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Who are the greatest fictional detectives in literature or wherever and why? Pretty self-explanatory, right?

Here's my top three, starting with number 3 (feel free to critizize or praise or whatever)

3. Lew Archer (because he's the ultimate hard-boiled detective)

2. Sherlock Holmes (because he's the granddaddy of all the detectives today)

1. Frank Columbo (cuz he's awesome!!! I mean, it's because he's real laid-back, and it almost seems like he's kind of stupid, so the suspects play right into his hands, and it turns out that, at the end, he's a genius and he had everything figured out almost from the beginning. He also never uses violence and it's all brains. He's hilarious too. He's amazing)

10/20/2010 #1
Columbo's stories are interesting because you know who did it, the question is can Columbo figure it out? Fortunately he seems to get an I.Q. boost by saying the magic words, "Oh, uh, one more thing..."
12/21/2011 #2
A Fire Rose
Sherlock Holmes, of course. I love that guy.
2/24/2012 #3

1. of course Sherlock Holmes!

2. Perry Mason

3. Hercule Poirot of Agatha Christie

7/7/2012 #4

Oooooo tough one! I think I've got to go wiiiith...

1) John Rebus, of Ian Rankin's books. Flawed but brilliant, a character so complete he lives on in your mind long after you've put down the book and forgotten the intricacies of plot.

2) Bernie Gunther of Phillip Kerr's historical crime novels, set (mostly) in Berlin under the shadow of the nascent Nazi regime. Bernie is a complete bad-a** living in a turbulent and politically charged time when, without the benefit of retrospect, it was so easy for everyday men to become monsters.

3) Philip Marlowe, of Raymond Chandler's noir series...because he practically birthed the hard-boiled detective.

Although obviously you gotta love Columbo :)

10/18/2012 . Edited 10/18/2012 #5

I'll pick a unique one: Judge Dee, from the Celebrated Cases of Judge Dee. I love the story, because it has a bunch of interconnecting mysteries all together. He's not a detective, but because he does solve things, I'll also include the original Arsene Lupin. He's the only big mystery character I know where he relies on his own reputation to steal things. A lot of the early stories are out of copyright, too, so you can probably find some online.

4/23/2013 #6
Phoenix Oblivion

Definitely Hercule Poirot of Agatha Christie. Sherlock Holmes is okay, but I'm not that into it.

I quite like Nick Diamond from the Diamond brothers.

7/7/2013 #7

As far as detectives in the Holmesian tradition go, Imma have to go with the namesake, Sherlock Holmes, cuz he's brilliant and awesome and yeah, he's basically the grandaddy of fictional detectives today. XD Aside from Holmes though, I really like Shinichi Kudo from Detective Conan (basically a teenage Sherlock Holmes in Japan) and Shawn Spencer of Psych (technically follows the Holmesian tradition of detectivery, but does it all with a pop culture references and food).

5/15/2014 #8
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