Re: RARA-AVIS: Spade falling in love

From: Michael Robison (
Date: 09 Oct 2007

Mark wrote:

Clearly I'm going to have to reread Maltese Falcon to see if I still feel that Spade did indeed love Brigid, but I do have to question the arguments against it that flow from the logic that Spade recognized her as a psychopath from the beginning, THEREFORE he could not have loved her.

*********** If you can accept that his whole speech at the end is a put-on, then I think it's no stretch at all to think he didn't love her. I don't buy that, though. My interpretation is that Spade is struggling at the end and pragmatism wins over sentiment, thus freeing Spade from a noir fate. To call Spade's ending speech a put-on is to discount his pragmatic take on life, his weighing of everything on the scales. Spade was dead serious. He had nothing to gain by further deception.
 The game was over. The cards were on the table and he had the winning hand.


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