Mickey Spillane...Gone

Mickey Spillane, who wrote the Mike Hammer series of novels, has died. He was 88. The details haven’t been released yet, but his wife said that he had cancer.


I remember watching the old Mike Hammer tv show, with Stacey Keach, when I was a kid. The whole genre had a cool, tough guy feel. “They” say that if there wasn’t Mike hammer, there’d be no Dirty Harry. Spillane, and his creation Mike Hammer, seemed to have a solid, and genuine, T-Man attitude.

Spillane did a small interview with Men’s Health in December of '03. Some highlights:

MH: Any advice for guys who want to come across as tougher?

MS: No…I’m a writer (an old comic-book writer, so don’t call me an author). I’m no tough guy. The real tough guys I’ve known were cops, and what made them tough was that they were honest in their dealings…Just be a good guy, and if trouble comes looking for you, face it head on and go “bang.”

MH: How are men different today from what we were 50 years ago?

MS: Men aren’t men anymore. Our supposed masculine qualities leave a lot to be desired. We chase money, but what are you going to buy?..I don’t owe a nickel. I have a Jag that John Wayne gave me…I wrote a book for the Duke, I rewrote a picture, and I didn’t want money. So they gave me that…It’s 50-some years old, and it’s got 32,000 miles on it.

MH: If there’s one bit of knowledge that you’d want to pass on, what would it be?

MS: Take your time, take care of your body, and don’t worry about getting older…I’m finally slowing down, though, at 86 - my skiing’s not what it used to be.


Wow. I definitely admire the man’s wisdom about aging and “wants” vs. “needs”. Always good to be reminded of stuff like that…

I loved Mike Hammer when I was growing up. And Betsy too.

Anyone see a movie on the horizon, with Colin Farrell playing Mike? Let’s hope not!