I'd feel worse for Dr. Watson if he didn't always make me laugh.
Sure, we've all heard folks who don't really get the Holmes-Watson dynamic complain about how badly Sherlock Holmes treats poor John H. Watson over the years. But did Sherlock Holmes ever treat Watson worse than the rest of the world?
It wasn't Sherlock Holmes who cast Nigel Bruce as Watson, and decided he should be shown as a cookie-loving doofus. It wasn't Sherlock Holmes who decided he needed other biographers and dumped him repeatedly for Teddy Roosevelt, Irene Adler, Mary Russell, Doc Holliday, any Irregular kid you'd care to name, and so many others. And it wasn't Sherlock Holmes who made Watson creepy.
Creepy Watson, the result of some less-than-stellar programming in a Sherlock Holmes video game has not only picked up some hits on YouTube, he's apparently now promoting a new video game as well, by being just as creepy once again. He doesn't walk. He doesn't move a muscle. He's just there, standing next to you. Turn away, he's gone. Turn again. He's closer than ever.
Creepy Watson now stands next to Doofus Watson, Drunken Watson (an old Peoria favorite), George Costanza Watson (the Private Life version), Cyborg Watson, Transgender Watson (well, if he used to be male, and now he's female . . .), Unrequited Love Watson, STD Watson, James Watson, Dead Watson, Whole Other Watson, Regenerated Gallifreyan Watson (yes, Burke/Hardwick), et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, in the great Hall of Watsons that surely will come to exist one day.
It's really amazing how flexible Watson is. I've always thought it do to his "everyman" quality -- he's a stand-in for all of us in the stories, he's just so relatable -- he literally has the ability to be every man (in the species sense of the word), it would seem. And he's also like an old friend that we're so comfortable with that we have no problem dressing him up in whatever costume we feel like at the moment. We know he's good old Watson. He won't complain, and he'll bounce right back to being Watson.
Even Creepy Watson has a limit on how creepy he is, for those of use who've known him for years. Tweens on YouTube may jump back and squeal, but seeing the old chap pop up at one's side just brings a smile.
Good old Watson.