Best Of / Worst Of....
Hey readers! Tonight's post is another in the Best Of / Worst Of Character Moments series, this one filed under "other". We're going to take a look at our characters from the movie, "The Cat O' Nine Tails".
Now, being a giallo, I imagine that most of our characters are going to get a demerit as a default position. It's rare for any of the main players in a giallo not to have some dark, tawdry secret hanging in the background. Although, off hand, I don't remember anything really appalling standing out for our two heroes, Franco Arno & Carlo Giordani. But, we need to get into this thing to be sure.
A warning though -- it may be possible to figure out the killer's identity by who isn't included in the list, so maybe you should check out the film before opening the LJ-cut.
Franco Arno: A blind puzzle creator, former reporter and mystery buff who draws too much attention to himself from a killer.
Carlo Giordani: The random reporter who is investigating a simple break in at a private science foundation, but suddenly discovers he's become a target, as well. I guess there is a lesson in this: Never trust a blind puzzle creator who was a former reporter and likes to get involved in mysteries. Words to live by, my friend, words to live by.
Detective Spini: Who knew that when the detective started investigating a simple burglary in which nothing appeared to have been stolen, that it was going to turn into a pile of bodies? Well, I did, but that's only because I'm familiar with the genre. Spini? Not so much.
Ana Terzi: The daughter of the foundation's founder and CEO. She starts as a rich bitch, but that's all just a front. She starts a tepid affair with our reporter at the most inopportune of times.
Director Terzi: A man with more than his share of embarrassing secrets... but is he willing to kill to hide them? Well, no... otherwise I wouldn't have him listed a not-villain. Still, I'm definitely seeing a large demerit in his future.
Dr. Braun: One our scientists at the Terzi Institute who is hiding his own secrets... and they're not about his being gay, refreshingly.
Dr. Calibresi: Another of our scientists at the Institute. Another demerit... just before he gets himself offed.
Bianca Merusi: Girlfriend of Dr. Calibresi, and somebody who isn't nearly paranoid enough about her own safety.
Wow, quite the list isn't it? This is also a trait of the giallo -- lots of suspects/victims who each get a large portion of screen time before they're revealed to be a/the killer and/or get killed.
Our Characters Are Standup Folks:
Franco Arno: Mr. Arno gets a lot of good scenes, including putting most of the mystery together, finding the killer (rather improbably) and stopping him (rather improbably). I think I'm going to give his KUDO to his first tangle with the murderer. Franco is snuck up on, but he's able to draw his hidden blind-cane blade and slash the murderer to drive him away. This saves not only his own life, but also Carlo's.
Carlo Giordani: Well, I was starting to look at not giving Carlo - one of our two male leads - zero kudos, when he finally came through. He gets a big KUDO for saving Lori, Franco's niece, from the killer's butcher knife and even injured, manages to delay the murderer long enough for him to have to retreat, thereby saving Lori and himself.
Detective Spini: Hmmm. I want to give Detective Spini some credit, so I'll issue a Half-Kudo for his keeping Lori's abduction quiet until they could find her, in order not to tip off the killer that the police are on his track.
Ana Terzi: I cannot issue any kudos to Ana.
Director Terzi: Well, the Director attempts to be more of a hindrance than anything, but I do admire his Institute's work. I'm going to issue a somewhat too-generous Half-Kudo for his scientific endeavors.
Dr. Braun: The doctor/professor does not earn himself any kudos.
Dr. Calibresi: Sorry, Doctor. I'm sure that your work was valuable in some way, but a vague title isn't enough to get you a kudo. Perhaps if you'd started your own institute, I'd have been more generous, apparently.
Ms. Merusi: I kinda liked you, Bianca, when I sympathized with you. But, ultimately, you don't deserve a kudo.
I'm also issuing a Half-Anti-Kudo to our murderer for the particularly vicious lie at Franco about the death of his niece. His glee in telling that whopping fib was pretty monstrous, even for a multiple murderer and psychopath. I had to admire... damn it....
Our Characters Are Not Saints:
Franco: Franco's biggest problem is that he doesn't go to the police with anything that he's figured out until Lori Ponytail is taken by the killer and he realizes that the psycho isn't going to let Lori live when he's finished. For putting himself, Carlo and Lori in direct danger due to his refusing to tell the police what he figures out, he gets a DEMERIT.
Carlo: Carlo does a lot of dumb things, including sleeping with a suspected murderess and blabbing about things he's found out to people he should have every reason to also include as a suspect. But what I need to issue a DEMERIT for is the breaking and entering of the Terzi home. Not only is this an obvious crime in itself, and therefore is tainting any evidence he may find, but he manages to do so while touching everything he walks by without gloves on! C'mon... even in the 70's they were aware of fingerprint evidence!!
Detective Spini: I can't really fault Spini for anything, except maybe being a bit blabby mouthed to Carlo about some anomolies regarding Braun. I'll issue a Half-Demerit, just because it seems unwise and unprofessional to be sharing so much to a reporter, no matter how much he may be Scooby-Doo-ing.
Ana Terzi: Oh, Ana. She's involved in some real gross nasty, but considering the hints that she's a damaged woman I can be forgiving and understanding. What I can't let her slip by with though, is putting pedestrians and everyone sharing the road with her in danger by stunt-driving through Rome's streets just because she's grown pissy with the police following her. DEMERIT.
Director Terzi: Oh, man... such a DEMERIT. He's gained his through engaging in a sexual relationship with his adopted daughter, which plays on questions of consent and emotional manipulation. Even he knows that what he's done is wrong, but knowing and recognizing that doesn't get you out of taking that black mark.
Dr. Braun: Industrial espionage against his employer: DEMERIT.
Dr. Calibresi: Bribery attempt against a co-worker: DEMERIT.
Bianca: Shacking up with a scientist under false pretenses in order to engage in industrial espionage: DEMERIT.
I'm also issuing a special DEMERIT to the Arno family friend who allowed Lori to go off with a stranger based on a letter from Franco... a letter... written by a blind man in perfect script, who apparently couldn't be bothered with just picking up the phone and calling her.
I'm also giving a Half-Demerit to Officer Foodie and his partner for being the worst tails in the history of tailing a suspect.
Finally, I have to give a DEMERIT to our killer for completely overreacting and killing a bunch of folks for very little actual reason.