The Comey Rule, Showtimes political drama miniseries based on former FBI director James Comey’s book A Higher Loyalty, aired this week. The two-part series follows his time working with our current president and stars Jeff Daniels in the role of James Comey. I personally have zero interest in this show, and what I saw in the first episode makes me glad I’m not.
I was not even watching the show, my mom was. It was more background noise for me because I was working on my computer in the living room. While working, I happened to look up during one moment in the show and was extremely disturbed. I’m not sure how long the show had been on before the scene took place, but all I saw were dead bodies lying on the ground. I was confused and thought to myself, what is this? What is happening?. Then I saw it:
June 12, 2016
For those that don’t know, Pulse Nightclub is a popular gay club that was hosting “Latin Night” on June 16, 2016 when a terror attack took place in which 49 people were killed and 53 were injured. In The Comey Rule, we see the aftermath of the attack in a scene where James Comey is inside looking at all of the victims who lost their lives. The scene is long and completely pointless. We literally just keep seeing the camera pan over dead bodies. After a time, the camera pans to Comey and while he is staring at the bodies, he receives a phone call that the AG wants to see him. That’s it.
While I realize they were all actors, the scene was incredibly inappropriate. I really don’t know what Showtime was thinking by having that scene in the show. There should have been some sort of trigger warning (a statement at the start of a piece of writing, video, etc., alerting the reader or viewer to the fact that it contains potentially distressing material) beforehand because this was a big one. What if someone who lost loved ones that night or even a survivor was watching? What Showtime did was extremely irresponsible. If the writer/director Billy Ray was going for shock value, he most certainly got it but this was a tacky move to get it.
I think Showtime and Billy Ray need to learn about trigger warnings because this kind of thing is not the way to get ratings. I for one am glad I’m not wasting any time on this show.
The Comey Rule aired on Showtime.