They won the race, but they lost the baby. And the show.
The first two are fake. But the show is real, as are the three horse deaths sustained during the production of HBO’s “Luck.”
And that’s why last night’s “Luck” was far more than a “season” finale. It was the final final. it’s theme song was a dirge signalling the end of “Luck.”
Too bad. The show is really about the human interaction. The racing scenes were incidental. They could have easily been done in a way to prevent harm to the animals. The scenes that are more poignant are back at the stable anyway. Yet pProducers were so quick to cancel after PETA exposed the horse deaths. To satisfy PETA, the producers didn’t have to cancel. They merely had to assure that the animals would be safe.
Why couldn’t David Milch and Michael Mann do that? Instead, they went straight to the cancellation option.
If you saw the credits last night, you may have noticed the disclaimer at the end was different. It didn’t say “no animals were harmed.”
It simply said the American Humane Association “monitored” the production.
Exactly what this means isn’t clear, but whatever monitoring was done clearly wasn’t enough to assure safety for the horses on the show.
What’s amazing is that the horse racing industry continues to think “Luck” was good for business and continues to criticize PETA.
The organization that deserves the scrutiny is AHA.
But let’s not get hung up about the fake races in fictional drama.
As the New York Times reported yesterday, there are many more deaths and drama with real horses in real races.
The industry has found a way to bring cash to the races by bringing in casino-style gambling and slot machines to the tracks. But being flush with cash has not brought out the humane side of the horsemen. Instead, the race purses are so rich, even for the lowest quality horses, that greedy horsemen keep sending out their unfit stock to race for the money.
Unfit horses? Well, if not for the drugs.