East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

Warren Murphy, R.I.P.

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I just learned about the death, on September the 4th, of Warren Murphy.

Some probably remember Murphy as the screenwriter of the Mel Gibson vehicle, Lethal Weapon II, but to pulp lovers he will forever be half of the creative team that brought us The Destroyer.

{B5F40AF1-F5DB-4964-924B-F3E30C105D05}Img400Murphy’s piece in the book The Fine Art of Murder, in which he explains how, together with Richard Sapir, he created the character of Remo Williams in the original Created, the Destroyer, as a satire of certian macho-oriented thrillers – and the book was bought and published as a bona-fide thriller – was what caused me to track down and read the first volumes in the Destroyer series.

With tongue firmly in cheek, an obvious gusto for excess and a collection of over-the-top situations, characters and events, the Remo Williams novel are at the same time the apex of the paperback originals that replaced the pulps in the ’70s, and a satire of that same subgenre. They mix spy story, science fiction, martial arts, with a large side serving of irony.

I am saddened by the passing of Warren Murphy.
He was one of the last giants of pulpdom.


Author: Davide Mana

Paleontologist. By day, researcher, teacher and ecological statistics guru. By night, pulp fantasy author-publisher, translator and blogger. In the spare time, Orientalist Anonymous, guerilla cook.

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