MSNBC was airing some old reruns of To Catch a Predator with Chris Hansen Sunday night, so I exited out of my chat log and tuned in, even though I had seen the episodes multiple times. To Catch a Predator episodes have got to be one of the only news investigation shows that are still played on a weekly basis even though they originally aired in 2006 and 2007. So why don’t you have a seat, grab a pitcher of sweet tea, and read through these reasons on why they need to make new episodes of To Catch a Predator:
1. It Keeps Pedophiles off the Streets and off the Keyboards
I’ll be looking at the lighter side of the episodes throughout this article, but let’s not forget the facts. Dateline NBC’s series To Catch a Predator led to the arrests of 50 people in 3 days and in a little more than two years, over 260 men were caught chatting inappropriately with minors on the internet. That was before even more episodes were aired later. With the show being off the air for so long, it’s going to be wicked easy to catch online predators now, because the predators won’t be expecting Chris Hansen to show his turtleneck again. Also, as far as I can guess, the only people still chatting in chat rooms now are probably either serial killers or pedophiles. I don’t think teens are in chat rooms anymore so setting up a few fake accounts would draw in predators faster than giving away free One Direction tickets to some 13 year old girls.
2. It Gives Out of Work Actresses/Actors Work
Let’s say you want to star as a 13 year old kid on a popular Disney show, but you’re already over 18 and don’t have much on your acting resume. That won’t be a problem if they make new episodes of To Catch a Predator. Actresses and actors will be able to get some money for their acting abilities playing decoys, all while gaining some valuable improv experience, and putting predators behind bars. There’s no better way to practice up on your improv skills, than luring a predator into a house with the promise of sweet tea. I don’t even know what sweet tea is, but apparently it’s the drink of choice for predators.
3. The Screen Names and Chat Conversations Are Unbelievable
Not all of the screen names are that creative, but every chat conversation usually has at least one thing so creepy that it makes you really question every dude you’ve ever met. Here are some of the more creative and creepy screen names I found, as well as a prime example of how quickly these online conversations often take a turn for the worst:
Guy_from_mars – Maybe they have different laws on Mars about chatting online with minors, but I’m Chris Hansen with Dateline NBC, and this is America.
Ricks_talented_toungue – Unfortunately I don’t think Rick is referring to his tongue’s poetry skills.
Can_i_rape_you_anally – Not the most subtle screen name, but he claims that it gets responses. This is the same guy that typed “I might want to cut you a little… suck on your blood lol” – This will probably go down in history as one of the most inappropriate lols of all time.
Here’s just one of many chat conversations that makes the show so mesmerizing to watch.
Italianlover37: what you looking
Decoy: I dunno
Italianlover37: well hot sex what else
Then later he became a bit suspicious, but not too suspicious.
Italianlover37: how do I know youre no cop lol
Decoy: Durr I dunno lol
Decoy: how I kno ure not my dad settin me up?
The grammar errors alone both unintentionally from the predators, and intentionally from the decoys make it fascinating to watch everything play out. Also a simple “Durr I dunno” was all it took to convince a potential predator that he wasn’t talking to the police. This brings me to my next point.
4. Predators Are Still Going to Show Up
In a more recent episode, I watched Chris Hansen mention how he was worried that people wouldn’t show up since the show had already aired a few episodes. On the contrary however, predators would mention that they had seen the show in the chat logs even claiming how funny the show was, only to appear the next night creepily b-lining straight for the decoy, before Chris Hansen could greet them with a witty opener. Then the smiles quickly became frowns and the nervous excitement turned into a nervous sweat. I’ve watched enough episodes of Cops to know that the police can say they aren’t the police and still arrest someone later, but people tend to think that people that work in law enforcement have to tell them if they’re a cop, so people will still show up to the decoy’s house. Here are two examples of people that knew about the show and still showed up.
Solepleaser: are u a cop
Solepleaser: posing undercover to catch “online predators”…
Decoy: No wtf r u talking about?
Solepleaser: …don’t u watch dateline?
Decoy: no whats that
Solepleaser: …it’s a show on NBC
Solepleaser: they take guys to jail for messing around with young girls
If that conversation wasn’t enough to prove that these dudes would still show up if they made new episodes, here’s one other guy who had seen the show and still showed up to the house. Simply stunning.
Lovesource7: u ever watch dateline
Lovesouce7: I was watchin it yesterday
Decoy: dont think so
Decoy: Is it good?
Lovesource7: these tv personal chat with men as kids and they ask them to meet and then they show it on TV
Lovesource7: its prettu funny…u should watch it
Lovesource7: but in this show they send those people to jail for meeting a child
Decoy: I dont want u in trbl
Decoy: how did they find out?
Lovesource7: I don’t know
Yes Lovesource7 it is clear you truly don’t know, and this also makes an important point that shows that even other predators enjoyed watching the show.
5. Chris Hansen’s One Liners
I believe Chris Hansen was put on this planet for one reason, and that reason was to catch online predators red handed, or rather carpal tunnel handed. The show wouldn’t be as good as it was if anyone else hosted the show. Hansen comes up with one liners on the spot the way only Chris Hansen can. For example, in one episode a man mentioned at some point that he was just going fishing so naturally Chris responded with a quick one liner stating, “Sounds like what you were fishing for was sex with a 12 year old girl.” Here are two more examples of some of his witty statements:
Chris Hansen: So you’ve been in movies, you’ve been on television? Well you’re about to get another role, because I’m Chris Hansen with Dateline NBC and we’re doing a story on computer predators.
Hot Tub (Wish It Was a Time Machine) Predator: I thought you were supposed to be in the hot tub already?
Decoy: Oh I’m just getting dressed. I’ve got a surprise for you…
Chris the Man Hansen: (Popping out behind a fence) I guess I’m probably not the surprise you expected am I?
Bonus: It Can Make for a Rather Entertaining Drinking Game – I often tend to look for ways to make drinking games out of things you probably wouldn’t normally associate with a drinking game. So while drinking to online predators getting arrested might not seem like a normal thing to do, the show actually has a pretty solid formula that makes for a great drinking game out of the show. Here are some suggestions:
Chris Hansen says “What’s going on?” – 1 drink
Chris Hansen says “Why don’t you have a seat?” – 1 drink
Chris Hansen says the word “blank” or is censored – 1 drink
Any time the predator says he just came to “hang out” – 2 drinks
The predator claims the person they were chatting with was 18 – 3 drinks
The predator is a truck driver – 5 drinks
The predator works in education – 7 drinks
The predator worked in law enforcement – 10 drinks
They claim it’s their first time – 2 drinks
They bring condoms – 3 drinks
They bring alcohol – 5 drinks
The predator pours a drink or eats some of the food that was offered – 5 drinks
The police use a taser on a predator – Finish your drink
The same guy shows up twice at two different locations – Finish your drink
So don’t just have a seat on this topic. Stand up for what you believe in and share this article to spread awareness to get this show back on the air, and these predators off the keyboards, and back in the hot seat with Chris Hansen.