Impeachment: American Crime Story, the third chapter of Ryan Murphy’s American Crime Story franchise, makes its debut this week (tonight at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT on FX with two immediate encores).
The crime drama is a dramatization of the events surrounding President Bill Clinton’s affair with Monica Lewinsky and his subsequent impeachment. Clinton is played by Clive Owen (recently seen in Lisey’s Story) and Lewinsky by Beanie Feldstein (Booksmart).
Co-starring are Edie Falco (Law & Order True Crime: The Menendez Murders) as Hillary Clinton, Sarah Paulson (The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story) as Linda Tripp, and Annaleigh Ashford (The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story) playing Paula Jones.
FX recently released a behind the scenes featurette with some of the creatives previewing the upcoming season.
Crime drama fans will want to check out Impeachment just to see how it compares to the prior American Crime Story seasons, because there are several major similarities and one big difference.
Like The People v. O.J. Simpson, this edition is based on a book by CNN pundit Jeffrey Toobin. It also features two actors who have been in previous seasons; longtime Ryan Murphy fans know he re-utilizes certain performers. Those two things could make this feel very similar to that first season.
However, what viewers may not know is that Monica Lewinsky serves as an executive producer. That’s the first time that one of the central figures of the story is also one of the people involved in making the season. What effect will that have on the episodes? From the promos that FX has aired so far, the season appears to be writing from the perspectives of Lewinsky, Tripp and Jones while casting Clinton as an antagonist. That certainly is a valid perspective but will audiences see it as biased?
Whatever the interpretation, Ryan Murphy is back with a new American Crime Story that shows the intersection between crime and another part of culture (this time, politics). There’s a high bar here because not only have both past seasons generated a ton of buzz but they’ve also won awards for leading actors. Hopefully Impeachment will be able to garner the same amount of discussion as its predecessors.
Brittany Frederick has worked 20 years as a professional journalist, reaching millions of readers worldwide with thousands of articles. Her one goal is to meet Jonathan Groff, but she’s sung with Adam Levine and gone 200 MPH with Mario Andretti. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow her on Twitter @tvbrittanyf.