Tuesday, January 19, 2010

California Joe

"There, some hundred paces distant from where they stood, was what appeared to be a horse and rider.

The animal was snow-white, and stood as motionless as though carved from marble.

The rider was dressed in deep black from boots to hat, and sat silent and still." (California Joe)

Black hats, white hats.  I love how this texts puts the black and white all in one character--of course he's mysterious.  How could he not be?  What visual clue do we have to his morality?  Italian westerns pick right up on the icon of the mystery man--but instead of mixed signals they give us the brown hat, the ultimate muddied morality.

I have to admit, I'm curious as heck about this mysterious plainsman and all he may or may not reveal about the history of the Western in literature.

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