In “Barrie Craig, Confidential Investigator —
Blood Money, Scenes 3, 4, & 5
Loyalties of the Hard-Boiled Detective
We’ve met Barrie Craig now and we can begin to identify some of his characteristics that make him a fairly typical hard-boiled detective. We heard him chat with Max Marcy and take on a job for him. He showed care and concern for the older detective, rather than feeling competitive. He even agreed to work for nothing, just asking Max to pay for his expenses. A hard-boiled detective lives by a set of rules, a code of ethics. This code defines what he considers right and wrong, moral and immoral.
But sometimes the rules of his code conflict with one another. In Blood Money, we see some potential for conflict. For example, these three rules could conflict:
1. be dedicated to your client
2. be objective, therefore don’t get too close to your client
3. be loyal to your profession
Barrie is dedicated to his client. This dedication to the client is part of the code of ethics, but in this episode, his client is another private eye, Max Marcy. Normally, the hard-boiled detective will distance himself from his client, not get socially involved, so that he can remain objective – so that he can look at the evidence he finds all the while remaining open to any possibility, even if it means that he comes to suspect his client. With Max Marcy as a client, it is a little more complicated than that because Barrie and Max work in the same business, the same profession. Not only do they already know each other somewhat, he has another item on his code of ethics, which says that he should be loyal to his profession. So he needs to hold Max at arms length, yet be loyal to him. Above all, if Barrie senses any ethical conflicts, he will follow one rule above all others – he will be loyal to his own personal sense of justice. Above all,
- be loyal to your own personal sense of justice
We don’t see it yet, but Barrie may be forced to make such a decision.
Plot: [Warning — Spoilers!]
In today’s podcast, we’ll listen to scenes 3, 4, and 5. In scene 3, Barrie Craig reports back to Max Marcy about what he has learned of Anatol Barbar’s whereabouts. Basically, he has done what Max hired him to do, but he offers to go the extra mile and verify the facts – check it out for himself. Max is okay with this as long as Barrie Craig doesn’t make Barbar suspect that he is being followed by a detective. In scene 4, while Barrie Craig is verifying Barbar’s whereabouts, he finds Anatol Barbar all right, but he is dead. His death was made to look like as suicide, as if he had hanged himself, but Barrie finds evidence that it was murder. In scene 5, Barrie tells Max that Anatol Barbar is dead. Max isn’t surprised. Listen and find out why Max suspected that Barrie would find him dead. After hearing Max’s reasoning, Barrie notes that the killer will have to kill again in order to cover up the first murder.