I was rummaging through the treasure chest of Warren Ellis's archive looking for something else and came up with this gem of an essay:
The actor Jeremy Brett found his way into his portrayal of Sherlock Holmes by giving the original stories the first close reading they’d had by an actor in many years. He found this line: “Holmes wriggled with pleasure in his chair.” And that was it. He was in. His pale, spidery, twitchy and explosive Holmes made everyone before him look stupid.
Go read the rest.
That also sent me to my old blog, because I recalled I put a picture of Jeremy Brett there (it's now here). What I forgot was a posting about some Sherlock Holmes episodes with Brett on YouTube. Shockingly, some of those are still up for viewing. If you like what you see, buy the DVDs!