I wrote the first episode of Markheim on a lark. It was several years ago, late in December, that time in corporate America when honestly nothing gets done, but you’re still expected to haunt your cubicle, like the living ghost of Bob Cratchit. I wanted to write a Christmas script, but something also hip and nasty, like we put on at AHA! Theatre for the variety show JunkXmas, way back in the mid-1990’s. It was really only a sketch of a play, tossed off and forgotten. The idea being to mash-up the nearly unnavigable moralities of LeCarre’s brilliant thrillers with the blunt choppy dialogue of Hammett’s incomparable detective stories, with maybe a little Miltonian angelology thrown in for texture. Even when I didn’t know exactly who was talking, the dialogue seemed to flow of its own volition.
MARKHEIM: Why should they care? They always get what they want.
BEZ: Maybe. But they ain’t crazy about... the unexpected.
MARKHEIM: They gonna kill the golden goose?
BEZ: They done stupider.
MARKHEIM: True that.
BEZ: Killed goldener.
MARKHEIM: Yeah. Yeah, they have.