Scandal In Bohemia And The Speckled Band Comparison

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“A Scandal in Bohemia” and “The Speckled Band” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle are both narrated by Dr. Watson. Throughout the stories, Watson explains what is going on and what Holmes has discovered. However, Conan Doyle also uses Watson as a foil character to Sherlock. The things Watson describes are things most people would also see, yet what Sherlock tells him are things only Sherlock has the skills to observe and piece together. This is important because by seeing the events or people first described to us by Watson, it makes Sherlock’s observations and interpretations of the scene seem even more genius. One of the first examples we see of this is in “A Scandal in Bohemia”. Watson describes the King’s outlandish outfit and physical appearance, …show more content…
Holmes says, “If your majesty would condescend to state your case…” (5). By only having seen Holmes’s client through Watson’s eyes up until that point and the description of them talking, the reader was left clueless as to his true identity until Holmes makes this comment. We see the deduction be not only surprising to the King, but it is meant to surprise the readers as well. Although this is an instance where Holmes does not explain how he gathered this information, the contradiction between Watson’s description and Holmes’s conclusion make the results seem more impressive. Jumping to such a conclusion makes Holmes seem incredibly smart. If Holmes had narrated the story instead of Watson, there would not have been as much of a mystery since we would see Holmes’s inner monologue as he figured out the facts for himself. Conan Doyle chooses to have Watson narrate it, because it makes reading about Sherlock’s discoveries more interesting and allows Sherlock’s intelligence to be displayed. Not hearing Holmes’s inner monologue helps “A Scandal in Bohemia” start off with dramatic deductions that help set the tone of curiosity. Conan Doyle uses this tone to make the reader want to know how Holmes figured out what he did. Sherlock lists things he notices about Watson then explains how he figured …show more content…
Although being a detective is Sherlock’s job, Watson is asked to tag along and help, but often Watson’s only role is to be the person Holmes is explaining his conclusions to or providing mild assistance. Rarely does Watson make a conclusion Holmes has not led him to. In “A Scandal in Bohemia”, when examining the type of paper that Holmes’s client sent a letter on, Sherlock goes through the process of figuring out what the maker letters are that can be faintly seen on it. He solves what each letter stands for, knowing random information that would conveniently help him out. For example, he says “The G with the small t stands for ‘Gesellschaft,’ which is the German for ‘Company’” (3). Using this knowledge, his own conclusions, and other resources he lists off, he leaves Watson to say the very obvious conclusion, “The paper was made in Bohemia” (3). This leaves Watson as a character whose actions are rarely impactful and often is just there to explain what is happening to the reader or recount what Holmes says. This makes Sherlock’s actions even more important because it is what truly moves the plot along. It makes it so that even though Watson is also a main character, Sherlock seems like the center of the story. We see something similar occur in “The Speckled Band”. When going on to solve the mystery by staying in Miss Stoner’s room, Sherlock invites Watson to come along with him. Watson just ends up sitting

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