Judging TV Judges · Hamptons Blaze
Can we please talk about Josh Hartnett's amazing true-crime mustache?
|The Blotter Presents||Jul 28|| 2||3|
Are you watching more courtroom TV these days? Shows like Judge Mathis or Paternity Court stretch the definition of true crime, I suppose, as what happens in those courtrooms has as much in common with the real-life justice system as, I dunno, Ally McBeal. But with all but the most pressing cases still on hold, those shows are all gavel-and-robe aficionados have to hold on to these days.
As we live in a world that feels increasingly meta (isolation does that to folks) and is suddenly more reliant on content recycling, that means we’re not just stuck watching these shows on TV. Here are two additional ways to get yourself a courtroom content fix without sitting through commercials for those bathtubs with the door or the latest in catheter technology.
Until I read about a Paternity Court podcast, I did not know that the TV show it’s following is actually called Lauren Lake’s Paternity Court! Live and learn. Anyway, as an accessory to the syndicated courtroom show in which issues like “deadbeat dads and DNA-test determinations” are, um, “litigated,” one can now enjoy the show as a podcast, with each episode featuring one of the show’s most popular cases. The show kicked off on July 23 and thus far has covered infidelity and, fascinatingly, infidelity. (I mean, it’s called Paternity Court, so…) You can subscribe to it here.
Less straitlaced is comedian Samantha Irby’s newsletter, the focus of which is mainly (but not always) “who's on judge mathis today?” It’s a question she’s answered 129 times as of this issue’s publication, with lines like “dennis says he knew nicholas in high school and back then he was a ‘bad apple.’ apparently nicholas used to fight and rob and steal and was addicted to heroin. as a child??? yikes!” Folks who can’t handle all-lowercase writing should avoid this (or just loosen up), but folks who like things that are very, very funny should subscribe here.
Fans of true crime-cursed tables lost an option this weekend. CNN reports that Southampton restaurant owner Zach Erdem ceremonially burned “table 1” from 75 Main, a spot apparently frequented by true-crime mainstays Jeffery Epstein and Harvey Weinstein.
The Italian spot, which currently boasts three stars on Yelp, “has become the preferred dining destination for both locals and the glitzy celebrity summer colony,” its owners say on the review site. Those glitzy celebrities included the notorious sexual assailants, Erdem says, and both preferred the same table.
“When I thought about it, like Jeffrey Epstein used to sit at this table, all I could think was I need to burn this fucking table and make sure nothing is going to stain my restaurant,” Erdem told CNN. “I got my hammer and my fuel and I broke it, burned it, and threw it in the garbage. It felt so good actually. Now I don't have to think about these guys anymore.”
You can see a video of the table’s destruction at Page Six, which totally makes it seem like — stick with me, folks — this whole display might be a bid for attention from a restaurant suffering during the small-business-crippling effects of the coronavirus crisis! Which I guess I am playing into by talking about it here. Sorry, guys. — EB
If you feel like doing an Instagram Live video where you destroy a true-crime talisman, please do drop us a line…or you can auction off the cursed object and put it toward a paid subscription to Best Evidence! There are worse places to put your money (for example, into online ads for your restaurant that now follow me everywhere, thanks, Google, but I will not be heading to Southampton soon).
And if you already have a paid sub, you can totally put that dough toward a gift subscription to this very publication. We’re not on Yelp, but if we were, we’d have more than three stars, which makes the gift of Best Evidence better than a gift certificate to dine at a “glitzy celebrity summer colony” destination.
Josh Harnett has an amazing mustache in Most Wanted. The former teen heartthrob plays Canadian journalist Victor Malarek, who has had a wild career! Wild enough that he’s been the subject of three fictional adaptations: Elias Koteas in Malarek, Louis Ferreira (a bunch of the Saw movies) in Urban Angel, and now Hartnett in Most Wanted, which you likely saw as available for rental this past weekend.
This time around, Malarek is on the case of Daniel Léger, who was caught in a questionable drug sweep in the mid 1970s (hence the facial hair, presumably). It’s getting rave reviews from reviewers as disparate as the Boston Herald’s (“Hartnett, strikingly tall, lean and fearless as Malarek, conveys the bitter realities of a diminished press with diminished resources.”) and CBR (“despite the generic title, the movie’s impressive performances and use of multiple timelines, combined with a troubling story that gets under your skin, elevate it above many similar films.”) The film is available for rental from Amazon for $6.99; if you’ve checked it out, let us know what you think. — EB
Feel the need to read? We’ve been stocking up on longreads for you guys; here are three that we love:
The Future Of True Crime Will Have To Be Different [BuzzFeed] “While I’ll Be Gone in The Dark and Unsolved Mysteries make for compelling TV, it’s time for true crime to move past white middlebrow comfort food.”
The crime victim who's obsessed with true crime shows [Narratively] “After I was injured in a school shooting, I found unexpected comfort in binging grisly TV shows and podcasts. And I’m not the only one.”
They Agreed to Meet Their Mother’s Killer. Then Tragedy Struck Again. [The Marshall Project] “A Florida family opted for restorative justice over the death penalty for the man who murdered their mom. What happened next made them question the very meaning of justice.”
Wednesday on Best Evidence: It’s The Blotter Presents Episode 152! As she mentioned on Monday, Sarah and guest Jeb Lund will cover Fear City: New York vs. The Mafia and The Perfect Murder’s “Jump Shot” episode.
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