Dirty Eyes & Other Not-So-Private Dicks
There’s always been a certain amount of sexual hijinks in the world of private detective fiction, right from the start.
I mean, come on. “Private dick”? Really?
You don’t have to be an English major to suss that one out.
Want more proof?
Read early reviews of Dashiell Hammett’s The Maltese Falcon–readers were shocked, I tell you, SHOCKED! by the sexual frankness. Or check out the pre-code first filmed version of that classic tale.
Brigid and Sam did not spend that night playing canasta.
Barely even soft-core here, although considered pretty raunchy stuff once upon a time. Plenty of innuendo and some smirky, mostly off-stage sex, bolstered by a lot of nudge-nudge, wink-wink and adolescent humour. A lot of “tiddly-winks are orbed,” as Dan Turner, the patron saint of spicy detectives, might say. Just racy enough to make Aunt Martha occasionally blush. If she doesn’t get out too much…
- Dan Turner by Robert Leslie Bellem. Flash those tiddlywinks, baby!
- Shell Scott by Richard Prather. The king of the Sexploitation Era.
- Honey West by G.G. Fickling. “Honey, where are your clothes?”
- Erik March by G.G. Fickling. “Erik, where are Honey’s clothes?”
- Pete Chambers by Henry Kane (circa The Glow Job, etc.) He may be a private richard, but he’s still a dick.
- Patrick Hardy by Martin Meyers. The so-called “sensual sleuth” of the seventies barely rates an X here.
Okay, these guys generally call a spade a spade. Still a lot of innuendo, but people actually have sex, and it’s usually depicted in some detail, if a little (or a lot) of it’s meant as humour. Enough to make your prudish Aunt Martha feel uncomfortable and leave the room. And besides, she mostly doesn’t get the joke.
- Guy by Anthony L. Green and Daryl Haney (The Best Sex Ever)
- Rick Knight by Jack Burns
- Timothy Lea by Timothy Lea (Confessions of a Private Dick)
- Case Morgan by Don Lomax
- Stewart Mann by Stephan Gregory (pseudonym of Don Pendleton).
- Jake Masters (star of a 1971 softcore flick, based on a Pete McGrath novel by Michael Brett)
- Max Nolan, Erotic Detective by Spenser Fortune (aka Robert Randisi)
- Bunny Quest by Kent Hadley
Sometimes girls just wanna have fun, too.
- Big Dick Rickenbacher by Michael Bracken
- Tokey Wedge by Jack Lynn. The little dick with the big dick, and the star of the stroke books.
This is the real deal. We’re not talking about innuendo, or even high-volume promiscuity here. We’re talking out-and-out smut here, private eyes who appear in films and literature whose primary (and possibly sole) focus is sex.
You can call it porn or erotica or whatever you want, but these eyes are out for a good time, and if they crack a case, well, it’s only in between bouts of the horizontal (or vertical or diagonal) bop. Aunt Martha’s either going to blush and run out of the room — or call in Uncle John, and then Katie, bar the door!
- Moe Ron” Boyette by Michael Bracken
- Franz by Alain Robbe-Grillet
Plenty of cheesy porn flicks parody P.I. tropes, but this one is supposed to be “art.”
- Nick Grande by Bob Chinn
- Takayasu Higashino (Bondage House)
- Hamilton “Trader” Hornee by David F. Friedman
- Jackson Kratz by Justin Welton
For those of you who were waiting for a porn version of Double Indemnity.
- Peter Magnum by Bob Chinn
- Samantha “Sam” Sharpe by Thomas K. Nash
- Johnny Wadd by Bob Chinn
Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.