Saturday, March 26, 2016

Black Sails Season 3 Finale: Throckmorton

Who exactly is Captain Thockmorton and why is he important to the season 3 finale of Black Sails, just shown on Starz?  Well, he has a great name, doesn't he, but I'll say no more except stay tuned to the end of the episode.

Until that great send-off into season 4, we're treated to a great sea battle, with Jack, Anne, and Blackbeard in top clever and conquering form, and an equally rousing fight on the land, in which Flint and freed slaves literally rise up to beat the English. It's nights and fights like these that show why the Brits lost the American Revolutionary War.   They're good, but ultimately no match for Western hemispheric intelligence.

And the Pirate Republic thing is, as I've mentioned before, a template for the American Revolution, in terms of the limits of British power and the restless, irrrepressible success of the democratic impulse.

Interestingly, the season ends short of the battle for Nassau, with Eleanor and Rogers still the devoted couple, and Vane still hanging from the public gibbet.   Our pirates are seated around a table in the last scene, intercut with a reading by Max of a letter by John Silver, introducing the aforementioned Throckmorton, and signed Long John Silver, which has the effect of making his name, the sound of his name, something to be respected and feared, along with Throckmorton.

Earlier and throughout the episode, in a crucial conversation with Flint, Silver explicates what it is that now makes him unique among this pirate force: he is not only feared but liked, and that's a powerful combination, unique into its capacity to truly move the men.

It will seem like just a blink before season 4 continues the story, and I'll be in my customary front seat in the audience, right in front of my big glimmering television screen.


See also Black Sails 3.1: Restored ... Black Sails 3.2: Flint vs. Sea ... Black Sails 3.3: Gone Fishin' ... Black Sails 3.4: Mr. Scott's People ... Black Sails 3.5: Alliance ... Black Sails 3.6: The Duel ... Black Sails 3.7: The Blackening of John Silver ... Black Sails 3.8: Whether Vane? ... Black Sails 3.10: Wither Vane

And see also Black Sails 2.1: Good Combo, Back Story, New Blood ... Black Sails 2.2: A Fine Lesson in Captaining ... Black Sails 2.3: "I Angered Charles Vane" ... Black Sails 2.4: "Fire!" ... Black Sails 2.5: Twist! ... Black Sails 2.6: Weighty Alternatives, and the Medium is the Message on the High Seas ...Black Sails 2.7: The Governor's Daughter and the Gold ... Black Sails 2.9: The Unlikely Hero ... Black Sails Season 2 Finale: Satisfying Literate and Vulgar

And see also Black Sails: Literate and Raunchy Piracy ... Black Sails 1.3: John Milton and Marcus Aurelius ... Black Sails 1.4: The Masts of Wall Street ...Black Sails 1.6: Rising Up ... Black Sails 1.7: Fictions and History ... Black Sails 1.8: Money

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pirates of the mind in The Plot to Save Socrates 


Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Vikings 4.5: Knives

A startling, shocking twist in Vikings 4.5 last week - which, once it happens, makes 100% sense.

Lagertha stabs Kalf, her betrothed, and then seals his death with a last kiss.  It's a powerful and instructive scene, which tells us how loyal Lagertha is to Ragnar, and, even more so, to his prowess as a world conquerer.

It was clear to the audience, and therefore must have been to Lagertha, that Kalf intended to kill Ragnar.  Since Bjorn would have been bent on avenging his father, had he not died trying to prevent what Kalf intended, Lagertha had no choice but stop Kalf in his tracks.   The destiny conveyed in her sudden thrust of the knife thus made it an exhilarating scene, all but obscuring any scent of betrayal the stabbing also presented.

And it was not the only significant knife in the episode.   Ivar suddenly stabs a boy he's been tussling with as part of a game, except there was nothing playful in the stab, which kills the boy.  Ragnar puts a knife to much better use, as part of a strangely compelling seduction of Yidu, who significantly says she's a daughter of the Chinese emperor.

Meanwhile, there are symbolic knives - in the back - over in Paris, as that Emperor's ear is filled with tales from Gisla as well as poor Odo's mistress that he's disloyal to the Emperor.   These knives will have important results for our story.   A Paris deprived of Odo will be more vulnerable to Ragnar and Lagertha's attack, and will make the oncoming battle a classic duel between brothers.

England will also figure into this in some profound way, and I'm looking forward more than ever to the return of our Scandinavian Vikings to Europe.

See also Vikings 4.1: I'll Still Take Paris ... Vikings 4.2: Sacred Texts ... Vikings 4.4: Speaking the Language

And see also Vikings 3.1. Fighting and Farming ... Vikings 3.2: Leonard Nimoy ...Vikings 3.3: We'll Always Have Paris ... Vikings 3.4: They Call Me the Wanderer ... Vikings 3.5: Massacre ... Vikings 3.6: Athelstan and Floki ...Vikings 3.7: At the Gates ... Vikings 3.8: Battle for Paris ... Vikings 3.9: The Conquered ... Vikings Season 3 Finale: Normandy

And see also Vikings 2.1-2: Upping the Ante of Conquest ... Vikings 2.4: Wise King ... Vikings 2.5: Caught in the Middle ... Vikings 2.6: The Guardians ...Vikings 2.7: Volatile Mix ... Vikings 2.8: Great Post-Apocalyptic Narrative ... Vikings Season 2 Finale: Satisfying, Surprising, Superb

And see also Vikings ... Vikings 1.2: Lindisfarne ... Vikings 1.3: The Priest ... Vikings 1.4:  Twist and Testudo ... Vikings 1.5: Freud and Family ... Vikings 1.7: Religion and Battle ... Vikings 1.8: Sacrifice
... Vikings Season 1 Finale: Below the Ash

 
historical science fiction - a little further back in time

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Colony Season 1 Finale: Not Quite Enough

Colony concluded its first season last week, much as it has been conducting itself in the previous nine episodes: excellent action on the ground, and between the major characters, but not enough in what's happening above and on top of all of this.

In the case of Colony, that's more than metaphor.  The Earth has apparently been invaded - we've become a colony, or maybe a series of colonies would be a better way of putting it  - but by whom?  In episode 9, we were treated to what looked like a robot arm.  Or, was it really just some sort of cybersuit?  Concealing ... what?  An alien?  Or maybe a human?

In the season finale, we get to see more or less of this complete exterior of the alien - but with no further indication of what was inside it.   This lack of revelation is a clearly a deliberate decision on the part of the show's creators.

One of them, Carlton Cuse, has a history of television series with a lack of sufficient revelation - in fact, his series (with Damon Lindelof), Lost, is justifiably the most celebrated series with insufficient revelation throughout its narrative.   And this led to a profoundly uneven story, with some of the best episodes and even seasons ever on television in any series, and also some of the worst.

The frustrating thing about Colony is that it's doing a fine job down here on Earth.  I'd have no complaints at all if the story was not about a presumed alien invasion, but maybe a fascistic revolution in the near future right here in the United States.  (Hmm...  looking at what's going on in the Republican Party these days, that's all too plausible.)  But everyone in the action keeps telling us that's not what's going on.

And that being the case, I really wish we'd see a little about the invaders.   Well, I'll give this show at least one more season to see what it does - and maybe that was the idea in the first place.

See also Colony 1.1: Aliens with Potential ... 1.2: Compelling ... 1.5: Questions ... 1.6: The Provost ... Colony 1.7: Broussard ... Colony 1.8: Moon Base and Transit Zones ... Colony 1.9: Robot Arm


not exactly aliens, but strange enough ...  The Silk Code

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Monday, March 21, 2016

Black Sails 3.9: Wither Vane

I entitled my review of last week's episode of Black Sails "Whether Vane".  This week's review - of episode 3.9 - is entitled "wither Vane," because--(spoilers follow)


Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Hillary Clinton Sweeps All Five States Tonight: The Best Antidote to Trump

An excellent night indeed for Hillary Clinton, who won primaries in Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Illinois, and Missouri - or all five contests, over Bernie Sanders.

As I've said many times and in many places, Bernie Sanders is an excellent candidate, with courageous positions that have a lot to commend them.  But I prefer Hillary, for a variety of reasons - her stronger position on gun control, on stopping police who kill innocent African-Americans, to name just two - and now there is an additional, highly important reason:

Donald Trump did very tonight in the Republican primaries, too.  Kasich won Ohio, but Trump won the rest.  What happened in his campaigns over the weekend makes it more imperative than ever than the Democrats nominate a candidate who can beat Trump in the general election.

It's not even Trump's positions that are so frightening.  Cruz's are even worse.  It's the fascistic tendencies that Trump has displayed at his most recent rallies - inciting his followers to violence. Such incitements are straight out of the Joseph Goebbels handbook.  He was the Nazi minister of Propaganda, and though I know some people dislike comparisons in our current day and age to the Nazis, they can't be ignored.  We're not that far away from angry people taking up arms against innocent, law-abiding Muslim Americans, given Trump's rhetoric.

I know Bernie has done better in many polls against Trump than has Hillary.  But, in the long run, she's the more reliable candidate to beat Trump.  As she aptly says, she has been under GOP attack for decades.   She can better withstand whatever vicious barrage Trump and his ilk might bring against the Democratic candidate for President.

Especially gratifying, then, that Hillary Clinton swept all five of  the Democratic primaries tonight.


Monday, March 14, 2016

Colony 1.9: Robot Arm?

Well, the next to last episode of the first season of Colony contained a tantalizing glimpse of what may the invaders: a robotic arm, or maybe a sophisticated piece of body armor, laying there on the train that Katie and Broussard's group has blown off track.

Of course, who knows what that means.   Whether robot or body armor, we have no way of knowing its relation to the alien intelligence, assuming that the colonization has been done by aliens.  All we know at this point is that they, whoever they may be, apparently have a base on the Moon (we saw that last week).   Some options are: (a) the invaders are robots, or cyborgs of some sort, (b) the robots are weapons that the aliens are controlling, (c) the robots are controlled by humans of some sort, who have taken over LA, etc, or (d) there's a human of some sort inside the glimpse of what we saw, which is body armor.   (Maybe they're Nazis of some sort, based on the art they're collecting - calling The Man in the High Castle.)

Meanwhile, it looks as if Beau is off the show, at least for the rest of this season, which ends next week.   He's taking the tunnel to the outside and that cabin in the mountain, which Will wanted for Katie and the kids.   On the other hand, Beau could well turn around and be back next week.

The argument between Katie and Will, with Katie apparently winning, was well staged, well motivated, and well played.   Though, come to think of it, I'm not sure I believe that Katie would've missed the chance to find their son, however traumatized she was by the sight of her friend and sons hanging there labelled traitors.

As I've been saying all season, the show would do better to reveal a little more a little sooner.  On the other hand, it's this lack of information which most has me primed for the season finale next week, and what it may reveal.

See also Colony 1.1: Aliens with Potential ... 1.2: Compelling ... 1.5: Questions ... 1.6: The Provost ... Colony 1.7: Broussard ... Colony 1.8: Moon Base and Transit Zones


not exactly aliens, but strange enough ...  The Silk Code

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Saturday, March 12, 2016

Black Sails 3.8: Whether Vane

Another outstanding Black Sails - 3.8 - tonight, with another superb fighting scene, this one on the road, as Flint, Vane, Annie & company, like masked desperados on horseback, with guns and swords, rescue Rackham and the loot from Rogers.  It could have been a scene of Zorro, or a Tarantino movie, it was that good.

The result was a nice piece of work, too.  Rackham sprung but in effect traded for Vane, with Rogers bloody but still intact and even more resolved than ever.

This now pitches our story into the triangle that has been building and we have been waiting for all season .  Will Eleanor truly work with Rogers, to destroy Vane and what he calls forth in her past, or will she be swayed by Vane once again?  Or - has she in fact never been swayed from Vane at all despite what's she said and done with Rogers?

As I've said in previous reviews - see below -  Eleanor sure looks and seems like she's loving Rogers, in spirit as well as body.   But she could be a good actress.  And though she makes a convincing, impassioned declaration of her commitment and devotion to Rogers, of her love for him ... I don't know, I won't be surprised at all if she sides with Vane in the end.   And such uncertainty is what I call fine narrative writing.

As a slightly less significant but appealing touch, I like that it's fallen to Billy Bones to save the day or at least Vane, somehow, in Nassau.   His volunteering was a heartening sight, and I can only hope that he doesn't have something up his sleeve also, because that's the way it is with these pirates.

Now how's that for a review just seventeen minutes past the hour!

See also Black Sails 3.1: Restored ... Black Sails 3.2: Flint vs. Sea ... Black Sails 3.3: Gone Fishin' ... Black Sails 3.4: Mr. Scott's People ... Black Sails 3.5: Alliance ... Black Sails 3.6: The Duel ... Black Sails 3.8: The Blackening of John Silver

And see also Black Sails 2.1: Good Combo, Back Story, New Blood ... Black Sails 2.2: A Fine Lesson in Captaining ... Black Sails 2.3: "I Angered Charles Vane" ... Black Sails 2.4: "Fire!" ... Black Sails 2.5: Twist! ... Black Sails 2.6: Weighty Alternatives, and the Medium is the Message on the High Seas ...Black Sails 2.7: The Governor's Daughter and the Gold ... Black Sails 2.9: The Unlikely Hero ... Black Sails Season 2 Finale: Satisfying Literate and Vulgar

And see also Black Sails: Literate and Raunchy Piracy ... Black Sails 1.3: John Milton and Marcus Aurelius ... Black Sails 1.4: The Masts of Wall Street ...Black Sails 1.6: Rising Up ... Black Sails 1.7: Fictions and History ... Black Sails 1.8: Money

#SFWApro

 


pirates of the mind in The Plot to Save Socrates 



Vikings 4.4: Speaking the Language

Good to see Rollo and Gisla together at last in Paris in Vikings 4.4, and all because Rollo got to her heart  by learning her Frankish language.  Well, French still is the language of love, and there was a chemistry between them the first time their eyes locked with Rollo scaling the walls, though Gisla did her best to deny and resist it.

This is also a great development for the plot, because Rollo and Gisla as a couple will make him an even more ferocious defender of Paris than he otherwise would have been.  I still can't seem him actually fighting Ragnar, but that's still a little away in the story - if it happens at all.

Meanwhile, speaking of Ragnar, and back in Scandinavia, I really can't stand that new guy who's insinuated himself into Ragnar's family, with Aslaugh's acceptance.  He's of course there to kill Ragnar, and we know already that some part of her wouldn't mind that happening, but I can't quite see her acquiescing in this way to her husband's assassination.

Who will come to Ragnar's aid, assuming he's not killed in his sleep (which won't happen).  Bjorn is back, and I think even Floki would kill the stranger before Floki would let him kill Ragnar. Presumably this will be resolved before our Vikings turn their attention back to England and to Paris.

England was pretty quiet in episode 4.4, but there's a lot brewing there, and the return of the Vikings, whenever they get back, should bring all of that to a violent surface.

Looking forward to all of this more in the weeks ahead.

See also Vikings 4.1: I'll Still Take Paris ... Vikings 4.2: Sacred Texts

And see also Vikings 3.1. Fighting and Farming ... Vikings 3.2: Leonard Nimoy ...Vikings 3.3: We'll Always Have Paris ... Vikings 3.4: They Call Me the Wanderer ... Vikings 3.5: Massacre ... Vikings 3.6: Athelstan and Floki ...Vikings 3.7: At the Gates ... Vikings 3.8: Battle for Paris ... Vikings 3.9: The Conquered ... Vikings Season 3 Finale: Normandy

And see also Vikings 2.1-2: Upping the Ante of Conquest ... Vikings 2.4: Wise King ... Vikings 2.5: Caught in the Middle ... Vikings 2.6: The Guardians ...Vikings 2.7: Volatile Mix ... Vikings 2.8: Great Post-Apocalyptic Narrative ... Vikings Season 2 Finale: Satisfying, Surprising, Superb

And see also Vikings ... Vikings 1.2: Lindisfarne ... Vikings 1.3: The Priest ... Vikings 1.4:  Twist and Testudo ... Vikings 1.5: Freud and Family ... Vikings 1.7: Religion and Battle ... Vikings 1.8: Sacrifice
... Vikings Season 1 Finale: Below the Ash

 
historical science fiction - a little further back in time

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House of Cards Season 4: Trump and Frank

House of Cards has always been about our political reality writ large and therein in effect criticized and caricatured, and in Season 4 that dissonant consonance moved much closer - this time, because of what's happened in our off-Netflix reality and screens with Donald Trump.  Just last night, violence at his cancelled rally in Chicago - cancelled as a cynical political move by Trump, to make him and his racist views and followers look sympathetic - played out on cable news, just as my wife and I were watching the conclusion of House of Cards season 4.

Frank Underwood and his story in House of Cards was always over the top. As corrupt and ruthless as our political system is, a House of Representative hotshot has never risen to Vice President and then President the way Frank did, a way that included not only exquisite political maneuvering, but two murders thrown into the mix to add a little spice.

The over-the-top kicker in Season 4 - Claire getting on the ticket as Franks's VP - should not be that shocking or hard to believe, if we've gone this far in the incredible story and willingly suspended our disbelief as per Coleridge.  But it was with typical flair and disconcerting zest in House of Cards.

And though Trump hasn't picked his VP as yet (thankfully, he's not yet even been nominated) and hasn't murdered anyone (as far as we know), he's veering close to murdering the primary process, at least in the GOP, and we've still got some months to go before the Republican National Convention this summer.

Whether that will be a rerun of Frank's nomination on House of Cards remains to be seen.  What is clear right now is Frank and Claire are the most frightening people ever to be in the White House - check out that chilling last scene and what Frank says about terror - and Trump is giving them a run for his money in the world outside your window.

See also House of Cards Season 1: A Review ... House of Cards Season 2: Even Better than the First, and Why ... House of Cards Season 3: Frank, Claire, "Putin," and Superb



McLuhan's "hot and cool" applied to Trump

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Thursday, March 10, 2016

Black Sails 3.7: The Blackening of John Silver

Another fine, strong episode of Black Sails on Starz this past Saturday - 3.7, which I was too busy looking at politics to review at the time - with two important character developments.

The most important is what is happening with John Silver, not physically, which we've seen with his peg-leg, but to his head - that is, psychologically, or, to be more precise,  his soul.   The television series takes place earlier than the Robert Louis Stevenson novel, in which Long John Silver is already hardened - and fearsome.

In episode 3.7, we see him really getting there, with his statement - chilling to himself as well as the audience - that he enjoys killing, or least gets some pleasure from it.   Given that Silver has been the moral compass of the show, this is an extraordinary if inevitable revelation.

Meanwhile, we also get a revelation of a very different kind from Eleanor:  she's sleeping with Rogers and enjoying it.   I suppose we could discover in the end that she's still loyal to the pirates, but her heart surely looks loyal to their enemy.  Of course, I'm no expert in the wiles of spydom, so for all I know she's enjoying Rogers while still employing him, manipulating him for her own purposes.  But it doesn't quite feel that way.

And speaking of Rogers, the scene was him and Flint was memorable, too.  Black Sails excels in subtly different shades, usually of evil, and it was refreshing to see a bad guy, from our pirate perspective, having a realistic, admirable toughness of spirit.  This, in turn, makes Eleanor's attraction to him more believable.

Looking forward to next week!

See also Black Sails 3.1: Restored ... Black Sails 3.2: Flint vs. Sea ... Black Sails 3.3: Gone Fishin' ... Black Sails 3.4: Mr. Scott's People ... Black Sails 3.5: Alliance ... Black Sails 3.6: The Duel

And see also Black Sails 2.1: Good Combo, Back Story, New Blood ... Black Sails 2.2: A Fine Lesson in Captaining ... Black Sails 2.3: "I Angered Charles Vane" ... Black Sails 2.4: "Fire!" ... Black Sails 2.5: Twist! ... Black Sails 2.6: Weighty Alternatives, and the Medium is the Message on the High Seas ...Black Sails 2.7: The Governor's Daughter and the Gold ... Black Sails 2.9: The Unlikely Hero ... Black Sails Season 2 Finale: Satisfying Literate and Vulgar

And see also Black Sails: Literate and Raunchy Piracy ... Black Sails 1.3: John Milton and Marcus Aurelius ... Black Sails 1.4: The Masts of Wall Street ...Black Sails 1.6: Rising Up ... Black Sails 1.7: Fictions and History ... Black Sails 1.8: Money

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pirates of the mind in The Plot to Save Socrates 




American Crime Season 2: Too Little Info

American Crime, arguably one of the best and most important series ever on any kind of television - network, cable, streaming - which I would be happy to argue on behalf, ended last night on a less than stellar note, with too many unanswered questions.

First and foremost, we still can't be sure what happened to Taylor, on the night he presumably was raped, or had unconsensual sex with Eric.  The problem is that both Eric and Taylor seem sympathetic and convincing in their contradicting assertions.  I'm not sure I see the point in casting and leaving this situation in such ambiguous terms.   And just to add more insulting ambiguity to the injured storyline, we also aren't told if Eric is getting into that car at the end - a car which represents his coming out into a very new kind of life.

I also wasn't happy with the way the show morphed into a cautionary tale about hacking, again with no resolution.  The result not only diverted from the important sexual assault, gun violence, and racism stories, but with its hackers-being-hacked message pitched us into the paranoid world already and much more effectively explored in Mr. Robot.

Don't get me wrong - I love ambiguous endings, in some cases, as I made clear in my Sopranos End and the Closure Junkies little essay about the sudden cut to black at the end of The Sopranos.  But that was very different from what we saw last night in American Crime, which was more frustrating that suddenly, bi-explicably shocking.

Nonetheless, American Crime remains in a class of its own - a very good class, as I said above - and I'm therefore very much looking to a third season, which hasn't been announced at this moment.  I hope a third season brings back the repertoire company which played so well in the first two seasons, including Benito Martinez, who put in a brief, unexpected appearance last night.

See also: American Crime 2.1-3: So Real, It Hurts ... American Crime through 2.6: Brilliant and Unflinching

And see alsoAmerican Crime, American Fine ... American Crime 1.7: The Truest Love ... American Crime 1.10: The Exquisite Hazards of Timing ...American Crime Season 1 Finale: The Banality of So-Called Justice




a different kind of crime

#SFWApro

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Colony 1.8: Moon Base and Transit Zones

A powerful Colony 1.8, which gives us two important new details -

1. There's a presumably alien base, presumably on the Moon.  It's viewable from Earth, if you know where to look with a strong telescope, and the episode begins with a great shot of what presumably is a prisoner workforce on the Moon, and a shot of the blue Earth marble in the black.  Very effective.

2, There are transit zones between the colonies on Earth, transversable via passes issued by whoever it is that's ultimately in charge, presumably, again, the aliens.  We sort of knew this already, but now it's explicitly spelled out.

These details are tantalizing and crucial, given to the viewership as if on a strict need-to-know basis. Unfortunately, I for one would like to know much more already.

Meanwhile, the action in the colony heats up with some well motivated deaths - that is, killings which make sense, however shocking they may be.   This makes Colony a taut narrative, even though the deaths of fairly major players is becoming somewhat predictable, in the way that they became in the final year of the original V series (not the preceding, superb mini-series) some decades ago.

There are only two episodes left this season, and the coming attractions promise that we'll finally find out just whom our heroes are fighting.  It's notable and even amazing that we haven't seen any alien in the flesh so far - just presumably their super ships and now the Moon base.   Maybe they're not flesh-and-blood - maybe they're robots.  Or maybe they're not really aliens but some advanced kind of humans.

I'm looking forward to the next two weeks.


See also Colony 1.1: Aliens with Potential ... 1.2: Compelling ... 1.5: Questions ... 1.6: The Provost ... Colony 1.7: Broussard


not exactly aliens, but strange enough ...  The Silk Code

#SFWApro

Friday, March 4, 2016

The New Knife in the O.J. Simpson Case: Reality and Fiction

In the amazing amalgam of reality and docudrama which is one of the hallmarks of our time, we have the just-concluded news conference in Los Angeles in which a police captain announced the recovery of a knife which may or may not have been the weapon in the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman in 1994.

Among the questions which immediately come to mind is why was the knife turned over to the LA Police Department now, having been in the possession of a retired police officer for many years?  Is it a coincidence that a superb docudrama, The People vs. O. J. Simpson, has been airing every week on the FX Channel?  Probably not - if someone had any conceivably relevant evidence to the case, and had been watching that docudrama, with spot-on brilliant acting of all the many major players in that case, keeping that evidence to yourself would be very difficult.   So, if the knife turns out to be the murder weapon - a designation which will depend upon whatever DNA is recoverable from the weapon - we can score one for docudrama for helping the cause of justice.   It would mean that sensationalism is not incompatible with the discovery of truth, and can indeed aid in that pursuit.

Some of the most important people in the story - notably defense attorneys Johnnie Cochran and Robert Kardashian - are no longer with us. But Kardashian's role in the trial in effect launched the bigger careers of his daughters, and other original players continue in this surreal admixture of fiction and reality.  Gil Garcetti, Los Angeles DA at the time of the murder and the subsequent trial, is currently consulting producer on TNT's series, Major Crimes (having previously served the same role in the parent of that series, The Closer).  His son Eric made an appearance as a fictional mayor of Los Angeles on Major Crimes, and is currently actually the mayor of Los Angeles.

O.J. was acquitted in the criminal trial, which means he can't be put back up on trial for the crime again, even if the DNA on the knife points to him as the killer of Nicole Simpson and Ron Brown. But if a friend or family member hid the knife, which turns out to be the murder weapon, that person could be charged for obstruction of justice, etc.  Meanwhile, O.J.'s in prison now anyway, for an unrelated crime, in Nevada - which some allege O. J. was set up for.   He was also found liable in a civil trial related to the murders, in which Daniel Petrocelli represented the family of Ron Goldman.   And one of Petrocelli's current clients is ... Donald Trump, whom Petrocelli is defending in a lawsuit against Trump University in California.

The O. J. Simpson case heralded the dawn of a new age in television - an age of extensive, continuing coverage of news on cable television.   Some of that edge has been taken up by social media.  But when news of the knife broke a few hours ago, we not only were transported back to 1994 and 1995, but to the roiling age of cable television.   Good to be back? Well, I like our current mix of social media and cable a little better, but it's good to see that cable still has some kick, and I'll stay tuned for more from Los Angeles - from both the current police, as well as the docudrama on television.


InfiniteRegress.tv