Archive for August 22, 2018

Thoughts on the Scandal surrounding Asia Argento and Jimmy Bennett

August 22, 2018 6 comments

A few months ago, an article by Ronan Farrow in ‘The New Yorker’ exposed the famous and powerful film producer, Harvey Weinstein, as a serial sexual assaulter/ predator/ exhibitionist and well.. an overall shitty human being. This was followed by a series of article about repeated instances of serious sexual harassment, assault and rape by Harvey Weinstein and many other powerful, old (and mostly white) men in media. Since then, more than a few famous older men in the field of media and entertainment no longer have their previous jobs or careers, and many deserved that outcome because what they did (and later confessed) was beyond normal flirting.

Of course, as many of you also know there also been instances of famous men being accused of sexual assault in instances where the evidence suggests miscommunication rather than anything approaching assault. A good example of such an overblown accusation was Aziz Ansari being accused of sexual assault by a woman he hooked up, because he expressed a desire to have penetrative sex with her instead of just oral sex. Some of you might have also heard of instances where some semi-famous guy (like Joss Whedon) constantly pushing his feminist credentials turned out to be a serial adulterer. To put it another way, we have seen the good, bad and ugly of #MeToo accusations- and there have plenty of all three types.

And this brings us to the recent exposé of the “odd” sexual relationship between Asia Argento and Jimmy Bennett. The short version of this still unfolding story is as follows: Asia Argento and Jimmy Bennett first met when they worked in the 2004 film ‘The Heart Is Deceitful Above All Things‘ when she was 29 years old and he was 7. As a side note, I would recommend reading a summary of that movie’s plot, because the subject matter of that movie (which was also directed by her) gives an interesting insight into stuff that captures her imagination. Anyway.. she developed a close personal bond with him, which to outsiders appeared to be some form of surrogate mother-son type relationship. And that is what makes this story so.. peculiar.

Moving on.. she kept in touch with him as he was growing up and this somehow culminated with her seducing him and having sex with him, on or just after his 17th Birthday. Subsequently, he accused her of sexual assault (especially since he was technically a minor at that time) resulting in her paying him about 380,000 dollars to buy his silence. The reason why any of this is relevant to the ‘MeToo’ movement is that Asia Argento was one the first and most vocal accusers of Harvey Weinstein whose exposure was, for all practical purposes, the starting point of that movement. In others words, that movement has turned full circle.. if you can call it that.

I am sure we have not the last of the accusations and counter-accusations between these two. The latest update is that there are photos and texts which clearly show that they were sexually intimate on the day which he claimed. Also, she has not denied paying him that amount or money. It also appears that she justified this incident in her mind based on her own history- specifically dating a 33-year-old guy when she was 17. Whatever you might think about the appropriateness or inappropriateness of this relationship, it hard to ignore that she repeatedly treated him like a surrogate son before having sex with him- and that makes it well.. odd.

Here is one montage of relevant photos and screenshots from her Instagram account. Also the guy int the posed photo is not Jimmy, but someone with a similar body type and likely age group.

And here is another montage where she clearly refers to him as her surrogate son. Remember she allegedly had sex with a day or so after one of the Instagram photos in this second montage.

What do you think? Comments?