Hollywood Armchair Detective Part II

Welcome back to the second half of your Armchair Detective course from Hollywood University. I hope you enjoyed your break, looking cool in the quad, drinking in the campus pub and running up Mom and Dad’s “this is strictly for emergencies” credit card. If you’re a transfer student and missed the first part of the course, please feel free to take notes from Hollywood Armchair Detective Part I.

Otherwise it’s time to get back down to business. Crime waits for no one.

  • Long, salon-styled hair should be worn down and will absolutely not contaminate a crime scene. I might leave giant tumble weeds of hair everywhere I go, but crime scene investigators have super follicles that never release their grip on their over-processed charges.  And when you think about it, who would want to put their hair up in a bun or unattractive shower cap thingy when they took the time to blow dry and style their hair? The fact that they do their hair at all is especially impressive when you think about their exhausting work schedules and the amount of personal time they spend solving crime, as well as being shot at, kidnapped and buried alive. Sometimes I don’t even take a shower and I can’t remember the last time I was buried alive.

Crime scenes are a dime a dozen but hair like this takes work. (image via dreamstime)

  • The obvious suspect is never the guilty party. If there’s a guy covered in blood, standing over the body of a person he hated, with a knife in his hand, you can rest assured that he didn’t do it. More likely, he was returning home from his job as a sous chef, when he slipped, fell, rolled in the blood and then stood over the corpse of his enemy, trying to remember if he filed his taxes. However, if one of your suspects has a really good agent and has been seen on television or in commercials, they are most certainly your killer.

Not your guy. However, the nice neighbor was on Southland and in a Doritos commercial, so she's definitely guilty. (image via dreamstime)

  • When in a stand-off, an experienced police officer will let a volatile criminal wave a gun around without shooting them. In fact, said officer will even give up his/her own weapon in the interest of a peaceful resolution.  And if for some reason the criminal has to be killed because they were about to shoot the detective or Little Orphan Annie, the detective will cry and lament over the lost life. You see, police officers love all gangsters, pedophiles and sociopathic killers and are optimistic about our justice system and its ability to rehabilitate criminals. They trust that criminals won’t get off because of clever attorneys or be paroled early due to a lax parole board. This unbridled optimism is impressive but perhaps not practical when you think of all the poor lab technicians who will be shot at, kidnapped and buried alive by the sociopaths at a later date.

"I really appreciate you not shooting me. Of course now I'm going to shank a guard, escape and bury a lab technician." (image via dreamstime)

Higher ranked officers do all of the grunt work. It’s quite common for an entire task force to be made of Sergeants, Lieutenants, Captains and Commanders. They interview suspects, canvas the neighborhood, kick down doors, get the coffee, wax the police car. They even train new recruits. And then apparently the new recruits are shoved into a closet until they earn a rank prestigious enough to be seen on the city streets or they are promoted right to Sergeant or they spend their time cleaning the toilets. I’m not entirely sure what happens to them but the important thing to remember here is that the upper echelon are not slackers. So the next time you want to file a loud music complaint or fight a traffic ticket, ask for the Chief. He’ll love taking your report.

Maybe higher ranked officers do all the work because they take such nice pictures (image via screenrant)

Officers can run around with their finger on the trigger of their gun without accidentally shooting off their toe. Probably because they don’t have a round in the chamber. Why be prepared to shoot your weapon when it would rob everyone of hearing that really cool racking sound and seeing you look like LL Cool J in SWAT? And you don’t really need to be ready to shoot your weapon at all, since you’re just going to give it up when the first criminal asks you to anyway.

If you look at this picture and listen carefully you can hear a firearms instructor cry. (image via dreamstime)

Congratulations! You’ve officially earned your MAD (Masters in Armchair Detectivery). Feel free to begin solving mysteries with the feeling of self-importance that comes from earning a degree about which nobody cares and that will never earn you any money.

I know that feeling well.

Hollywood Armchair Detective Part I

I have a guilty pleasure: dramatized police procedurals.  Love them! I love mystery and witty banter and forensic stuff. I love trying to figure out who did it. And I don’t mean to brag but I’m one heck of an armchair detective. It’s a gift really.

However, being married to a cop has almost ruined it all for me. See, Hubs is a slave to silly things like occupational accuracy and the laws of physics. These shows are painful for him to watch and his pain sucks the marrow out of my enjoyment. As a result, I mostly watch these shows on my own, although occasionally I will put one of them on while Hubs is in the room just so that I can hear him groan and leave the room like he’s about to pass a kidney stone.

Hubs doesn’t know what he’s missing. I learn so much watching these shows. If Hollywood hadn’t had the fantastic notion of chronicling the goings on of abnormally attractive detectives, coroners and lab technicians, I would still be in the dark. I’m passing this knowledge on to you because I’m a giver. Like Typhoid Mary.

Because Hollywood has taught me so much, I’ve split this post into two parts so as not to overwhelm. In the words of Sir Francis Bacon, knowledge is power and too much power given all at once can make your head explode (I added the last part.) Here is the first generous helping of Hollywood knowledge. Use it wisely.

  • Coroners and lab technicians spend their days diligently solving crime and apprehending criminals in expensive designer clothes. I thought they mostly did autopsies and processed DNA but I was so wrong. I also had no idea that public servants and government workers made boat loads of cash and had incredible cutting edge tastes in fashion. That is until Hollywood educated me. Now I know that standing on the unforgivingly hard floors of morgues and labs just feels better in stilettos.

She wears the same shoes to cut up dead bodies (image via dreamstime)

  • Good looking coroners like to hang out with good-looking detectives. And when they do, hi-jinx and crime solving ensue. I don’t know why Hubs never invites coroners over for dinners and family cookouts. Then again, I don’t think I want Hubs spending all of his time with a hot coroner. Watching Hubs exchange witty banter and solving murders with some good-looking smarty-pants just might make me want to kick a coroner’s @ss. If Hubs is going to take some unarmed chica in impractical shoes to a dangerous crime scene, it’s going to be me.

She best stay away from my husband's crime scenes! (image via dreamstime)

  • Detectives often cry in the interview room while divulging painful personal facts to hardened criminals in order to obtain a confession. This strategy always works, probably because hardened criminals are notoriously empathetic, which makes total sense when you think about the painful childhoods the criminals must have had. What allows this technique to work so well is that criminals hardly ever ask for a lawyer and when they do, the lawyers sit silently in dismay while the detectives manipulate the hardened criminals into a confession. Nobody wants to interrupt a hot, crying detective. It’s just not done. Hubs seems to be ignoring my suggestion that he cry more at work, which might be why he’s not a detective.

This detective cried at least once an episode (image via dreamstime)

  • Crime labs investigate every death with the same amount of time and resources. Vagrants who seemingly died of natural causes get the same exhaustive efforts that high-profile murders do. And they are all investigated with state of the art equipment not seen outside of secret squirrel government agencies. Crime labs can be this thorough because they never have a backlog of lab work to catch up on. Nor do they have bureaucrats breathing down their necks about overtime hours and the super fancy hologram machine they used to recreate an image of the vagrant’s butt. This is very good news for the residents of Vegas, New York and Miami, because it means that there is hardly any crime and the city governments have plenty of money. So head on down to City Hall to get your free handout and don’t be afraid to carry it around in an open fanny pack.

*I am kidding. In no way do I condone the use of fanny packs.

"Oh sure, now you tell me." (image via dreamstime)


There you have it. You are half way to earning your Masters in Armchair Detectivery from Hollywood University. You should totally hit the campus pub. You’ve earned it.