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Old 17th July 2006   #1
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Default ''She was big and she was lovely''

Legendary mystery writer Mickey Spillane died today. There's a nice tribute article at the following page:,00.html

I never actually read any of his novels, but, like so many children of the '80s, I grew up watching Stacy Keach playing his famous private eye, Mike Hammer, on network TV. The women on the series weren't quite plus-size, but they were definitely fuller-figured that any others in prime time. If I remember correctly, Delta Burke even made a guest appearance on one episode.

One passage from the above article makes me think that Spillane had a preference for plus-size beauty. I have to admit, this is pretty exciting:

The Hammer novels had a couple of recurring characters: Pat, the honest, but slow-moving cop, and Velda, Mike's faithful secretary. Like so many women in Hammer's life, Velda was a looker, and burning for love.

"Velda was watching me with the tip of her tongue clenched between her teeth," Spillane wrote in "Vengeance is Mine!," an early Hammer novel.

"There wasn't any kitten-softness about her now. She was big and she was lovely, with the kind of curves that made you want to turn around and have another look. The lush fullness of her lips had tightened into the faintest kind of snarl and her eyes were the carnivorous eyes you could expect to see in the jungle watching you from behind a clump of bushes."

When I read that, I immediately thought of two things: Torrid's '40s-inspired images of Christina Schmidt from last winter's campaign, and the "carnivorous eyes," of course, made me think of Barbara Brickner. (Someone just mentioned how good she looks in animal prints.)

If someone were to cast a Mike Hammer movie today, I'd hope they would select their voluptuous vixens from among the plus-size model ranks. They clearly embody the image of beauty that Spillane had in mind - very curvy, and very dangerous.
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Old 18th July 2006   #2
Join Date: July 2005
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Default Re: ''She was big and she was lovely''

Originally Posted by Chad
When I read that, I immediately thought of two things: Torrid's '40s-inspired images of Christina Schmidt from last winter's campaign...

When that campaign debuted, Emily initiated an intriguing thread likening Miss Schmidt's Torrid images to the milieu of the private investigator. Readers noted that in the following, incredibly sexy image of Christina, her hand gesture coyly mimics the possession of a firearm:

Mickey Spillane's work may be sub-literary, but it sounds like a guilty pleasure, and seems rather more interesting than the genre's "respected" novels of Hammet and Chandler. (Politics are always involved in these assessments.)

Anyone wishing to explore the world of Mike Hammer for themselves--perhaps to enjoy Spillane's descriptions of his "big and lovely" femmes fatales--can indulge in a paperback anthology of the first three Hammer novels, at the link posted below. The titles of the works, such as Vengenace is Mine! and I, the Jury, have real brio. And note, in particular, that the cover depiction shows a buxom vixen, firearm included, in the Christina Schmidt manner.

- The Mike Hammer Collection

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