Golden Age vs Hardboiled

For Genre Review this week, we are presented with the genre of crime fiction and a question that has plagued us all since the 1920's, 'Which section, or sub-genre of crime fiction is most popular in 'modern' society: Golden Age, or Hard Boiled?' Of course, we are to ignore 'The Great Detective' sub-genre for the time being as there is no competition for its position: it constitutes the genre of crime.
Golden Age writers have been criticised for their two-dimensional characters but have been praised for their intricate plot and ability to create a literary crescendo as the story progresses. Golden Age writing's framework is based on the expectations and conventions of the 'whodunit' style of crime writing. Hard Boiled writing could be described with a single word, or so much more. Based on America from the 1920's, Hard Boiled texts are often a blend of 'whodunit' and 'howcatchem'.
Agatha Christie's Three Act Tragedy and Dashiell Hammett's The Maltese Falcon are two texts that bind very strongly to the conventions of Golden Age and Hard Boiled crime fiction. Critics dub the two authors as 'revolutionary' and naturally the pioneers do certainly abide the expectations, conventions and values set out by their sub-genre.
Three Act Tragedy features Agatha Christie's popular 'Hercule Poirot'. A man dies at a dinner party held by 'Sir Charles Cartwright' and all the guests believe it to be natural. Poirot dismisses the case due to a lack of evidence and motive of murder. Soon after, a second death, of Dr. Bartholomew Strange, occurs under similar circumstances and Poirot takes up the case with Cartwright taking role of Poirot’s ‘Watson’. Cartwright’s social status proves to be useful in attaining information but this does not aid in preventing the third tragedy-- the death of Madam Rushbriger, which is revealed to be a red herring during the denouement scene. With the murderer’s identity revealed, Poirot closes the case.
The Maltese Falcon features one of the most...