Sunday, September 16, 2012

Of Comebacks, Classics, and Commandments

• Tonight will bring Episode 2 of the latest Wallander series, “The Dogs of Riga,” starring Kenneth Branaugh. That 90-minute broadcast begins at 9 p.m. ET/PT as part of PBS-TV’s Masterpiece Mystery!

• Speaking of Masterpiece Mystery!: Three new installments of the very popular World War II-era crime drama Foyle’s War, starring Michael Kitchen and Honeysuckle Weeks, are currently being filmed for Britain’s ITV and are expected to show in the States sometime next summer
under the Mystery! umbrella. Omnimystery News catches us up a bit on what to expect from those fresh episodes.

• It seems rather early to be announcing this, but registration is now open for ThrillerFest VIII, scheduled to take place from July 10 to 13, 2013, in New York City. According to a press release, “This year, spotlight guests will include 2013 ThrillerMaster Anne Rice, 2011 ThrillerMaster R.L. Stine, T. Jefferson Parker, and Michael Connelly.”

• Although it has zero to do with crime fiction, it’s worth noting that tomorrow marks the 40th anniversary of the debut of M*A*S*H.

• Better late than never: Yesterday was the 79th birthday of Henry Darrow, described by the Los Angeles Times as “the first Puerto Rican star of an hour-long TV series, playing the charismatic and devilish Manolito Montoya on the 1967-71 NBC western The High Chaparral.” Many of us, though, will recall Darrow best for his role as San Diego Police Lieutenant Manuel “Manny” Quinlan on Harry O.

• Hard Case Crime editor Charles Ardai picks Hollywood’s top seven femmes fatales for The Huffington Post. In the course of it, he manages to promote only two of his popular line’s titles.

• As Shotsmag Confidential notes, British publisher Orion has launched The Murder Room, “a dedicated Web site which makes out-of-print and hard-to-find classic crime novels available as e-books.” A list of available titles can be found here.

• There certainly are plenty of supposed “commandments” in regards to the writing of crime, mystery, and detective fiction. Here are several such lists, none of which--in my humble opinion, anyway--need to be followed slavishly.

• In advance of Bouchercon, taking place this year in Cleveland, Ohio, from October 4 to 7, the blog Murder, Mystery & Mayhem recaps the lists of contenders for a wide variety of commendations to be given out during that convention.

• As part of its “Classics in September” series, the blog Crime Fiction Lover features an interview with editor, publisher, and bookstore proprietor Otto Penzler. His interrogator doesn’t ask enough questions, and Penzler is too brief in his responses, but the results are still worth reading here.

• Another installment of “Classics in September” is this new tribute to Arthur Conan Doyle’s A Study in Scarlet.

• Blogger Rhian Davies reports that Charles Cummings has won the inaugural Scottish Crime Book of the Year award.

• It’s been a long while since I watched the pilot for the 1984-1986 private-eye TV series Riptide, starring Perry King, Joe Penny, and Anne Francis. But it has suddenly appeared on YouTube in its entirety, along with the introductory film for another Stephen J. Cannell series, Hardcastle & McCormick, and the pilot for the Cybill Shepherd/Bruce Willis series, Moonlighting. Sheesh! If you’re not careful, you could spend all day just watching old TV shows on the Web.

• Or maybe you’d prefer lower-tech entertainment.

• As a veteran newspaper guy, I’m glad to see that U.S. publishers remain optimistic about the future of their printed news medium. With the intent of helping out, I’ve recently returned to my tradition of spending a couple of hours just reading The New York Times on Sunday mornings. It’s much more peaceful than finding news online.

• And not long after I posted a list on this page of book-oriented blogs that deserve greater attention, the author of one such product--Jedidiah Ayres from Barnes & Noble’s Ransom Notes--wrote to tell me that “I got my pink slip this afternoon--no more Ransom Notes for me.” Ayres adds: “I’m not sore. Of course I’d rather continue with that gig, but I think they made a business decision and I couldn’t speak to the advisedness of that.” Well, at least Ayres still has his personal blog, Hard-boiled Wonderland.


Naomi Johnson said...

I'm salivating over the idea of more Foyle's War.

Ah, Manolito Montoya! Henry Darrow and Cameron Mitchell were MY reasons for watching High Chaparral.

Winifred said...

So pleased Foyle's War has been salvaged once again. Wonderful stuff.

I also loved Henry Darrow in the High Chaparral & he was great as a foyle to David Janssen in fabulous Harry O.