A few months ago, I saw a promo for David Schwimmer to play Robert Kardashian in an upcoming series about the O.J. Simpson trial.
Imagining Ross Geller playing the patriarch of the Kardashian family seemed downright laughable and I brushed off the draw to watch this drama unfold.
After seeing some scuttlebutt on my Facebook feed, I stayed up on Wednesday night and DVR’ed the first episode intending to watch it at a later date. Instead, I watched the episode as my DVR was recording it and my life has never been the same.
The case that captured the national audience when I was an awkward pre-teenager was suddenly highlighted again. Catching bits and pieces during those years, the FX series shed light on some of the lesser known facts (I encourage your own independent fact-checking) and helped to give some perspective to my now adult self.
I can vividly remember the television being wheeled into the cafeteria and our gym teacher demanding silence as we watched the jury come back. When I informed my mother at the time of what we had watched during our lunch hour, she marched to the principal’s office. I would imagine to suggest that perhaps exposing us to the circus that was the O.J. Simpson trial was probably not the best course of education.
Where were you when the O.J. Simpson saga was unfolding?
I can remember watching the Bronco race away for a bit on the television and hearing now about the reflections on the glove and the major names involved. But to see this case played out via a television series? I suddenly felt like I was back in a lunchroom with fold-down benches and paper sacks.
David Schwimmer playing Robert Kardashian is best described by my husband and my cousin (with whom I “virtually” watched the episode again with when she watched it later in the week). They suggested that he seems like he is basically Ross Geller playing Robert Kardashian. And they nailed it.
Imagine my surprise when during the episode, I heard a familiar voice and was surprised to see John Travolta make an appearance as Robert Shapiro. Initially in shock, I came around to his character and thought his portrayal was both comical and spot on. FX brought some big names to the scene, including Connie Britton as Faye Resnick, Selma Blair as Kris Kardashian, and Cuba Gooding Jr. as the disgraced football player at the core of this case.
Most roles are played out perfectly, but we agreed that Cuba Gooding Jr. seemed smaller and not quite as scary as O.J. While his acting is good, we thought he needed a bit more oomph to get the full effect as the “Juice.” On that note, grab your O.J., pop, tea, or drink of your choice and we dare you not to take a drink every time someone refers to O.J. as “The Juice.” In one part of the episode, Robert Kardashian Geller refers to him as this about 5 times consecutively and all I can think of is Sally Field as M’Lynn in Steel Magnolias encouraging Shelby to just DRINK THE JUICE!
The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story airs on Tuesdays at 10 pm and the next episode goes live tonight. I won’t spoil the first episode, but tune in for all the action and our recap next week. I have watched the first episode four times and I dare you not to be hooked!
Did you catch the first episode of the O.J. Simpson saga? What did you think?