Sunday, July 11, 2010

Miss Leech and The Yard

The police have a special place in the tradition of the classic amateur detective story, and it is not always a happy one. Because the actual bad guy is hidden, very often poor Inspector Plod has to take the place of main antagonist to the detective. Sometimes a rival, sometimes an obstacle, sometimes a downright villain, and sometimes a long-suffering friend and supporter. And sometimes, when bureaucracy gets in the way, the policeman might even be the client - when his nose tells him that something is wrong, but he's not allowed to investigate further, he might call on his rival to take the case for him.

A long time ago, in cartooning class, I created a cartoon strip about a long-suffering policeman named Inspector Stride, who did not need or want any help, and the competitive old lady who lived in his district, Miss Leech. I now present to you:


If I find more of these in my files, I'll put up more later.


Anonymous said...

Camille - You make some very good points about the way the police detective is portrayed in crime fiction that features a sleuth who's not on the police force. I think that whether or not the sleuth is on the police force makes quite a difference in terms of how a cop is portrayed. But yes, when the detective isn't a police officer, I can see how your cartoon strikes home...

The Daring Novelist said...

Yes, the poor policeman just has to adapt in the world of the cozy mystery.

I'm working on police characters in two cozies I'm developing, so their plight is much on my mind.