Monday, August 7, 2023

REVIEW | Sherlock Holmes -The Fiends of New York by Jonathan Barnes

Sherlock Holmes: The Fiends of New York by Jonathan Barnes, is a gripping play that transports listeners to the world of London at the turn of the century. Once again, Jonathan has written a story worthy of the great Conan Doyle himself. The story is full of twists, shocks and great character moments. It is a carry on from The Seamstress of Peckham Rye.

The production values of this audio drama are top-notch. Benji Clifford has created a rich and immersive atmosphere, effectively capturing diverse settings such as the ambiance London streets, the bustle of the theatre and the intimacy of Baker Street. Scored by Jamie Robertson the music sets expectations, reveals emotions and embeds the story well into its time and place.

Nicholas Briggs delivers an exceptional performance as Sherlock Holmes. Holmes is older now but Briggs still is able to capture the character's eccentricity, deductive prowess, and unwavering determination. Richard Earl's portrayal of Dr. John Watson is equally praiseworthy, perfectly embodying the loyal companion and also husband with unwavering support and astute observations. The chemistry between the two lead actors is undeniable, and their dynamic brings the iconic detective duo to life.

All the cast are sensational from the evil Seamstress played by Juliet Aubrey and Watson’s wife with secrets, Lucy Briggs-Owen. Supported by a regular repertory of Big Finish actors in the likes of Timothy Bentinck, John Banks, Glen Macready and James Joyce (or is that Jez Fielder)

Ken Betley as always does a solid job as director. With so many scenes, such a large cast and so much essential plot to unfold it must have been a logistical nightmare plotting out the recording of this story, But as always, Ken pulls it all together. 

The Fiends of New York is an enthralling audio adventure that successfully captures the essence of the beloved detective's world.

Philip Edney

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