Saturday, June 29, 2013

Auto Focus The Murder of Bob Crane by Robert Graysmith

Robert Crane, the former star of television’s “Hogan’s Heroes,” was a down on his luck, forty-nine year old actor touring in dinner theatre when he was found dead in his bed on the morning of June 29, 1978, in his apartment in Scottsdale, Arizona, with his head bashed in beyond recognition and a VCR cord around his neck, surrounded by thousands of dollars of video equipment he used to feed his addiction to pornography and making sex tapes of his own intimate encounters.

It was a life of masks. The brash, funny, friendly face Robert Crane presented to the world, hid a very insecure man who measured his own self worth by the number of women who went to bed with him. Beset by marital and money woes, he bypassed the usual addictions of drugs and alcohol, and went for pornography instead. With his friend John Carpenter, a former VCR salesman and expert on the use of home video equipment, he picked up women, participated in orgies, and filmed it all for future viewing. He was even rumored to have had a penile implant so he would look more impressive in these videos.

This book charts the course of Robert Crane’s life from start to end and explores all theories and clues relating to his death with a close look at prime suspect John Carpenter.

If you’re interested in the sad and sordid life of Robert Crane and how it all ended, this is a good and thorough book about both.

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