Last night “To Catch a Predator,” still quaintly referred to as Dateline NBC (as if anything else on that show matters anymore), brought the Chris Hansen Tour ’06-’07 to Flagler Beach, Florida. The usual assortment of creeps and perverts was paraded in front of the cameras for our collective amusement. My personal favorite was the swarthy Egyptian fellow who brought lotion, wilted flowers and a Krackel bar with him. Nice to see that romance isn’t dead.
One thing I’ve concluded is that while many people may find the actual arrests of these people to be the climax of the show, I think it’s what I refer to as the “Hansen Money Shot.” But the key to the HMS isn’t just the confrontation, it’s when our intrepid reporter finds ever more creative ways to shoehorn his name into the segment. Hansen, who is berating the perv like he would a dog who just crapped on the rug, signals the end of the transaction thusly — “There’s one more thing you should know. I’m Chris Hansen from Dateline NBC, and you’re toast you dirty kid toucher.” Well, something like that.
If the guy stays for his scolding, Hansen’s job is easy enough. But when they run, Chris has to act quickly. “Hey! Before you head back to your Camaro I’m Chris Hansen Dateline hahahahaha!” If the future prison inmate is too fast, verbs are optional. “I’MCHRISHANSEN!” I’m not sure what Hansen’s deal is with letting the guys know who he is, although he obviously gets a lot of satisfaction from it. Do the police have to let the guy go if he doesn’t know who brought the hammer down? More importantly, is that how he acts in his daily life?
“Hi sir, welcome to Red Lobster! Can I start…”
“Before we go any further, you should know that I’m Chris Hansen from Dateline NBC, and I’m here to have the Captain’s Feast.”
“Ummm, OK. So do you want a drink to start with?”
“Is that how you play your dirty little game? Get me intoxicated? I’m Chris Hansen from Dateline NBC, and I will not fall for that.”
“WTF? Dude, what’s your problem?”
“One of our hidden cameras caught you inappropriately touching a little girl over at that table earlier.”
“She was choking! I was giving her the Heimlich Maneuver!”
“Oh. Well in that case I’ll have a Lobster Margarita. And some cheese biscuits!”
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