The People v. O.J. Simpson: An American Crime Story – What’s the Verdict?

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It’s the million dollar question. Did O.J. Simpson do it? Did he brutally murder his ex-wife, Nicole Brown-Simpson, and her friend, Ron Goldman? Did the blood trails, DNA evidence, and multiple incidents of domestic abuse find him guilty of these malicious crimes? FX explores the infamous O.J. Simpson murder trial of 1995 in one of its newest hits, The People v. O.J. Simpson: An American Crime Story.

Although the heinous crime occurred nearly twenty-one years ago, the writers, creators, and producers of this hit drama series did such an incredible job, that it seemed even more credible now than it did back in 1995. From the nation-wide televised white Bronco police car chase to the flawless choice of casting, the writers made sure not to miss a single detail of this highly televised crime.

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As the series unfolds, the writers explore topics that still haunt the United States today including racism, sexism, and the biased treatment of celebrities. Viewers can expect to see dauntingly accurate depictions of some of the most famous trial moments, and an inside view into the personal lives of O.J. Simpson as well as  those of his “Dream Team” including his close friend, Robert Kardashian. One aspect that I especially enjoyed about watching each episode was how close the writers stuck to the truth throughout the entire series.

The TV series received a great deal of praise for its performances, directing, and writing racking up twenty-two Emmy nominations, and winning nine of them, including an award for an Outstanding Limited Series. So what’s the verdict? Although we all know, the finale to this infamous crime story (spoiler alert: O.J. was acquitted) , I found the show guilty in producing a marvelous and on-point representation of this drama-filled thriller.

As an afterthought, checkout Buzzfeed’s reflective recap of The People v. O.J. Simpson: An American Crime Story.

– Eleanor Raether

 

 

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3 Responses to The People v. O.J. Simpson: An American Crime Story – What’s the Verdict?

  1. mediaphiles says:

    I’m not sure if you watched the Emmy’s this year, but Sarah Paulson was awarded for her role in this series (Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or a Movie). In her acceptance speech, Paulson apologizes to Marcia Clark (the real-life prosecutor of the OJ trial) for initially buying into the narrative that Clark was a failure for her inability to convict OJ. It was really a moment that underscored the ways in which TV (particularly that branch which is based upon real-life events) has the power to shape and reconstitute popular beliefs/narratives that may have previously been problematically ingrained in popular culture. It reminded me of Hamilton (the musical), in which Lin Manuel-Miranda essentially disrupts the narratives of Alexander Hamilton and his role in the American revolution to offer a more nuanced perspective. I think we can easily apply one of the most poignant song lyrics from the show, “who tells your story?”, to this show. For nearly two decades Marcia Clark’s story was informed by her colleagues, the media, the trial, etc. Paulson’s performance challenges the harmful narratives that have been perpetuated for so long, and I think her commitment to telling Marcia Clark’s story in a way that renders her more agency is significant.

    – Callie Sartain

  2. mediaphiles says:

    I’ve been dying to watch this series so this definitely gives me the encouragement I needed to effectively binge and procrastinate! I like how you made the point that OJ Simpson’s trial was heavily televised. When I saw that you mentioned Robert Kardashian as one of his close friends, the name Kardashian immediately dominated my mind and by association, I thought of reality TV. OJ Simpson’s trial was reality TV in a purely denotative sense; that being naively literal and not tainted with our connotative understanding of it resulting from the development of the popular TV genre. In this case, Simpson’s trial was a reality TV show in that the TV displayed the reality of the court case with all the spectacle of fiction. We call the genre reality TV, not reality or Realism, because the subject’s lives are such a spectacle that they take on a fictitious, mythic quality to us.

    – Reece Guida

  3. mediaphiles says:

    I absolutely LOVED this show! I have always been very intrigued with crime shows, but this one was particularly interesting because it involved high-profile celebrities and an unusual case. Due to the fact that I was too young when the trial was occurring, I was so excited to see the show and learn about the actual details of the trial. For years, I have heard people comment about whether or not he was guilty and it has sparked my curiosity about what actually happened. I think that the writers, creators, and producers did an impeccable job illustrating the events that occurred.
    -Allie Kleinman

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