The Making of the Mob Refuses to Mythologize History of Organized Crime

by Glenn Garvin – Docudrama series on AMC mixes archival footage with actor recreations If nothing else, AMC’s new semi-documentary series, The Making of the Mob: New York, is a reminder of one of the more amusing instances of television’s long and glorious tradition of gutlessness. In 1981, when NBC was putting together a crime series called The Gangster Chronicles, the regular characters included Lucky Luciano, Bugsy Siegel, Al Capone and … Michael Lasker? This Lasker fellow was a Jewish accounting wizard with a special expertise in gambling operations, which sounded remarkably like Mob financier Meyer Lansky, who in 1981 was still alive, though he was spending more time fending off lung cancer than G-men. Though it boggles the mind to imagine Lansky filing a libel suit, which would have exposed him to courtroom questioning over the roles he may have played in half a dozen or more notorious gangland murders, NBC’s legal department...

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