Contrasting Easy Rawlins and Jake Gittes is hard, but paralleling them is not difficult at all.Both are often shot at, both have an enemy that has a predilection toward the obscene:one is incestuous, the other a pederast.Both deal with L.A. history and both deal with the L.A.P.D. In a different era, they'd probably be stepping on each other's toes. Although, it is entirely possible that one of Gittes' cronies took the lewd pictures of the Mayoral candidate in Devil in a Blue Dress.Both men are pawns in the hands of the rich and powerful.Both men have a tragic love interest; both men's tragic love interests are tied to the most powerful men in the city.Both men have morals that can be weakened with the correct amount of cash, and both men walk right past important clues that are revealed again later in the film.
Gittes, for example, sees something shining in the koi pond at the Mulwray estate when hefirst visits it after the revelation of the real Evelyn.He was about to fish it out, but is interrupted by Ms. Mulwray.When he visited the Dept. of Water and Power, he went into Mr. Mulwray's office looking for clues, but a bigger one was on the wall of the office that he was ushered into next: the large symbol for the albacore club on the wall of the Assistant director's office.Easy had the same problem, but he seemed to add things up a bit faster, the bouncer's Mexican cigarettes for example.The difference here may simply be the style of the filmmakers involved.
Another similarity would be their individual motivations.Jake was motivated somewhat by money, but seemingly more so by his curiosity. Easy was in it for the cash on the outset with Albright’s hefty sum, but after it seemed that Albright would turn out to be an enemy anyway, he was in it for his own reasons.Reasons of curiosity, revenge, and need for closure.

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