We’ve come to the end of THE PEOPLE VS OJ SIMPSON and the end of the trial in tonight’s episode. And we begin with OJ waiving his right to testify, but Johnnie wants to let OJ make a statement. Naturally, Marcia isn’t happy about it, especially since he won’t be subject to cross-examination. The defense rests and closing arguments begin.
The defense is worried about how it will all play out with the jury and Marcia is under extreme pressure from her boss to nail the closing. She immediately addresses the issue of Mark Fuhrman and says yes, he’s a racist, but the evidence overwhelms his prejudice. In fact, when you listen to her summarizing the physical/DNA evidence you’ll feel overwhelmed. And then Darden stands to summarize the history of domestic abuse to the jury.
Johnnie doesn’t have physical evidence on his side, so he focuses on Mark Fuhrman and race and then utters his famous phrase about the glove: “if it doesn’t fit, you must acquit”. And then the trial that lasted so many months is over.
We go into the jury room next for a preliminary vote and a deliberation about all of the crucial questions in the case. Then, a mere four hours later, the jury has reached a verdict.
Everyone is shocked and they’re waiting for the verdict with baited breath. All across the country people are standing in front of televisions at home and in public waiting for the verdict. I myself remember watching the announcement on TV back in the day. Within moments, it’s over. But that’s not the end of the episode.
What’s always been interesting about THE PEOPLE VS OJ SIMPSON is that the verdict isn’t the most important aspect of this show. I won’t spoil it for you, but if you know your history then you know how the case turned out. What the show has also focused on is the question that race plays in society, within police departments, and in the judicial system as a whole. And these are discussions still playing out today, all of these years later. Johnnie understands the importance that the race debate played in this case as he watches coverage of the verdict play out. And it’s both sad and interesting that this is still a conversation we’re having so many years later.
Don’t miss the season finale of THE PEOPLE VS OJ SIMPSON tonight (April 5) at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT on FX.