> Narratives about the misdeeds of the commercially powerful are
> perennially popular, but are there any new noir yarns that take
> place in the milieu of low-skilled workers displaced in the shift
> from an industrial to a service and information-based economy? Or
> has noir been displaced by reality TV?
Actually, I rather enjoyed FEAR THE WORST, our ol' pal Linwood
Barclay's latest domestic noir (or whatever you call it).
The protagonist is a used car salesman, circling the drain, whose
seventeen year-old daughter disappears. Barclay doesn't quite hit all
the noir buttons (he never gets quite thematically dark enough) but in
the hands of a latter day Hitchcock or Dymytryk, this would make a
really fine film noir. Maxing out your credit cards and possibly
risking your job to fly across country to rescue your daughter?
It's a welcome change from Harlan Coben's similarly themed domestics
which seem to be taking place in an increasingly UMC world. HOLD
TIGHT, for example, has a surgeon/lawyer couple at its core. Maybe we
could call that Huxtable noir.
One of the problems some neo-noir writers seem to have is this
patronizing theme that being working class or unemployed means having
no class. Being unemployed doesn't necessarily automatically make you
start saying "Fuck" every two words, or suddenly want to take a belt
sander to your wife.
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