Preface- I am deciding to do Sayers because last week I did Holmes, so I thought it fair to give Sayers a blog post as well.
Idea- The concepts in Sayers are familiar yet, trendily new to the genre of the detective fiction novel, given that it is 30 years post Holmes.
Quote -“Y’see,” said Lord Peter, balancing a piece of duck on his fork and frowning, “it’s only in Sherlock Holmes and stories like that, that people think things out logically. Or’nar’ly, if somebody tells you somethin’ out of the way, you just say, ‘By Jove!’ or ‘How sad!’ an’ leave it at that, an’ half the time you forget about it, ‘nless somethin’ turns up afterwards to drive it home.”
-The point is that, while I do believe that “Whose Body?” is a Parody of the Holmes formula, because of its obvious comedy, it is also working to progress the detective narrative to a high art form, due to its many classical literary references, simultaneously making a commentary about the tumultuous times of the 1920’s and 30’s, it being one of social upheaval and exemplifying a misguided idea of justice – who can be apart of justice, who are the enforcers, who is to be trusted and so forth.
Quote-“In fact it was a proverb that Sir Reuben was as well loved at home as he was hated abroad. I don’t mean in foreign countries, you know, dear—just the proverbial way of putting things—like ‘a saint abroad and a devil at home’—only the other way on, reminding one of the Pilgrim’s Progress.”
-The reference to “Pilgrims Progress” would only be understood if one has read that narrative and can use critical thinking skills to equate that to this book, in Holmes this extra thought is not really present due to its strict adherence to be relate-able to the broadest audience possible. This is why, as well with other references, that Sayers is trying to make this genre more elitist and “edgy”, considering Sayers is also playing with the “taboo” of a “Murder mystery genre”. In short, Sayers has created a sub class under detective fiction, made the art-form elevate by ‘playing off’ of the classic repeatable, Holmes Detective fiction.