Friday, January 06, 2006

You Say, I Say (Comments on comments)

Oh, boy...

My on-going e-mail problems (thanks for nothing, SBCGlobal, the world's most unhelpful ISP) seem to have suddenly, almost miraculously fixed themselves in a big way, a few weeks after I was told there was nothing they could do -- I've suddenly got 700 pieces of mail to read.

If any of you have written to me in the last month or so, and not received a response, it might be a good idea to re-send it. As reported elsewhere, my December was a hellhole from which I'm only now digging myself out of, a few weeks where everything from work to wahoo went wonky. Modems died, e-mail servers turned belly-up, the new issue of the site got postponed about twenty times, Christmas gifts vanished, the plague settled in, our TV died, blah blah blah poor poor pitiful me and all that... but as I said, I think I see light at the end of the tunnel... or maybe it's the Double E.

So while I'm downloading all those messages (and hoping it's mostly spam), I'll do a little blogging. She Who Must Be Obeyed says I should really blog something at least once a day, at least at first, just to make sure people check me out regularly so, uh, here goes.... with my first ever You Say I Say blog...

Dave the Skib said;

"It's so geat to have a daily dose of your pisser personality. I was missing it on Wicked. Things were just getting too tame over there, and you're the reason I joined that group. So don't let any of the whiners rein you in, continue ypour rants, and let the chips fall where they may."

And I say:

Chips? You're soaking in them.

And Stephen wrote:

"Haven't seen the new Kong, yet, but I have to wonder have there been any remakes better than the originals? I don't mean prettier, or with better production value, and bigger monsters, but truer to the story, or a better telling of it."

And I say:

That's so easy. THE MALTESE FALCON, 1941, directed by John Huston. You may have heard of it. Anyway, it was the third adaptation of Hammett's book. And by far the best, although the first adaptation seems to have been cannibalized for parts by Huston. Some of the scenes are duplicated line for line and camera angle for camera angle in the 1941 version, which really puts the boots to the lie that Huston write the screenplay by having his secretary just type up the novel.

And David from Pamama (Say "Hey!" to Ruthie!) wrote:

"Jim Rockford? No question, the best. I've read that the character came out of Garner's playing Marlowe. Is that true?"

And I say:

Possibly, although I was always a little ambivalent about that film (Still, I'd love to have it on DVD). I actually thought, in a weird way, that Elliott Gould in Altman's LONG GOODBYE was closer to what an updated Marlowe would be like, and somewhat truer to Marlowe's essence. Garner's Marlowe was just a little too smug/slick and confident.

And nobody could ever do Rockford without re-imagining the character completely, or settling for imitating Garner -- because Rockford was totally built around Garner's screen persona which he'd carefully developed over the years -- you know, that shifty, slightly cowardly reluctant hero we all have come to know and love.

So, if you ask me, I think Rockford's character probably owes more to Brett Maverick and Sherrif Nichols and Garner's character in THE GREAT ESCAPE than Marlowe, per se, although it's obvious Huggins and Cannell know their Chandler. Like, in the episode "EXIT PRENTISS CARR," it's no coincidence the town Jimbo visits that's full of corrupt and/or incompetent cops is called... Bay City.

Hmmm... 734 messages (and counting), some of them dating back weeks, plenty of duplicates and messages I seem to have already received...


Three "Open letters to Osama Bin Laden" (Darn, I hate getting mail addressed to other internationally wanted bad guys...)
Seventeen messages asking "Do You Have a Web Site?" (Sometimes I wish I knew the answer to THAT one)
Several with such enticing subject heads as "gewgaw Pharamaceutiucal," "blanch Jain," "Make Her Screeeeeammmm !!!!!," "Your account's securitty has been tampperd with," "The widow of the late finance minister of Southern Ooby Dooby wishes to discuss a private business transaction with you" and the ever-popular "楽しいひと時すごしません?"
I mean, who could resist opening (and responding to) such obviously important mail?

And "Haircare for U"? If I had an actual hair for every piece of spam I've received from these people I might actually be in the market for haircare products. As it is, I can make a bottle of shampoo last for years...

Anyhoo, my apologies to everyone who thinks I'm some sort of Cyber Garbo, not answering their mail... I'll try to sort this all out.

Other thrilling news from KevWorld:

My respects to the late, great Dennis Lynds are paid in the latest MYSTERY SCENE, currently available at finer bookstores, magazine stands and bowling alleys everywhere. Also included: my annual list of gift suggestions (it's never too late to start shopping for next year...)

Meanwhile, several reviews of mine are included in January Magazines BEST OF and REST OF lists at Read 'em and weep. Or sleep. Or something...

And the site is slowly (oh so slowly) coming together...

And this just in... the new Deets Shanahan, from Ronald Tierney. I'm really looking forward to hooking up again with Deets. He's always been about my favourite "old dick" -- imagine Rocky, not Jim, as the P.I. in the family.

And Dick Adler's new book of reviews... I'll get back to you on that one.

Oh, the Isley Brothers' "SHOUT" just came up on shuffle play... gotta go.

Hey, Hey, Hey, Hey....


Blogger David Terrenoire said...

The Long Goodbye. Now there's a movie I'd like to have on DVD.

I think that was the first Altman film I'd ever seen and Elliot Gould was terrific as a modern Marlowe. I understand that apartment of his is still a party place, with easy viewing.

And Ruthie says come see her.

9:34 PM, January 06, 2006  
Blogger Confessions of a Starving Mystery Writer said...

Hammett, Chandler, MacDonald.

Where have all the heros gone?

10:12 PM, January 06, 2006  
Blogger Tribe said...

Hell, I sent you email back when you guest blogged at Sarah's blog...that must have been the reason I got no answer. Shit, now I put on the stop...what if you just decided "fuck you, Tribe."

Ya know, I've stopped using email through an ISP going on a year now...I strictly use Gmail...lemme know if you want an invite or two...I have a ton of invites sitting there for the asking.

10:27 PM, January 06, 2006  
Blogger FizzWater said...

Um... okay, I just checked out

Biking? Biking?

I want to hear about biking. Er, cycling, for the purists.

Do you bike out there in SoCal? Road or mountain?

Did you catch this post in the Bog:

2006 marks the year I began my cycling career.

11:41 AM, January 07, 2006  
Blogger Jen Jordan said...

Your write-up on Scott Wolven is dead nuts on.

ISP problems are a modern plague right up there with faulty html. Somewhere out there an evil IT guy is laughing his cyber ass off.

4:21 PM, January 07, 2006  
Blogger Stephen Blackmoore said...

Re: Remakes. The Maltese Falcon. Of course. What was I thinking?

I saw a screening of A Dangerous Female about 10 years ago. Amazing, and a little disturbing what they were doing before the movie codes. Spade comes off as an asshole. Bogart really added a lot of humanity to the character that Cortez just couldn't begin to muster.

Which reminds me, I saw it as a double feature with The Kennel Murder Case with William Powell and Mary Astor. If there's one thing movies are missing today it's actors like Eugene Pallette, the frog voiced police sergeant.

9:29 PM, January 08, 2006  

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