Joe Exotic may be glorious fodder for quarantine memes, but it's nauseating to watch people turn the "Tiger King" star into a hero.
I’m not sure if it’s a result of the ongoing coronavirus lockdown that has trapped much of the U.S. inside, but the popularity of Tiger King star Joe Exotic seems to be a “thing” now.
That’s right. During the worst pandemic in recent times, society is championing a polyamorous zoo owner who tried to hire someone to kill a rival.
The popularity of the Netflix show seems to be inspiring others to get their slice of the Exotic pie. Only this week, Rob Lowe announced that he’s interested in portraying the big cat-owning scumbag.
Both Lowe and the creator of American Horror Story, Ryan Murphy, have plans to develop their “own version of this insane story.”
Joe Exotic is many things, but he’s not an idiot. He’s taken note of his popularity following the release of the Netflix show and is trying to use it to his advantage.
While gullible “celebrities” like Cardi B make ridiculous statements about how Exotic is innocent, based entirely on what they’ve seen on a television show, Joe Exotic is looking to do what he does best.
Exploit the situation.
Speaking on his newfound fame, Joe Exotic commented:
You know it would be nice if I could actually see me being famous out there, but I’ve seen these same four walls for a year and a half now. Go sit in a cage with your animals for a week. I mean, when I left the zoo, and I sent my chimpanzees to the sanctuary in Florida and imagined what my chimpanzees went through for 18 years, I’m ashamed of myself.
You should be ashamed of yourself, Joe. Although that isn’t stopping him trying to sue the U.S. government.
When watching Tiger King, it immediately becomes apparent that there are no heroes in this show. Only varying levels of moral failure.
How anyone can watch this show and come away supporting any particular character is beyond me.
As was brilliantly noted by Sophie Gilbert of The Atlantic, Tiger King is the latest offering from Netflix in the trend towards extreme storytelling. This type of narrative seems to catch the imagination of a public looking for escapism.
The problem is, in the virtual race to the bottom for eyeballs, where does it all end?
For Netflix, that threshold hasn’t been met as yet. Too Hot To Handle arrives on the streaming platform this month. A show that sees a cash prize slowly decreases every time any of the contestants on an island hook up with each other.
It really is the definition of trash television, and it seems to be where Netflix is headed.
But what’s most unsettling is that the streaming giant is only providing the content that its audience craves.