It’s been 25 years since Lorena Bobbitt was tried and acquitted for mutilating her husband, John Wayne Bobbitt, and Jordan Peele is going to tell their story. Peele is producing a docuseries called Lorena to reexamine the events “from her perspective.” If you somehow do not remember what put Bobbitt on trial, she cut off her husband’s penis and the defense argued that she did so in a fit of blind rage after John raping her triggered a psychotic break, bolstered by suffering years of physical abuse at his hands. The jury agreed Mrs. Bobbitt could not be held responsible, which kept her from serving up to 20 years in prison. This excerpt from a New York Times article about the verdict gives you a look back at the gory details.
In testimony, Mrs. Bobbitt said she had not realized what she had done until later, when she fled their home and was in her car. She said she then discovered the knife in one hand and her husband’s penis in the other. She threw what she called his “body part” in the underbrush, from which it was retrieved, and, after nine hours of surgery, reattached.
The series, produced through Peele’s Monkeypaw studio and directed by documentarian Joshua Rofé, will be a four-part event. It will attempt to move past the tabloid sensation that colored the story when it first unfolded and instead unpack the effects of domestic abuse and the way media coverage of Lorena Bobbitt shaped her public identity. The series does not yet have a release date.