Asia Argento Has Issued A Statement That Claims Anthony Bourdain Initiated Her Sexual Assault Settlement
Asia Argento may have just used up the last of any public goodwill she had earned, by dragging her recently deceased boyfriend Anthony Bourdain into the sexual assault scandal that surfaced against her this week. Asia stands accused of sexually assaulting 17-year-old Jimmy Bennett in 2013, not long after she made allegations of her own against Harvey Weinstein. Jimmy was paid $380,000 in hush money, a fact that was made public when somebody showed the New York Times incriminating photographs of Asia and Jimmy in a presumed post-coital embrace. Now Asia has come forward with a statement in her defense. One that claims that the pay-off was all Tony’s idea. Prepare to be disturbed.
Here’s Asia’s statement:
— Yashar Ali 🐘 (@yashar) August 21, 2018
This statement is all kinds of icky. We’ve been inundated with so many “official statements” refuting or explaining charges of sexual impropriety of late, that people’s BS detectors are pretty finely tuned by now. We know what makes a tolerable statement, and what makes a really, really bad one. One rule of “official statement” is don’t involve the dead, they can’t speak for themselves. Just hearing Anthony’s name in conjunction with this story makes me very sad indeed. Another rule is, don’t victim blame. That’s a move right out of the Harvey Handbook of Terrible Statements That Make You Look Worse. Bringing JB’s financial history into it, is not the look. Yet another rule, don’t martyr yourself; Asia claims this is a “long standing persecution”.
The simple fact that a pay-off was made, no matter who initiated it, is damning. Her claim that she and JB were just friends, doesn’t match with the photographic evidence provided in conjunction with the story. TMZ has seen the photos and describes them here:
A 37-year-old Asia Argento snuggled with then-17-year-old Jimmy Bennett on a bed, shirtless, their foreheads pressed together, her arm over his as they lay with satisfied smiles…
The photo is not overtly sexual, however a casual observer would clearly conclude it looks like a post-sex pic as the 2 faintly smiled while they lay on a shared pillow.
Of course TMZ often has a fanciful way of describing things and it’s possible the photos are just of two friends, as Asia describes the relationship. But unfortunately for Asia, TMZ also has seen text messages between Asia and Anthony that contradict her claims that she and JB were never intimate.
Asia, at one point, seems to contradict her claim she never had a sexual relationship with Bennett, saying, “It wasn’t raped (sic) but I was frozen. He was on top of me. After he told me I had been his sexual fantasy since he was 12.”
And however unfair it may be, with this statement, Asia has opened herself to speculation, once again, that she may have played a role in Anthony’s suicide. Couple that with multiple outlets asking variations on the super dumb question, “Do these allegations invalidate #metoo?“, and Asia suddenly has a lot more people besides JB claiming injury. It’s an ugly mess, wrapped up in an even uglier mess, with a gooey, nougaty ugly mess at the center.