American Crime Story S03E06 is the sixth episode of the third season of the true-life crime FX TV drama anthology series. Entitled “Impeachment” this season revolves around the Clinton–Lewinsky scandal and is based on the book A Vast Conspiracy: The Real Story of the Sex Scandal That Nearly Brought Down a President by Jeffrey Toobin.
Entitled “Man Handled”, American Crime Story S03E06 finally brings us to the point teased at the beginning of the series as Linda Tripp gives up Monica Lewinsky to the FBI. How would these good friends respond to this traumatic moment? Monica is in shock, naturally, while Linda goes … shopping. A bit of an anti-climax, to be honest.
American Crime Story S03E06 is more about the battle of wills between Monica (and her parents) and the FBI, as the latter blackmail her in an attempt to ‘flip’ her and to entrap President Clinton in perjuring himself. It’s all a political game ultimately, without regard for the lives that may be destroyed.
The episode also introduces Monica’s mother Marcia Lewis (Mira Sorvino) and father Bernard Lewinsky (Rob Brownstein) as they attempt to assist their daughter during this difficult time. Certainly, despite her apparent naivety, Monica is more savvy than is given credit for, and is able to see through the FBI’s threats and remains loyal to her core beliefs, as superficially foolish as these might appear to be.
Colin Hanks’ as Agent Mike Emmick is a conflicted player – wanting to gain Monica’s co-operation against Clinton in the right way – which ultimately doe snot pay off as Monica is able to outwit him in the most basic manner. The FBI look incompetent in this portrayal, which makes perfect sense, when you realise the man in charge is Kenneth Starr, who would later defend President Trump in his first impeachment proceedings.
American Crime Story S03E06 is the beginning of the end, so to speak, of this notorious sex scandal with more to come. A strong episode, overall.
… still there’s more …