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Friday, August 5, 2022

A "Search Party" Finds the Pillaging of an Employee Benefit Plan

Sometimes, ya gotta listen really carefully to find ERISA references in unexpected places.  In the once-promising Search Party, on HBO Max by way of TBS, the search has indeed turned up such a reference.  

The sad thing, for anyone who's watched the first two seasons before HBO took it over, is how this tight clever little series went so completely off the rails, maybe about as much as anything I've seen.  Season 3 was obviously different, from everything from affect and tone to even cinematography; Season 4 was worse; and Season 5 became  indescribably nuts.  

Now, sometimes, as Bilal Hazziez of:90 Day Fiancé fame said, crazy is not always bad.  Here, however, crazy was just crazy.  And, hey [BIG SPOILER ALERT - read NO farther if you don't want a BIG spoiler], this comment is coming from someone (me) who . . . 

. . . likes zombies!!  On the other hand, maybe Search Party itself, in "Kings" (also from Season 3), provides a responsive parry to my critique.  There, we get Jeff Goldblum's Tunnel Quinn (Jeff Goldblum?!?) uttering: "[P]eople confuse ambition for psychopathy. So maybe you're not crazy."  Could be one of the better lines of all time!*

Anyway, here's the ERISA reference to which my NeverEnding search for ERISA references in pop culture recently led me:

Edward Manley's FBI agent - Don't play dumb with us, Witherbottom, we know what you're capable of!  Get your a** down and put your hands where we can see 'em!

Chantal Witherbottom - Wait, what did I do?

FBI agent - You're being charged with the following felony counts: securities fraud, investment-adviser fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, international money laundering to promote specified unlawful activity, money laundering, false statements, making a false filing with the SEC, theft from an employee benefit plan -

Chantal - I don't remember doing any of that!

What an odd little tidbit to tack onto the end of that laundry list of wrongdoings!  Sounds to me like a writer somewhere had quite the ax to grind from somewhere along the way.   

* Maybe even has an ADA-type quasi- ERISA angle?

** Don't remember stealing from an employee benefit plan?!?  Who do you think you are, Jimmy Hoffa? 

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