Post by renaissancegirl on Apr 20, 2013 10:08:28 GMT
Yes. That's why the "visible" carbon monoxide seemed ridiculous. They could have still pulled it off by just using a hissing sound, as I think most viewers would have understood. (But I guess using "smoke" was part of the dramatic effect they were trying to achieve).
Yeah, I found the masks to be ridiculous, too. They made a point in Curse of Beaton Manor to say that masks do not look realistic, the eyes look dead. They don't look like the person except from an extreme distance. This episode only takes place 3 years later. The technology with latex had not changed in that time. In terms of getting access to the houses. I believe the next door house was vacant/no one lived there. Darcy made frequent trips to Buffalo to see his family, which would have left his house empty for several days at a time if he gave the housekeeper the time off. We know Gillies would have been having his movements tracked. But the neighbors, esp. the nosy next door lady on the other side, would have heard all the racket from drilling the trap door and bringing in the huge cage. Most likely Gillies would have hired guys to do most of this work and to pose as men working on Darcy's newly purchased house. People often do work on their house when they first move in. But still, one would think it would be hard to explain the cage. People would wonder what on earth Darcy was doing with it! Probably, they built it down in the basement. So they would only have been bringing the metal bars and the materials to weld it together. It wouldn't have fit through the front door already constructed anyway. It is a stretch to believe they could pull it off, but I think it would be possible. The moving picture with voice and the masks were the biggest stretches to me. Oh and the carbon monoxide... it's very common in film to make gasses visible that are not. They want to show that the person is being engulfed in the substance for dramatic effect.
The cage is ridiculous. Hannikan, I would point out something that you mentioned in your post:
The cage being welded together.
Such stuff was almost impossible in 1900.
The cage could be slotted, bolted, screwed or riveted together, but almost certainly not WELDED.
Electrical welding was in its INFANCY in the late 1800s. It would not have been in anywhere near the compact or effective state to weld a cage together in the confines of a basement.
The only welding available at the time would've been forge-welding. Forge-welding used the skills of a blacksmith, and a fire, to literally melt the metal to bond it together...obviously impossible in a basement in suburban Toronto. The smoke and the heat and the flames would've given everything away.
Riveting might be possible, but the noise created by that would wake up the neighbours for two blocks in every direction.
As much as I like these two episodes, on a technical level, they fall down flat.
Mm, yeah I didn't think of that about welding. I think I knew that welding like today wasn't possible then. Yeah, it would have been too noisy the only way they could do it. Doing it in the basement it would be harder to hear for the neighbors than above ground, but considering all the equipment they'd need would be too conspicuous. It wouldn't be the same kind of stuff to do renovation on a house either. Not the the neighbor would be too aware of what the equipment would look like.
Trapdoors, hidden switches, electricals and such. You could just say that you're doing some sort of home-renovation. The cage seems far too far-fetched, though, along with the audio, the video and the gas.
The episode in GENERAL was very enjoyable. But the technicalities just don't work.
I'm not in any state to talk about the advancements (or lack thereof) when it comes to synthetics and rubber at the time, but I would tend to agree with what's been said already - They probably didn't have the technology at the time to produce such an accurate replica of someone's face. I mean POSSIBLY - but it'd be rather long odds.
Linking back to my remarks about the audio-quality available in the late 1800s/early 1900s, the whole thing about Dr. Ogden's fake telephone-call also falls down flat.
Tracing a call, wire-tapping and so-forth were all possible back then. But piecing together a coherent sentence from multiple recordings? I don't think so. Not with the technology available at the time.
I mean you could probably get away with it today (soundboards and all that), or even during mid-century, but not in 1900. The technological advancements simply didn't exist.
I wondered about the ability to splice together phone conversations. It was very choppy. The housekeeper even noted that it sounded very halting. It probably should have sounded even more halting. It ended up saying, "I will be there six o'clock," instead of at six o'clock. I think many times MM has stretched the lengths to which the technology could really go. Like with the Pendrick Arrow flying over Niagara Falls the way it did. If they stuck very rigidly to what was truly possible with the existing technology, they would be quite hampered in terms of the narrative. And very little that didn't actually happen during the time period would happen in the story, which would make it more like a documentary. I think they try to keep it within the broad realm of possibility, while stretching it a bit. This episode was a case of it being stretched more than a bit.
Post by renaissancegirl on Apr 21, 2013 19:16:29 GMT
Yes, they really did stretch things a little too far in this last episode. Normally I can overlook things, knowing that it is a television show after all, but for some reason, they seemed to throw so many things at the viewer which I thought was over-the top at times. I do hope the writers will try to recover some of the "old charm" of the earlier seasons in season 7, as we all know that they can still balance interesting cases without having to compromise "historical accuracy."
Darcy's neighbourhood was considered a fashionable suburb of Toronto at the time. Homes in that neighbourhood would not have been very old, so any sort of extensive renovations done to a home would have caught the attention of neighbours, and most certainly would have seemed very unusual for the time. The fact that Gillies was able to remove a whole wall of the basement, between the two adjoining homes, would have been a huge task at the time--as it still is today--and would not have gone unnoticed. (Architecturally speaking, the height of the basement's ceiling is also wrong for a Victorian home. In fact, I'm not sure if many people actually have unfinished basements today with cathedral ceilings, but that's another story).
Anyway speaking of historical accuracy, and when MM gets things right: I'm not sure if anyone caught in episode 12, the reference to Dr. Clark, Julia's employer. Dr. Daniel Clark was the superintendent of the Toronto Asylum for the Insane (which was formerly the Provincial Lunatic Asylum) from 1875-1905, and was subsequently replaced by Dr. Charles Kirk Clarke. Dr. Clarke (Charles--the Clarke with an "e") would eventually contribute to some sweeping reforms in psychiatry. I found it was a nice nod to Toronto's historical past.
Here are some pictures of Toronto during the 1900s, that might be of interest.
The thing about the Pendrick Arrow didn't bother me so much. For the mere fact that the technology was already there, so to speak. They simply advanced it a little bit for dramatic license.
It's when they try to suggest possibilities that did not exist at the time, or which were FAR beyond the technology available.
Yes, the flight of the Arrow might be a bit far-fetched, but within 5-10 years, such technology did exist. So I wouldn't be that flustered if they brought it back a bit.
But the stuff about welding and the talkie-films and the audio-splicing...none of that would be possible in 5-10 years. Not even in 20 years! It was just too far ahead of its time for it to be plausible.
Yeah, I wasn't thinking of the ability to fly a plane. That I could buy within the span of a few years. Many people were working on flying machines with some success in the years before the Wright Bros took their first flight. I meant the ability to successfully fly one so close the falls that way. That was a stretch to me, but not to the point that it ruined the episode.
Oh, nice photo find! I know someone actually went to the site of 693 Jarvis recently and it's just a hole now. He was going to share a photo but hasn't yet.
You make a good point, Hannikan, re. Niagra Falls. The downdraft of the water is EXTREMELY powerful (I know, I've been to the Falls myself!). I wouldn't want to risk myself in an open, motorised kite there, either!
One other thing about this episode which I believe sticks out from a scientific standpoint, is the carbon monoxide.
Not only is C/Monoxide colourless and 'steam'less, if I recall rightly, it's also odorless, and undetectable. Murdoch would never have noticed the gas if everything was done 'by the book'. He wouldn't be coughing and gagging and choking to death - it's not Chlorine Gas from the Trenches!
In fact I believe that's what makes C/monoxide so lethal - it's sheer undetectability. It has no smell, no sight, no taste and is completely undetectable. You die from suffocation. You pass out and drop down as if you fell asleep. Not choking and coughing and gagging for air.
It's one reason why a popular method of suicide is to park a car in a closed garage with the engine running.
Post by renaissancegirl on Apr 23, 2013 2:18:14 GMT
Where 693 should be is now a rather busy intersection, however, there are still quite a few lovely remnants of the neighbourhood further south and between Sherbourne and Jarvis, and Jarvis and Church (some of the old mansions are now wonderful restaurants and bed and breakfasts and are worth checking out if you ever visit Toronto!).
If you click on my link in my last post, you will also find images of the University of Toronto and Queen's Park around that time. Looking over the photos again, I just thought of how great it would be if they had an episode take place at the Canadian National Exhibition or the St. Lawrence Market--two Toronto Landmarks that have been around since the 19th century. Perhaps even at the Woodbine Racetrack.
Yeah, it looked like the plane would have just been engulfed by the force of the falls. And how they got so much power to "climb" out of the falls up to the surface/grass they landed on. I just don't think such a primitive plane would have had that much power. I'm no aviation expert, it just seemed a little but of a stretch. But I'm okay with a little dramatic license.
Ooh, I love the photos, RG! Sometimes it's hard to see some of the text against the darker colors.
This one makes me think they should do an episode that takes place at a candy store:
i believe show's like this have to now and again add little extra's to the history side of things which doesn't add up being british some of the guess stars who are great british writers or royality etc there ages don't add up cohan doyle for one he look older then he really was the irish problems with prince alfred but doe's it really matter i don't think so it's a show about a copper who think's a head of time and uses all avenue's to solve the case i would also say 99% of the history is spot on and show's like this for me make me want to read more not only about my own country's history but other's too so lets write about what to look forward to next season hope it was ok for my take on this matter
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