hot seat n.
1. (US, also hot settee, ...spot, ...squat, seat) the electric chair; thus, as v., to be subjected to the electric chair [hot adj. (9b)].
|On Broadway 12 July [synd. col.] Condemned men at Sing Sing do not pass through a ‘green’ door to go to the Hot Squat. It is a brown door.|
|It’s a Racket! 228: hot seat—Electric chair.|
|Gun Molls Oct. [Internet] If you tell everything you know, you may get life instead of the hot-seat.‘Gorilla Girl’ in|
|Pulp Fiction (2007) 272: He was in a tough spot [...] A hot spot on the electric chair.‘About Kid Deth’ in Penzler|
|Dames Don’t Care (1960) 31: I would like to bust this shootin’ guy a coupla hard ones an’ get him the hot squat afterwards.|
|Iceman Cometh Act IV: If he gets de Hot Seat I won’t go into no mournin’!|
|Ten Detective Aces Apr. [Internet] Act I: Court Room in Massachusetts, U. S. A. Act II: Hot Squat at Charlestown sometime later.‘Short Order Crook’ in|
|Phenomena in Crime 99: Gerald was taken to the ‘hot’.|
|Letters from the Big House 14: Paddy Choice is hot-seated – ah the good Paddy.|
|Popular Sports Jan. [Internet] A guy gets in a tight spot, blows his top, and shoots. Next stop, the hot settee.‘You Gotta Have Luck’ in|
|We Are the Public Enemies 30: A man could always get out of a cage sooner or later [...] But you couldn’t ever rise from the hot squat.|
|Man with the Golden Arm 216: If I ain’t nuts I get the seat.|
|Real Cool Killers (1969) 122: Why risk [...] the hot seat just for a moment of playing the big shot?|
|Teen-Age Mafia 59: If one of them took the hot squat he’d drag the other along with him.|
|World’s Toughest Prison 804: hot squat–The electric chair.|
|Pimp 126: I was quivering like a joker in the hot seat.|
|(con. 1930s) Monkey Off My Back (1972) 82: A hurried court [...] and then I would take a quick trip to ‘The Old Hot Squat’.|
|‘Drama’ [lyrics] On death row they got their own hot seat.|
|Lowspeak 75: Hot squat – the electric chair.|
|Clockers 244: Motherfucker’s got the hot seat down there [i.e. Florida].|
|Liar 105: Why don’t they just go ahead and send him down to Huntsville to get the hot seat?|
2. in attrib. use of sense 1.
|Black Mask Stories (2010) 239/1: I don’t mind running a few legitimate risks. But this hot-squat stuff is too much for me.‘Ten Carats of Lead’ in|
3. any situation in which the subject, consciously or not, is exposed, esp. for the purposes of a confidence trick [note Davis, Phenomena in Crime (1941): ‘So called because the hooked “mug” is on tenterhooks re the materialization of the investments he has handed over to the crooks’].
|Phenomena in Crime 35: Mr. Mulvaney’s interest [...] was to steer me towards the ‘hot seat’ of a confidence trick.|
4. an unpleasant situation, esp. in a courtroom or public enquiry; esp. as in the hot seat.
|On the Waterfront (1964) 308: Pete Barry was on the hot-seat.|
|Syndicate (1998) 15: I don’t like to be in this hot seat.|
|Cop Team 154: Richard T. Beckell, Sepe and Telano’s ‘main man’ [...] was on the hot seat.|
|Lowspeak 75: Hot-seat, to be in the – to be in difficulties or an unpleasant position.|
|(con. 1945–6) Devil’s Jump (2008) 94: If he’s such a good fellow, how come he left you in the hot seat?|
5. the seat in an interrogation room on which the prisoner sits.
|Inner City Hoodlum 66: It’s like I was the one who was on the damned hotseat.|
|(con. early 1950s) L.A. Confidential 58: Bud took the hot seat – a spot where all three men could see him.|
6. any form of interrogation, in a non-official context; also attrib.
|Bug Jack Barron 17: Want Bennie Howards in the hotseat slot?|
|Serial 93: Che wished [...] he could take a nap before they put him in the Hot Seat.|
|Makes Me Wanna Holler (1995) 152: Each prisoner took turns in the ‘hot seat’ where he talked about his background and answered probing questions.|
|Indep. Rev. 30 Nov. 12: Brampton is shunning all interviews until she hits the hot seat next month.|
(US) to be executed in the electric chair.
|AS XI:3 201: Take the hot squat.‘American Euphemisms for Dying’ in|
|Popular Detective Mar. [Internet] Then we’d probably have you back here, either as a lifer or to do the hot squat.‘New Year’s Pardon’|