tiger king is back and probably still very inaccurate

Tiger King 2 Official Trailer Hints at a Rashomon Battle for the Truth

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We knew it was coming, but it is finally here: the trailer for Tiger King 2. May the cat gods have mercy on our souls.

Back in the early days of the pandemic, the world got swept away in the fever that was Tiger King. A chaotic mixture of a true crime documentary, it told the very biased story of Joe Exotic, a wild animal zoo owner who got entangled in a feud with animal rights activist Carole Baskin. Their feud was a huge part of Exotic’s brand, and it eventually escalated to the point where he was charged and convicted of attempting to have Baskin killed. He was also found guilty of several counts of animal abuse.

Since then, people have been attempting to untangle the truth from the fiction when it comes to how Tiger King set up the storytelling of the events portrayed in the series—especially when it came to the purposeful vilification of Carole Baskin. Still, despite those ethical issues, the show was a hit and got a lot of people through the early stages of the pandemic. Carole Baskin and others from the series have only continued to get entangled into things, so there was always a place for a sequel.

According to a description from Netflix,

With Joe Exotic behind bars and Carole Baskin closing in on ownership of his disreputable zoo, the Emmy-nominated saga continues its twisted course with Tiger King 2 as newfound revelations emerge on the motivations, backstories, and secrets of America’s most notorious big cat owners. Old enemies and frenemies, including Jeff Lowe, Tim Stark, Allen Glover, and James Garretson return for another season of murder, mayhem, and madness. Thought you knew the whole story? Just you wait.

Even just watching this latest trailer, it is clear that they want you to have empathy for Joe Exotic. They are still playing with this whole “Carole Baskin killed her husband or knew something about his death” thing, even though there is no evidence that supports that theory, and just playing this all up for a game when, very recently, one of the former zookeepers at Joe Exotic’s “zoo” died.

There will be Rashomon-style conflicts about the truth, but who really wins in the end? Certainly not the cats.

I don’t think I’m going to watch Tiger King 2, not because there isn’t an interesting story there, but I don’t trust the team working on this to do a good job on it. There is a really good podcast about the Joe Exotic saga that is worth checking out if you are equally dubious.

Still, to the cool cats and kittens who are hooked on the narrative being spun, Tiger King 2 premieres November 17.

(image: Netflix)

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Princess Weekes
Princess (she/her-bisexual) is a Brooklyn born Megan Fox truther, who loves Sailor Moon, mythology, and diversity within sci-fi/fantasy. Still lives in Brooklyn with her over 500 Pokémon that she has Eevee trained into a mighty army. Team Zutara forever.