Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: Spillane and misogyny

Date: 09 Jul 2006


I think you're right that he's just not my taste. For instance, miker recently pointed out how many of Chandler's murderers were women, but that never bothered me. Similarly, I'm a big fan of noir films with femmes fatales (whether or not they get away with it), a depiction many find sexist, if not outright misogynist. So it can't just be Hammer's dispatching of female killers that bothers me, a dismissal that has even less validity now that you've proven that Spillane believes in sexual equality when it comes to villainy.

I think it's probably telling that my favorite Mike Hammer film is Kiss Me Deadly, the one Spillane hated because Hammer is shown as far from heroic, basically using Velda to run badger games. Also kind of enjoyed Stacey Keach's Hammer, but mostly for the spoofiness. While I do recognize the bits of tongue in cheek humor in the few novels of his I've read, the proud brutishness overwhelmed it for me.

Maybe it was because I read them in college that the anti-intellectualism particularly offended the intellectual I was then
(somewhat ostentatiously) trying to become. I like to think I've outgrown at least some of that snobbiness.

And with that mind, maybe I'll try him again. Which Hammer book do you
(or anyone else) recommend as his best?


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This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 09 Jul 2006 EDT