It’s the time of year for several different awards events. We’ve recently had the BAFTAs, the Academy Awards, and the Grammys, and the Tony Awards are coming up in June. But you know, there are no awards for fictional sleuths. Well, their creators sometimes get awards, but the sleuths themselves? Not so much. I think it might be fun to imagine the sorts of awards our top fictional sleuths might get. So, if you’ll send your disbelief shopping for that perfect awards ceremony ensemble, let’s take a look at…
The Sleuthie Awards
The scene is a richly decorated theatre. The camera follows several famous sleuths as they walk the red carpet towards the building, almost all of them in formal wear. A few of them stop to sign autographs or to pose for pictures, but most are making their way inside to find their seats. An orchestra is playing as everyone settles in. The music stops as the emcee takes the stage to audience applause.
Emcee: Thanks for being here. You’re in for an exciting night as we pay tribute to some of the finest sleuths in the business. Let’s start with the award for Best Dressed Sleuth! After all, appearances do matter! And the nominees are…. Hercule Poirot (Agatha Christie), Phryne Fisher (Kerry Greenwood), Aimée Leduc (Cara Black), and…James Bond (Ian Fleming). (The camera pans the nominees’ faces, then goes back to the emcee, who is slowly drawing the winning name out of a gold envelope).
And the Sleuthie goes to…… Aimée Leduc! (Aimée Leduc makes her way to the stage as everyone applauds. She gives the emcee a hug and accepts her award. As she begins her short list of thank-yous, the camera pans the audience again.)
Emcee: Next up, here are the nominees for the Long-Suffering Second in Command Award! (Glances down at a list). And the nominees are…. Peter Pascoe (Reginald Hill)…. Dr. Watson (Arthur Conan Doyle), Sergeant Lewis (Colin Dexter), and …. Archie Goodwin (Rex Stout). (The camera pans the audience and returns to the emcee). And the Sleuthie goes to…. Peter Pascoe! (There is applause as Pascoe makes his way to the stage. The camera lingers a moment on Andy Dalziel’s face. He’s muttering something but seems to be taking it all in stride. Pascoe shakes hands with the emcee and, holding his trophy in one hand, starts his thank-you speech).
(As the applause dies down, a stagehand brings the next envelope and list to the emcee) Emcee: We’re ready now for the Attitude Award for Grumpiest Sleuth. And the nominees are…Salvo Montalbano (Andrea Camilleri), Andy Dalziel (Reginald Hill), Inspector E. Morse (Colin Dexter), and … Nero Wolfe (Rex Stout). And the Sleuthie goes to…. Nero Wolfe! (Applause). Here to accept the award on behalf of Mr. Wolfe is Archie Goodwin. (Archie stands up and heads for the stage, where he shakes the emcee’s hand. He takes the trophy, walks to the microphone, and takes a slight bow. He thanks everyone, and then mentions how well deserved the award is before returning to his seat.)
Emcee: It’s been a really exciting evening so far, hasn’t it? (Applause). But there’s still more to come. (Pauses while a stagehand brings him the next envelope). Let’s move on to the Globetrotter Award! The nominees this time are…. Russell Quant (Anthony Bidulka), Sir Roderick Alleyn (Ngaio Marsh), Ava Lee (Ian Hamilton), and…Emily Pollifax (Dorothy Gilman). And the Sleuthie goes to… Ava Lee! (The camera pans the audience, focusing on Ava Lee’s face as she hears the news, then follows her as she goes up to the stage to accept her award.).
Emcee: It’s not easy being a sleuth. Very often, sleuths get into dangerous situations, and take real risks, and some sleuths have taken more risks, and survived more danger, than others. That’s what this next award is all about. It’s the Survivor Award! And the nominees are (Glances down at the list), Dave Robicheaux (James Lee Burke), V.I. Warshawski (Sara Paretsky), Walt Longmire (Craig Johnson), and (Looks at the list again) Anna Pigeon (Nevada Barr)! And this Sleuthie goes to….Walt Longmire!! (There’s a burst of applause as Longmire walks up the aisle towards the stage. He shakes the emcee’s hand, nods to the audience and takes his trophy. The emcee looks a little surprised as he goes back to his seat with only a short thanks.).
Emcee (Trying to get past that slightly awkward moment): Moving on to our next Sleuthie, the Most Innocuous Award goes to a sleuth who seems non-threatening, but who shouldn’t be underestimated. The nominees for this year’s Most Innocuous Sleuthie are… Miss Jane Marple (Agatha Christie), Miss Maude Silver (Patricia Wentworth), Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte (Arthur Upfield), and… Flavia De Luce (Alan Bradley)! (The camera pans each nominee). And the Sleuthie goes to…. Miss Maude Silver! (Applause as Miss Silver gets up to accept her award. She reaches the stage, transfers her knitting from her right to her left hand, and takes the trophy with her right hand. She coughs gently once or twice, and then gives a short acceptance speech).
Emcee: We’ve got much more just ahead, so stay tuned! We’ll be right back!
Which awards would you give? Who do you think was ‘robbed’ of a Sleuthie?
20 thoughts on “The Sleuthies ;-)”
LOL, lovely Margot – I wish the Sleuthies existed in real life! I doubt I would argue with any of your winners, and you remind me that I have a Mrs. Pollifax book somewhere!
Thanks, KBR! I wish there were real Sleuthies, too! Glad you thought the winners were deserving, and I do hope you’ll like the Mrs. Pollifax when you get to it. I think those are some fun adventures. Perhaps the need for a bit of suspension of disbelief, but good stories!
LikeLiked by 1 person
I think the most deserved award in this list was for Nero Wolfe as Grumpiest. Also happy to hear that Miss Silver was awarded Most Innocuous.
And I was reminded that I wanted to get back to the Ava Lee series. I have only read the first two books.
Nero Wolfe certainly knows how to be grumpy, doesn’t he, Tracy!? And I love the way he expresses himself. You know, I’ve always liked Miss Silver, too. Miss Marple sometimes gets more press, I think, and I do like her. But there’s something about Miss Silver… I hope you’ll get the chance to read more in the Ava Lee series. She’s such an interesting character, isn’t she?
I love Longmire!
He’s a great character, isn’t he, Becky?
LikeLiked by 1 person
Yes, one of the best!
LikeLiked by 1 person
I thought Robicheaux would be nailed on for the survivor award, but you have reminded me that I need to read some Craig Johnson!
They’re both survivors, Col, no doubt about that! And, yes, I do recommend reading Johnson’s work.
Well done as always Margot. In addition, might I add:
During the break Kinsey Milhone (Sue Grafton) and Russell Quant (Anthony Bidulka) commiserate. “How could the Awards Committee overlook the two of us? Your wonder pants and my little black dress should have been enough to get us nominations.” Kinsey emphatically stated. “Never fear Kinsey, I am sure having worn our outfits tonight we shall gain attention next year. Why, I noticed dozens of people looking at us and shaking their heads,” replies a smiling Russell.
Emcee: Welcome back everyone. Our next Award is a historic category. It is the Survivor of World War One Award. The nominees, all veterans of the war are … Maisie Dobbs (Jacqueline Winspear), Ian Rutledge (Charles Todd), John Madden (Rennie Airth) and Bess Crawford (Charles Todd). And the winner is Ian Rutledge.
Upon reaching the stage Rutledge pauses, looks upward, sighs and then addresses the audience:
I appreciate this Award but I want to acknowledge Hamish with whom I share this Award though he is only present tonight as a voice in my head. As readers know Hamish was a young soldier executed who speaks to me. He acts as my conscience and reminds me daily of the sacrifice of millions of young men in the Great War. Peace be with you Hamish.
Emcee: Thank you Ian. You have touched us all. Moving on, we have the Best Barrister Award with the nominees being Mickey Haller (Michael Connelly), Jake Brigance (John Grisham), Rumpole (John Mortimer) and Arthur Beauchamp (William Deverell). And the winner – I am really excited about this one – is Arthur Beauchamp.
Beauchamp firmly grasps the Sleuthie, looks out to the audience and says:
Thank you, dear Emcee (who modestly nods). I am pleased, even gratified, to humbly (Rumpole sotto voce but carrying through the theatre “Never!”) accept this Award. I will cherish it for the rest of my days though surely the name Sleuthies should be upgraded to a more fitting title such as the “Immortals” to reflect the true status of the distinguished winners.
Oh, Bill, these are fantastic! I completely agree about Ian Rutledge and Hamish. They certainly personify surviving WW I. And it’s wonderful that you included a Best Barrister category. I had actually planned to do that (and, in fact, Beauchamp was among my nominees (but please don’t tell him – his ego does not need that!)). But I didn’t, because there are too many great fictional lawyers out there. You have a terrific list here. Oh, and Russell and Kinsey need not worry. Next year’s Sleuthies will have categories that fit them better…
Thanks for adding these in. As always, you make my posts better.
Brilliant Margot, very funny – and of course well-deserved all round!
How about an award for the sleuth with the most fake endings (to put the real murderer off the scent of course). In fact – that award should be given to one detective, and then that’s revealed as incorrect (in true Oscars manner) and the real fake-ending-expert gets the award. Mayhem ensues. This one may need some work, it’s very meta 😉😉😉
Meta it may be, Moira, but a fabulous idea!! I absolutely love it!! That’s a wonderful touch, for which thanks! And I’m glad you enjoyed these. I have to admit I had fun doing this.
Hahaha, excellent, Margot! I take it Rebus wasn’t there because he’s banned after that horrific incident last year, when the comedian mocked his rumpled suit and he stormed up to the stage and…. no, perhaps not… 😉
Hahaha! You heard about that Rebus incident, too, FictionFan? I know it was all over social media… 😉 Yes, those award shows certainly have their moments. See, that’s why I like the idea of the Sleuthies; it gives all of those famous crime-fictional sleuths a chance to get in on the drama. 😉
LikeLiked by 1 person
Oh, that was fun! Brilliant, Margot!
Thanks very much, Cat! Glad you enjoyed it! 😊
LikeLiked by 1 person
Was wonderful. 🙂