THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES (Curio): 60-second review

photo by Kyle Cassidy

Harry Slack, Steve Carpenter, and CJ Keller in the HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES. Photo by Kyle Cassidy.

“Rare moths, wives pretending to be sisters,” deadly moors, escaped killers, and a legendary hellhound: the plot points of Arthur Conan Doyle’s THE HOUND OF THE BASKERVILLES are ripe for farcical reimagining. And though overlong (130 minutes, with intermission) and dramatically confused, the adaptation of this famed Sherlock Holmes tale by Steven Canny and John Nicholson, now at Curio Theatre, is delightfully silly.

“He said his name was Sherlock Holmes and asked me to take him to Waterloo Station.”
“Where’s he going?”
“Waterloo Station.”

The conceit is that this is a low-budget production of a horror tale, so meta interruptions (“you’re not Sherlock Holmes.” “I am.” “That’s just a costume.”) bracket an evening of frenetic multitasking by a talented three-man cast: Steve Carpenter (as Holmes, among nine characters), CJ Keller (Watson and others), and Harry Slack (Sir Henry Baskerville, etc.). The comedy remains curiously similar whether the fourth wall is in place or not, and the criticisms of a mock tweeter at intermission—that the first half dragged—were too accurate. But the silliness reigns over a faster-paced second act. May 8 to June 1, 2013. curiotheatre.org.

Extras
Previous Phindie coverage of Curio Theatre Company.
Read the original Arthur Conan Doyle story “The Hound of the Baskervilles”.

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About the author

Christopher Munden

Your faithful correspondent and publisher Christopher Munden has written and edited for many publications, websites, and cultural institutions. He was an editor/publisher of the Philly Fiction book series, collections of short stories written by local writers and set in Philadelphia. He's also a soccer coach and a pretty good skier.