By Brendan Labra, Student Writer
Is this show still about tigers? The third episode of Tiger King on Netflix follows up the series’ biggest cliffhanger so far and focuses on the life and controversy of Carole Baskin of Big Cat Rescue.
A Wild Marriage
This episode is almost solely devoted to the marriage of Carole Baskin and the now deceased Don Lewis. There is a heavy implication from every person in this episode who is not named ‘Carole Baskin’ that she had a part to play in Don’s mysterious disappearance and since confirmed death.
The episode begins with people that were close to Don Lewis. They all say that Lewis felt his life was in danger and that there was a lot of circumstantial evidence pointing towards Carol Baskin as the murderer, however no one has been able to prove that it was her. People who knew Lewis, including his ex-wife and daughters from a previous marriage believe that Lewis’s mysterious disappearance was very out of the ordinary.
Lewis happened to be a millionaire which explains where Baskin got the money to start her first zoo called Wildlife on East Street. Interestingly, we learn during this episode that Baskin most likely did breed and sell her exotic cats during this time which is a direct contradiction to her work in cat rescue now.
At some point, Baskin changed her mind about the big cat breeding business. While Lewis would fly off to sell the cats, Baskin would neuter them so the breeding could stop. It is implied that Lewis was very focused on the financial aspect of the zoo and wanted to continue to make money off of the selling and breeding of big cats. Baskin was against the idea, which led to their first major dispute.
Lewis and Baskin continued to face problems within their relationship. Their ongoing disputes eventually led Lewis to file a restraining order against Baskin. Many of Lewis’ close friends in this episode state that he was ultimately planning a way to divorce Baskin while being able to keep a fair share of his money.
Eventually, Lewis decided to go to Costa Rica, a place he often visited for vacations. No one ever found out if he got there, and he was never seen again. At this point, everything is essentially speculation. No one can confirm how Lewis disappeared or where he disappeared to. Lewis’ car was found at an airport in which he had his private jet, so it is speculated that this is the last place he was before he disappeared.
Many of the characters on this show seem to pin this disappearance on Baskin. The most compelling evidence against Baskin comes from Lewis’ former lawyer. He shares that on Lewis’ will, right before he disappeared, the will was changed to say that in his untimely death or ‘disappearance’ all of the money would go to Baskin. The word ‘disappearance’ being added right before he disappeared certainly does not bode well for Baskin.
Back to Exotic
The episode ends with a phone call from Joe Exotic in which he states that he is the only one willing to take on Baskin. How will this relationship eventually play out? Keep watching the show to find out.
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