Re: RARA-AVIS: Hard-boiled Stand-up Guys: Ray and Woody

From: Patrick King (
Date: 05 Mar 2008

--- Kevin Burton Smith
> But then again, I've always sorta thought Chandler
> would have made a
> great stand-up comedian, as smart but uncomfortable
> in his own skin as
> Allen in his stand-up days. It's easy enough to
> picture Chandler's
> similes being delivered as one-liners.
> "I tell ya, this dame, well, I'm not saying she was
> hot, but she could
> make a bishop kick a hole in a stained glass
> window."
> "This guy was so ugly, man, he had a face like a
> collapsed lung."
****************************************************** The thing about Chandler that makes him unusual as a thriller writer is that Phillip Marlow, his idealized self, was so detached from his real self. You can clearly see Dashiel Hammett in Sam Spade, Nick Charles, and The Continental Op. In describing James Bonds physical characteristics, Ian Fleming was describing himself. But Raymond Chandler was, neither in stature, vocal inflection, nor athletic prowess, anything like Phillip Marlow. Chandler was a smart enough businessman to see what the public would respond to, and a good enough author to pull it off.

Patrick King

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