Our Sherlockian eyes: The surveillance of vision

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Refractory: A Journal of Entertainment Media, Vol: 25, Issue: 2, Page: 1-14

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Redmond, Sean; Sita, Jodi Christine; Vincs, Kim
University of Melbourne
Film and Media Studies
article description
For this inter-disciplinary article, we undertook a pilot case study that eye-tracked the ‘Holmes Saves Mrs. Hudson’ sequence from the episode, A Scandal in Belgravia (Sherlock, BBC, 2012). This small-scale empirical study involved a total of 13 participants (3 males and 10 females, mean age was: 27 years), comprised of a mixture of academics and undergraduate students at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia. The article examines its findings through a range of threaded frames – neuroscience, forensics, surveillance, haptics, memory, performance-movement, and relationality – and uniquely draws upon the interests of the authors to set the examination in context. The article is both a reading of Sherlock and a dialogue between its authors. We discover that the codes and conventions of Sherlock have a direct impact on where viewers look but we also discover eyes emerging in the periphery of the frame, and we account for these ways of seeing in different ways.