I’ve read a lot of Elmore Leonard and I think that shows in Bigger Than Jesus. He just influenced me a bit more. You see, the thing about Netflix is that if you run across a TV show that appeals to you, whipping through a bunch of episodes at once is doable. Keep an eye on the clock because it sure can suck up a weekend. This weekend the kids were away so I watched Justified.
I don’t usually pay attention to who wrote this or that. As much as I love Kurt Vonnegut, one of his books I can’t seem to read. The same thing has happened with all the authors I love: Palahniuk and Goldman, too. There’s always at least one that isn’t for me (which is still an incredibly impressive batting average.) However, the fact that Elmore Leonard was listed as Executive Producer of Justified did get my attention so I sat down and stuck it in my head.
The EP title is sloshed around plenty in movies and TV. Often it means nothing beyond a credit and more (or less) money. However, I saw Leonard’s influence in some of the funny dialogue, at least. The winding story arc held me, as well. I like to goof around in alternate dimensions and figure out where the writers are going with the plot (and what I’d do differently.)
Justified isn’t perfect. No one in law enforcement loses his mind and turns his back on thugs as much as Timothy Olyphant does in this show. However, it’s the funny sensibility of criminals relating to other criminals (and to cops) that I groove on. It’s not laugh-a-minute, witty dialogue, but there’s certainly enough there to make it watchable, enjoyable and good for a bunch of chuckles.
That inspires me. As I read the reviews and hear the happy feedback from readers of my books, I think there will be a few changes to the next book in The Hit Man Series. I predict a little less swearing, a little more sex, even more clever twists that will read like how-to for finding people who don’t want to be found. And more jokes. The people who love Bigger Than Jesus all mention the humour. Higher Than Jesus will raise that bar higher. Higher than Jesus.