Why is this so funny and perfect? Let’s take it apart and see why it sings.
1) The sheriff deputy is from central casting.
If there’s a factory where Hollywood makes police officers from small towns, Lt. Higgins is the man they use as the mold.
Even without the hat and the uniform, Higgins would look and sound like an officer of the law. It’s in his bones.
Also, his accent and the cadence of his speech is mesmerizing. I could not, and would not, improve it. And his name is perfect.
2) Telling details about the crime and the suspect.
Show somebody the surveillance video without any narration from Lt. Higgins and they’d be all, “Yeah, it’s some kid in a hoodie. Good luck figuring out who.”
Lt. Higgins doesn’t see grainy film and a kid in a hoodie.
He sees a six-foot-tall suspect in a camo hoodie, a man with a distinctive lanky gait.
If we gave Lt. Higgins more screen time, I bet he could dissect every frame of this surveillance tape. And we’d be educated while entertained.
3) Son, I’m gonna have a cheeseburger here, with fries and a coke
The beginning is good. The middle is interesting.
But the last two-thirds is the climax, and that’s what makes this little bit of YouTube footage into viral gold.
This is what slayed me: “Look at me son, I’m talking to you. The sheriff likes Stelly’s restaurant, and so do I. The food is good, and the folks are friendly. We’re gonna identify you, arrest you and put you in a small cell. After that, I’m gonna have a cheeseburger here, with fries and a coke, and leave a nice tip for the waitress. Meanwhile, your next meal will be served in a small door through a cell door.”
Then Lt. Higgins gets all CSI, talking about his detectives “harvesting DNA from the rock you used” and the perfect bootprint on the door.
The kicker: Lt. Higgins doesn’t need all that science evidence, because the suspect’s friends, they don’t like him much and will go for the reward money. Oh, that stings.
Lt. Higgins should have his work duties changed so he records Crime Stopper videos all across America.
More posts for your amusement and possible education:
- How weird news teaches us great storytelling (WordPress put this post on its front page)
- The Mother of All Query Letters
- 30 achy breaky Twitter mistakeys
- Writing secret: Light as air, strong as whiskey, cheap as dirt
Reformed journalist. Scribbler of speeches and whatnot. Represented by Jill Marr of the Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency.