The Femme Fetale, as we have learned from our previous readings and research on wikipedia, is a mysterious and secretive woman. She often is very sexual in nature, and can be very dangerous to characters, particularly the main character.
wikipedia on Femme Fetale: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Femme_fatale
We have seen many femme fetale characters in our readings so far this semester, such as Dina Brand in Red Harvest, Vera in Miller’s Crossing, and Phyllis Diedrichson in Double Indemnity. Even in some ways Mildred Pierce and V. I. could be considered femme fetales because of their extreme independence.
Kay Lake, however, is the most extreme embodiment of the femme fetale idea that we have read so far. Just when we first meet her the image we get is completely noir:
“She was in profile as I approached, head tilted up, back arched, one hand on the cruiser’s door for support. Auburn hair in a pageboy haircut brushed her shoulders and long, thin neck; the fit of her Eisenhower jacket and wool skirt told me she was thin all over.”
Then this quote soon after gives us a real look into her personality:
“For aestetic reasons, I hope you both look good with your shirts off. For moral reasons, I hope the Los Angeles Police Department gets ridiculed for perpetrating this farce. For financial reasons, I hope Lee wins.”