Greg Braxton of the LA Times shares his funny, and stingingly accurate, ten-step formula for the typical TV police procedural.
2. The ‘What d’ya got’ scene
The star investigators must
arrive at a crime scene walking at a regular pace or in slow motion. Dark trench
coats are a must, and the stars should look properly stern and speak cryptically
out of the sides of their mouths when asking officers at the scene, "Who’s the
stiff?" Detectives should possess a background in comedy or philosophy: Nothing
kicks off a murder investigation or leads into the first commercial like words
of wisdom or a morbid one-liner such as, "Dinner really did cost him an
arm and a leg."
The list goes on. But Greg left a couple of things out:
1 ) the hero’s obligatory dead wife (an updating of what was "the obligatory estranged wife").
2) the hero’s or co-star’s struggle with an addiction (gambling, alcoholism, etc.)
3) one lead character eats healthy, the other loves junk food.
4) the irascible boss.