The latest entry into America’s “misery-as-entertainment” category is the Blake murder trial. The preliminary hearings started today and apparently his agent (if he still has one) negotiated a sweet deal with ABC so that his jailhouse interview with Barbara Walters would air on the same day. Great P.R., if it doesn’t backfire. ABC is providing reciprocity for the exclusive interview by airing the most insane-looking shots of Blake in their promos. Blake’s attorney seems to be using some Billy Flynn-type finesse with the press by stating that he has advised Blake against doing any TV interviews but staying on the case, nonetheless (unlike the parade of other attorneys who had Blake as a client and who no longer represent him).
The trial could go on for months, and I’m sure the wall-to-wall news channels are hoping that it does, considering the spike in ratings that they received from the O.J. fiasco.
But time will tell what the public’s threshold of endurance is.