Sherlock Hound (FAQ)

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Q: What is Meitantai Holmes?

Meitantai Holmes ("Famous Detective Holmes", or "Sherlock Hound") is the last TV series Miyazaki made. It was made as a joint project between Tokyo Movie Shinsha and an Italian TV station, RAI, in 1981. Miyazaki directed 6 episodes (and wrote scripts for some of them), but the production was put on hold due to a copyright dispute with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's estate. Two of the episodes, "The Blue Carbuncle" and "Treasure under the Sea" were then finally theater released with Nausicaa in 1984, with the disclaimer, "This film has nothing to do with Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes". Since it was well received and the copyright dispute was finally resolved, Tokyo Movie Shinsha decided to make more episodes of "Holmes" and to air it as a TV series as originally planned. Of course, Miyazaki was no longer working there, so the new episodes were made by totally different staff members from the first 6 episodes.

The series is action packed, and really fun to watch. There are many classic Miyazaki moments - car chases, flying scenes, a strong woman, villains turning good, etc. All the characters such as Holmes, Watson, Mrs. Hudson, and Prof. Moriarty were made into dogs. Holmes is a lot younger and more active than in the novels (he drives a car and does a lot of car chases). Mrs. Hudson, now a 19 year old widow, gets a piece of the action, as most Miyazaki heroines do.

Q: What Episodes did Miyazaki Direct?

  • "The Little Client" - A little girl looks for her father who was kidnapped to make counterfeits.
  • "The Blue Carbuncle" - Polly accidentally pickpockets the Blue Carbuncle.
  • "Treasure Under the Sea" - Moriarty steals a submarine to attack a ship loaded with salvaged treasure.
  • "Where Did the Sovereigns Go?" - Sovereign coins are stolen from a huge golden money-bank.
  • "The Abduction of Mrs. Hudson" - Moriarty kidnaps Mrs. Hudson.
  • "The White Cliffs of Dover" - Mrs. Hudson jumps into action to save the air post between London and Paris.

Q: Are there Differences Between the Theatrical and the TV version of "Holmes"?

Yes. They have different voice casts, songs, and opening and ending titles. They also had different names for the characters, due to the copyright dispute. Aside from Holmes and Watson, Mrs. Hudson was "Mrs. Ellison", "Prof. Moriarty" was "Prof. Moroach", and others were changed as well in the theater version. Tokuma has released a video of the theater version.