The last time I recall having anything even tangentially to do with the Super Bowl, I was sitting in a corner, wearing a bicycle helmet and being told to chug a beer, because I had just lost that round of whatever drinking game we were playing. A game I only stopped playing (and, apparently, losing) long enough to watch Michael Jackson sing “Heal the World” at halftime.
That was in 1993, folks.
Since then, given how much I hate sports and most musical acts that aren’t Michael Jackson, I’ve avoided the entire spectacle like the plague.
This year will be no different (and may actually count double, as I loathe Maroon 5 more than mere words can express). And so I’ll spend my time today oscillating between the glory that is the Puppy Bowl and as many true crime shows as I’m able to manage.
Should any of my dear readers be similarly inclined and searching for something non-sports-related to watch today, I thought I’d share of some of the latest documentaries I’ve found worth watching.
Hopefully I’ll be able to find a couple I haven’t seen yet for myself.
1.) “Confessions with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes,” Netflix. This four-part series didn’t reveal too much about Bundy’s crimes that I didn’t already know, but hearing the serial murderer talk about them — creepily in the third person — makes this true crime offering stand out. I also hadn’t known before that Bundy actually escaped custody not once, but twice — and that it was during one of those times on a the lam that he committed a couple of his most infamous slayings at a sorority house in Florida.
2.) “The Innocent Man,” Netflix. Another multi-parter (hallelujah!), this documentary takes a look at a couple of cases examined by John Grisham in his only nonfiction work, “The Innocent Man: Murder and Injustice in a Small Town.” Both cases involve particularly brutal murders, both happened in the 1980s, and both took place in the small town of Ada, Okla. It’s Grisham’s assertion that both also resulted in the wrong people being sent to prison.
3). “Abducted in Plain Sight,” Netflix. This film is about an hour and half of crazy, following the Brobergs, an otherwise typical American family that gets manipulated by their friend and neighbor — who also happens to be a complete and utter sociopath. Oh, and a pedophile. The way he plays each and every person to keep them all under his thumb, and eventually absconds with one of the daughters — twice — is just the type of scenario for which the phrase “stranger than fiction” was invented.
4.) “Fyre Fraud,” Hulu. One of two documentaries released recently about the disaster that was 2017’s Fyre Festival, this one gets the bragging rights of featuring an on-camera interview with the festival’s mastermind (and master fraud) Billy McFarland, while also taking a decent look at the ills of social media and “influencer” culture.
5.) “Fyre: The Greatest Party That Never Happened,” Netflix. Like Hulu’s offering, Netflix’s documentary about possibly the biggest festival failure of the last decade delves into the scams, lies and evasions that went into making Fyre Festival one of the most-hyped, least-planned parties of all time. As for which is better, Hulu’s or Netflix’s, I can’t really say. They’re both pretty great.
And, let’s face it, the stupid Super Bowl lasts all day, so why not go ahead and watch them both? You’ll avoid hours of dreaded sports programming and, as an added bonus, fill your Schadenfreude quota for a year, watching all those wealthy millennials get screwed.
The way I see it, that makes you the big winner today.
Katie McDowell is a copy editor/lifestyles for The Dominion Post. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.