Joe Peters (Roadblock)

Created by Richard Landau (1914–93) and Geoffrey Homes Pseudonym of Daniel Mainwaring (1902-77) In Roadblock (1951), a nifty little noir full of robbery, murder, sexual obsession and a bunch of other neat stuff, JOE PETERS (Charles McGraw), a Los Angeles-based insurance investigaor who sounds like he gargles with old car parts, becomes involved with Diane … Continue reading Joe Peters (Roadblock)

Ralph Henderson

Created by Charles Felix Pseudonym of Charles Warren Adams (1833-1903) "Is that chain one of purely accidental coincidences, or does it point with terrible certainty to a series of crimes, in their nature and execution too horrible to contemplate?" -- Victorian P.I. Ralph Henderson gets all noir on us Forget The Moonstone (1868) by Wilkie … Continue reading Ralph Henderson

Marty Carlin (In the Blood)

Created by Paul Ledoux MARTY CARLIN worked for fifteen yeara as a detective for the Toronto cops until health problems, a botched stakeout and a dead partner had him and his wife Sharon hightailing it back to his hometown of Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he planned to pursue a calmer, quieter career as an insurance … Continue reading Marty Carlin (In the Blood)

Bill “Baron Munchausen” Tolliver

Created by Curtiss T. Gardner (1898--) BILL "BARON MUNCHAUSEN" TOLLIVER was an investigator for the Imperial Casualty Company who appeared in over a dozen short stories in the pulps in the forties, mostly in G-Men Detective. Apparently, the author, Curtis Tarring Gardner, had a thing for insurance dicks. He also wrote at least one story about … Continue reading Bill “Baron Munchausen” Tolliver

Willard P. Webb & Bruno Steele

Created by Curtiss T. Gardner (1898--) Somebody sent me this, with no explanation, but it does sound intriguing... I mean, a couple of insurance dicks, working as a team? And one of them is blind? And those names! WILLARD P. WEBB? BRUNO STEELE? Visions of some unholy, pulpy mix of Double Indemnity and Longstreet are … Continue reading Willard P. Webb & Bruno Steele

Tom Davison (Insurance Investigator)

Created by Gertrude Walker and Beth Brown In the enjoyable little 1951 flick Insurance Investigator (not to be confused with the dreadful 2001 straight-to-video porn flick The Insurance Investigator), TOM DAVISON of the Cosmopolitan Life Insurance Co. is dispatched to investigate a suspicious death. Apparently tea-totaler wealthy real estate agent George Sullivan, who had a $100,000 double … Continue reading Tom Davison (Insurance Investigator)

Sam Donovan (Cover Up)

Created by Jerome Odlum, Dennis O'Keefe, Francis Swann & Lawrence Kimble This Christmas Eve, if you're tired of The Thin Man, and can't quite stomach another viewing of Die Hard, there's an easy-going alternative that ought to hit the sweet spot between crime films and Christmas cheer. Cover Up is a pleasant little feelgooder from … Continue reading Sam Donovan (Cover Up)

The Acme Indemnity Op

Created by Jan Dana Pseudonym of John Frederick Brooks Lawrence (1907-1970) Sssshhhhh.... don't tell the Hammett folks. But in 1937, Dime Detective started publishing a series of short stories featuring a nameless hard-boiled, cynical claims investigator who worked for a national insurance agency. No similarity to Hammett's very popular and influential hard-boiled, cynical Continental Op, … Continue reading The Acme Indemnity Op

John Wallis & David Roche (Bug & Roach)

Created by Wilson Toney JOHN "BUG" WALLIS and DAVID ROCHE (everyone seems to insist on pronouncing it "roach") are a pair of seen-it-all investigators for the National Detective Agency, a long-established firm, headquartered in some unnamed city in the Midwest, looking into everything from late night car accidents to high-level corporate malarkey, published by Stark … Continue reading John Wallis & David Roche (Bug & Roach)

Jerry Killain

Created by Harlan Ellison Pseudonyms include Jay Charby, Landon Ellis, Sley Harson, Ellis Hart, John Magnus & Jay Solo (1934-2018) "I don't play if I don't know how to win." -- Jerry lays it out for his boss, in "The Golden Virgin" Although he's celebrated as a science fiction and fantasy author (and as a … Continue reading Jerry Killain