Netflix has been on a bit of a tear as of late. Before the world went on pause they released one of the trashiest/addictive reality shows in recent memory with Love Is Blind. A show that may have oddly predicted the way we date moving forward. Seriously, pods for everyone. And right as all the hype from Love Is Blind was dying down we all got quarantined with Joe Exotic. For a streaming platform, you really can’t ask for anything more. “Oh, you guys are going to be locked inside for the foreseeable future? How about you check this documentary series out that uses tigers for the platform but doesn’t even cover half of the insanity spread throughout these seven hours.”
By now you’ve probably seen Tiger King which has put its star, and I’m using this term loosely, on the meme level of one Baby Yoda. In fact, I think we live in a world where we need the Baby Yoda/Joe Exotic meme crossover. Something that deals with chicken nuggz but also “Here Kitty Kitty”. Internet, get on this.
Tiger King is a rare piece of pop culture that is almost impossible to describe to those who haven’t watched it yet. You can tell them it has to do with these personal owned zoos, a woman who may have fed her husband to a tiger, mullets, poor teeth choices, Millie Vanilli levels of lipsyncing, a presidential run, prison, tigers and you still won’t even have covered half of what’s going on here. This show is legit crazy town banana pants and what makes it even crazier is that its real life. A friend of ours watched the series on our suggestion and her immediate reaction to the first episode was that these people aren’t real. That’s part of the beauty, and horror, of this series. Its all so gloriously real. Take that Love Is Blind’s Jessica!
Tiger King is the show equivalent of typing “Florida Man…” into a Google search just to see what pops up. It’s perfect on its own and Netflix is gifting us all with one more episode on Easter, a talk show hosted by Joel McHale, to catch us up on all our favorite insane people. Of course, I use the term perfect loosely. Very little things in television are perfect and I get that the documentary is a bit flawed but from a viewing experience, it’s exactly what I/we needed right now. It’s captured the attention of the world and in that sense, I wouldn’t change anything about it.
Which leaves, me a bit puzzled reading news that Ryan Murphy and Rob Lowe are close to bringing a television adaption of the series to our screens. Is this really something at we need?
The obvious answer is no. It’s not.
Listen, Tiger King is already batshit crazy on its own. What could a television series really bring to the table? At some point, you have to wonder if it runs the risk of being a parody. While Ryan Murphy has produced some excellent television based on true stories, American Crime Story and The Assassination of Gianni Versace, there’s just something about Tiger King that feels unadaptable. It would be like someone trying to put together a documentary series discussing why no one ever dies in G.I. Joe cartoons despite explosions, bullets, and missiles flying around everywhere. At some point, things become too outlandish to be adapted and we accept them as the norm. No one dies in G.I. Joe because they’re all bad soldiers and their weapons are stupid. What could Rob Lowe really bring to a performance of Joe Exotic that would top any of the insane things Exotic does in the documentary? Seriously, this guy has three bullet hole tattoos with blood leaking out of them. He’s already a caricature of himself. A television show will most certainly have something lost in translation.
If anything, give me a sequel documentary series. Let me see the investigation into Carol Baskins. Let’s explore this new zoo that Jeff Lowe is trying to build. Give me a series that explains why I had to watch that would be hitman sit in a bathtub to be interviewed…with his shorts on. Hell, give me forty-five minutes of James Garreston on that jetski before you give me a tv adaptation. The Tiger King Universe speaks for itself and doesn’t need TV to speak for it. Let all us cool cats and kittens have this one. Please.