Saturday, November 19, 2011

Bullet Points: Saturday Night Special

• Following a vote by “some 33.000 members of the Irish reading public,” the winners of this year’s Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Award were determined. Among them was the recipient of the 2011 Ireland AM Irish Crime Fiction Book of the Year: Bloodland, by Alan Glynn. A rundown of the victors in all categories can be found here.

• While many of the rest of us are putting together lists of our favorite crime novels from 2011, critic Robin Jarossi has been busy assembling his rundown of this year’s best TV crime dramas shown in Britain. His selections include Dexter, Law & Order: UK, Case Histories, Top Boy, and The Killing (aka Forbrydelsen, the original, Danish version of the police procedural series that translated so poorly to American television).

• Speaking of Dexter, that serial-killer show has already been renewed for two more seasons. While British network ITV has signed actor David Suchet to star in five more Hercule Poirot tales.

• Lately, Max Allan Collins seems to be even more ubiquitous than normal. AmazonEncore has recently reissued (in paperback and e-book formats) the complete backlist of Collins’ novels featuring Chicago-based private eye Nate Heller, and published Chicago Lightning, which collects 13 Heller short stories. In addition, graphic-novel publisher Vertigo Crime has released Return to Perdition, the conclusion to the saga that began with Road to Perdition (1998), on which the Tom Hanks film was based. “Collins moves the story along at a ripping pace,” writes Bill Crider, “with some good surprises along the way, and [artist Terry] Beatty’s drawings are just right for the ’70s setting. If you didn’t know better, you might think you were watching an exploitation movie from that era, with plenty of nudity, sex, and violence. The ending works very well as it brings the long road trip to a conclusion, and the last panel is perfect.”

A Munsters TV reboot? Really?

• Now we know some more of the reasoning behind Republicans wanting to slash taxes on America’s wealthiest 1 percent of residents and shift that burden onto the shoulders of the rest of us. “During a town hall meeting in Ottumwa, Iowa, Friday afternoon, [GOP presidential candidate] Rick Santorum argued that Americans receive too many government benefits and ought to ‘suffer’ in the Christian tradition.” Read more here.

• Oscar-nominated actress Elisabeth Shue will be joining the cast of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, replacing Marg Helgenberger. Her first appearance on the long-running series will come February 15. “Helgenberger will no longer be a regular after this season, but she is expected to make occasional guest appearances,” reports AolTV.

• I, for one, have fond childhood memories of Mister Ed.

• Shamus Award-winning author Ed Gorman provides Beat to a Pulp with its latest short story, a dark little number titled “Stalker.”

• Wow, can this be? The delightful blog To the Batpoles has already finished reviewing/revisiting the first two seasons of Batman, the campy 1966-1968 TV series based on Bob Kane’s comic-book character. Only one more season to go, this one introducing Batgirl in the curvaceous form of actress Yvonne Craig.

• The made-for-TV movie format, which I enjoyed so much as a boy, returns later this month to network TNT with the debut of Mystery Movie Night, a weekly dramatization of original films based on best-selling novels. First on the docket will be Innocent, adapted from Scott Turow’s 2010 sequel to Presumed Innocent (1987) and set to air on November 29. Criminal Element offers a general preview of the series, while author April Smith writes in the Weekly Lizard about what it took to transfer her character, FBI Agent Ana Grey, to the small screen. Army Wives’ Catherine Bell will star in Good Morning, Killer, based on Smith’s 2003 novel of the same name, on December 13.

• Television historian James Rosin is a guest on the latest edition of TV Confidential, the radio series hosted by Ed Robertson. Click here to find a schedule of air dates.

• And it’s hard to resist this headline: “9 Ballsy Real-life Spies.”

1 comment:

Erik said...

I love that Collins' work is coming back in print. I'm holding my breath for the Ms. Tree comics