" Let's not start Chicken Noodle Souping just yet..."
I recently got my hands on a copy of Watson & Holmes a modern day retelling of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's classic Sherlock Holmes written by comics vet Karl Bollers. There are however some noticeable differences here; one it's set in modern day New York City, Harlem in fact Watson is a former Para-Jumper and a medical intern instead of a doctor. Oh and need I mention that both characters are now African-American? I won't get into how race might color (see what I did there) a mainstream reader's notion of a characters readability I'm just going to focus on the story.
The comic opens with Jon Watson trying to save the life of a newborn left in a dumpster by an unknown mother, he doesn't succeed and this seems to drive him throughout. He meets Holmes when a man is admitted into the hospital for blunt force trauma and a drug overdose. This leads into a mystery involving a gang member’s kidnapped sister and a list of murdered businessmen. Now I know what some of you reading this maybe thinking, and no this isn't going to be a sequel to New Jack City, though (it is referenced in the story) I feel this is just as valid an adaptation as the recent films with Downey Jr. and Law. The differences being that they are modern day don't present an issue to me as a reader and unless a person is a Sir Arthur Conan Doyle purist I don't think it will bother anyone either. The story even utilizes Watson's Point of View as the original books did as well as Holmes' signature catch phrase.
Rick Leondardi does great job on the pencils creating a look that's not as grim or gritty as one would imagine illustrated Harlem but works very well. Paul Mendoza's colors are faded and give one the impression of Milestone's golden days. I love the pacing of the series my only issue is that it's an ongoing that is not monthly so you always have to go back and re read older issues to remind yourself of where you were. You can pick this up in digital and hard copy at newparadigmstudios.com or Amazon.com.Rating 4/5