Have you been looking for something to fill the void now that Sarah Koenig is done telling the story of Adnan Syed on the popular podcast Serial? (You know, the one they totally spoofed on Saturday Night Live.) Don’t worry, we totally feel you. And we’ve got an even bigger addiction for you to delve right into.
You may or may not have heard of a dude named Robert Durst. He’s the rich son of a real estate developer who was accused of murdering his wife in 1982, but her body was never found. Many strange crimes have followed the soon-to-be 72 year-old ever since.
His story is now being told on weekly installments of HBO Canada‘s The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst. The story comes from Andrew Jarecki, who befriended Durst for the making of the series — much like Koenig befriended Syed. In fact, this is the first time Durst has really been interviewed about his array of accused crimes.
And on Sunday, March 14 at 10 p.m. ET, it all comes to a close with the big finale. That means you no longer even have to wait to catch up on weekly episodes of the series if you’re a subscriber, because they’re all just sitting there, waiting for you to give ’em a go.
And if you were into Serial, you’re definitely going to want to give it a go. It’s way, way creepier than Adnan Syed’s case ever was. Why’s that, you ask?
Well for starters…
1. Syed–by all accounts from the podcast, was a sweet teenage boy at the time of his crimes, and has a strong contingent of people vouching for his innocence.
Durst, however, was older. He had been married to his wife, Kathleen McCormack, for nearly a decade when she went missing. The couple moved in together after just two dates and were seemingly very much in love. Until he reportedly became moody and abusive to her. Now she is presumed dead, but to this day her body was never found.
2. Syed was close to his family. Durst is not. When his father died Robert’s brother Douglas inherited the company business, tearing the brothers apart. Douglas has since admitted that he’s at times hired a security guard to follow him around because he’s scared of his brother.
3. Syed was only ever accused of one crime.
But Durst? Where to even start? In 2000, when the case of his wife started to gain new traction, police were set to interview Durst’s confidante and sometimes spokesperson Susan Berman. Except they couldn’t get to her in time: she was found shot dead — execution style — in her L.A. home days before the interrogation was scheduled to take place.
Then, in 2002, Durst was picked up in Texas for the murder of his neighbour Morris Black. Black’s chopped up body had been found in a nearby bay. When Durst made bail, he skipped town, becoming the first billion-dollar fugitive in the United States (yup, he’s worth lots). But then he was picked up at a grocery store in Pennsylvania, where he’d been stopped for trying to shoplift a chicken sandwich. While he had $500 in his pocket.
Shockingly, once the case finally went to trial, Durst told the jury he had cut up Black’s body with a paring knife, two saws and an axe. But he was acquitted under the claim of self-defense, and diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome. He did, however, serve a year in jail for evading bond.
4. Syed had a normal upbringing. Sure, he wasn’t allowed to date girls and stuff, but there wasn’t anything severely abnormal about his home life. There was for Durst though. When he was four years old he supposedly witnessed his mother committing suicide when she jumped off the roof of their house.
5. No one made a movie about Syed, whereas Ryan Gosling and Kirsten Dunst starred in the one about Durst, All Good Things. In fact, the film was directed by Jarecki, and a large reason why Durst reached out to him for The Jinx.
6. Before his arrest, Syed didn’t do strange things in public.
You’re dying to know what Durst did by now, right? Well, the media has reported about his cross-dressing tendencies, which we don’t find that unusual. What we did find super weird was that last year, when he entered a drugstore in Houston, allegedly exposed himself and then urinated on a rack of candy bars. In December he pleaded no-contest and was ordered to pay a fine and restitution.
Feeling creeped out yet? Then you should definitely have a look at The Jinx. Who knows how you’ll feel afterwards.