Oh great, now Sherlock Holmes is an example of "toxic masculinity"

Jan 4th

The college sophomores who run Salon must be having a slow week.

Someone wrote an entire think piece examining how Sherlock Holmes' toxic masculinity contributes to the character's appeal.

Let's start at the beginning. This coy little question first drew my eye as it sat man-spreading just under the headline.

Holmes is often portrayed as unemotional and arrogant — why hasn't this been challenged in modern adaptations?

Why indeed.

Perhaps because those are features that make up Sherlock Holmes as A CHARACTER.

Why should it be the job of modern adaptations to take classic characters and recast them in a generic, non-offensive, vanilla-flavored, mold? If you take a character like Sherlock Holmes and remove all of his personality traits, you don't have Sherlock Holmes anymore.

I sometimes get the picture that if wokeists had it their way, every classic character would be rewritten to look like the mascot for Greendale Community College. Just a raceless, genderless, personality-free blob of a human being.

It's a beautiful thought.

But to the bafflement of this author, it seems that some viewers prefer to watch characters with, well, character. And unfortunately, sometimes that requires them to have a personality

To make her point, she talks about the BBC's Sherlock mini-series starring Benedict Cumberbatch and the (far inferior) American show Elementary. Both of which came out about 10 years ago, by the way. Which makes this whole analysis even weirder.

So what exactly is the problem with these shows?

In both adaptations, Sherlock's brilliance and skills of deduction are unmatched. While I really enjoyed these shows, I was taken aback by Sherlock's rudeness, exasperation, his disparagement of others, his desire to dominate and his latent violence. I saw Sherlock as a toxic man.

Heaven forbid!

So then the author discovered something truly disturbing. Apparently, this Sherlock Holmes character is based on some books or something! "Not knowing the books, I wondered where this came from, so I began reading them," she writes.

And 🚨 #Problematic Alert! 🚨, the character in the books is JUST as toxic as the one in the shows which are based on the books!

So then, of course, we are taken on a magical journey through the history of toxic masculinity, wherein I discovered that there is such a job as "masculinity researcher."

Masculinity researchers have defined toxic masculinity as a performance of "traditional" male gender roles exhibited by a tendency to dominate others, a predisposition to violence, and to be emotionally cold and distant. It can also be expressed through highly competitive behaviour, or the desire to be the sole source of information — someone who thinks they are right about everything in every sphere. Men like Donald Trump, for example.

I'm impressed.

Made it six paragraphs before making it about Donald Trump.

Holmes is obviously not akin to Trump. To start with, Holmes is a genius, and he hardly exhibits the same level of toxic behaviours that Trump does. But there are elements there.

🙄

What was this article about again?

Oh, quick reminder: Someone wrote this. Then someone read it. Then someone published it.


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