Top Five: Stranger as Fiction
A few of our favorite Rice-inspired characters on page and screen
Landry Clarke In “Friday Night Lights,” the beloved TV series (and 1990 book) set in fictional Dillon, Texas, football player Landry Clarke (played by the versatile Jesse Plemons) left his small town — and the show — to attend Rice.
Danny Deck In “All My Friends Are Going to Be Strangers” (1972), Larry McMurtry ’60 introduces readers to a naïve young writer and Rice student named Danny Deck. Deck returns in the sequel, “Some Can Whistle,” as a much older character whose writing career has been a mixed bag.
William Duffin Did McMurtry, who taught at Rice in the early 1960s, model Bill Duffin, “a prize modernist that Rice had managed to hire away from Ohio State,” after a real Rice faculty member? “Moving On” (1970), which features the character, is the second book in McMurtry’s “Houston trilogy.”
Louis Holland In Jonathan Franzen’s second novel, “Strong Motion” (1992), the main character attended Rice, where he was the station manager at KTRU.
Unnamed mathematician Rice’s science cred gets a nod in novelist William Gibson’s 2003 novel “Pattern Recognition.” Computer security specialist Boone Chu mentions a “friend of mine at Rice,” a mathematician who discovered a hidden encryption in mysterious video clips.
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