The Dain Curse
is a 1929 detective novel by Dashiell Hammett
, featuring The Continental Op
The Op investigates a complicated web involving robbery, murder, cults, psychosis, and drug addiction enmeshing Gabrielle Leggett, who believes she is the inheritor of a curse on her mother's family.
Adapted as a TV mini-series in 1978, with James Coburn in the lead role.
The Dain Curse provides examples of:
- A God Am I: Joseph.
- Cartwright Curse: Apparently one of the symptoms of the Dain Curse.
- Evil Redhead: Fitzstephan.
- Noble Demon: Gabrielle's opinion of the Op boils down to this.
- Rasputinian Death: Joseph takes a gun full of bullets and knife through the neck before he goes down.
- Red Right Hand: Gabrielle believes her pointed ears and small facial features are signs of evil.
- Uncanny Valley: Hammett gives a pretty good description of the phenomenon almost 50 years before it was named:
"There was warmth and there was beauty in her olive-skinned face, but except for the eyes, it was warmth and beauty that didn't seem to have anything to do with reality. It was as if her face were not a face, but a mask that she had worn until it had almost become a face. Even her mouth, which was a mouth to talk about, looked not so much like flesh as like a too perfect imitation of flesh, softer and redder and maybe warmer than genuine flesh, but not genuine flesh."
- You're Insane!
The TV adaptation provides examples of: