North Texas Daily

It’s elementary, my dear fan club

It’s elementary, my dear fan club

February 13
15:53 2013

Will Jaeger



Sherlock Holmes and his friend Dr. Watson have enjoyed widespread fame and fandom since the publication of their first adventure, “A Study in Scarlet,” in 1887. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s duo has taken many forms across a wide range of media over the last century.

Each has established the characters and their tales to a new generation of fans, most recently through Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law’s spin on the classic stories on the big screen, and BBC’s “Sherlock” television series starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman.

UNT221B, UNT’s unofficial and only Sherlock Holmes fan club, celebrated its first anniversary on Saturday.

The group, named for Holmes’ apartment number on Baker Street, came together when co-founders visual arts senior Dorie Mishael and studio art senior Heather Avary discovered their mutual admiration for the stories through a series of Holmes-themed sticky notes left around the art building by Avary.

“We became friends, and that’s what started it,” Mishael said.

The group meets once a month to watch episodes of the BBC series or the films, play Holmes-inspired board games and drink tea. Their chalk drawings and flyers adorn the campus at various times, a nod to a climactic episode of the BBC series.

In the coming year, Avary hopes to expand the group’s horizons.

“Hopefully, we can try to be more active with Save Undershaw,” Avary said, the movement to preserve the Surrey, England home of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, supported by Holmes fans from all over the globe.

Additionally, group members are learning how to knit to make scarves, mimicking a fashion staple of the BBC series. Mishael said some of the scarves would be donated to charity.

At its heart, the group’s primary focus has been to make friends over the bond of fiction’s greatest detective.

“Sometimes, in college, you get to meet a whole lot of people, but you don’t get to socialize with them,” said Rita Uscanga, a UNT alum who has been with the group since its inception. “That’s the beauty of this fandom. We get to make friends with people from all over.”

UNT221B has between 10 and 20 regular members at meetings, and the group’s blog on Tumblr has 155 followers. For more information on the club, visit or

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