Home > Characters, Information > The Holmes Inc. Character Bible

The Holmes Inc. Character Bible

by Ty ‘The Guy’ Templeton

In the 21st Century, when international terrorism and crime gets too much for any government to handle, they turn to the greatest consulting agency on Earth: HOLMES INC.

The direct descendants of Sherlock Holmes have a family business, and the business is saving the world. These are their stories.

THE HISTORY – BACKSTORY

Sherlock Holmes’ last adventure (titled: HIS LAST BOW) was set during the First World War, wherein he worked for British intelligence rooting out a German double agent named Von Bork. At the end of the adventure, Holmes says he’s going back into retirement to work on breeding a special kind of bee (honey production and beekeeping were the hobbies Holmes takes with him into retirement)….and we never hear from him again…(of course, not counting the many adventures of SOLAR PONS, a thinly veiled alter ego of Holmes, created by August Derleth in the 1930s and published throughout the next twenty years.)

But what was never spoken of in any of the chronicles that Watson wrote, was a son of Sherlock Holmes, who revealed himself to the master detective, a scant two years after the last recorded chronicle. Montgomery Adler, the detective’s secret son with IRENE ADLER (the woman from A SCANDAL IN BOHEMIA, and the only love affair Holmes ever had) had known who his father was all along, and was sworn to secrecy by his mother, only revealing himself to his father upon Irene’s death. Monty is in his late forties when he contacts his octogenarian dad to tell him a) he was his son and b) that Irene had passed away.

Montgomery’s revelation came with more that one surprise, for Monty and his wife Alice, had two children, Edgar and Lucille, who were both toddlers when Holmes met them. Because of his astounding physical condition, and a rare extract made from the proteins of a certain type of bee, Holmes lived to be nearly one hundred years old before dying, and as a result, he got to be there for Edgar and Lucille’s childhood…passing away when the grand kids were both in their late teens, some time in the late 1930s in England.

Edgar and Lucille were trained in the art of deduction and forensic detection by the master, and it changed the course of their lives. When World War II broke out, Edgar entered the British Intelligence service, and proved to be an astounding help to the Allies through the war. Lucille helped the allies where she could (sometimes secretly working with her brother, other times toiling as a code breaker for the service), but the thrust of her life revolved around her writings…both as an historian of all things Victorian, and the creator of a series of VERY successful detective novels, written under the pen-name August Derleth, and starring an unlikely character named SOLAR PONS, an astoundingly obvious pastiche version of her famous grandfather. Lucille’s writings brought her small fame, and eventually she meets the grandson of Dr. Watson, who sought her out to discuss their mutual family legacies…they fall in love and marry. She takes his name, Lucille Watson, and has children of her own…whom we shall come back to in a moment.

Edgar’s post war life was very eventful. With a record of outstanding service to the Empire, he’s asked to head up postwar intelligence…the position of “M” in the secret branch in fact. (“M” as the designate for head of intelligence is a throwback to an earlier era when Edgar’s great uncle MYCROFT Holmes had held the position.)

But Edgar declines, and instead sets up HOLMES INC. a freelance agency that settles the problems of governments, but off the books and deniably. Throughout the cold war, Holmes Inc. and their many agents (almost of all of whom were unrelated to the Holmes family, but had worked with Edgar during the war) spied on the Commies, dealt with the IRA, stopped kidnapping attempts on the Royal Family, and all the things that James Bond was off doing FICTIONALLY, they were doing for real.

And the main family continued to have children and heirs. Edgar had two children, a son, Sherlock Holmes the Second (who is very much alive, and currently head of operations at HOLMES Inc.), and another child, Thomas, who died as a toddler.

Sherlock the Second (known affectionately as “Number Two” by those who work for the team) was born in the fifties, and grew up in the family business. He never showed the spark of genius that so many in this family do, but nevertheless he has proven an able heir to Edgar in running the company. As a tactician and political player, Number Two is living up to the family legacy quite well. Number 2 has two children, Edgar the Second (his twenty-two year old son) and Sherlock the Third (his Sixteen year old daughter, known to everyone as “Trey”)

These three characters are the backbone of the series, the main family that catches the focus of adventures, along with a few other support players that we can go into now:

THE MAIN CHARACTERS:

EDGAR HOLMES the FIRST.
Like his famous Grandfather, Edgar is remarkably long lived. He’s about 91 years old, and still sharp, though the body has long given out. He’s retired, but still considers himself the “head” of the company, even though he never goes into the office anymore. Edgar is the last living soul on Earth who knew Sherlock Holmes personally, he’s that living connection to the past. He’s quite fastidious, and somewhat vain, even though he’s as old as dirt, he flirts a bit with the ladies. FIERCELY British and loyal to the Queen, almost to a fault.

Visually, he’s a very old man, once handsome.

In terms of an archetype: He is the WISE MENTOR.

SHERLOCK HOLMES the SECOND:
Known as “number two” not simply because he’s the second Sherlock, but because he’s technically Number Two in the hierarchy of the company itself. With Edgar, his father, still alive, he’s always got to consider the “old man” as his number #1. Number Two is in his late fifties, but is in fairly good shape for his age. He hasn’t the war stories that his father or his kids get into, but he’s game for anything that happens. His wife, Amanda, is a pleasant and substantial woman, rarely seen in the series, as she’s from a generation that stayed at home while the men carried on.

Visually, think of Basil Rathbone in his fifties…with the crooked nose and everything.

ARCHETYPE: Everyman.

EDGAR THE SECOND:
Called simply “Edgar” by the gang…Edgar is 22 years old, and clearly the smartest man currently walking the Earth. His insight, knowledge and sharp intellect put him in the same league as his ancestor…he’s also in great shape, kind of hunky, and charming enough that the ladies of the world cannot resist him. Oh yeah, and he’s a surgeon…at 22!!! Like Bond meets Bruce Wayne, by way of HOUSE. It’s not that Edgar isn’t interested in women, he’s male and hetero…but there’s no one playing on his level except his female relatives, and women, like most things, ultimately bore him after a few weeks. Edgar was raised and educated in England along with his sister…

Visually: Think of young and good looking. Jude Law, Tom Welling or Christian Bale from ten years ago …that sort of thing. But with the crooked nose. NEVER without the nose.

ARCHETYPE: The ALPHA MALE

SHERLOCK THE THIRD:
She’s sixteen years old. Call her “Trey” (for third). It’s not that she dislikes her famous heritage and name, it’s just that it’s a terrible name for a girl, and SHIRLEY HOLMES is even worse. Trey is an expert fighter, like a slightly older “HIT GIRL” (From Kick-Ass) only she’s also much smarter than she has a right to be for someone so based in the physical. Its martial arts mixed with brainy physics, and she, like Cyrano, likes to freestyle poems while she fights. It keeps her mind agile in the middle of hostile situations.

She’s not exactly a typical sixteen year old, but she shares much of her world view with her contemporaries, as she’s lived through the nineties and 21st Century as her window on the world. Keep her young and fresh in dialog and attitude.

VISUALLY: She’s young Buffy. Cute but deadly.

ARCHETYPE: The Juvenile, the Sidekick.

ARTHUR HOLMES:
He’s 18 years old, and the only one in the organization who is NOT a descendant of Sherlock Holmes, but the great, great, great grandson of Mycroft. He and Edgar (II) are strong rivals, as there is some evidence Arthur (Or Artie, or Art) might be as clever as Edgar…but he tends to hide it behind a smartass attitude, and an obsession with practical jokes that are REALLY elaborate. (Think Rube Goldberg on steroids).

Arthur is an expert at computers, modern technology, engineering, modern pop culture and physics. He joined the team simply to get a job that didn’t bore him silly, and jumping out of helicopters to fight terrorists seemed like the thing. At 18, he’s already created two PC operating systems, a zillion software apps, and the most successful first person shooter game of all time. He’s rich, and bored, and just might be the smartest person in the room, if he’s stop being such as wise ass.

He was raised in Canada. Toronto specifically…local boy, don’tcha know?

He’s not as handsome as his cousin…think a little more normal looking. Michael Cera…the less hot brother from SUPERNATURAL.

ARCHETYPE: The comedy relief. The Trickster.

ELIZABETH WATSON
She’s late twenties, perhaps 30, American, and the granddaughter of Lucille and David Watson….a direct descendant of both Holmes and Watson….she has been an operative for HOLMES INC. since she was barely an adult. She’s the team leader in the field of our four main agents, simply by seniority and experience, and has been working on assignments and getting shot at since 9-11, when she flew to England to join up as her way of fighting for America. She has the brains that all the family seems to have, and her focus is on chemistry, forensic science and history. Like her Grandmother Lucille, Elizabeth is very invested in the family legacy and works hard to BE a Holmes. But being an American and a “Watson” at that, she is distanced from the others in her own mind, something she fights to overcome. She’s like the sexy QUINCY of the team, and always in charge in the field…though the other three barely pay attention to her leadership, she is technically in charge.

VISUALLY: Think of an Elizabeth Shue / Emma Watson from HARRY POTTER look, with an age that averages between them.

ARCHETYPE: the OUTSIDER

There are literally hundreds of other characters to use who are agents, analysts, members of the administration team, etc. etc. etc. Think of this organization as having about two hundred members across the world, with probably fifty of them working at headquarters itself. NOTE: NO ONE in the organization is named HUDSON or LeSTRADE, as I don’t want to push the generational aspect to its breaking point.

LAST NOTE:
Moriarty.
Many have suggested an interest in using this character, which I’m fine with…
HOWEVER, He/She/They cannot be a relative to the original Professor Moriarty for two reasons

Moriarty dies without any family mentioned, while going over the falls with Holmes in the FINAL PROBLEM.

It is often suggested amongst Holmes fans that Moriarty was not real. He may have been a madness that Holmes hallucinated (the secret of “THE SECRET OF SHERLOCK HOLMES” is this very fact revealed) or he may have been an invention of Holmes to hide certain facts from Watson when Holmes relates of the character’s plans. Moriarty is never seen, only recalled by others, or suggested through the consequences of Moriarty’s otherwise unseen actions.

I truly hesitate to screw with the original premise of the character and make him a concrete, living character in a way that Doyle never intended…

SO, any Moriarty in our series is an homage, or someone inspired by the original…NO BLOOD RELATIVES of a character who may not have had any basis in reality.

TONE OF THE SERIES
The four young members of the cast, along with Number Two (the head of the organization) are the five main players of the series. You don’t have to use ‘em all in every scene, but I’d like to consider those five the main cast, and stories must revolve around them, and their relationships to each other…as well as their adventures doing exciting things. Romantic entanglements with each other are allowed (Arthur is barely related to the two female characters and might be hitting on both of them at some times) as our new characters introduced to be romantic/friends/enemies as the stories grow, and unseen relatives such as mothers, cousins, etc…. but STAY FOCUSED ON THE MAIN FIVE CHARACTERS!

In general, we are attempting to marry the genre of Sherlock Holmes to the genre of SHIELD/JAMES BOND/ 24 /CSI style spy adventure. These characters tend to deal with terrorists, international criminals and rogue atomic weapons, as well as baffling murders of major importance (heads of state, bankers, etc.). They do it with gadgets, leaping out of helicopters and cool leather outfits like EMMA PEEL or NICK FURY, but first and foremost, they do it with intelligence and deduction.

If there is one phrase to explain the essence of Holmes, it would be this:

He was noted for drawing large conclusions from the smallest observations. Think of that as your starting point to most stories and pitches. OBSERVATION, DEDUCTION, LOGIC and a knowledge of science and forensic methods.

The opening scene in HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES demonstrates this talent for conclusions admirably. It’s worth reading.

But this is also an ACTION series, and we cannot over focus on the detective and miss out on the kung fu grip. The balance is required.

THINGS THAT NEED DESIGN WORK:

The look of all the characters, both their faces and haircuts, but their basic “action” outfits as well.

The Headquarters of HOLMES INC. Which is a stately building in London as well as branches around the world. The branch office in New York is in the Chrysler building because it’s just such a gorgeous building we need to draw it…but the London home of the organization is yet un-designed.

There will be an aircraft that gets them around from place to place, like the Quinjet or the Pogo Plane, it should have a distinct look to it, as well as VTOL capability.

There are gadgets and devices specific to each story, I’m sure. As we create them, we’ll pass the designs around to other creators.

Advertisements
Categories: Characters, Information Tags:
  1. Rae Wells
    June 6, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    Hey, now that we have some basic designs agreed on, do we know what the character’s approximate heights are, especially compared to one another?

  1. March 2, 2011 at 9:24 am
  2. May 9, 2013 at 4:15 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: