Movie review: Parker

Update: My opinion isn’t the only one. I’m adding links to thoughts from fellow Parker fans (often quite different from mine) at the bottom of the post.

Parker is terrible.

Almost everything about it is awful. It opens well enough, with a heist set at the Ohio State Fair, […]

UK first editions of the Parker novels (plus some reprints), 1967–1970

NB: A version of this post also appears on Existential Ennui.

Last week I posted a Westlake Score—a 1969 Hodder Fawcett/Coronet paperback of Donald “Richard Stark” Westlake’s Parker novel The Sour Lemon Score—which, for me, completed a run of British first editions of the Parkers—i.e. those editions Coronet published in the […]

Like having a scorpion in the room: an interview with Darwyn Cooke on Richard Stark’s Parker: The Score

Introduction

Darwyn Cooke does one in-depth interview for each volume in his series of comic book adaptations of Richard Stark’s [pseudonym of Donald Westlake] Parker novels. (Here are the interviews for The Hunter and The Outfit.) For his new one, The Score, he was kind enough to invite The Violent World of Parker to conduct the interview. “I thought it was time I geared whatever big interview I did more towards Don’s [Donald Westlake’s] fans, rather than my own,” he told us.

For better or worse, he got what he asked for. Nick and I managed two conference calls with Darwyn across three countries, three time zones, and two continents.

There are minor spoilers sprinkled throughout, but nothing, I think, that will affect the enjoyment of the reader of either Darwyn’s great adaptation or its source material. (I did remove one major spoiler, although not for this book.)

Thank you for sitting down with us, Darwyn, and thank you for your immense contributions to the violent world of Parker, and to The Violent World of Parker.

Dear reader: Dig in. I think you’ll find it as fascinating as Nick and I did.

Interview

Nick: [Opening after some green room chatter] Speaking of The Score: How was it this time? How did you find it? How did you adapt to it this time out?

Darwyn: There’s sort of a built-in need to find a way to make each one better than the last. That usually adds to stress and anxiety and all sorts of things you can’t control, but the more I work with Parker, the more comfortable it gets. It’s a pretty easy ride now.

I know how I feel about the character and I know how people have reacted to it, so I feel really free just to go ahead with it? And, in every case with Parker I’m just out to please myself. And that happens to be pleasing other people, so that’s great.

I’m never sitting there worrying about what it is I’m doing. It’s just a very comfortable, really gratifying job now.

We’re like old buddies.

Continue reading Like having a scorpion in the room: an interview with Darwyn Cooke on Richard Stark’s Parker: The Score

Rest in peace, Ernest Borgnine

What a life.

Westlake Score: The Split (Gold Medal, 1968), Robert McGinnis cover art

NB: A version of this post also appears on Existential Ennui.

I’m back, with a Westlake Score, and further evidence, as if any were needed, of the madness which consumes me. Because despite already owning three different editions of the seventh Richard Stark Parker novel—both under its original title of The […]

The Split finally comes to DVD

Image from Warner Archives release announcement e-mail

(Via Wallace Stroby.)

Does this mean I have to watch it again?

Here’s the announcement from the Warner Archive:

THE SPLIT (1968) Richard Stark’s The Seventh (part of his iconic series of ‘Parker’ novels) gets the Jim Brown treatment in this neo-noir tale of […]

Richard Stark’s Parker novels: the US Fawcett Gold Medal and UK Hodder Fawcett Coronet paperback editions, 1967-9

Earlier in the week, at the end of this post on the review slip in Jeffrey Goodman’s copy of the 1967 Gold Medal edition of Point Blank!, I mentioned that seeing that review slip helped me make a connection that answered a question I’d been pondering for a while, and that as a […]

Richard Stark’s Parker novels: the British Gold Lion editions

Always nice to start the week with a massive pistol, I find.

Now, chances are, you won’t have seen this particular Parker cover before. It’s a hardback-with-dustjacket, it dates from 1973, and it’s one of three Parker novels issued by the same publisher in that year which, together, rank among the most elusive—and […]

Westlake Score: The Split by Richard Stark; UK movie tie-in edition (Coronet paperback, 1969)

This latest Westlake Score was inspired by my learned friend Olman, who almost secured a copy of the book in question during a recent holiday ramble around a number bookshops in the Canadian Maritimes (not as unusual as that sounds; I did a similar thing on my holiday this year). Olman spied this […]

Are you ready for some football?

I’m far too backlogged on cover scans to post them all at once, so I dribble them out when I have an excuse.

Tonight’s excuse is Monday Night Football. I had a wonderful extended football weekend with both of my alma maters (Michigan, Texas) winning, and my three pro teams winning as well […]