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In 1997 a 1977 Kyotaro Nishimura story was translated into
French. Nishimura was born in 1930 in Tokyo and belongs to the second generation of Japanese detective writers. Together with Matsumoto Seicho
and Akagawa Jiro he is one of the most popular writers in his country.

What would happen if Maigret, Ellery Queen and Hercule Poirot met in Tokyo?

What would happen if Maigret, Ellery Queen and Hercule Poirot met in Tokyo? Their rich host certainly seems to know. Solely for his pleasure to see his favorite detectives at work. One other old Japanese detective is present: Kogoro Akechi, the hero in the books of Edogawa Rampo.
The book confronts the techniques of each of the master detectives with the Japanese culture. Two years before this Tokyo gathering the city was hit by a spectacular theft. 300 million yen was mysteriously stolen without any trace. Following a few clues and using the outline of the psychological profile of the thief, M Sato, an old millionaire, decides to re-enact the whole heist under the noses of his four guests. He sets out to find a
guinea pig who fits the psychological profile and sets out to let him steal 300 million yen of his own A  Brazilian edition O Grande Desafio French version is obtainable called Les grands detectives n'ont pas froid aux yeuxmoney. His sole purpose being to find a trace of the first thief by following the facts and actions of his guinea pig. The investigations of our four detectives lead to an extraordinary finale. The story is not widely translated but a French version is obtainable called Les grands detectives n'ont pas froid aux yeux as is a  Brazilian edition O Grande Desafio
(1992). The original 1977 book is titled Meitantei nanka kowakunai (Those famous detectives aren't afraid) and is the first in a series of four all of which have Queen, Maigret, Poirot and Akechi in them. The second part is Meitantei ga Oosugiru (Too Much Detectives), the third Meitantei mo raku janai (Even famous detectives have troubles) and lastly in 1983 Meitantei ni kanpai (Cheers to the Famous Detectives).

When researching his 1981 The Great Detectives Julian Symons not only had the privilege of meeting Fred in Larchmont. He was able to put forward an interesting theory that there were in fact two Ellery's -- the earlier one with the pince-nez and the later one post-
Halfway House. He even constructed an interesting theory that the earlier Ellery was, in fact, Ellery's younger brother "Dan". Fred thought the theory was "inventive" but stated that Julian underestimated the way people change and even went as far as saying the theory was unconvincing. Julian included a pastiche "Dan and the Fair Sabrina" a story about a missing statuette called "Sabrina".

The Further Misadventures of Ellery Queen edited by two West 87th Irregulars Josh Pachter &‎ Dale C. Andrews. Order at Wildside Press by clicking here...

It's September 1982 when we see "The Adventure of the
Logical Successor" by J. Randolph Cox appear in Volume 32, Number 3 of The Baker Street Journal - An Irregular Quarterly of Sherlockiana. This edition of NY Baker Street Irregulars has Ellery Queen, in 1919 whilst studying at Harvard, visiting 'the Great Detective'. "On Opening the door I saw a young man dressed in tweeds and carrying a stout walking-stick. He was fully six feet in height, spare and square shouldered, and not unathletic. His eyes were those of a thinker, silver-grey in color. The one aspect of attire which seemed out of place was the pair of pince-nez eyeglasses, the lenses of which he was engaged in polishing. They were an incongruity on such an athletic figure. ...".  And it has Ellery stating: "... I've read your accounts of Mr. Holmes's cases since I was a boy. My aunt brought me a copy of your Adventures of Sherlock Holmes when I was sick" and "In fact, it was probably that book that made me want to become a writer." Which of course point more in Dannay's direction than Ellery as a whole. It isn't a mystery story but reveals some of Sherlock's thoughts on Ellery Queen's future ("...both of his chose careers").

Michio Tsuzuki
's "Jiraiya in Ginza" (1982) is set in 1936 when Ellery visits Japan. When sightseeing in Ginza (Tokyo), “surprisingly”, a murder takes place. Not only was the victim's back tattooed with a picture of Jiraiya (a fictional thief and wizard) but he also left a dying message… (Michio Tsuzuki is the first editor-in-chief of the Japanese EQMM)

Truly a pity that some of these stories are as good as unobtainable.
Jon Breen
West 87th Irregular describes "The Persian Fez Mystery" or "The Tragedy of Q" by Joe R. ChristopherWest 87th Irregular(1983) as one of the cleverest send-ups of the Queen style. Found in 30 copy(!) chapbook Queen's Books Investigated or Queen is in the Accounting House it reveals that Elroy Queep "..only in his novels solved the cases before the police, in real life his suggestions were always wrong..."


                    Manfred B. Lee and Fred Dannay in a drawing by Aya Fukushima (Boon Fukushima) a Japanese freelance illustrator and textile designer who surprised us with this rendition of famous photograph. Click the picture for his website (Picture courtesy of Aya Fukishima)
Above: Manfred B. Lee and Fred Dannay in a drawing by Aya Fukushima (Boon Fukushima) a Japanese freelance illustrator and textile designer who surprised us with this rendition of famous photograph. Click on the artist name below for his website (Picture courtesy of Aya Fukishima).

The admiration for the Ellery Queen works in Japan is unsurpassed. No small wonder several examples are found in this section. In Yuki Misshitsu, Snow Locked Room, (1989) by Rintaro Norizuki, police superintendant Norizuki Sadao is invited by, as it turns out, a female blackmailer to her guesthouse in the middle of winter. She's found hanged in a separate building on the premises. Local police treat it as an apparent suicide since the snow is trackless and the only key is inside the building itself. Convinced of foul play Sadao calls in the help of his son Rintarou Norizuki (same name as author!). There also a Norizuki volume called The Adventures of Norizuki Rintarou.... More an homage than pastiche, but close enough. (Nigel Holmes, Snow Locked Room

As is the case with Arisugawa Arisu. As with Queen, the main character is a mystery writer with the same name as the author. (Arisugawa was born Uehara Masahide, but based his pen name on Japanese version of “Alice” out of his love for Alice in Wonderland as well as the 1970s rock star Alice Cooper. Unlike Queen, the real hero is not the fictional Arisugawa, rather it’s his best friend, the brilliant and sometimes ill-tempered criminologist Himura Hideo. The fictional Arisugawa chronicles Himura's cases, making their relationship  more like that of Watson and Holmes. Arisugawa works many of the tropes of classic detection into his stories, including locked rooms, iron-clad alibis, unexpected motives, and clever methods of poisoning.  Arisugawa shows his affection for Ellery Queen in the titles of his stories, including h
is first novel called Moonlight Game, The Tragedy of Y '88,
(1989) and some of his books, novelettes and short stories:
"The Russian Tea Puzzle"
(ss, 1994),
The Swedish House Mystery (novel, 1995),
"The Brazilian Butterfly Mystery" (ss, 1996),
"The English Garden Mystery" (ss, 1997),
"The Persian Cat Mystery" (ss, 1999),
The Malayan Railway Mystery (novel, 2002),
"The Swiss Watch Mystery" (novellete, 2003),
"The Morocco Crystal Mystery" (ss, 2005),
The Indian Club Mystery (novel, 2018),"and
"The Canadian Coin Mystery" (ss, 2019)

(Steven SteinbockWest 87th Irregular, Wikipedia, Nigel Holmes, Death in Nara by the Sea)

 Steven Steinbock and Arisugawa Arisu (Alice) in Osaka, Japan in March 2020 - Photo courtesy of Steven Steinbock 
Above: Steven SteinbockWest 87th Irregular and Arisugawa Arisu (Alice) in Osaka, Japan in March 2020 - Photo courtesy of Steven Steinbock

The 70th anniversary edition of EQMM had two pastiches . Edward D.Hoch's "The Circle of Ink"
(EQMM, Sep 1999) placed Ellery and his married father (to Jesse March 2018 saw the release of "The Misadventures of Ellery Queen" anthology by Wildside Press. Most of the stories it contains were first published in EQMM. So EQMM wanted to celebrate the book’s publication and decided to have one of the stories recorded for this podcast series. Here is Darcy Bearman, Dell Magazines’ manager for social-media marketing, reading “The Gilbert and Sullivan Clue” by Jon L. Breen, first published in EQMM September/October 1999.Sherwood) in a University where a murderer left an ink circle on the hands of his victims. Jon L.Breen'sWest 87th Irregular "The Gilbert and Sullivan Clue" lets Ellery deal with Y2K. (Click on Podcast icon to enjoy!...)

Frank Stewart contributed the following Ellery Queen problem in the daily bridge section of many a newspaper in 2004:

Ellery Queen surveyed the lifeless body of West, sprawled under the table where he's played in a high-stakes game. He'd been conked with a pair of fire tongs.
"We're holding the other three birds," Inspector Queen said.
"North's prints are on the murder weapon, but he won't confess. He says he'd stoked the fire."

"What happened on their last deal, Dad?" Ellery asked.
"According to North," said the Inspector, "South played at five clubs. West led the ace and another heart, and South ruffed, forced out the ace of trumps and took six trumps, four diamonds and a spade. What does it matter?"

"I think if you put the heat on East, he'll confess," said Ellery.
"West defeats the contract with a diamond shift at Trick Two. When East takes the ace of trumps, he leads a second diamond, and South can't use the diamonds and loses a spade."

"I did it," howled East. "My partner wouldn't kill the dummy so I killed him."
"Take him away, Velie," sighed the Inspector.

I have to admit don't play bridge. So let this be a challenge to our Click if you think you can help out...!readers. How well is this put together? Are there references in the solution that, at first glance, are not apparent? You can reach me by clicking on "Uncle Sam"...

Again Edward Hoch had Ellery to revisit Wrightsville in "The Wrightsville Carnival" (EQMM Sep/Oct 2005). In the same issue we also find Josh PachterWest 87th Irregular and Jon.L.Breen'sWest 87th Irregular  "The German Cologne Mystery" subtitled an Ellery Queen parody it had Inspector Wretched Breen brake down the unlocked door of the fast-declining Hotel Madrid's room 521. In response to a phone call from his son, celebrated mystery writer and accomplished amateur detective Celery Breen.

"The Japanese Armor Mystery" (
日本木製鎧甲之謎 ,2005) by Ma Tian a Chinese New Orthodox story in which Queen has to find the answer to a few seemingly simple questions: Why kill an elderly man already on his deathbed, and why the suspect was found dead wearing a wooden facsimile of a Samurai suit of armor? Steven Steinbock West 87th Irregular translated this short story and it is included in The Further Misadventures of Ellery Queen (2020).

Japanese Kazuo Miyamoto made his writing debut using the pen name Kaoru Kitamura. He is considered a pioneer of  the "everyday mystery". Initially, because the unnamed first-person protagonist of his early works "The Japanese Nickel Mystery" by Kaoru Kitamura, reissue. Publisher: Tokyo Somoto-sha (April 20, 2009)"The Japanese Nickel Mystery" by Kaoru Kitamura, 2005 Tankobon Hardcoverwas a female college student, and the name Kaoru is gender ambiguous, it was widely speculated that Kitamura was female. This speculation persisted until he revealed his identity upon accepting the Mystery Writers of Japan Award in 1991. In itself a tribute to EQ. He didn't leave it at that... in 2005 he published a full fledged pastiche called The Japanese Nickel Mystery. Ellery Queen visits Japan at the invitation of a publisher and mystery writer, and gets sidetracked by infant killing incidents in Tokyo. The story includes a man who could change a thousand-yen bill into twenty coins of fifty yen and has our detective pointing out a relationship with a previous case.


Following a discussion in March 2002 in a readers forum regarding the novel And on the Eighth Day  Dale AndrewsWest 87th Irregular tried his hand at writing a "new" form of pastiche. It provides an epilogue to the existing story. Dale has been so kind allowing me to put it here. It comes, of course, with a spoiler warning so ... if you haven't read the original story look away now!
It eventually led to the writing of the pastiche "The Book Case" by Dale Andrews
West 87th Irregular and Kurt Sercu (EQMM, May 2007) the story had an elderly Ellery Queen aiding Harry Burke to find the culprit. Ellery is called in since the victim is found amidst a collection of his Ellery Queen books...

Maxwell E. Siegel's "Once Upon a Crime" was written in 1951 but was publicized much later in 2007 (Old-time Detection Issue N°16 ) it had all Ellery Queen characters (including JJMcC) reappearing and it had Ellery deciding to have, next to his own name,  three "non-existent names" on his plate glass of his office at 545 Fifth Avenue: Frederic Dannay, Manfred B. Lee and Barnaby Ross". Nikki reverted to being called Sheila Brent and Mrs. Ellery Queen appears to be Paula Paris! Lee wrote to Mr. Siegel that despite the story's merits: "... this is the one kind of story we simply may not consider. For the editor to glorify himself in his own publication is unthinkable, not to say poor business."


Matthew J. Elliott is, by his own admission, an award-winning screenwriter, author, voice-over artist, presenter, editor and contributor for RiffTrax from Lancashire, England. His 2008 miniseries The New Adventures of Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer starring Stacy Keach was nominated for an Audie Award.
 "I became a mystery writer because of Ellery Queen. Hilary Caine wouldn't exist were it not for Ellery."
His "tongue in cheek" Hilary Caine mysteries are set in "The Golden Age" of 1930s British mysteries. Hilary Caine is a young woman with a unique gift for solving crimes. She is employed by the English tabloid Tittle Tattle Magazine as their private investigator. She solves the crime, they write the story.  
First published in 2008, there are already 25 Hilary stories to
listen to.


In the September/October 2009 edition of EQMM we find a prequel to "The Book Case"  by Dale C. AndrewsWest 87th Irregular, entitled "The Mad Hatter's Riddle." Set in 1975, Ellery is called to Hollywood to serve as an advisor on the NBC Ellery Queen series for the filming of "The Mad Tea Party" episode, which fans will remember was the only episode in the series based on an authentic Ellery Queen story. Unfortunately (no surprise!) things go very wrong on the set ...

"And you, El, are also looking fit. Still writing those convoluted whodunits?
No. I gave up writing detective stories about four years ago. I still edit the magazine. I guess it's my vineyard.

Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine also put up a teaser on this page...where the story was excerpted.

                The Mad Hatter's Riddle by Dale C. Andrews Art by Laurie Harden (by permission EQMM)
Above: "The Mad Hatter's Riddle" by Dale C. AndrewsWest 87th Irregular Art by Laurie Harden (by permission Laurie Harden & EQMM).

The Further Misadventures of Ellery Queen edited by two West 87th Irregulars Josh Pachter &‎ Dale C. Andrews. Order at Wildside Press by clicking here...
Leverage is an American television drama series on TNT that premiered in December 2008. Leverage follows a five-person team of professional thieves, computer experts and con artists, headed up by former insurance investigator, Nathan Ford, who use their skills to right corporate and governmental injustices inflicted on common citizens. It seems natural for Timothy Hutton to dress up in his fathers EQ costume (or close enough) as "Ellery Queen: World's Greatest Detective' ."Nate" is played by Timothy Hutton, to us of course the son of the late Jim Hutton. Leverage ran for 5 seasons, on July 7. 2011 in the second episode "The 10 Li'l Grifters Job" a Murder Mystery Masquerade offered the opportunity for a tribute to EQ or the character Jim portrayed him in the 70s.
Timothy has been mentioned here and in several other fora as being "perfect" for the lead for a new Ellery Queen series... so it seems natural for him to dress up in his fathers EQ costume (or close enough) as "Ellery Queen: World's Greatest Detective".
Sadly other than the appearance of Timothy Hutton dressed up as EQ no other references are made to the work of Dannay/Lee.

In Season 3 of Mad Men episode 12 "The Grown ups" (Nov 1, 2009) Pete comes home disappointed as Lane has given him and Ken separate roles and titles within accounts, which Pete believes belittles his achievements. Trudy asks him questions to understand what happened, to which Pete replies "Stop it with the Ellery Queen". (See below)

    Trudy asks him questions to understand what happened, to which Pete replies "Stop it with the Ellery Queen".

David Marcum had a JJMcC moment when he wrote the introduction to The Papers of Sherlock Holmes (2011) in it he describes how he found Watson's notebook containing original untold Sherlock Holmes cases in his aunt's house! David told us he tried to write in Watson's traditional voice. Ellery is mentioned in a very small way at the end of the book, in one of those Untold Tales that Watson refers to but never actually writes. In this case, it is in reference to an investigation in which Ellery and the Inspector, along with several other of the Great Detectives, helped Holmes and Watson during a time they were in New York.

(continued here...)


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