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Sex. Celebrity. Politics. With Teeth

Give Us the John Steinbeck Werewolf Book or I'll Make It Into an HBO Show Myself

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On Thursday, the New York Times revealed the existence of a John Steinbeck detective mystery with a werewolf plot that the snobs in the publishing industry have been hiding from us for 91 years because they assume the hottest of the Depression-era writer dudes would be embarrassed by it now.

But it sounds fucking great:

“[Stanford professor Gavin] Jones, who is one of the few people to have ever read the book, described the plot (spoilers ahead): The book focuses on a cub reporter who takes a job in the fictional town of Cone City near a spooky dismal marsh. He is soon drawn into the orbit of a local hunting club. When one member’s dog is killed on a moonlit night, the reporter and an eccentric candidate for sheriff decide to investigate. Other, more gruesome killings of people follow, always under a full moon. The illustrations by Steinbeck include a murder scene.

In order to find the killer — who they start to suspect might be a superhuman monster that has arisen from the marsh — the investigators apply a theory of crime detection built on reading bad murder mysteries. This element gives the novel a “postmodern, ironic feel,” Mr. Jones said.”

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And if these publishing stiffs in suits aren’t going to give us nerds the goods, could all the HBO Max executives please see my pitch below.

Picture this: We get Evan Peters, who has proven via Mare of Easttown that he’s great at regional accents and cute as a goddamn button, as the young reporter, hungry to earn back his good name in Cone City fresh off an unceremonious firing at the San Francisco Chronicle for uncovering a corrupt water scheme too close to his editor-in-chief for comfort. Distract Matthew McConaughey from his disastrous-sounding political ambitions and get him back where he excels: as an eccentric crime investigator with a dead or estranged wife in a climate that requires him to sweat a lot. We’re also going to need to give him a big-eyed blonde daughter for Evan to love, and Anya Taylor-Joy has a lot on her plate right now, so let’s see what Elle Fanning has going on. The wolf’s an allegory for Depression-era classism, and this whole town has a violent past and a terrible secret, including Sheriff Sweaty McConaughey and his large-eyed child.

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Just give everyone their Emmys right now because this is HBO gold.