The Return of Sherlock Holmes: Season 1, Episode 5

The Man with the Twisted Lip (6 Aug. 1986)

TV Episode  -   -  Crime | Drama | Mystery
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Responding to a grieving wife, Holmes investigates the apparent murder of her husband in an apartment above an opium den.



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Title: The Man with the Twisted Lip (06 Aug 1986)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Clive Francis ...
Eleanor David ...
Denis Lill ...
Patricia Garwood ...
Mrs Whitney
Terence Longdon ...
Isa Whitney
Rosalie Williams ...
Dudley James ...


Watson locates a husband in a London opium den and encounters a disguised Holmes there. The Great Detective is searching for another errant husband who has apparently been killed by a filthy, poetry-spouting professional beggar who lives in one of the building's upper apartments. Written by Gabe Taverney (

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Crime | Drama | Mystery





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6 August 1986 (UK)  »

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Did You Know?


Neville St. Clair's final quotation, as he is burning the beggar's clothes is a misquotation from Hamlet, Act 5, Scene 2, when Horatio says "Good night, sweet prince, and flights of angels sing thee to thy rest." See more »


In the flashback, we see Boon the beggar throwing the coat out of the window, which he explains is laden with the hundreds of coins he has collected throughout the day. However, the coat flutters down, and clearly has nothing heavy in the pockets. See more »


[last lines]
Neville St Clair: Farewell, sweet Boone; a flight of angels sing thee to thy rest. William Shakespeare.
See more »


Version of Sherlock Holmes: The Man Who Disappeared (1951) See more »

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User Reviews

A Sad Portrayal of the Drug Situation in England
11 February 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

When the British resisted an end to the Opium Wars with China, they brought to their world a host of terrible results. The opium den became a fixture in the poorer streets of London and other cities and there was an open toleration. Even citizens, mostly me, found recreation in attendance of these places (this was true of prostitution and child neglect as well). The poor were victimized for economic reasons. In this episode, Watson is engaged by a young wife to find and bring home her husband, who has probably fallen into this habit. As he investigates, he finds his friend Holmes disguised, attending one of the worst of these places. He tells Watson he is on a case. They move forward in pursuit of clues as to the whereabouts of this man and at one point assume him dead. This is a story of persistence and faith. What it doesn't address is the ultimate price of all this. We sometimes speculate in amusement about Holmes cocaine use and Watson's seven percent solution. We are of a different time and place; hence, we cannot totally judge a culture on its terms. This is certainly unique among the original canon and very engaging.

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