How Jimmy Bennett Makes Asia Argento Look Small

By Karen

If anyone ever wanted to build a monster that personified in one being all the worst proclivities of Donald Trump and Harvey Weinstein, the result would be Asia Argento.

Lying, equivocating, denying, bashing, distracting, defying, deflecting, projecting, cheating, using people, engaging in sexual deviance and predation. Argento has it all. The whole package.

And for some ungodly reason, Anthony Bourdain thought himself lucky to have her.

Since Bourdain’s death, Argento’s role in the #MeToo movement has morphed into #EtTu after we learned that in 2013 she allegedly raped a 17-year-old she’d known since his early childhood. Then she promised him $380,000 if he’d turn over compromising photos they’d taken together and get permanently lost.

Argento has issued and leaked nothing but contradictions, all to make her the victim and cast Bennett and Bourdain in the worst possible light — claiming Bennett was the attacker and then extorted her and that Bourdain insisted on paying hush money.

This forced Bennett to issue his own statement, explaining he felt “ashamed and afraid” in the immediate aftermath. He said, in so many words, he didn’t think he’d be believed, writing to The New York Times

“I tried to seek justice in a way that made sense to me at the time because I was not ready to deal with the ramifications of my story becoming public. At the time I believed there was still a stigma to being in the situation as a male in our society. I didn’t think that people would understand the event that took place from the eyes of a teenage boy.”

I give him credit for having the maturity to realize that. Also, he hasn’t blamed the family member who agreed to leave him alone with Argento. He hasn’t even blamed Argento. He just found her hypocrisy over Weinstein impossible to swallow.

He ended his statement with…

“I would like to move past this event in my life, and today I choose to move forward, no longer in silence.”

I applaud Bennett and hope he realizes he’s not the one being judged.

The Blast reported that Bennett didn’t realize until shortly before the NYT story broke that Bourdain made the initial lump sum payment. Now Bennett has to live wondering if he played any role in Bourdain’s suicide.

While Bennett was soul-searching, Argento was scheming with a friend via leaked texts to TMZ, who offered these helpful coping suggestions…

  • Discredit Bennett by finding proof you rebuffed any past advances he ever made.
  • Get your therapist to leak that you talked about suffering some trauma that would have affected your judgment.
  • Get documentation proving Bourdain made the payment to exonerate you of trying to buy Bennett’s silence.

Argento also kvetched that it shouldn’t be such a big deal because 15 is the age of consent in France and Italy, failing to realize that it’s irrelevant to any adult who has appropriate relationships.

And here’s a note TMZ published that Bennett supposedly left Argento that day. Does this look like a man a mature woman would find desirable, or a kid?

Argento also claimed Bennett sent her unwanted nude selfies until two weeks before his intent to sue arrived.

Coincidentally, the Daily Mail just reported that on June 2, the same weekend Argento romped around Rome with 28-year-old Hugo Clement, a comedian named Jeff Leach, 34, did a podcast claiming Argento had sent Leach nude selfies at some point and “freaked out” when he told her to stop.

Here are some things we still don’t know…

Did Bourdain believe Argento had sex with Jimmy Bennett or not? She told him she would never pay Bennett for something “she didn’t do,” but then said she “froze” when they did it. One of his unauthenticated texts said he’d back her either way.

Did Bourdain view the encounter through the eyes of a horny teenager and think Bennett was an idiot not to appreciate being humped by a hot woman (in Bourdain’s estimation) old enough to be his mother ?

Did Bourdain realize Argento may have committed statutory rape in California? Did he knowingly cover up her crime, possibly ignoring his own attorney’s advice?

Presumably, Bennett is now receiving $10,000 a month from Argento until about October 2020 to pay out the $380,000 settlement.

This is a mess of true Trumpian proportions and, like with Trump, more dirt keeps spilling out.

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85 Responses to How Jimmy Bennett Makes Asia Argento Look Small

  1. Donna says:

    #EtTu! Karen, you are brilliant!

  2. takouris says:

    Thank you for all your posts on this sordid story. We, as Bourdain fans, want answers and feel as if we need to know more about this narrative. Please keep posting on this! You’re a great source and your comment thread is an outlet for our grief and anger.
    We love you!!!!

  3. feijicha says:

    This writer does a nice job of laying all the AA crap out in a timeline up to the present moment. She/he is clearly reading this and other sites.

    https://reason.com/archives/2018/08/24/asia-argentos-time-is-up

  4. feijicha says:

    Another good article that lays out the AA AB relationship timeline. I encourage you to read the whole thing.

    https://www.eonline.com/news/962223/asia-argento-and-anthony-bourdain-s-complicated-relationship-a-bizarre-twist-to-an-already-tragic-love-story

    A few interesting parts:

    Audiences can watch Anthony Bourdain and Asia Argento falling for each other on the “Rome” episode of the award-winning CNN series Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, on which Argento appeared as a guide to the Italian capital’s off-the-beaten-path culinary delights and culture, taking him to eat pasta ringside at a boxing club and to her sister’s house for a home-cooked meal.

    “As so many have found throughout history, it’s easy to fall in love with Rome. She is seductively beautiful,” Bourdain intones as he and a similarly leather-jacketed Argento are seen strolling a narrow street together, two misfits on a mission. “She has endured and survived many things.”

    Whether his passionate narration was inspired by the new woman in his life is anyone’s guess—but it certainly makes for a powerful metaphor if so.

    After the initial splash they made as a couple, Bourdain and Argento went on to have a fairly private relationship, sharing the occasional photo on Instagram in which they inevitably looked ravenously in love and also often like two world-weary travelers who’d found each other at last. They bonded over their nomadic tendencies, and till the end of his life Bourdain never stopped crisscrossing the globe for Parts Unknown.


    Bourdain concluded, “To the extent which my work in Kitchen Confidential celebrated or prolonged a culture that allowed the kind of grotesque behaviors we’re hearing about all too frequently is something I think about daily, with real remorse.”

    (This comment makes me think back to the quote of him from an interview — the last long one he did with that reporter who went back to his apartment at CNN?– and he said he no longer got/kept the royalties etc from Kitchen Confidential, that he had profited off it enough and that now the money was going to someone else who needed it. Many hoped it would be Nancy or his daughter… but it got me thinking that maybe he felt that since the book may have inadvertently contributed to a misogynistic culture he would make reparations by giving the money/royalties to a victim of #metoo, i.e. AA. Dear god let’s hope not)

    An outpouring of grief over Bourdain’s shocking death and appreciations for his copious contributions to the cultural discourse proceeded to consume longtime and brand-new fans for the next two months. CNN announced it would put together more Parts Unknown episodes from the footage of Bourdain’s final trips, and a network documentary is in the works. And that conversation will continue.

    But as if there weren’t enough questions left unanswered already, there are now even more.

    ….

    “In her statement she doesn’t actually take responsibility for what happened or the chain of events,” Liz Plank, an executive producer at Vox Media and host of the online series and podcast Divided States of Women, told E! News (before TMZ published the photo and screengrabs). “She actually either blames the victim or blames Anthony Bourdain, for not only being responsible for paying off Jimmy Bennett, but also for it even being his idea in the first place. Anthony Bourdain is unfortunately no longer with us and cannot defend himself.”

    The Times reported Sunday that Bourdain’s lawyer Richard Hofstetter had also been representing Argento last November, and was the recipient of the intent-to-sue notice from Bennett’s attorney. Argento then turned to attorney Carrie Goldberg to handle matters for her, according to the story. (Neither Goldberg, Hofstetter nor Bourdain’s agent commented for the piece.)

  5. feijicha says:

    Here’s another good article in the Mercury News that shows the mainstream media starting to take the stories about AA’s behavior with Clement and other things more seriously and as possibly contributing to Tony’s suicide.

    https://www.mercurynews.com/2018/08/20/what-did-anthony-bourdain-know-sexual-assault-allegations-against-asia-argento/

  6. feijicha, regarding the Kitchen Confidential royalties. I watched an interview or maybe an episode where Bourdain is with a friend and he mentions that his ex-wife receives the royalties. He said it with a smidgen of bitterness and the friend looked at him either saying “well?” or having the look of someone saying “c’mon man.. she deserves that, at least” and Bourdain bows his head and agrees. This is *very* paraphrased but I’m sure I watched it because it felt like such a real and great moment between two good friends.

  7. Morganlf says:

    Like trump, she’s toast.

    Rats jumping off a sinking ship.

  8. catsworking says:

    Welcome, takouris! Thank you so much. Et tu, Donna!

    I’ve been reading so much about this situation, writing the posts helps me process what I’m finding. With each passing day, Bourdain’s death seems more and more avoidable if only he’d never crossed paths with AA.

  9. gettngclear says:

    This has become so convoluted I doubt the public will ever know much about the truth.

  10. catsworking says:

    feijicha, this afternoon I watched a very disturbing little video clip with Glenn Beck, of all people, talking with some guy about the Bennett payoff and CNN.

    Their point was that CNN has been all over Trump paying off Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, but is apparently keeping hypocritically mum about Bourdain doing the same thing for his girlfriend. If that’s the case (I haven’t been watching CNN), I would have to agree.

    Now let’s look at it from Bourdain’s point of view. He must have kept some tabs on what his employer was airing and must have realized he’d put CNN in a pickle if they ever got wind that he was paying hush money to cover a sexual assault. If it came out, CNN might have thought they had no choice but to fire him. How could they give him a pass and keep ragging on Trump?

    I think it gives us yet another reason that may have factored in to his decision to grab that bathrobe belt.

  11. feijicha says:

    Though I wonder, did he actually think he was paying off a sexual assault? He seems, from the texts we’ve seen, to have believed that this guy was just “shaking her down’ for money because he was a ‘loser opportunist’. Apparently Bennett leveraged the photos in his demand for money because part of the settlement was him turning over copyright to the photos so he could never use/sell them to anyone else. So Tony *had* to know she banged the kid. And he had to know the kid was underage at the time. So how did he justify paying the kid? To protect AA from it getting out that she slept with someone underaged? Did he believe her story that the kid somehow jumped her and she froze and let him bang her?? Did he not think the kid being underage was any big issue because he was a boy? No matter how you slice it, why would it make sense to him that she should pay the kid if in fact she never slept with him. What would you be paying off in that case? And if he knew she’d slept with Bennett, (the photos would have to cause him to think it was true) why wasn’t he mad at AA and not at Bennett? Did he think Bennett should have been grateful to have gotten a piece of the fetid hole?? It’s so confusing- wtf was he thinking ?!

  12. bamboo.skewer says:

    Soooooo … Asia has hung on to this note for 5+ years? Why? Does she keep a scrapbook of conquest mementos? You know, with pretty patterned papers, washi tape accents and journaling of her thoughts and feelings that day. LOL.

    Didn’t the NYT say that Asia wrote notes to Jimmy on the Ritz-Carlton paper? Wonder if he kept those notes.

    Wonder if they can do handwriting analysis on this note. If Jimmy was not completely wanting what happened, why would he write this note? Like I’m having a hard time imagining how this got written. They were hanging out in the hotel room together. Does he get inspired to write this while she’s refilling his alcohol right next to him? Just a break from drinking, feeling all the feels, gotta write a note. Did he write it when she was cleaning up in the bathroom afterwards, all afterglowy? This all makes my head hurt.

  13. Katherine says:

    The biggest surprise is to find out RainDove was the ‘friend’ in the recent texts and that RD turned those texts, along with documents, into the authorities. Bigger surprise—RainDove is currently Rose McGowan’s love interest. You read that correctly. Rose chose to protect her brand and disengage from her great friend Asia. You can’t make this up.

  14. Adele Prass says:

    I think all this information has finally turned my mind to total mush. With having head, I admit to watching the season finale of “Mama June, From Not to Hot.” This is a cry for help!

  15. catsworking says:

    feijicha, exactly. AA told Tony conflicting stories, and he said he would back her either way. Admit it or deny it, I’m with you. WHY??!!

    Did he think for a moment how he would have felt if the 17-year-old had been his daughter getting “initiated” in a hotel room by a 37-year-old man? Bennett is somebody’s child.

    When you add in the angle of the ramifications for his and ZPZ’s future with CNN for him to be basically doing a Trump move on a sexual assault, it boggles the mind.

    But Tony’s family has his phone, and perhaps it contains the same series of texts Asia leaked — and more. THEY know how it went down. The question is, will they ever let the whole truth come out?

    PS: Why do you think AA and Tony referred to Bennett as “donkey?” I’ve heard that name applied to male genitalia, which would imply she could describe it.

  16. catsworking says:

    bamboo, I suspect AA does a lot of dictation to willing (or unwilling) male stenographers. So much of what Tony wrote about her reads like the bullshit Trump dictates to be said about him.

    I agree with you that it was a totally weird thing of him to write then. Was she in the bathroom, and he scribbled it before running out of the room? Why didn’t he make any mention of what had just happened? The wording was generic. It could have been in a greeting card.

    There’s someone on Twitter analyzing the handwriting in Jimmy’s note, focusing on the spaces between the words, which may imply he didn’t mean them. You may find some or all of that as “likes” on my Twitter feed, if you can find stuff that way.

  17. catsworking says:

    Katherine and anybody reading, if gray matter suddenly splats across your screen, it’s my head exploding.

    Where did you see this about RainDove? That sounds like a female. Are you saying AA was stupid enough to confide in RMG’s girlfriend, who turned around and leaked to the media to show what a narcissistic douchebag AA is (presumably with RMG’s blessing)?

    If so, RMG can take off her track shoes and stop running from AA. They BOTH deserve to be banned from the #MeToo movement. Untrustworthy, back-stabbing, unworthy of finding safe harbor in any movement.

    I think the only way for #MeToo to salvage its mission is to make a clear break from those two and condemn AA as a predator and statutory rapist. They didn’t wait for court verdicts on all the men whose careers they’ve ruined, so she needs to be vilified equally.

  18. catsworking says:

    Oh, Adele, you have sunk very low indeed. I didn’t realize Mama June was still on TV. I knew she lost a ton of weight but I thought she had a health crisis. And whatever happened with her and Sugar Bear? I saw she dumped him and found someone else, then maybe something about a reconciliation. Poor Honey Boo Boo got lost in her mother’s drama.

    I watched one season while Honey Boo Boo was still kind of cute, although seemingly destined to a life of her mother’s morbid obesity on a diet of spaghetti with ketchup and butter.

  19. Adele Prass says:

    Karen, i’m So ashamed that I can answer most of your questions. Last year, June had bariatric surgery and lost over 200 lbs., had skin removal done and showed up at Sugar Bear’s wedding, to another woman, even larger than the original June,wearing a size 4 red dress. I think June (and it’s a relief to say I missed several episodes) did have some problems with her surgery and unrelatedly had serious eyesight issues.

    This year, June’s gained back about 75lbs,has a new boyfriend, and her daughter,Pumpkin had a baby and in tonight’s finale, married the baby daddy in Vegas. Honey Boo-Boo is called Alana, now, and the best line of the whole show was hers, as the motley crew walked into an All You Can Eat buffet, Alana said to the hostess, “Here comes your worst nightmare. Let me just say that Alana’s face takes up the entire TV screen. Can I pass this off as sociological research?

  20. Dingobeast says:

    Catsworking, go look at the orange janitor instagram. The RainDove thing is there.

  21. Kat19 says:

    I think Asia wrote the letter from Jimmy. It will be interesting to see if He calls her out on the letter or
    Any other claims she has made about that day.

  22. Rachel says:

    So this is breaking news, friends. The person who sent the texts in which AA admitted she had sex with Jimmy, and the photo was.. drum roll please. RAIN DOVE. Who is that? Well he-she is a binary fashion model (poses as a man or a woman). Oh and that is not the most interesting thing about Rain. He/she is dating…Rose McGowan. Yup. Go check the Orange Janitor on Instagram. Rose and Rain got the goods on Asia, and they decided to cut her loose. Awesome. Oh, and when Rain told Asia she was going to turn over the texts and photos to the authorities, Asia called Rain a “monster.” Rose will now resume her crown as leader of the MeToo movement. I knew there wasn’t room for both of them. Rain did the right thing though, so good for him/her/they. I want to know what other texts they have from AA!!!! Now. WHY hasn’t AA been fired from X-factor yet???

  23. Janet says:

    Also, RD promised a new headline today but said the date had to be pushed back because he was forced to lawyer up. And Mama June is back to 200 pounds as of the last episode. Also:

    http://www.foxella.com/at-this-point-a-trade-has-been-made-they-are-very-very-good-at-suiciding-people/

  24. L Villeneuve says:

    You guys are great investigative journalists! Just when I think there’s no more information about Tony, someone here has more scoop.
    Thanks for all your work.

  25. Mira says:

    Raindove is very active on twitter and has no problem spilling the beans…just have a look at his, I mean their threads ( its a bit complicated but they are non-binary…)

  26. Mira says:

    I actually can’t keep up with the world of dirt people are digging up from her twitter account. This woman has well documented years of disturbed behaviour. You don’t need to be an investigative journalist, you just need a strong stomach…Which again begs the question…what was he thinking…if I did not fall for a similar psychopath myself , I would be suspect of him, but speaking from personal experience, love is truly blind and refuses to see anything negative about the projected romantic fantasy…still…he knew of her years before he met her, so he did have some idea who he is getting involved with…dear Lord 😦

  27. catsworking says:

    Adele, that it hilarious! Alana always did have the best lines. She’s like a miniature redneck Bethenny Frankel, except without the eating disorder and the vicious bitchiness.

    If I know all this about Bethenny, I can certainly give you a pass on that bunch.

  28. catsworking says:

    Kat19, the place for Jimmy to come clean is to the L.A. Sheriff when he’s interviewed in the criminal inquiry. That gets it on the record officially. He may have a lot of documentary evidence of their relationship over the years. It wouldn’t surprise me if he doesn’t have some nude selfies of AA sent to him while he was a minor, since she seems to send them to everybody.

  29. catsworking says:

    Janet, welcome! I actually feel sorry for June regaining the weight. I’ve already regained about half of what I lost six years ago on Weight Watchers and now EVERYTHING in my closet is too tight. It’s miserable.

    According to this Foxella, AA has agreed to stop talking trash about Weinstein. Hmmm… I wonder what brought that on?

  30. catsworking says:

    Mira, I don’t even know what “non-binary” means, but I am amazed by the vast array of combinations that have arisen to describe people who don’t consider themselves just plain old men and women. Makes me kind of glad I’m past man-chasing age, because it seems you never know what you’re going to get anymore just going by what shows on the surface.

  31. Mira says:

    In any case, Raindove is happy to answer anyone’s question, and appears to be quite open with his views and the facts available to him, through spending time with RMG and AA…I’ve been following his twitter conversations this evening, he seems quite measured and polite in his responses. I mean ‘they’. I need to get used to this new gender fluidity thing…

  32. Adele Prass says:

    Karen, I know about Bethenny, too. I’ve virtually kicked my Bravo habit, except for The Real Housewives of NYC.

    I also watched Parts Unknown “Jersey,” which I’d Never seen. AB was with his brother, Chris. It made me very sad.

  33. takouris says:

    I know this may seem absolutely ridiculous, but I just thought of something: did anyone think that maybe Tony left a note? And that maybe the note is being kept under wraps by his family? I don’t mean to throw out a red herring or anything but it just popped in my head.

  34. catsworking says:

    Adele, I’m bummed that Carole Radziwill is leaving. She was my favorite. But Bethenny really did make it impossible for her. BTW, I was listening to AJ Benza’s podcast the other day and he’s all over Bethenny, saying she’s doing serious drugs and is in danger of losing Bryn, and that pill bottles with her name on them were found all over BF Dennis’ apartment when he ODed. If true, it would explain a lot about her behavior on the show.

    OK, popping out for a few hours to go see Crazy Rich Asians. I love Constance Wu.

  35. Mira says:

    Looks like Raindove has reported to police some information divulged by AA. He urged her to self-report, but when she declined, RD had no choice, but to report. This, off course, is all just alleged, and based on twitter information from Raindove.

  36. Rachel says:

    I really need to go shopping but I cannot stop following the internet for all the twists and turns in this insane story. Here are some updates! AA has apparently been fired from X-Factor, according to several posters who said that it is in the Italian newspapers but I guess has not hit the US press yet. Hooray now AA can go live in the Amazon rain forest. Also. Rain Dove had to delete her tweets revealing that she turned over the texts because her publicist advised her to. She also had to hire a lawyer (in case AA comes after her for exposing the texts, I suppose). You can still see screenhotams of her texts on the Orange Janitor IG and also the gossip site Datalounge. Rain and Rose are in Berlin right now at a Feminist conference, but I guess they forgot to tell AA. No more ‘Berlin sisterhood” for AA. Lastly, BigGayIceCream commented on Leah McSweeneys recent IG post about Asia. As you know, Mr BigGayIceCream is Ottavia Bourdain’s best friend. I still think the source of the New York Times story is from someone close to Bourdain. They decided to risk the possible negative fall out to expose Asia Okay. Got to go buy some food!!

  37. Dingobeast says:

    I hope this stuff keeps happening to her. She was very proud about her abuse of men, poor Tony was snowed so badly. She put on a show for Tony, I am sure it was very easy to do a few days at a time.

  38. Francis Alan Wormald says:

    NOT GOOD NEW TWIST TO “AB”‘s LEGACY….😕

  39. Mira says:

    Here is a great summary ( with some minor timeline errors), on the #metoo related suicides.

    https://t.co/FjvP68yP1U

  40. Katherine says:

    Karen’s, sorry this is so late, but I see another poster already adored your query regarding RainDove. On The_Orange_Janitor’s IG yesterday, he posted the news with a screen shot of RainDoves’ statements. In any event, it’s all over the news already. People are speculative regarding the motives of all the players, so many moving parts here.

    A J Benza reports that Rose knew about the Bennet crisis for a long while before Anthony did.

  41. catsworking says:

    Thanks for that link, Mira. That was the first time I’ve ever read anything on Breitbart. They totally muffed the facts on the Jimmy Bennett situation, but they got the bottom line right: Bourdain would have had a lot of ‘splainin’ to do to CNN about why he covered up a statutory rape.

    With the revelations by RainDove, we have another AA parallel to Trump — all her closest allies are flipping on her. If she’s kicked off of X Factor, it should show up in English somewhere soon. I’m not aware of any other income-producing gigs she has, is anyone else?

    While this Bennett thing plays out, she’s unemployable unless she wants to take up female mud wrestling or star in hardcore porn. In those industries, her reputation would sell tickets.

    PS: Crazy Rich Asians isn’t much of a comedy, but it’s a cute love story and sumptuously filmed. Singapore looks like the most breathtaking city in the world. In one scene, they were walking through the airport and it made me think of Tony.

  42. bamboo.skewer says:

    Re: $$$ Asia has done some singing gigs, and maybe she gets royalties for music. Her instagram stories were full of her music world friends DJing at her house, she was going to their concerts. Whether any of those people stand by her and want to team up with her .. well, many of them are men … beware guys …

  43. bamboo.skewer says:

    Ha ha re: willing & unwilling males taking dictation from Asia! I can see her, S&M-like dictator, standing over them tats all exposed, cig stuck on her lip, all gravelly words.

    Re: “AA told Tony conflicting stories, and he said he would back her either way. Admit it or deny it, I’m with you. WHY??!!” You know how “they” say “love is a drug.” Seriously I think so much of what we do and don’t do is dictated by the chemicals in our brains, and we don’t even realize how much they run our lives. Just like drugs — he knew they were bad for him, yet he still wanted and needed them. They’re so hard to kick. Same thing with being in “love” with Asia, whatever “love” is where she’s involved. He had to have known she wasn’t good for him, but even knowing that, maybe even because of knowing that, she was so hard to kick. Who the hell knows, it’s my overactive imagination from hundreds and thousands of miles away, trying to understand.

  44. Mira says:

    Bamboo, denial is powerful. You try and fit everything that doesn’t quite fit, until the whole false idea of someone finally shatters….

  45. catsworking says:

    bamboo, what’s saddest about all of this was that a purely evil force like AA was ultimately a stronger pull for him than his daughter, his crew, his friends, his family, his fans, all the beautiful places he loved, the food he loved. None of it mattered against his addiction to that foul skank and her fetid hole.

  46. Donna Pavone says:

    Mama June is on TV,I believe the show is called “Not To Hot”?? She admits to having gained a significant amount of weight back. I’ve never seen the show. I know who these people are. I hate myself.

  47. feijicha says:

    Write up about how AA and Bennett met, and just how vile their movie together was. It grossed a whole whopping $200k WORLDWIDE. Roger Ebert and plenty of other critics trashed it. The plot description is vile.

    https://www.knoxnews.com/story/entertainment/2018/08/22/asia-argento-jimmy-bennett-anthony-bourdain-heart-deceitful-above-all-things-harvey-weinstein/1067091002/

  48. catsworking says:

    If you have Amazon Prime, The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things is out there for free viewing. I’m watching it now and only 7 minutes in, but in light of what we know happened between her and her co-star, I am already appalled. More later.

  49. Kat19 says:

    Karen, you will have to let us know your thoughts on the movie. I haven’t seen it and don’t plan to. The question I keep asking myself is how could any parent let their 7 year old son act in a movie like this? It seems crazy to me.

  50. Mi says:

    Regarding Tony’s text, I don’t think he said “Admit it or deny it,” but rather, “Pay a settlement to avoid a court trial, or don’t pay; I’ll support you either way.”

    I agree with you also over Jimmy’s confusion after AA’s assault and why it would fester until it burst when he saw her hypocrisy over Weinstein.

  51. Mi says:

    Even if Jimmy wrote that note, it doesn’t mean what happened didn’t disturb as time progressed. He comes from a troubled home life. He’d known and looked up To Asia Argento since he was 7. She acted maternal toward him, and her tweets of anticipation at seeing him and then about that day with him were over the top and weird for a woman her age referring to a boy she had that sort of relationship with.

    It would be normal for a boy like that to interpret the sex to mean much more to the adult than it did. It would be normal for him to feel even more devoted to her and to believe she felt that way about him. It would also be normal for him to be hurt and confused when she had no interest in him after that and to feel used when she distanced herself. All those feelings about a woman who had a long-time maternal attitude toward him, and had said multiple times she loved him, and I mean LOVE. Like I said, she was over the top with those messages. Between 17 and 22, he is understanding more about what really happened, so of course he’d be really angry watching her take international center stage as an accuser, a victim so sexual assault, and self-proclaim activist of #MeToo.

  52. feijicha says:

    You know, it strikes me as ironic (or is it hypocritical?) that AA would hold out that note from Bennett as an indication that the relationship was all from his side, that he was besotted with her, or as evidence that he wasn’t traumatized by their relationship because Look! He wrote this loving note! When she HERSELF was in a years-long consensual relationship with Harvey and insists that everyone must understand that just because she photographed all smiling and happy with him and chose to be with him for years after her supposed attack doesn’t mean she wasn’t assaulted or that she wasn’t traumatized by it. Hmmm…. can’t have it both ways fetid one…. you can’t say you having an ongoing affair with your attacker doesn’t prove the attack didn’t happen and then say Bennett writing a love note on the other hand means you couldn’t have attacked him. What’s good for the goose……

  53. Attorney In This Space says:

    Honest question: I don’t understand how all these Bourdain fan sites / anti-Asia bloggers (I have no bone in this fight, just another member of the media consuming public) take no issue with the fact that Bourdain paid off her accuser. Yes, she’s awful. But he is too — I get the motivations, eg do anything for someone you love – but doesn’t this make him the BIGGEST hypocrite in the world of #MeToo which his pontificating on his new found feminism, decrying Weinstein’s crime, even Instagramming jokes about prison rape, and he’s forwarding his paycheck to silence a male rape victim? Thank you, curious how the cognitive dissonance works. And I hope this post doesn’t offend anyone. Please explain!

  54. fifi lune says:

    Jimmy Bennett was at that hotel because Asia Argento was casting teenagers for a role and wanted to reunite with him. She tweeted or instagramed (can’t remember which) after that day at the hotel that “Jimmy will be in my next movie!”. A couple of months later she sends Jimmy another message on social media telling him “Sorry Jimmy, not this time. I had to cast an Italian for this role” or something to that effect.
    These messages are out there and i don’t have time to search for them.

    Casting couch?

  55. Mira says:

    mi, feijicha, good points.

  56. Lenora says:

    Wow. Just Wow.

    In summary of the whole sordid mess, and pardon my language, what a God damn shit show.

    Karen I tip my hat to you for watching that movie because just watching the trailer is giving my nightmares. What a horrid mess. The movie is just shocking to be shocking based on supposedly true story that was total fiction. It’s just gross.

    In Tony’s defense and maybe I am just too much of a fan girl but it seems once he commits to someone he will support them for life. Perhaps he came to the conclusion the only way out of this his commitment to Asia was to end his life.

  57. Mira says:

    In any case, it explains the deadness in his eyes…the whole last season of Parts Unknown….so dead and flat.

  58. jellyblue says:

    Like many, I have been avidly following this story since Bourdain’s death.

    Of course, it’s utterly heartbreaking. Bourdain’s unique contribution to this human embodied experience is hard to articulate and put into words.. he shared his flaws and was loved wart’s n’ all. Besides his intelligence and wit what I loved most about him is he didn’t have a whiff of snobbery — he got to see and experience the fanciest this world has to offer and yet he was most comfortable crouched on a plastic stool on a noisy street slurping noodles. He was invited to every corner on this planet to everyone’s home, sharing their table eating with families and friends.. he shined a light on the multi faceted bonds and love that we share with eachother. he exposed the very best and horrendous of what this world is doing both in the past and in the now.. In this soundbite culture he read the fucking manual and scratched the surface.

    I actually went to the memorial at Les Halles in NYC and gave a note which is an alien thing or me to do since I tend to live on the periphery as a misanthrope and wallflower.

    “You’re loved
    I’m thankful your star shined bright among us for the time that it did.
    Your spark lit many hearts.. many souls.
    I’m blessed to have had this experience.
    You will be greatly missed”

    There are many layers to this tragic story.. as it unfolds I question our humanity.
    Here I learn that Bourdain a man I love as a fan gave hush money to keep statutory rape from going public.
    Argento herself is being cyberbullied. I think it is entirely hypocritical that she cyberbullies and then complains about being bullied herself but I can’t stand bullying.
    The level of parasitic opportunism that has been displayed by both Rose and Asia post death is disgusting.

    Here are main questions I have.
    1) Jimmy Bennett’s lawyer sent the letter of intent to sue to Bourdain’s lawyer — why? Was his lawyer representing her at the time? Because this act raises questions. Why not send it to Asia directly let’s say if she didn’t have a lawyer stateside.

    2) Although the timing coincides as Bourdain’s family is sorting out his estate I have a hard time grokking that they would release this information to the Times because at the end of the day it certainly tarnishes Tony’s reputation because he did in fact give hush money for statutory rape.

    3) It’s mind-boggling to me that after Asia’s history with controversy she would still text such incriminating info she admitted to sex with a minor any which way you slice it, the reality in the state of California what she did is statutory rape… of course she knows this!

    4) There’s an element of “grooming” to this whole Jimmy Bennett story that makes me sick.

    5) The complete and utter lack of respect from Asia and Rose to Tony’s mother and daughter is staggering. It doesn’t matter what kind of relationship he has with his mother — it’s none of my business.. she just lost her son.

    6) The deleted instagram photo of Asia in the Sid Vicious t-shirt. The collar is ripped — In Judaism ripping the collar is something done after death to represent mourning. Is this just a coincidence? Did she taunt him?

    https://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/248163/jewish/Why-Do-We-Tear-Our-Clothes-After-a-Death.htm

    This type of loss will not rest for me. I do understand why he killed himself. I don’t know the exact reason of course but the series of events, the humiliation and devastation.. I get it.. It’s just so fucking sad and it is such a monumental loss.

    The display of chronic narcissism by Asia and Rose has just got me questioning our humanity. Here they highjack the Metoo movement, use Tony’s death (that video of Rose crying and the letter Rose released post death and Asia’s behavior post death is just beyond appalling. Couldn’t they just shut the fuck up and stay quiet?) They just don’t care nor does it occur to them Tony has a surviving daughter.
    Rose and Asia invite this level of scrutiny into their lives.

    Tony’s family including Ottavia and Eric Ripert are classy folks. Coping and living through this tragedy they carry themselves with dignity! it’s too bad that Rose and Asia haven’t learned a thing or two.

  59. catsworking says:

    Mi, thanks for clarifying the text. I didn’t reread it before making my comment.

  60. catsworking says:

    feijicha, excellent point! There seems to no end to her deceitfulness.

    Interestingly, one thing I haven’t seen her say is that anyone enjoyed the encounter. She herself has portrayed it as him attacking her while she was “frozen.” And in all the photos taken after the deed, instead of looking satisfied, doesn’t he look a bit more like “WTF just happened? I guess it was okay, but…?”

    However, SHE looks like the cat who ate the canary in the one of them in bed together. Mission accomplished.

  61. catsworking says:

    Welcome, fifi lune! I do recall seeing her write that he would be in her next movie for sure. But I never heard a resolution to that. Duh! Thanks for connecting that dot. He was never in another movie with her, so obviously she didn’t cast him.

    Sure sounds like a casting couch situation to me.

  62. Mira says:

    She has even got those predator eyes…Bruce the Genius captured her so well, in his painting where she is slaying HW, with RMG in the background…He is really good at capturing the truth.

  63. catsworking says:

    Welcome, jellyblue, and thank you for your thorough assessment of the situation. Your note to Tony was beautiful, BTW. And I understand the new owners will keep it in a collection they will give to Tony’s family.

    This situation has morphed in directions that I don’t think anyone could have fully comprehended when the documents and photos were sent to the NYT. Yes, they cast AA in terrible light, but now they’re raising serious questions about Tony’s integrity. I feel sure he would have thought it through in the months after he made the first payment and it accelerated his downfall. And then when Asia cheated on him with Hugo, he realized that compromising himself and having to live forever with the damning secret that he helped hide her crime had all been for nothing.

    Yes, as you said, “It’s just so fucking sad and it is such a monumental loss.”

    Rose and AA just rubbed salt into the wound with their behavior, outing themselves as the ambitious, opportunistic fakes they’ve always been.

  64. catsworking says:

    Welcome, Attorney. I don’t find your question offensive, and I’m not seeing any cognitive dissonance here. We are all deeply appalled the Bourdain would pay off AA’s accuser and continue to be a voice in the #MeToo movement. It’s quintessential hypocrisy, and had he been alive when it came out, it would have probably destroyed the reputation for integrity he’d carefully built over the years by refusing to cash in on endorsement deals, work with assholes, etc. Not to mention it could have gotten him canceled from CNN.

    No one here has tried to justify his actions. We are upset and disappointed.

    But as Bourdain fans, we see it through his eyes and recognize the torment it must have caused him to literally sell his soul to protect a woman who, just a few months later, threw his loyalty in his face by cheating on him in a way that heaped on personal public humiliation in addition to compromising his career. THAT’S why it might appear we are condemning AA more than Bourdain.

    They were both at fault, but she was the architect of his destruction. He’s paid with his life, and she’s still running around looking for sympathy.

  65. Mira says:

    From what the available texts show, my guess is that AB’s interpretation was that JB tried to extort money, that the sex was consensual. I wouldn’t be jumping to any further conclusions.
    He probably later joined the dots, but it was too late…

  66. Jellyblue says:

    Mira- I’ve enjpyed reading your comments. Thanks.

    This snippet of texts messages is a very
    Small part of the story.. since this hellacious episode actually happened I’d imagine there’s lots more communications about this amongst the parties involved.

    We know the AB and AA shared an attorney. We know he gave her the $$
    For the settlement.
    In California the age of consent is 18.
    JB was a minor.
    It’s Hush Money.

    Now because I loved him I can attempt to process this and consider the different minutia as to why he would of participated in this sordid tale.

    But facts are facts.. and AB was not a stupid man. Completely shit faced by love? Sure.. besotted to the point that it broke him? Ya. He killed himself.

    I thank everyone for your contributions and thoughts as it helps me process the grief.

  67. jellyblue says:

    Karen- “…This situation has morphed in directions that I don’t think anyone could have fully comprehended …”

    You’re totally right everything you wrote..

    Sigh.

  68. Mira says:

    AB never pretended to be some clean cut person. He always liked the ‘transgressiveness’. So, I don’t think he would give any thought to the statutory age, etc, he would be probably seeing it from a point of view of a hypersexualised teenager, he would think what he would like as a 17 year old.
    We are holding him up to the standards of the dare I say mostly middle aged white female rather conservative group of readers, and trying to fit him into our own world views.
    I think the fact that he in the end decided he had enough and killed himself is punishment enough, punishment for his poor choices.
    I don’t think him , nor his family , nor anyone owes anyone any explanation.
    We are all here online because of the human inquisitive nature, but some of us get carried away and imagine to be some seekers of justice.
    We live in an age of entitlement, and it is contagious, suddenly people demand the right to know…it all gets a bit ridiculous.
    I am happy to be frank and honest, and say I am here because I am escaping my own life issues, and it is easier to poke around someone else’s.
    Now I’ ll try to drag myself to first day back to work, after a very long leave…

  69. catsworking says:

    Mira, I agree with you that Tony probably experienced some sense of incredulity that any teenage boy in his right mind would claim to feel traumatized after having a chance to romp in the sheets with a hot babe like AA. And that’s where we hit the wall of his inexplicable obsession with her, who appears to all us middle-aged women as a tatted-up tramp. Period.

    Different strokes for different folks.

    Good luck on your first day back at work. Sorry to hear you’ve been on leave. Hope everything is better now.

  70. jellyblue says:

    Mira-
    I appreciate your frankness and honesty!
    I like Tony due to his “grit”..
    But the rampant hypocrisy of putting yourself out there championing the Metoo movement while behind the scenes participating and providing the hush money is gross.
    It doesn’t matter how Tony interpreted it. Facts are facts and all of them put themselves out there and in context to Metoo and it just stinks.
    380K whether someone is high net worth or not is a lot of money to cough over for such a story… and then in your public life being so loud about injustices and abuse of power.. it’s not a good look for Tony that is for sure.
    I honestly don’t expect anything less of AA considering how she has conducted herself..
    Good Luck at work!!

  71. bamboo.skewer says:

    Thank you Jellyblue for the info about the ripped t-shirt. I know we’ve all analyzed that t-shirt to bits, and I haven’t said this before, but to me the ripped shirt photo is very ambiguous. The intended audience and the message totally depend on *when* AA posted the picture. Did she post it before or after she knew he died?

    If she posted it before AB died, well then, pretty damning timing … but what bothers me is the “fuck everyone” text. If she was taunting AB wouldn’t she have written “fuck you?” Or maybe that’s what he said and she was sending the words back to him along with a suggestive photo. No one knows.

    If she posted it after she found out he died, I think she was telling the world she knows, and in a gross graphic tasteless way with a ripped neck, of all things. Geez. I would think “fuck everyone” was about the Hugo photos being papped and published. This is not to let her off any hook! As we know she does, she would be blaming everyone else. Not blaming herself for cheating, but blaming photographers and media for exposing her cheating. She’s also denying her responsibility for playing a role in AB’s mental state and decision to commit suicide. She blames everyone else.

    That shirt was ripped in previous photos, but not as bad as it was in early June. She obviously ripped it more to send a message, but I still question who the message was for.

  72. Polly says:

    Sandra Ripert posted a beautiful photo on Instagram of Tony and Ottavia from six years ago if you want to see something bittersweet and lovely. Such a breath of fresh air from AA’s filth.

  73. Katherine says:

    Bamboo Skewer—-the Sid Vicious T-shirt itself had the words “Fuck Everyone” printed on it and her own text said ‘you know who you are.’

  74. Mira says:

    Thanks for the lovely photo…lets not focus only on his last chapter.

  75. catsworking says:

    Polly, thanks for that picture! Ottavia’s wearing her wedding ring, too. I miss them as a couple.

  76. Mi says:

    Regarding that day in the hotel & the rapey spin she’s insinuated on Jimmy’s part, she posted multiple photos of them on IG and called it the “happiest day of my life”, reuniting with Jimmy Bennett. I don’t know why a middleaged woman was posting that she was “trembling, sweating, and crying” while waiting with “trepidation” to see her “long lost son”, Jimmy Bennett again or why she would call seeing a teenager again the happiest day of her life out of 37 years of living, but she did, with lovey dovey photos to boot. The woman’s a moron who doesn’t appear to understand that what she puts on the Internet lives forever & can’t be kept secret forever.

  77. Mi says:

    It just galls me that the highly intelligent Bourdain fell for such a stupid train wreck of a woman. I just don’t get it.

  78. Mi says:

    When Asia posted the ripped Sid Vicious shirt photo, she wouldn’t have known he was dead if he already was.

    She also took the photo down as soon as the public learned he’d died. She found out with the rest of us because no one there, including Eric Ripert, cared enough about her to call her and give her advance notice.

    I don’t remember all of the details anymore, but I saw one post in which she was trying to defend herself over that photo, and she provided information about the time frame of Tony’s death (from one point of time to the point he was found) that she had no way of knowing unless she’d communicated with him at the beginning of the time frame she stated. Only the family has the reports with the details & his loved ones weren’t going to share any info with her, so she had no way to know anymore than the rest of us. Quite a few people responded with the fact that she’d given it away that she was probably the last person to communicate with him before he took his life. Trying to defend herself, she only deepened the widely held belief that she’d emotionally driven him over the edge.

  79. catsworking says:

    Mi, I’m not sure if it was the T-shirt photo or another one where she told everyone to “go fuck themselves, you know who you are,” but I think she took it down after Bourdain’s death was reported and said she’d been aiming it at people who attended Cannes, which made absolutely no sense.

    I strongly suspect she was the last person to speak to Tony because SHE’S the one who claimed he died between 9 p.m. to midnight Thursday night, when the authorities vaguely pegged it around Friday morning when he didn’t come down to breakfast.

    What probably happened was that she was haranguing him until the point where he’d had enough and stopped responding. She thought he was being an asshole, so she lashed out on social media. Then the next morning she learned with the rest of us that he’d killed himself. After her initial statement of losing her “rock, love and protector” she went into full spin mode trying to cover her ass by getting Rose to say the relationship was open, blah, blah.

    So since April she has lost Jimmy, Tony (and the money he was contributing to her upkeep), her standing as a #MeToo crusader, her friend and accomplice Rose, and now her job. For all she knows, more of her misdeeds may still come out.

    She’s in an untenable position. The usual lies and nude selfies won’t help, nor will anger, defiance and blame. Her other option is to somehow gain sympathy, and the only way to do that is to harm herself.

  80. catsworking says:

    Mi, with every post and pic she put out that day, AA knew she was having sex with Jimmy. We don’t know if they discussed it in advance or how willing he was. His statement indicated only that he felt disgusted and confused afterwards. That he became totally outraged when she started parading around herself as a victim indicates to me that he did feel she had preyed on him against his will, even if she talked him into going along with her in the moment.

  81. jellyblue says:

    Mi- what you write makes sense about her not knowing.

    Karen- the “chronology” or sequence of events you wrote makes sense to me.

    I read a twitter feed (this was a while ago I don’t remember exactly) someone close said that the sid vicious pic was directed at AB so perhaps from that lens the “fuck everyone” means that AB was just part of “the rest of them” like “fuck you all” etc etc..

    I think her intention was to taunt him with that pic. Who knows if he saw it. As if the Clement pics weren’t enough. It is just so horrible to contemplate.

    AA is a total narcissist I bet she is pretty far gone on that scale of Narcissistic personality disorder- I think that is what they call it.. that any and all attention even negative makes them relish.

    I don’t know if she was aware she would get so famous!

  82. Mi says:

    catsworking, On the “f**ck everyone” photo, Asia added the caption, “you know who you are”. She did take it down as soon as AB’s death was made public, & Clement took down his IG photos of them together.

    Narcissistic Personality Disorder is what they call it, and people who have it throw what is called “Narcissistic rages” when others don’t do exactly what they want when they want it or when they’re confronted with disappointment in them or disapproval of them. It’s like they’ve been injected with a drug so they totally lose control, saying (screaming) cruel things and blaming their target for anythingmthey themselves did wrong. They view any independent thought that doesn’t suit them and their agendas as a betrayal.

  83. catsworking says:

    Mi, there you go again describing Trump. 😉 AA and Trump are two peas in a pod, except in AA’s case, the consequences are rolling in very fast, while Trump is still treading water.

    Rachel, I wouldn’t find it strange at all if AA threatened to reveal kinky things about Bourdain, which would horrify him only because they’d be out there for his daughter to see. Otherwise, he probably wouldn’t care. There’s no telling what she said to him to hurt him besides the relatively tame thing he admitted to, which was that she accused him of always having to be the “winner.”

  84. Mi says:

    I’ve often thought Trump suffers from the same disorder as AA and RM. All three exhibit the same traits, and always have.

    Remember when McGowan said the staff at Barnes & Noble, her publicist, and her audience failed her because she was confronted by a protester and none of them instantly saved her? As if she wasn’t supposed to handle the situation as a professional? She shrieked, stomped, swore, and then went to social media and even blamed her audience. That was a narcissist in action.

    I imagine when Tony told Asia how he felt she went ballistic. Narcissists don’t allow others to have their own feelings if those feelings aren’t 100% what the narcissist wants them to feel. Her calling to fight with him those last two days, interrupting his work, indicate she thought she was losing something but didn’t plan on letting it happen.

    I’ve witnessed complete meltdown narcissistic rages when nothing less was working to manipulate and they are exceedingly ugly. I’ve no doubt she blamed him for every thing gone wrong & about to go wrong for her; blamed him for her sexual indiscretion; told him he made her feel some God-awful way; told him he treated others, including his wife, better than he treated her; told him that her life was better before she got involved with him; told him he didn’t deserve any better; and on and on. That’s what a narcissist does during a rage.

  85. catsworking says:

    Mi, I can picture everything you’re saying about their last arguments. Bourdain turned himself inside out to support her, but it was never enough, and she threw that in his face until he couldn’t take it any more.

    Same thing is going on in the White House with Trump and his staff. They are in a no-win situation. They will never satisfy his inexhaustible need to be worshipped unconditionally. And even if they could, it still wouldn’t be enough.

    Trump and AA are monsters cut from the same cloth. Neither of them are going to have a happy ending, and we are sitting on the sidelines, watching their destruction unfold. For the preservation of all of our sanity, may it happen sooner rather than later.

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