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'Watson' Starring Morris Chestnut: Reasons Why This Latest Take On Dr. Watson Could Be CBS's Next Hit Series


Morris Chestnut stars in the upcoming series Watson-Image Courtesy of Heidi Rubin/CBS Studios
A Bold Reimagining of Dr. Watson

As we eagerly await the 2024-2025 broadcast season, CBS is preparing to captivate viewers with Watson, a compelling new drama starring Morris Chestnut (The Best Man, Boyz N The Hood). This creative take, produced by CBS Studios, puts a contemporary spin on the beloved character from the Sherlock Holmes universe and could end up being a new hit series.


Justin Hartley of TRACKER and Morris Chestnut of WATSON, attend the CBS New Fall Schedule Celebration event-Image Courtesy of Sonja Flemming/CBS
Justin Hartley of TRACKER and Morris Chestnut of WATSON, attend the CBS New Fall Schedule Celebration event to announce CBS' 2024-2025 primetime lineup at Paramount Studios in Los Angeles on May 2, 2024-(Image Courtesy of Sonja Flemming/CBS)
A Fresh Take on an Iconic Character

Chestnut's portrayal of the iconic doctor could offer an unexpected perspective on Dr. John Watson, assuming a role that will reimagine the iconic character in a modern-day setting. “Craig Sweeny’s bold new vision for the complex Dr. Watson deftly interweaves rich character storytelling with edge-of-your-seat medical mysteries,” said Amy Reisenbach, president of CBS Entertainment.


This modern adaptation places Watson seven months after the tragic death of his friend and partner Sherlock Holmes, where he returns to his medical roots as head of a clinic dedicated to treating rare disorders.



(L to R):Jack Klugman in Quincy M.E. (Photo courtesy of NBCUniversal); Dick Van Dyke in Diagnosis Murder (Image courtesy of Getty Images); Hugh Laurie in House (Image courtesy of NBC Universal Television)
(L to R):Jack Klugman in Quincy M.E. (Photo courtesy of NBCUniversal); Dick Van Dyke in Diagnosis Murder (Image courtesy of Getty Images); Hugh Laurie in House (Image courtesy of NBC Universal Television)
Medical Drama with Detective Intrigue

As Watson confronts new challenges in his medical career, the shadow of his past looms large, with Moriarty set to reenter his life, adding a thrilling investigative element to the medical drama. This approach brings to mind shows like Quincy, the mystery medical drama starring Jack Klugman, Diagnosis Murder, starring Dick Van Dyke, and the very popular medical drama House starring Hugh Laurie. 


If the showrunners incorporate successful elements from these shows while staying true to their concept, blending the investigative intrigue of Quincy and Diagnosis Murder with the complex medical cases and character depth found in House, the approach would not only pay homage to classic TV storytelling but also continue the success seen in these types of medical dramas. This combination would provide a throwback vibe while still delivering a fresh and engaging experience for viewers.



Image of Jeremy Brett & David Burke in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

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(L to R): Larry Teng Directs the first episode of CBS's Watson (Photo Courtesy of Darby Gidlow); Peter Mark Kendall stars as Dr. Stephens Croft (Photo Courtesy of David Noles); Ritchie Coster will play Shinwell Johnson (Photo Courtesy of Steve Granitz)
(L to R): Larry Teng Directs the first episode of CBS's Watson (Photo Courtesy of Darby Gidlow); Peter Mark Kendall stars as Dr. Stephens Croft (Photo Courtesy of David Noles); Ritchie Coster will play Shinwell Johnson (Photo Courtesy of Steve Granitz)
Stellar Creative Team and Cast

The creative team behind Watson is impressive, featuring executive producer Craig Sweeny, known for his work on Elementary, 4400, and Medium. Sweeny is also working on the upcoming Star Trek: Section 31, with production officially underway as announced by STARTREK.COM in January. Alongside Sweeny, Morris Chestnut, Shäron Moalem MD, PhD, Aaron Kaplan, and Brian Morewitz of Kapital Entertainment will also serve as executive producers. Larry Teng, known for his work on shows like Nancy Drew, Animal Kingdom, and Graceland, will direct the first episode, offering insight into the series' direction.


While not heavily discussed since its announcement, IMDb lists Peter Mark Kendall, recognized for his role in Chicago Med, currently in its 9th season, and The Americans. Kendall will portray Dr. Stephens Croft. His background suggests viewers can expect complex characters with great backstories.


Ritchie Coster, well known for his roles in gritty crime dramas, is slated to play Shinwell Johnson. With credits in productions such as New York Undercover, American Gangster, and True Detective, Coster's ability to bring characters with shades of darkness and complexity says that we may get an edgy dimension to CBS's Watson.



John Lee Miller and Lucy Lie in Elementary (Image courtesy of CBS)
John Lee Miller and Lucy Lie in Elementary (Image courtesy of CBS)
Proven Success with 'Elementary'

CBS has a track record of success with modern adaptations of Sherlock Holmes. The series Elementary, which premiered on September 27, 2012, and concluded after seven successful seasons on August 15, 2019, received critical acclaim for its innovative approach. 


Elementary modernized the Sherlock Holmes mythos diving deeper into the character's drug addiction. The series featured Jonny Lee Miller as a recovering drug addict version of Sherlock Holmes and Lucy Liu as Dr. Joan Watson, a former surgeon turned sober companion and detective partner.


Liu's portrayal of Watson and the dynamic relationship between the duo was refreshing. It provided a compelling reason to keep watching. The show's unique setting in New York City and its exploration of contemporary themes like addiction and recovery resonated with audiences, earning award nominations and high ratings on Rotten Tomatoes.



Casts from CBS shows ‘NCIS: Origins, Ghosts, Tracker, Fire Country, S.W.A.T., NCIS, Elsbeth, 60 Minutes, The Price Is Right, Poppa's House, The Neighborhood, Matlock, Watson-Celebration event to announce CBS 2024-2025 primetime lineup at Paramount Studios in Los Angeles on May 2, 2024-Photo: Francis Specker/CBS
Casts from CBS shows ‘NCIS: Origins, Ghosts, Tracker, Fire Country, S.W.A.T., NCIS, Elsbeth, 60 Minutes, The Price Is Right, Poppa's House, The Neighborhood, Matlock, Watson-Celebration event to announce CBS 2024-2025 primetime lineup at Paramount Studios in Los Angeles on May 2, 2024-Photo: Francis Specker/CBS
A Must-Watch Series

With its innovative premise, talented cast, and experienced creative team, Watson is poised to be a must-watch series. The combination of medical drama and detective intrigue, along with a fresh take on a beloved character, makes this show one of the most anticipated premieres of the 2024-2025 season. Stay tuned for more updates and exclusive behind-the-scenes content as Watson prepares to debut on CBS. (TV Guide: CBS Fall TV Shows 2024: The Complete Schedule)


Thanks for making it this far! As a Sherlockian, I'm excited to see how this upcoming series unfolds. Adding another story to the iconic Sherlock Holmes universe sounds intriguing, especially with a fresh take on Dr. Watson. Let me know your thoughts.


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