains: “You do remember her, in a way.  Every choice you ever made; every path you’ve ever taken - the man you are today - is your memory of Eurus.”

In other word, the truth shapes you, even - in fact, especially - if you try to evade it.  Ignorance cannot protect you from the truth. Shutting your eyes will not stop the fangs of a demon from biting you.  Self-deception can only leave you blind - helpless - at the mercy of that which you seek to evade.  It will shape you, rather than you shaping yourself.  And you will be unaware of its hold over you. 

Only by knowing the truth - only by facing the truth, rather than running from it - are you free to choose your actions, rather than having them chosen for you.  Only by facing the truth can you be yourself - rather than being what blind circumstance or the will of others make of you.


DETERMINISM VS FREE WILL
With the motif of self-deception, the writers are now boring down to the core of Existentialism - to the fact that human beings are not “things”.  The writers here are focusing on the fact there is a single characteristic which distinguishes “humans” from “things”: 

Free Will. 

Things simply “are”.  They merely “exist”.  They are “brute facts”.  They have no power to change their identity.  A thing “is what it is” - nothing more.  Things are determined.

Humans, on the other hand, are not determined.  As the existentialists say:  “Humans can never really be anything in the way brute objects can be things with determinate attributes.”  Our attributes are “ambiguous” - are subject to our will.  In other words, humans have the freedom to choose - to create - our identity. 

AUTHENTICITY
The “awareness and acceptance of... this basic ambiguity” is what Existentialism calls “authenticity”.  We create ourselves - and are responsible for that creation.  This freedom of choice is the attribute which separates “humans” from the rest of existence - from “things”.
 
To create one’s self is the nature of human beings.  To be true to ourselves is the only way to stay human. By exercising our will, we are being faithful to our nature.  We are being human.

BAD FAITH
For existentialism, self-deception is the rejection of this nature.  It is an example of what they call “bad faith” or being “inauthentic”.  It is the attempt to escape the responsibility of shaping oneself.  It is the attempt to be determined - to have one’s identity set by others or by happenstance rather than by oneself.

Sartre’s novels are filled with characters who base their actions, not on what they know to be true - not on their understanding of reality - but on “external pressures - the pressure to appear to be a certain kind of person, to ignore one’s own moral and aesthetic objections” etc in order to have “a more comfortable existence”.  Such people abandon their own will.  They substitute the will of others and let them dictate their identity.  They treat themselves as “things” - things to be molded into the shape others want.

Sartre’s novels also “include characters who do not understand their own reasons for acting, or who ignore crucial facts about their own lives in order to avoid uncomfortable truths.”  This is exactly what Sherlock did as a child, thus leaving himself to be determined by “fate” - to be shaped by blind circumstance and by others rather than by himself. 

(Note: It is not a coincidence that Eurus played the false “Faith” character in TLD)

PINOCCHIO IN REVERSE
For existentialists, the desire to escape the responsibility of creating one’s own identity - the desire to be determined - is the desire to be a “thing” rather than be a human being.  It is the reverse of the Pinocchio story.  Rather than the puppet’s desire to be a boy, it is the boy’s desire to be a puppet. 

It is the desire to give up the responsibility of self-creation.  It is the desire to give up being human.

Self-deception - the refusal to know the truth of why one acts or makes one’s choices - is self-abnegation.  It is is no different - and no less destructive - than when others make people into things.  Where CAM forced people to be “property”, those of “bad faith” volunteer to be property.  Where Smith forced people to be cadavers, the “inauthentic” volunteer to be cadavers (Sherlock, the Lying - ie inauthentic - Detective, volunteers to be a cadaver).

The practice is the same - making a person into a “thing”.  Only the executioner is different.  Self-deception is self-destruction - self-immolation.  It is the wish ‘not to be’.

Self-deception is simply an act of suicide, rather than of murder.  The outcome is the same regardless: the death of one’s “self”.

THE LYING DETECTIVE
All of this is the reason the second to last episode is named “The Lying Detective”.  Not only has Sherlock lied to everyone throughout the episode, but - as the viewer is about to learn - Sherlock lied to himself about his entire childhood.  His life is a lie.  He has not shaped it.  His life has been shaped by “external forces” - to which he had purposefully turned a blind eye.  Sherlock - the sociopath - ironically turns out to have allowed himself be made by others.

His life truly is “not his own”.

This was hinted at (along with almost every other reveal in Season 4) in TAB.  While speaking with his Mind Palace version of Watson, that Jiminy Cricket - ie his own subconscious - asks: “What made you like this?” Sherlock scoffs “Oh, Watson.  Nothing made me.  I made me.”  That this declaration is false is immediately suggested when, incongruously, we hear the sound of a dog whimpering.  Sherlock is surprised, recognizing it:  ”Redbeard?” he asks.   Then, suddenly, (as if Redbeard wasn’t hint enough) the ghost of a woman appears.  This shows Eurus truly is haunting Sherlock’s mind.  As Mycroft says: unbeknownst to Sherlock, Eurus lives in his every thought - his every action - his every choice.

She - not Sherlock - is the ‘ghost in the machine’. 

That is what changes in the final episode.  No longer will Sherlock deceive himself about these external forces.  No longer will he relinquish the choice of his identity to them.  No longer will he be a puppet. 

In the end, like Pinocchio, Sherlock wants to be a human boy again.

That is what Sartre identifies as a “self recovery of being which has been previously corrupted.”  And that single sentence is the entirety of the plot of TFP.  It is Sherlock’s recovery of himself, from that which he had previously “corrupted” (And note: “corrupted” is precisely the word the writers have Smith use in TLD).

Talk about integration!  The writers are really plumbing those “deep waters”.

END OF STORY ANALYSIS
« Last Edit: January 14, 2018, 03:16:36 PM by blspro »


Offline blspro

  • Sparkles in Sunlight
  • *
  • Posts: 65
  • Liked: 7
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #31 on: January 14, 2018, 09:20:56 AM »
Now I had started to write a breakdown for each of the episodes, but life got in the way at the time and I only completed a breakdown of the first episode.  So I didn't include it in the document links, since it is incomplete.  But it does serve to give an idea of all the integration going on between episodes, which are intended to serve the final episode.

MIRRORED PLOTS AND CHARACTERS
Besides repeating motifs, the show repeats events and characterizations throughout Season 4.  The reason for this is, as before, two-fold.  First, again, to establish the universality of the theme through action.  More importantly, however, is to provide the audience with a proper “context” for Eurus. 


THE PROBLEM OF EMPATHY
The biggest challenge the writers faced was getting the audience to feel empathy - to feel sympathetic - toward Eurus.  It was a challenge because Eurus seems to be a cold-blooded psychopath.  We see her murder people and torture our heroes.  How does one engender “sentiment” for such an individual?  How does one make such unsympathetic behavior understandable - relatable? 

How do you make an audience feel sorry for a psychopath?

The answer is: by placing other characters, mostly those we already know and with whom we already sympathize, in similar situations.  Because we have great empathy, if not love, for them, we will understand how and why they react.  And thus, by extension, we will understand and empathize with Eurus when we see the same behavior in her.

In other words, the writers are putting us in as many other familiar pairs of shoes as possible, so that we will be comfortable when we are placed in Eurus’ shoes - which, at first blush, may seem radically different, but turn out to be remarkably similar shoes.

PRIMARY PLOT MIRRORS OF THE SEASON
Throughout the series, we’ve seen Sherlock become more human because of his friendship with John.  John essentially saved him.  The writers remind us of the power of that journey by mirroring it (in an abbreviated form) with John through Season 4.  In doing so, they pave the way for Sherlock to trod that path with Eurus.  So, in the simplest of summaries, we have these primary story echoes and mirrors: 

John’s lost his love (Wife)
Sherlock’s lost his love (Best Friend)
Eurus lost her love (Sherlock)

John cuts himself off from others.  He withdraws from everyone, isolating himself emotionally.
Sherlock had cut himself off from others.  He withdrew from everyone, isolating himself emotionally.
Eurus has been cut off from others.  She was withdrawn from everyone, and has been isolated emotionally.

John is alone - without love.
Sherlock was alone - without love.
Eurus is alone - without love

John is haunted by the ghost of his past: Mary
Sherlock is haunted by the ghost of his past: Eurus
Eurus is haunted by the longing in her past, for Sherlock

John is in existential hell
Sherlock was in existential hell
Eurus is in existential hell

John needs to be saved from hell by Sherlock’s love
Sherlock needed to be saved from hell by John’s love
Eurus needs to be saved from hell by Sherlock’s love

Of course, that is just the bones of the reflected stories.  Each episode fleshes out these bones, and provides a richer set of echoes and mirrors in the process:
« Last Edit: January 14, 2018, 09:52:15 AM by blspro »


Offline blspro

  • Sparkles in Sunlight
  • *
  • Posts: 65
  • Liked: 7
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #32 on: January 14, 2018, 09:23:32 AM »
EPISODE 4.1:  “THE SIX THATCHERS”
This episode had much to set up. It had to expand the ongoing conflict between ego and empathy as one’s standard more concretely.  It had to establish the thematic concept of determinism vs free will (Sumarra vs Sumatra).  It had to establish water as a visual motif related to death.  It had to set up Norbury as a mirror of Sherlock.  And it had to begin the reversal of roles between Sherlock and John - ie it had to set up John as the one who needed saving.

AJAY AS MIRROR OF EURUS
One of the primary mirrors in T6T is Ajay.  As Eurus is the “very tangible ghost” of Sherlock’s past come back to haunt him, so Ajay is the “very tangible ghost” of Mary’s past come back to haunt her.

Ajay is a former colleague of Mary’s (“We were family”) whom she unwittingly ‘abandoned’, leaving him - trapped and alone - to be tortured relentlessly and mercilessly for six years for absolutely NO reason.  It was insane; meaningless; endless.  As such, Ajay is literally a “tortured” soul.

Ajay’s is also a maddeningly enraged soul.  He is psychotically vengeful toward Mary for leaving him alone in that hell.  And no one, not even Mary, blames Ajay for being filled with such rage - at being subjected to such a horrific life.  They can certainly blame him for misdirecting his anger at them.  But they do not condemn him as evil and seek his death for it.  Quite the opposite.  Despite the fact that he seeks to kill her, Mary wants to help him - to try to save him.

In other words, Mary does not feel anger towards Ajay, but empathy.  And, in fact, when Ajay is killed, Mary is not relieved by his death.  She is terribly anguished by it.  His death is not a justice, but a tragedy.

That is the reason the writers created Ajay.   

EMPATHY FOR BOTH
Ajay’s story is a mirror of Eurus’ story.  Like Ajay, Eurus is a family member whom Sherlock unwittingly abandoned, leaving her - trapped and alone - to be tortured relentlessly and mercilessly for decades by an insane, meaningless existence.  Eurus is a metaphysically tortured soul.  And, like Ajay, hers is a maddeningly enraged soul.  She is psychotically vengeful toward Sherlock for leaving her alone in that hell.

The reason the writers created Ajay is because they want the audience to feel for Eurus the same way they felt for Ajay.  They don’t want us to blame Eurus for her rage at being subjected to her horrific life.  We can certainly blame her for misdirecting her anger at Sherlock, et al.  But they don’t want us to condemn her as evil or to seek her death.  They want us to hope Ajay’s tragedy is not repeated.  In other words, despite the fact that she is responsible for the deaths of many, and seemingly seeks to kill Sherlock, the writers want us to root for Sherlock to help Eurus - to save her.

They want us to hope Eurus escapes Ajay’s fate.

Naturally, because people are not normally inclined to have sympathy toward seeming psychopaths, this mirror will necessarily be repeated later (in TLD) with someone we care about even more, so as to re-emphasize the similarities and reinforce the audience’s understanding, and thus empathy, for Eurus.

MARY FORESHADOWS EURUS
While this is less of a mirror than others in the episode, it does echo in one’s mind when watching TFP.  As Mary goes on the lamb, isolating herself from love, her condition parallels that of Eurus.  Like Eurus, Mary’s actions are determined by caprice.  There is no “context” to guide them.  Her choices are totally random - literally made by the role of the dice.  This is Eurus’ existential condition.  She has no basis on which to make any choices.  She has no love.  She can only make them capriciously.  And this rootlessness leaves Eurus in a state of terror, as evidenced by the girl on the plane.  Here, too, Mary foreshadows Eurus’ state.  In disguise and on the run, Mary plays a woman clearly agitated and afraid: “I watched a documentary on the Discovery Channel ‘Why Planes Fail.’  … truly terrifying.  Swore I would never fly again, yet here I am!”  She then begins to feel panic: “Oh God.  I’m sc...I-I don't feel so good.  Oh my God.  I think i’m dying, I don't feel so good.” 

That is Eurus’ constant state. 

In other words, as Mary plays a woman fearful while flying, who is alone and needs help, so Eurus’ metaphor is of a girl fearful while flying, who is alone and needs help. 

Even if it only registers subliminally, this parallel serves as another linkage between Eurus and someone we already care for, thereby strengthening the empathetic association.


Offline blspro

  • Sparkles in Sunlight
  • *
  • Posts: 65
  • Liked: 7
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #33 on: January 14, 2018, 09:25:38 AM »
NORBURY AS MIRROR OF SHERLOCK
Mrs. Norbury was a false Amo (false “Love”).  She did not act out of love of others, but of love for herself.  She wanted money - and wanted to prove herself clever.  She acted to satisfy her own ego, and did so by treating people as things to that end.  That is what made this seemingly harmless ‘little old lady’ a “monster”. 

This is a direct mirror of Sherlock.  Sherlock doesn’t love “people”.  He loves competing against others - conquering others.  That is “The Game”. He is always trying to prove himself the ‘cleverest’ person in the room.  Put simply, Sherlock doesn’t play The Game in order to help people.  For Sherlock, people exist in order for him to play The Game.  People are things to be beaten.  And if they fail to serve that purpose, as Sherlock angrily complains on multiple occasions: “Then what exactly is the point of you?” 

Sherlock takes cases for the same reason he takes drugs - not because it helps others, but because it feeds his ego.  It’s about him, not them (which is the reason Sherlock became a consulting detective rather than a member of the police force: so he can turn away the “boring” people and their “boring” cases).  In other words, while taking cases may help other people, that is usually just collateral benefit.

And, just as when a junkie takes drugs, there can also be collateral damage as well. 

DIE, MARY, DIE!  (alternately: DIE, EGO, DIE!)
As has been noted, the purpose of the series is to show Sherlock becoming a “good man”.  The conflict of the story is the conflict within Sherlock - the conflict between his ego and his empathy.  Part of the problem Sherlock faces is that he doesn’t even see the conflict.  The damage his ego causes others rarely impacts him in any significant fashion. 

As the saying goes: “The first step toward solving a problem is recognizing you have one.”  That is what the writers had to do - get Sherlock to finally see his problem.  They had to bring his love of self into direct conflict with his love of others.  In this case, his desire to beat others had to come into direct conflict with his love of John and Mary.

And, in this conflict, love had to lose.  Ego had to ‘triumph’.  Sherlock had to see - for himself - the death and destruction caused when his ego ‘beat’ his empathy.  He had to feel - for himself - how wrong he had been to place his ego over his empathy.

Mary’s death is the moment Sherlock truly recognizes he has a problem - that his moral standard is not “good”.

In other words, to get Sherlock to question his ego, the writers had to kill Mary.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2018, 09:59:46 AM by blspro »


Offline blspro

  • Sparkles in Sunlight
  • *
  • Posts: 65
  • Liked: 7
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #34 on: January 14, 2018, 09:28:41 AM »
“YOU MADE A VOW!”
What is Sherlock’s vow? He states it at the end of “The Sign of Three” (TSoT, 3.2):  “I’ve never made a vow in my life, and after tonight I never will again.  So, here in front of you all, my first and last vow.  Mary and John: whatever it takes, whatever happens, from now on I swear I will always be there, always, for all three of you.” Put simply, Sherlock’s vow was to protect them.  To keep them safe from the monsters of the world, no matter the cost.   To slay any “dragon” which might threaten them.  As both Mycroft and Mary note, that is how Sherlock sees himself: as “a Dragonslayer.”  And Sherlock kept that vow in the very next episode (HLV).  He slew the dragon which threatened them - CAM. 

But there was one dragon Sherlock always turned a blind eye toward.  One monster hiding in plain sight: the dragon inside the dragonslayer.  Again, as he tells Moriarty in TRF “I may be on the side of the angels, but don’t think for one second that I am one of them.”  Sherlock knows himself to be a devil.  He allows that monster to live inside him.  He feeds that dragon constantly.

At the beginning of the episode, the writers went to great pains to re-establish this fact.  We see Sherlock “present” at many important events in John and Mary’s life.  But he is not “there”.  He is not staying true to his vow.  Instead, he is solving cases - feeding his ego - feeding his dragon at their expense. 

And, in the end, the dragon eats Mary.

Sherlock’s desire to beat Mrs. Norbury is ultimately what gets Mary killed.  Sherlock broke his vow by ignoring his own dragon.  He broke his vow by not controlling it - by not shackling it.  He broke his vow by keeping himself as his moral standard - rather than substituting Mary and John as that standard, as he promised. 

Sherlock thought he could have both.  He thought he could have his egotistic cake and eat it too.

But he learned - at terrible cost - that it’s one or the other.  Ego or empathy.  Only one can reign supreme.  Only one can be a person’s standard - the star by which one steers.

So the question now becomes - can Sherlock stop the monster?  Can he chain the dragon?  Or is Sherlock destined to be a destroyer - fated to be a sociopath - doomed to end in Samarra?

NO FATE BUT WHAT WE MAKE
As previously indicated, Sherlock does consider himself a “sociopath”.  And it’s important to note that “sociopath” is a psychological condition.  In other words it is an affliction rather than a choice.  This is another of Sherlock’s self-deceptions.  As we hear him constantly repeat: “All emotion is abhorrent to me.  It is the grit in a sensitive instrument.”  In other words Sherlock chooses to act like a sociopath. For him, it is actually a philosophic decision rather than a psychological disorder.  As one of the writer/creators declares: “He’d really like to be a sociopath.  But he’s so [f’ing] not.  The wonderful drama of Sherlock is that he’s aspiring to this extraordinary standard. ...He’s repressed his emotions, his passions, his desires, in order to make his brain work better - in itself a very emotional decision.  And it does suggest that he must be very emotional if he thinks they get in the way.  I think Sherlock Holmes must be bursting!” 

So we have another example of Sherlock’s existential “bad faith”.  And it’s very much in line with an example given in the context of Sartre’s idea of inauthenticity: a woman who thinks “just as a matter of fact” that she is a coward.  With such an assertion, she is accepting a deterministic view of herself.  A view that she’s just a thing - possessed of an immutable identity.  That she has no say in it.  That she has no agency.  Such a woman is evading the fact (“excluding from her view”) her ability to “transform her existence through changed ways of behaving”.  Such bad faith is a denial of human “transcendence” - a denial of the will’s freedom to choose.

By always asserting - “as a matter of fact” - that he is a sociopath, Sherlock engages in the same act of denial.   He accepts determinism - accepts his appointment in Samarra is unchangeable.  In fact, not only does he accept it, he has reveled in it.  He was proud to be a dragon slaying other dragons.

But after Mary’s death - when he finally recognizes his problem - Sherlock begins to question whether he is indeed doomed to trod this ego-driven path.  As he asks at the very end of the episode: “When does the path we walk on lock around our feet?  When does the road become a river with one destination?  Death waits for us all in Samarra.  But can Samarra be avoided?”

In other words, is he too late?  Has his identity become fixed?  Is he destined to forever be the deadly beast?  Or can the dragon submit to love? Can he change his destination from Samarra (from feeding his ego) to Sumatra (to selflessly loving others)?

This is the mystery Sherlock must now solve.

THE CHANGING OF THE GUARD
That Sherlock is determined to solve this mystery - that he is resolute in his desire to change - is evidenced by his discussion with Mrs. Hudson near the conclusion of T6T.  With great shame, he quietly and humbly requests of her:  “If you ever think I'm becoming a bit ...full of myself, cocky or...overconfident...would you just say the word ‘Norbury’ to me, would you?  … Just that.  I'd be grateful.”

This is Sherlock having looked in the Norbury mirror.  It is him admitting he has a problem, admitting he needs to change, and admitting he may need help to make that change.  It is Sherlock taking the first steps on a new path - to a new identity: that of a “good man”.

THE MIRROR TO AVOID
What the writers give us with the end of T6T is a tragedy. But they also give us an alternate ending to the season finale - IF Sherlock fails to change.  In T6T, Sherlock competes with Norbury rather than being compassionate toward her.  It is his lack of empathy which leads to T6T’s deadly consequences.  If Sherlock had not recognized his problem - if he were to continue to place his ego above his empathy with Eurus - if he had tried to beat her, to feed his ego - the results would have been catastrophic for them all.

Learning the hard lesson - that “ego is the signature in human destruction” - is what saves everyone in the end.

END OF ANALYSIS
« Last Edit: January 14, 2018, 09:34:15 AM by blspro »


Offline blspro

  • Sparkles in Sunlight
  • *
  • Posts: 65
  • Liked: 7
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #35 on: January 14, 2018, 10:24:22 AM »
I think it would ruin them for me to over analyze at this level.
A similar idea was expressed in TLJ thread, though that commenter was far nastier about it: that knowledge of a thing destroys one's enjoyment of it rather than enhancing it. To that other commenter, I referenced a story the famous physicist Richard Feynman told in regard to this bizarre notion.  Instead of trying to summarize his words, I'll simply let the man make the point himself:

https://youtu.be/zSZNsIFID28

His words last less than a minute and a half, so they won't cut into your time reading "novels".

« Last Edit: January 14, 2018, 10:39:31 AM by blspro »


Online The Lurker

  • Ephialtes
  • *****
  • Posts: 7716
  • Liked: 4127
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #36 on: January 14, 2018, 11:28:50 AM »
hbomberguy brings up some interesting points...
<a href="https://www.youtube.com/v/LkoGBOs5ecM" target="_blank" class="new_win">https://www.youtube.com/v/LkoGBOs5ecM</a>


Offline blspro

  • Sparkles in Sunlight
  • *
  • Posts: 65
  • Liked: 7
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #37 on: January 14, 2018, 02:23:52 PM »
Quote
It being my birthday

Happy Birthday!  :)


Offline LucasM

  • Ephialtes
  • *****
  • Posts: 7383
  • Liked: 4400
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #38 on: January 14, 2018, 04:25:40 PM »
Quote
It being my birthday

Happy Birthday!  :)

Thank you.
To dispel some of the misconceptions about head injuries you have developed from watching movies and TV, I wrote this: ...Some Information on Head Injury Effects


Online MartyS (Gromit)

  • Not Quite Legend
  • *****
  • Posts: 11373
  • Liked: 2449
  • Weirdies!
    • My homepage
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #39 on: January 16, 2018, 12:12:01 AM »
I guess I'll share a case where analysis of art almost ruined a song for me.

I listened to a bass player talking about how great the bass guitar track was in a certain song, concentrating on listening to the bass in that song I could see all the guys points.  But then when the song would come on the radio I was inadvertently still listening to the bass more than anything else.  It took hearing the song a lot more times until I could enjoy it normally again.


Offline blspro

  • Sparkles in Sunlight
  • *
  • Posts: 65
  • Liked: 7
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #40 on: January 21, 2018, 07:16:28 AM »
I'd suggest there is a difference between music and most other art, given that music is a direct emotional experience, whereas film (for instance) requires an understanding of the words and the action in order to make an emotional connection.  As such, I'd say analysis of a film or a novel etc is like forming a relationship.  The more you learn about the person (or in this case, the work), the deeper and more rewarding a bond you can create.  Thus one has the choice of forming superficial acquaintances, respectful associations, strong friendships, or profound loves - depending upon one's level of knowledge (and interest). 

For example, when watching Sherlock's "The Abominable Bride", one is certainly entertained by the story being told.  But by the end of the Sherlock series, with the introduction of Eurus and the reveal that Sherlock has blocked his memory of her, one looks back at "The Abominable Bride" and sees a completely new and deeper story was actually being told.  The additional knowledge one has gained reveals the true story - in much the same way the ending of The Sixth Sense reveals the deeper truth to what one had previously known.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2018, 08:05:53 AM by blspro »


Online MartyS (Gromit)

  • Not Quite Legend
  • *****
  • Posts: 11373
  • Liked: 2449
  • Weirdies!
    • My homepage
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #41 on: January 21, 2018, 09:44:12 AM »
I'd suggest there is a difference between music and most other art, given that music is a direct emotional experience, whereas film (for instance) requires an understanding of the words and the action in order to make an emotional connection.  As such, I'd say analysis of a film or a novel etc is like forming a relationship.  The more you learn about the person (or in this case, the work), the deeper and more rewarding a bond you can create.  Thus one has the choice of forming superficial acquaintances, respectful associations, strong friendships, or profound loves - depending upon one's level of knowledge (and interest). 

All of that can be true for music, songs have lyrics that can tell interesting stories, and each instrument can be like a character that interacts in different ways with other characters.  A well written orchestral piece can tell a story just like a song can.  Knowing how to read music and/or playing an instrument can also change how you perceive all music.


Offline blspro

  • Sparkles in Sunlight
  • *
  • Posts: 65
  • Liked: 7
Re: Sherlock
« Reply #42 on: January 21, 2018, 12:37:28 PM »
"All that can be true for music, songs have lyrics that can tell interesting stories"

Yes it is true of lyrics.  I should have been more specific (esp given your explicit context of "song" rather than "music").  My apologies.

My comment was more generally aimed at instrumental music.  That is the direct emotional experience.  Lyrics do indeed fall into the category I was describing for film or other forms of literature.  And thus my argument applies to them as well.  If you do not understand the words, you won't hear the "interesting stories".  Your experience will not be the same as if you did understand the "interesting stories" they tell.  If you do not grasp the analogies they use, you will only understand some of the "interesting stories" they tell.  Etc.  In this case, lyrics are comparable to poetry.  And analysis is not only helpful, but is usually necessary, to derive the full meaning in poetry.  (Of course, contemporary music is usually fairly overt in its meaning - but there are many songs where analysis is required to understand what the writer is truly referencing).

It is also true that, if you do know the words to a song, you may not be able to listen to just the instrumental version without hearing them in your head.  I would not call that "ruining" the music though.

"each instrument can be like a character that interacts in different ways with other characters"

But it is different in that they "interact" neither in word nor action.  There is no intermediate step.  It is, as noted, a direct emotional experience.  Thus determining the meaning of words and actions is not required in order to evoke an emotion.  When one speaks of music, one is speaking of something categorically different than other art - because it doesn't have the intermediary step necessary to evoke an emotion.  And it is precisely those intermediaries which need SOME analysis.

That was my point.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2018, 01:25:07 PM by blspro »