The Continental Op

From Academic Kids

The Continental Op is a fictional character created by Dashiell Hammett. A private investigator employed as an operative of the Continental Detective Agency's San Francisco office, he never gave his name and so is known only by his job description.

One of the earliest and arguably the most influential of the hard-boiled private detective characters to appear in the pulp magazines of the early twentieth century, he made his debut in an October 1923 issue of Black Mask. He appeared in nearly forty short stories, some of which were later adapted into two novels, The Dain Curse and Red Harvest, both released in 1929.

In 1978, The Dain Curse was made into a six hour CBS television miniseries starring James Coburn. For the miniseries, the Op was named Hamilton Nash (his creator's name spelled "sideways").

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