"I’m your worst fuckin’ nightmare...a nigger with a badge!"
Description: Eddie Murphy as Reggie Hammond shouts his now classic catchphrase in the motion picture 48 HRS. (1982).
Reggie is small time crook arrested for armed robbery who is released on parole for 48 hours to assist disgruntled cop Jack Cates (Nick Nolte) catch Hammond's former and very disturbed partner, Albert Ganz (James Remar) who escaped from prison, and is now in the possession of Jack's .44 service revolver that he stole during an encounter at the Walden Hotel in San Francisco. Ganz used Jack's gun to kill Detective Algren (Jonathan Banks) before he got away.
As Jack leaves prison with Reggie, he comments on the convict's character, saying, "Class isn't something you buy. Look at you, you've got on a 500-dollar suit and you're still a low-life." Reggie replies, "Yeah, but I look good."
While searching for clues on Ganz's whereabouts, Reggie enters "Torchy's," a country western bar. "Not a very popular place with the brothers." says, Reggie. His partner, Jack replies, "My kinda place. I always liked country boys. They're sure as hell don't like you."
Entering the bar, Reggie tells the clientele, "Y'all a bunch of backward ass country fucks." When one of bar's redneck clientele asks, “What kind of cop are you?” Reggie replies, “I’m your worst fuckin’ nightmare...a nigger with a badge which means I got permission to kick your fuckin' ass whenever I feel like it.”
Reggie acts all cop-like and shakes down one of the rednecks. Pulling out a wad of cash from the man's pocket, Reggie inquires, "Man, your loaded here, What the fuck's this? When the man answers, "Tax refund," Reggie quips, "Bullshit! You're too fuckin' stupid to have a job!"
Before Reggie leaves the bar, he tells the owner," You start running a respectable business and I won't have to come in here and hassle you every night. You know what I mean?" Then facing the patrons, Reggie shouts, "And I want the rest of you cowboys to know something, there's a new sheriff in town. And his name is Reggie Hammond. So y'all be cool. Right on."
As Reggie and Jack continue their search in Chinatown, they get in a little argument about their progress in the case.
|Jack:||This sucks! A maniac gets hold of my gun and runs all over the streets killin' people with it. So, instead of bein' where I oughta be, home in bed with my gal givin' her the high hard one, I'm out here doin' THIS shit: roamin' around the streets with an overdressed, charcoal-colored loser like you.|
|Reggie:||Look, man, if you don't like it, why don't you just leave? I can take care of Ganz by myself, all right?|
|Jack:||Heh, don't make me laugh. You can't take care of shit. You been dickin' me around since we started this turd hunt! The only thing you're good for is GAMES. So far, what I got outta you is nothin'!|
|Reggie:||Yeah, well, I'm real impressed with you too, man. It takes a real-skilled cop to kick in the bedroom door of a couple of dykes!|
|Jack:||Luther knows more and he told me and so do you. I wanna know what the fuck this is all about! I gave you 48 hours to come up with somethin' and the clock's runnin'!|
|Reggie:||Yeah, well, maybe I don't like the way you asked me, all right?|
|Jack:||Who GIVES a goddamn what YOU like? You're just a crook on a weekend pass! You're not even a goddamn NAME anymore! You're just a spearchucker with a number stencilled on the back of his prison fatigues! And I'm through fuckin' around. You tell me the truth or you're gonna get the living shit beat outta you.|
|Reggie:||Oh, you're gonna kick MY ass now? I think you lost your mind, Cates. Just put your gun back in your holster and get in the car and let's go. I'm serious. I'm not in the mood and I'm just gonna end up fuckin' you up out here and it's gonna be an embarrassment to you and the police force.|
|Jack:||Let me explain one thing to you, nigger: I fight DIRTY!|
After Jack and Reggie clear the air with good old-fashioned fist-fight, they pull themselves together and continue to search for Albert Ganz.
Jack finally learns that Ganz and Reggie stole a half a million dollars from a drug dealer. The money is in Reggie's car that has been in storage for nearly three years.
When Jack and Reggie come up with a plan to get both Ganz and the money, Reggie implies that he and Jack are now partners, But Jack, in no uncertain terms, says, "Now, get this! We ain't partners. We ain't brothers. And we ain't friends. I'm puttin' you down and keepin' you down until Ganz is locked up or dead. And if Ganz gets away, you're gonna be sorry YOU ever MET me!" Reggie replies, "I'm sorry already."
Unfortunately, a guy named Luther (David Patrick Kelly) posing as Reggie, retrieves the car first, and Ganz gets a hold of all the money from the drug deal heist. Ganz kidnapped Luther's girlfriend Rosalie (Kerry Sherman) and forced him to get Reggie's car and the money inside the car's trunk. Ganz later kills Luther.
When Jack and Reggie eventually tracks down Ganz, he takes Reggie hostage, using him as a human shield and shouts, "Hey, cop! Come here! I got something for you!" Jack tells Ganz, "You're not gonna make it." Ganz replies, "What are you talkin' about? I got your gun! I got the money! I got everything!" Jack points his a newly issued firearm at Ganz, as Reggie yells , "Take aim, man, and blow his fucking brains out!"
Ganz doubts Jack will shoot, but he does. which freaks Reggie out. "Are you crazy, man? I was just bluffing!" When Ganz says, "I don't believe it... I got shot!" Jack says, "You're done, end of story" then finishes Ganz off by shooting him repeatedly.
Before Jack returns Reggie to prison, he puts the stolen money back in to the trunk of Reggie's car. Then he negotiates a loan for a new Cadillac when Reggie gets out of jail in six months. Jack's own Cadillac was destroyed when it drove through a building during a car chase with Ganz's associate, Billy Bear (Sonny Landham) who helped Ganz break out of prison.
Reggie agrees to the loan, and tells Jack that from now on he will be honest. And, at least for the moment, Jack believes him.
Note: In the motion picture Another 48 HRS. (1990). Eddie Murphy as Reggie Hammond, once again on temporary release, says, “Let me tell you something, Jack. If shit was worth something, poor people would be born with no hole in their ass.”
In the film Cop and a Half (1993) Devon Butler (Norman D. Golden II), a black kid interested in helping solve a crime, tells policeman Nick McKenna (Burt Reynolds), “I’m your worst nightmare...an eight-year-old with a badge.”
In the film The Santa Clause (1994) North Pole elves rescue Santa Claus from jail. They tell the officer in charge of the lock up, “We’re your worst nightmare...elves with attitude."
Tyrin Turner as Caine in the film Menace II Society (1993) offers a variation on the phrase when he refers to his psychopathic friend O-Dog (Larenz Tate) as “America’s nightmare—young, black and didn’t give a fuck.”
See also - National Lampoon's Loaded Weapon 1