William March's conception of an apparently bright and conventional young girl -- pretty in pink and adorned with pigtails -- as a merciless serial killer was entirely unheard of in the literature of mid-twentieth century America. The Bad Seed and the play and movie produced from it shocked and enraptured audiences worldwide, and from it would come endless literary and movie variations of the evil child. March had recently returned home to Mobile after a long and ultimately disorienting sojourn in New York. What -- or who -- inpired him to write this story of unexpected malice in the body of a Mobile child? For clearly the story was set in March's native city. It was his final valentine to the culture that produced him, laced with the strychnine of his darkly ironical imagination. This website and the accompanying film will explore the genesis of The Bad Seed in depth by hearing from a number of Mobilians, among them Elizabeth McGowin, Herndon Inge and Norman Nicolson, seen in the brief clip below followed by part of the movie trailer praising Maxwell Anderson for his "gripping" play: