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17 January 2013 @ 11:47 am
A Sibling Question  
Anyone have any thoughts on whether Harry Watson is an older sister or a younger sister? I can give arguments for either one, mainly that John has the responsible, caregiving nature of a stereotypical older sibling, but the show seems to be trying to parallel Sherlock and Mycroft's relationship with John and Harry's, which would make Harry older. Unless John is supposed to be the Mycroft and Harry the Sherlock.

If we go by 'canon', a newspaper that flashes up during Reichenbach puts John's age at 37, and if you add to that with the (two!) original canon theories about Watson's birthday, he'd either have just turned 37, or be about to turn 38. Which would put him at 35-36 during Series One. On John's official blog, he refers to Harry as being 36 during Series One. Which would make her either slightly older, or the same age. But I think Sherlock would have mentioned if they were twins. And canon isn't exactly brilliant with keeping itself logical. If you go by John's CV, he's 28 in Series One, which, despite Martin Freeman's spritely appearance, is stretching things a bit.

So, I guess it's basically up to me what I want to make her. She's always been older in my mind, but I was just curious to see what everyone else thought, or if I've missed something.
The other Weird Al: minisherlock - frood john towelaeron_lanart on January 17th, 2013 07:51 pm (UTC)
#1 - There's no way I can go with John being 28 in S1, IMO he's done too much with his life to be that young! That means I'm going with the 35-36 in S1 which is much more believable.

#2 - I've always thought of Harry as older. I don't think there's as much of a gap as there is supposed to be between Mycroft and Sherlock (7 years I think) but around 3 or 4 years feels right to me. Part of it is the vibe I get that the tables are kind of turned with them, that John has had to look after his older sibling, rather than the other way around as it was when they were little kids. I have no evidence for this whatsoever of course.
The Writer They Call Tay: SHERLOCK: Sherlock shockawanderingbard on January 18th, 2013 12:09 am (UTC)
1- Yes, that's what I thought, too. I wondered if the person who made the CV wrote 199- for the years instead of 198- for the years. That would have made him 38, which was how old Martin Freeman was at the time.

Of course, according to the casebook, evidently, Sherlock is supposed to be 31 when he 'dies'. Which again, is stretching things a bit. My canon has him having just turned 33 or 34 at the beginning of Series One (which takes place in January and Sherlock's birthday is Jan 6), so about 34-35 during Reichenbach. Molly is definitely 31 during Series One (she states it in her blog), and I can't picture him as younger than her.

... I've thought about this too much.

2. That's exactly how I think of it, too. John as the younger sibling forced to be responsible because the older one is a mess. Nice to know my reasoning makes sense to one person at least!
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on January 18th, 2013 12:21 am (UTC)
I think I always assumed Harry was older because didn't the original Watson have an older brother?
The Writer They Call Tay: Merlin: Thumbs up!awanderingbard on January 18th, 2013 01:12 am (UTC)
Oh, you're right! My original canon knowledge is not as good as it should be. I knew he had a brother, but I didn't know that he was definitively stated as being older. Thank you!
aelfgyfu_mead: Watson plotaelfgyfu_mead on January 18th, 2013 12:57 am (UTC)
I have strong feelings about this issue despite having very little evidence!

I decided the moment I heard that Harry gave John her cast-off phone that she was an older sibling. It's an older sibling thing to do—give something that you don't want anymore, whether because of unpleasant memories or because you've scratched it up. I wouldn't give my older brother a phone or, really, much of anything used. (I did give my younger brother my college tv when he went off to college.) Now as a full adult (and not a grad student), I can't imagine giving either brother a used phone.

I am the middle of three, and I was supposed to be the responsible one. It wasn't just in my head; when my brother and I did the same thing, we got in the same amount of trouble, even though I was younger and was never the initiator—and my parents seemed more disappointed in me! He was 2 1/2 years older, but they expected more of me. And, frankly, they were right. To what extent that was a self-fulfilling prophecy, I don't know: how did my brother feeling knowing they thought I should have more sense than he did?

I totally see John as the aggrieved younger sibling, perpetually annoyed that he's supposed to act older. It goes along with her drinking. It also goes along with my tendency to identify with John on the show, despite my complete lack of military experience, medical degree, or ability to kill anyone.

And yes, I think John and Sherlock sympathize with each other as younger siblings. I see John's attitude towards Mycroft as partly a reaction to his own sibling difficulties. He's totally an enabler in the palace scene where Sherlock is wearing only a sheet! And Mycroft is disappointed in John! And that totally strikes a chord with me (again).
The Writer They Call Tay: SHERLOCK: Watson giggleawanderingbard on January 18th, 2013 01:16 am (UTC)
I'm a young sibling, too, and I think that's why I made John younger in my mind as well. Although I get along great with my brother and he's had to put up with way more crap from me than I ever have from him. But I like all your reasoning and I really appreciate you sharing it with me!

shadowfireflame: Sherlockshadowfireflame on January 18th, 2013 02:11 am (UTC)
I've always thought of Harry as older because she gives John her phone. But I feel they're pretty close in age, it's just that she's older. I have no evidence for this, it's just what I instinctively feel! :)