As a detective, my first step would be to identify the keywords in the crossword clue “staple of Coen brothers films.” Coen brothers are known for their unique style of dark comedy. Therefore, I quickly realized that the answer to this clue must be related to dark humor. I searched for synonyms for dark humor, such as black comedy, gallows humor, or morbid humor, but none of them seemed to fit. However, after brainstorming for a while, I recalled that the Coen brothers are known for their quirky and offbeat sense of humor, often combining it with violence, absurdity, and irony. This led me to the perfect answer–DARKHUMOR. ‘Dark humor’ accurately captures the essence of their films, with their witty, sardonic, and unconventional take on serious issues. Overall, my experience as a detective and my familiarity with the Coen brothers’ work helped me crack the crossword clue and provide a satisfying solution.