RARA-AVIS: The roots of the Seven

Mark Blumenthal (blumenidiot@21stcentury.net)
Sat, 18 Sep 1999 00:50:04 -0500

Magnificent 7 seems to have a following on this list. To keep this on topic, did Kurosawa have a hard boiled source for Seven Samurai as he did with Yojimbo? The plot of somebody going in and cleaning up a town is pretty common in hard boiled fiction, but I'm unaware of having a group whose members are fairly equal do this. If more than one a person is sent to do the job, usually they go sequentially with the protagonist coming after his predecessor has been killed as in Latimer's Solomon's Vineyard. His Bill Crane books do usually have at least 3 detectives, but the others are clearly subsidiary to Crane, and the books' focus is more towards mystery than the killing off the controlling gang.

Parker started the trend of the detective having a more or less equal partner who will do the dirty work with few moral qualms, but except for the Doc Savage books and comics, I'm unaware of a similar group. Maybe we have to go back to __The Three Musketeers__, the classics or Far Eastern folk tales. Mark Blumenthal

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