Created by Raymond Chandler

Chandler’s first P.I. character lasted only two stories. MALLORY, whose adventures were told in the third person, was a Chicago operative who came to Hollywood for one case, and stayed for one more. The format (third person) and background (business in Chicago) differentiated Mallory from Chandler’s later series characters (most notably, of course, Philip Marlowe) but he was more or less the same character, save for a few rougher edges. Chandler later “cannibalized” these stories for his novels.

In The Simple Art of Murder collection (1950), which included “Smart-Aleck Kill,” Chandler changed Mallory’s name to John Dalmas.

Other names Chandler used for his loner P.I. hero include Carmady, Ted Malvern and John Evans. By the way, at last count there were seven other eyes out there using Chandler’s discarded names for their own character. I wonder if they all are thinking how clever and oblique they are?


  • “Blackmailers Don’t Shoot” (December 1933, Black Mask)
  • “Smart-Aleck Kill” (July 1934, Black Mask)
Respectfully submitted by Jim Doherty and Kevin Smith.

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