Inspired by the successful English language version of Wallander, I wondered if there was a market for an update of my favourite Scandi drama of last year. Inspiration came from a Bank Holiday visit to the concrete and glass permatanned hell that is Bluewater Shopping Centre, and the view from the approach road.
I've even given it the theme tune https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vy7yuj-UrNI
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(SFX: Mobile Phone Ringtone- Spring from The Four Seasons)
Pipe: Yes! Pipe here! Better be good it’s nearly 3 in the morning. What? A Body? On the Bridge? Surely that’s Essex Constabulary? In the middle you say? Exactly on the middle? Stop the traffic and get me clearance to come over the wrong way! Be there in twenty.
(Atmospheric theme music as Pipe drives down scenic Kentish lanes before hitting the joyless industrial estates of Dartford, and onto the bridge)
Pipe: DI Pipe. Kent Constabulary. Who is the senior officer here, it looks like a circus. Get these rubberneckers out of the way.
Lane: That will be me babes! DI Lane, Essex Constabulary. We prefer first names on our side hun!
Pipe: And you are?
Pipe: Ah! Your parents were fans of the classic work by Victor Hugo.
Lane: Nah! Some bloke shagged my mum up against the bins round the back of the Bingo Hall after she was off her tits on Fanta and Malibu. Nine months later out I pop. She named me after what caused me!
Pipe: What a beautiful story?
Lane: Fantine Teniqua Beyonce Malibu Lane! But you can call me Fanny!
Pipe: Fanny Lane! Hmm!
Lane: And you are?
Pipe: Gordon. As in the gin!
Lane: Oh you should see me after a few gins at Sugarhut babe. Five of those and I’m anybody’s!
Pipe: Charming, I’m sure.
Lane: So was your mum off her face on Gordon’s when your Dad banged her?
Pipe: Some children are actually conceived in a conventional loving relationship.
Lane: Not round here babe! Sorry! Gordon!
Pipe: Let’s just stick to Pipe and Lane shall we? Now where is this body?
Lane: Right here! Not been touched yet.
Pipe: Bizarrely dressed I would say!
Lane: Seems quite normal to me!
Pipe: Not surprisingly (To self) Note this down! You can write can’t you?
Lane: And you are in charge because?
Pipe: Because the head is on my side! On the Kent side!
Lane: Ah get you now hun!
Pipe: Subject would appear to be male judging by the haircut and the Hollister top. Over-priced designer brands for the local youths. Some sort of tribal tattoo along the right arm. Would you agree Lane?
Lane: No I’m guessing it’s a female victim. Velour tracksuit. Faked Chanel. Designer label trainers also counterfeit, and a tattoo with ‘Marc 4 me 4 eva!’ around the ankle. Besides I’ve already looked down the pants. Tiny thong and no meat and two veg. we’ve got a babe, babe!
Pipe: Unless it’s a hermaphrodite!
Lane: Come again Guv!
Pipe: A Lady-Boy! A she-male!
Lane: We get them down the Hut all the time. My ex had one hell of a surprise after one session. Didn’t stop him though, dirty little bleeder.
(SFX: Mobile Phone Ringtone- Mr Lover Man)
Lane: That’s him now! Babes! How ya doing? No! How, not who! Dirty bugger! Can’t really talk now, I’m on a job! No! Not on the job! And no not on the … Am you wonder why I left you! See ya!
Pipe: Can we get on with it?
Lane: That’s what he said! Why do you keep touching your goolies? You’re not one of those doggers are you?
Pipe: No! I’ve recently had a delicate operation … downstairs.
Lane: What? In the living room?
Pipe: No! Below!
Lane: In the wine cellar! I know you’ve got posh houses in Kent.
Pipe: For God’s sake I’ve had a bloody vasectomy and my bollocks are really sore! And the last thing I need is mindless drivel, so if you don’t mind! The Body!
Lane: OK! Sore point! I’ll do the head! And don’t give me that look!
Pipe: I wouldn’t dream! OK feet for me as you’ve already done that end of things! I’m just going to remove these shoes. One and two and … AAARGH!! What is this? It’s bleeding still. Constable- an arc light over here now!!
Lane: AAARGH!! Me too! All over my hands! It feels like brain matter!
Pipe: We are looking at a violent assault! Multiple causes of death! Where is that bloody arc light?
Lane: Pipe! How long has blood been orange?
Pipe: What do you mean? It has the feel of congealed blood.
Lane: It’s not blood you Muppet! It is a case of too much fake tan paste! They never rub it in properly! Why do you think their legs are so streaky?
Pipe: Because they had wet themselves when drunk out of their skulls?
Lane: Well there is that as well! But what about me? I’ve got this brain gunk all over my hands! Was he beaten to death?
Pipe: That isn’t brain matter! It’s an excess of hair product! Good God! It is dripping from your hands! How much has this boy used?
Lane: What do you mean?
Pipe: Never dated a Dartford boy?
Lane: Never shagged beyond Brentwood mate!
Pipe: They all have it! Go to Bluewater on a windy day and any male under twenty four doesn’t have a hair out of place. The rest of us have been dragged through several hedges backwards. And the real reason for the smoking ban in clubs wasn’t for the smoke. One discarded match in the wrong direction and WOOF!! The whole lot would have gone up!
Lane: Are you thinking what I’m thinking?
Pipe: Essex girls think? (SFX- Slap) They think!
Lane: Two bodies! Not one!
Pipe: Up with the top! Down with the tracksuit!
Lane: There! Cut across the middle and placed together! Symmetrical!
Pipe: Asymmetrical! Can’t you tell this script was written by a teacher?
Lane: Yeah! Bloody peasant!
Lane: That’s the one!
Pipe: You know what Lane?
Pipe: We aren’t looking at a crime of passion! We are looking at a crime against fashion!
(Fades into theme tune as both gaze balefully into the middle distance- to the oil refineries of Canvey Island or to the marshes of Gravesend where Magwitch emerged to threaten young Pip in Great Expectations, depending upon your cultural preferences)