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The Creeping Man 

Holmes thinks a woman's claim to have seen a man at her upstairs bedroom window is related to the theft of several apes.


Tim Sullivan


Arthur Conan Doyle (by) (as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), Robin Chapman (dramatised by)




Episode complete credited cast:
Jeremy Brett ... Sherlock Holmes
Edward Hardwicke ... Dr. Watson
Charles Kay ... Professor Presbury
Adrian Lukis Adrian Lukis ... Jack Bennett
Sarah Woodward ... Edith Presbury
Anna Mazzotti Anna Mazzotti ... Alice Morphy
James Tomlinson James Tomlinson ... Macphail
Peter Guinness ... Jenkins
Steve Swinscoe Steve Swinscoe ... Wilcox
Colin Jeavons ... Inspector Lestrade
Anthony Havering ... Secretary of the Zoological Society
Peter Elliott ... Great Ape


Sherlock Holmes is asked by Jack Bennett to investigate after his fiancée Edith Presbury sees the shadow of a man in her window in the middle of the night. The problem is that her bedroom is on the second floor and there is no way for any man to have been able to get to that window. Edith is the daughter of a notable natural scientist, Professor Presbury, a widower who is engaged to be married to a much younger woman, Alice Morphy. The Professor is quite displeased at hearing that Bennett, who also happens to be his assistant, has hired the Great Detective and Holmes and Watson are unceremoniously escorted off the property.When Holmes reads of a rash of thefts from zoos - all monkeys and apes - he slowly begins to unravel the mystery of the shadow Miss Presbury saw in her window. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

ape | irish wolfhound | See All (2) »


TV-PG | See all certifications »






Release Date:

28 March 1991 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Granada Television See more »
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Technical Specs



Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Michael Cox: Being the last episode of the series to be involved with as producer, he performs a cameo as zoo cleaner in the background of the zoo scene where Lestrade talks to the zoo director. His face is barely recognizable, but this event is mentioned in "A Study in Celluloid: A Producer's Account of Jeremy Brett as Sherlock Holms" by Michael Cox, 1999, Rupert Books Cambridge. See more »


(at around 36 mins) Holmes idly picks up the newspaper and looks through it. His attention is immediately caught by the headline of 'Monkey Theft.' It makes mention of the 'Lonon Zoo', when it should be London Zoo. See more »


[first lines]
Professor Presbury: You may inform the Secretary of the Royal Society that I have entitled my Michaelmas lecture 'Darwin's Fundamental Error'.
Jack Bennett: That'll raise a few hackles, sir.
Professor Presbury: Will it not.
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User Reviews

Modern Genetics Aside.....
15 February 2014 | by HitchcocSee all my reviews

The makers of these Granada episodes dedicated themselves to producing the entire Holmes canon. Unfortunately, some of the stories are not very good, and the wonderful Jeremy Brett didn't survive to the end. When the series aired on Masterpiece Mystery, it was introduced by Vincent Price. His presentation at the time pointed out that we were in for some real suspension of disbelief if we were going to enjoy the episode. Conan Doyle was basically a scientist, but this is really more science fiction than detective work. Because I know that early fiction writers often made assumptions that proved medically unsound (the blood transfusions in Stoker's Dracula, for example), I can still watch and enjoy. The conclusion floored me. I had not read this story and so I wasn't prepared. It is both startling and really laughable. Jeremy Brett at one point delivers one of those awful pronouncements, more indicative of Basil Rathbone. Brett had pretty much let the pontificating go. Far from the best, but fun nevertheless.

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