If you watched the O.J. Simpson case — or even if you didn’t — you know that the Race Card is a key member in the case, and on ‘The People V. O.J. Simpson,’ we finally met that member.
Right away, we got a glance at the life that Johnnie Cochran was living — being pulled over for no reason, while driving his kids in a nice, white city, driving a nice car. The police immediately question him — that is, until they realized who he was.
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For Marcia Clark and the prosecution team, their plan was to focus on the evidence — and to do the questioning. And for Robert Shapiro, Johnnie and the defense, it was about everything but — like pointing out that it sure looked like prosecutors brought on Christopher Darden just because of his color.
Since Chris was assigned to prep Mark Fuhrman, the officer that would be made out to look like a racist, he took it upon himself to make a statement in the court room: the n-word should not be allowed, and brining up Mr. Fuhrman’s past use of it would be inappropriate. With that, Johnnie came back with fire, saying that that was offensive to African Americans. And well, he ended it on quite an intense note, looking Darden right in the eyes. The following day, he was painted into the role of an “Uncle Tom.”
Upon the jury entering court, Marcia Clark kicked it foo with her opening statements: quick, to the point, and what needed to be said: all the blood evidence. Johnny Clark did the opposite: he brought up “witnesses the prosecution didn’t mention.” He was referencing 14 witnesses that Shapiro had never submitted; something Johnnie was alerted of the night before, but used it to his advantage. Deputy District Attorney Bill Hodgman interrupted Johnnie in a stressed out rush — so stressed out that he ended up collapsing in the court house. So, Chris Darden stepped up.
Meanwhile, Johnnie took it upon himself to remodel O.J.’s home — you know, take out all the photos of bikini-clad girls, and O.J. with his white friends. He replaced them with pictures of random black people that O.J. didn’t even know, African art, and photos of O.J.’s mother. When the jury visited, that was the house they saw. Johnnie also worked that “magic” to get into Chris Darden’s head after O.J. screamed at him in front of the jurors for sitting on a bench at his house.
And it worked — Chris questioned Fuhrman once more in the office, before telling Marcia he couldn’t bring him to the stand. Oh yeah, and Fuhrman said he collected “World War II memorabilia, medals mostly.” Apparently Chris could read through his “I’m not racist” attitude — the last scene cut to him cleaning his medal case — medals from the Axis side of World War II.