Re: RARA-AVIS: Bloch as a Crime Writer

From: Jeff Vorzimmer (
Date: 12 Feb 2008

> wonder if it would hold up? Mysteries too tied to music trends or
> hipster lingo date very badly. It's like watching a rerun of "77
> Sunset Strip" and listening to Kookie go through his patter. Too
> gone Daddy.

I've been watching reruns of 77 Sunset Strip lately and I'll have to say that they're actually as good as I remember them. I disagree with your point on slang. To say something is "dated" suggests you're talking about a story from the not-too-distant-past, in which their is a lot of slang from a period in which it has just recently been out of vogue. If you're reading the same story or watching a show like 77SS 50 years later it helps recreate the whole time period and can be nostaglic (if you're old enough), fresh again, or new to you (if you weren''t around then) and interesting to hear the patter as spoken by hipsters circa 1960. I laugh when I hear Kookie again all these years later, just like we laughed at him then. Same as hearing Wilbur again in Peter Gunn. It's a gas, man.

Haven't read Bloch's Dead Beat, but I just recently read Markson's Epitaph for a Dead Beat and the beatnik lingo really helps recreate the time period.


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