The Jinx

I was surprised to see that there wasn't a dedicated thread about this show, only mentions in other threads.

Frankly I found the first few episodes to be pretty slow and dull at times as the groundwork was laid, but by episode 3 or so it really picked up and became really interesting. 

I was so surprised to see one of the producers mention in episode 5 I believe that they liked him or found him likable or something. He creeped me the fuck out from the very start, that super creepy squint/blink he constantly did after almost every sentence was so disturbing. I found the 'behind the scenes' sections with the producers strategizing just as interesting as the coverage itself, if not more so in a way since that's so rarely done, at least integrated within the series like it is.

And what the fuck, Galveston? What a dream jury for a defense team, complete imbeciles that will listen to the defense attorney's bullshit spotlighting on very specific letter-of-the-law definitions and completely dispose of all common sense and context. The same type of morons acquit O.J. Simpson and Casey Anthony, they gullibly get lost in meaningless minutia and ignore reality. 

I'm still blown away at how strong the resemblance is between Kathie Durst and her niece, it looks like they could literally have passed as identical twins at the same age.

I have to say though, I found the intro sequence they made to be jarring and distasteful. This is about real people and events and they seem to totally disrespect that, or at the very least be extremely tone deaf towards it, when they decide to commission a catchy song and create some highly stylized intro sequence with it and integrating those real photos throughout. It bothered me more and more with each episode.


  • I didn't have a problem with the opening sequence. I guess this is because it looked like they were going for a True Detective vibe. And I'm all for anything True Detective.

    I was instantly drawn in, right from the start with the dismembered body parts and headless torso floating in the bay. Wasn't it Jarecki himself who said he found Durst likeable? I also found that constant blinking extremely creepy.

    One thing from the Bald Move TV podcast that was missed was Durst did serve some jail time for bond jumping and evidence tampering. I guess that's what they call chopping up a dead body down there.
  • @AntManBee Yeah it is quite True Detective-like, which was really part of the problem to me. It serves to detach it from reality by giving the whole thing the sheen of a fictionalized production like True Detective. Would you seriously not have a problem with a depiction of your relative being murdered to a catchy tune and slick visuals, and then have an actual picture of her pop up? I'll just barely stop short of saying they're glorifying it but it's pretty goddamn close.

    I agree that the opening was engrossing but then they changed gears and had to start some bricklaying that I found a bit dull at times, if necessary. Yeah I don't recall who exactly it was that said they found him likable, it just surprised me.

  • @ghm3 Yeah, I see what you're saying. I'm curious to know how the relatives feel about the intro.
  • @AntManBee Yeah I am as well. I could see them not being offended with it not exactly being a recent case that's still as raw but regardless of how they feel about it it still strikes me as being really in poor taste since it's all about real people and events.
  • steph_bsteph_b Austin
    edited March 2015
    In Texas you can kill someone in your home if it's self defense and the burden is on the state to prove it wasn't self defense. The state took this for granted as a slam dunk and didn't meet the burden of proof.

    The defense did a good job of providing a reasonable enough explanation of why Jarecki would flip out and try to hide the body because of the witch hunt Jeanine Pirro put on.

    Jarecki happened to find the most ridiculous sounding juror to interview. I wish he had interviewed more of the jurors. But there was a narrative he wanted to craft and it included a perception of Texans as tongue chewing morons. I assure you, we are not.
  • @steph_b Whether or not that was Jarecki's intention has no impact on my judgment of the jurors. Stupid/gullible people are everywhere, I make no personal judgement about Texas. And as I said in my other examples, the other equivalently stupid juries were in Florida and California. All it really is is careful deliberate jury selection by experienced private defense attorneys to select folks with minds they can mold like play dough. 

    More specifcally, what most people don't know, and what courts do not want jurors to know, is the true power they actually have. Basically, if a criminal case gets to a jury, the letter of the law does not matter, regardless of what either side's attorneys claim. Essentially, the jury has the ultimate power over anyone else in the court room, and its decision is fully legal and valid regardless of whether or not it contradicts or ignores laws. This is called jury nullification, and merely expressing your knowledge of its existence is probably a guarantee to get out of jury duty anywhere in the country.

    This case is a perfect example of this:

    If a jury convicted that guy they'd all be colossal assholes. Obviously he committed clear-cut second degree revenge murder at the very least, but so what? The jury was smart enough to not give a fuck what the law says and actually vote with conscience instead of just paying attention to the law. This is pretty common for extreme cases like this with children and whatnot, but when the victim is an unlikable curmudgeon like the victim in the Galveston Durst case it really worked against the prosecution.

    Point with the Galveston Durst case being, it doesn't matter if the state can't prove if the death itself was not an act of self defense even though that's what the letter of the law states. The jury absolutely has the power and legal authority to say, "fuck the letter of the law" and convict him. It's so blatantly obvious that it's not a true legitimate case of self defense because he, you know, fucking dismembered the guy and threw him into the bay. And took deliberate care to dispose of the head more carefully, which almost certainly had the evidence proving his bullshit since he probably killed him the exact same way he executed Susan Berman. Sorry but blaming a DA witch hunt in a different state for his reason to dismember and dispose of someone he killed in self defense is so beyond completely ridiculous I can't believe I even had to type that.
  • I got the impression that the "likeable" parts of Robert Durst were not really shown to us. I believe that he could be funny and even charming in person but that wasn't the goal of the documentary.  When the jury in a murder case is chuckling and having a good time when he's on the stand, he has to have some kind of charisma.  Frankly, his spaghetti comment made me laugh.

    None of that means he isn't a creepy, murdering bastard.

    The end of The Jinx floored me.  I kinda already figured that he was a murderer but the realization that the letter was concrete proof, combined with the experience of watching Durst realize that he'd just admitted to murder on camera, AND the off-camera bathroom audio was one of the most remarkable things I've ever seen.  It honestly disturbed me.
  • Just finished this today, and wow, it was amazing! I was hooked from the beginning.
    The blinking thing bugged me too, but I think that maybe that was his "tell". He seemed to do it when he was lying.
    I had read about this, so I knew about the matching writing, but I still gasped out loud when I saw it. I don't think it takes a handwriting specialist to see that the same person wrote both letters.
    I think Robert Dudst is a dangerous, dangerous person, and am glad he's behind bars, and hope be stays there this time.
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