Episode 40: Man Arrested For Overdue VHS Rental Of Freddy Got Fingered (2016)
12:12PM Jan 19, 2023
freddy got fingered
Whoa, just curious. Welcome to Just curious media. This is that's a crime. I'm Jason Connell.
And I'm Sal Rodriguez.
All right, so we are back for another crime.
Yeah. And this is a fun one. I think anyway, I mean, you know, you can ask our subject here if he thinks it's a fun one, but for us it's a fun one.
Yeah, light. I know that sometimes you're like, just putting in my year. How about a light when Jays Yeah, heavy? Yeah. And this one was not this light. It was pop culture. It's a few years old, but I just came across it. I thought it was funny. And I know we have a lot of talking points.
Yeah. I think we are in the era of nostalgia. And I think this can make a lot of us. very nostalgic.
Absolutely. And today we are breaking down the true crime story of the man arrested for overdue VHS rental of Freddy Got Fingered. In 2016.
The movie is what makes it even better. Right? That's
it. The movie title nails it? Yeah. I don't know if you've seen this movie. So I rented it a lot. I did read it. I had a VHS copy of this at one point in time. But are you familiar with this film?
Jason, not only have I not seen this movie, but I actually thought it was sort of like maybe a mafia or a crime, you know, because I thought it was maybe like a courtroom thing. Oh, yeah. Right. Right.
He did it. Yeah. Yeah.
That's what I thought I had no clue what this movie was about.
Oh, that's funny. Well, we're gonna jump into before we do sell a word from our sponsor. Yes. Support for that to crime is brought to you by manscaped, who is the best in men's below the waist grooming and offers precision engineered tools for your family jewels. Join over 4 million men worldwide who trust manscaped. And with his exclusive offer, you'll get
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perfect. Now back to business. So you're not familiar. You weren't familiar? No learned about it today. When you read the notice.
Just today, literally moments before you realize, gosh,
that's too funny. Well, I was familiar. At the time. I really enjoyed Tom Green and his pranks on MTV. Yes, it was really funny. He wouldn't break he never broke character. One time I saw him grab like a jam box radio and went out and disturb like a youth soccer game. He went out there with like, Ninja ninja ninja, had that on his shoulder. And he ran out there and he started kicking the ball and parents were literally going to kill him. MTV is filming and he never would break. He never laughed, that he's wired differently. I never saw him break. And some people just crack up at the pranks that they're doing but never with this guy. And he was the predecessor to like Jackass and all these types of shows he really was Love him or hate him. He had his plays had his moment. But this was a big movie for him. And at the time, I know that he was either married to which I believe he was to Drew Barrymore and he popped up in Charlie's Angels bit part playing her love interest. And she has a bit role in this movie as well. So a lot of things. It also has Rip Torn who I always loved rest in peace but so that's a little backstory. What even put this on my radar, I rented it. It's not great. No doubt about that. It's not a great movie, but there's a few memorable parts but that is what makes this episode even funnier because the movie is kind of not and well regarded, I should say,
Jason, it's not only a matter of whether or not somebody appreciates the movie, I guess, cinematically or comedically, but the subject matter alone, I mean, I read the synopsis and I'm gonna say wow, I had no idea what this movie was about. And we
are going to get into this synopsis. We'll share that as well. But yeah, to stay on point with a crime that leading up to this movie now we give the movie a little backstory. Yes. Here's more about the crime. So on March 22 2016, single father James Meyers, Jr. of Concord, North Carolina, was pulled over for a busted taillight. Don't you hate that cell busted taillight for the old busted taillight? Film busted derelict. And when the police ran his license plate, he realized there was a warrant out for Meyers arrest. And Sal The reason for this arrest warrant stemmed from Meyers inability to return a VHS rental of Tom Green's 2001 comedy and box office bomb. Freddy Got Fingered. And what I didn't know until today, was it one five Razzie awards that year and I know you're familiar with the Razzies
can the people under scrutiny here and in this instance, Tom Green, can he go to accept a Razzie
award that I don't know? Is there an actual Razzie Award like could you get people there? Sound come on down. You've been up for Best Actor for a ride. Yeah. Do you want to go? I don't know about that. So I'm gonna say no,
at this point in time. I say that any publicity is good publicity. So yeah, let's say someone were to say, hey, we had the awards for Worst podcast or Sal Rodriguez worst podcast. No, come and get your award. I'll show up. Right. I'll show up.
Well, let me tell the audience's that's unfamiliar what a Razzie Award is.
Well, Razzies, like the opposite of an Oscar, right? It's the antithesis of
the worst movie of the worst actor worst director. So at one five, it was nominated for more. But one, five. So the movie, just to be clear, was written, directed and starred. One Tom Green, along with like I just said earlier, the late Rip Torn, he portrayed his father. So it's really them going at the whole movie. There's other people in it, but it's like they're battling each other throughout the film, and they keep raising the stakes. So you mentioned the synopsis. I'm going to read it, and now you'll understand what the title has to do. It's not a mob movie.
Hang on. Parental discretion. Is it? Yeah.
Thank you for that disclaimer. And unemployed cartoonists moves back in with his parents and younger brother Freddy. When his parents demand he leave, he begins to spread rumors that his father is sexually abusing Freddy.
And as a comedy is
supposed to be. It's meant to be. So that is Tom Green writing, starring directing. And that is what it's about,
you know, I gotta hand it to comics. I even at my comedy peak at my stand up comedy peak. I was never one of these comics who really pushed the envelope. I admire comics that do. I kind of stayed in the more of a vanilla lane, if you will. Yeah, that's working for yourself. It's working for you the vanilla mocha guy.
So that's what the movie is about. There are some memorable scenes even to this day, I have to pop up in my mind. And I watched the trailer just to kind of prep for this. And one comes up later in this episode. But as for the warrant, it was actually issued in February 2002. So go back. It's 2016 crime 2002. This is 14 years in the making. And the warrant was issued by j&j video, and Salisbury, North Carolina. And it charged Meyers with a misdemeanor of failure to return hired property. So have you ever heard of that term before?
No, I never heard of such a thing that may be a North Carolina thing. Yeah. Because you got to put things in perspective. I mean, today, a person would think if I were to rent a movie, and I didn't return it, first of all, you have to go back to when they were actually a physical object, as opposed to a street to get Netflix download. He's, you know what I would, because not all the Netflix library is on streaming. Some of it is on DVDs.
But that's a subscription model. And they would just say, hey, we won't send you a new one until it comes back. And this is back in a different day, where it's like here, Sal Rodriguez, and I worked at Blockbuster. We can get into this. I know you have a story as well. But this isn't blockbuster. But it's blockbuster adjacent. It's renting VHS tapes.
Yeah, it was the blockbuster era. Now what happened with me was I rented a movie, and then return the movie. So I thought, but then I got a call from blockbuster they go Hey, Mr. Rodriguez, did you return? I forgot whatever movie was. Do you return the movie? I go. Yeah, yeah, it's there. Look for it. Oh, another week or two go by? Mr. Rodriguez. We don't have the movie. Did you return it? I said Mean Girls, was it Mean Girls? Mean Girls, too. I started to get annoyed, right. I was like, Listen, you guys get your shit together. Who? All right. And then they said to me, have you checked under the seat of your car? And I was like, What kind of idiot you take me for I'm gonna be driving around with it. There we go. So it was there. It was there. The movie was under the seat of my car. Just like they said, That is creepy. And at this point, it had been like eight weeks. And I remember I had to pay a fine of like, $43
Are you kidding? You could have just bought the movie. I had to pay a
fine to Blockbuster. He was it literally was like eight weeks. And they charged me. I mean, I suppose I could have tried to grovel my way out of it. But no, I paid the money. That's what happened with me. If they never would have said, would you look under your seat? I probably never would have liked you to
still be driving around with.
I wouldn't be this guy. I would be arrested today. You'd
be him like, I don't have beaches. Oh, I'm sorry. I hear cuff me. Yeah, that's really funny. When I worked there, I never had someone I was chasing down. More often than not, they would come in with the VHS not rewind. They weren't kind. They didn't rewind, but I just thought in the faster wine machine. But some of my fondest memories and working there. When like say you would come in and we had like a report because I'm such a film geek and you'd be like, Wow, I'm looking for something for my girlfriend and me. And then I would literally point out two or three amazing options and usually start with my number one recommendation. And more often than not, they'd come back and say thank you. You nailed it. And that felt great knowing what they're Looking forward because they're not as familiar with all the movies that I am and so that was our talk someone out of a bad movie. Someone had last action heroes like you can get that. You're not gonna like it. Get a backup and let me show you what to have. So I would always try to help my customers all Jason
Jason Are you forgetting I was an extra and Last Action Hero.
I know you get it for sound Rodriguez scenes and then watch this other movie. Okay.
No, but you know what? That is a skill. That's a lost art now that we don't have to deal stores anymore. You were like a movie Somalia. Is that the word? Somali? Yes. Yeah,
I was like a curator. Yeah, go figure out what started film festivals years later.
They didn't know who they were dealing with. So back to this guy.
Myers what we don't know is what was going on. Was he disputing it? Was he like you assumed he returned it? We don't know that or was he like no, that's my pride and joy. That's my copy of Freddy Got Fingered. And we also don't know if he loved the movie or not. How did he write it? Yeah, exactly. I'd love to know was right. And he doesn't get into that this is so long ago. And who has VHS anymore? Anyway? It's not like he's probably still watching it. But it's shocking that there's a 2002 warrant it got so bad they did a warrant j&j Video couldn't just call him like you were doing or even you know what? Pop by I know. That's like crossing a line. What's j&j video doing here? But it's better than doing a warrant on somebody. I mean, come on. Well, I don't know how it works over
there. But the way it works, at least in Los Angeles, county and city, is the police issue the warrant or actually, I think officially the district attorney, issues the warrant, the police serve the warrant, but it's not like a private party or business can issue a warrant. They just provide the information, which then gives the police Yeah,
they probably sent it to the police and the police probably did do it. Or maybe it was such a low profile. It's like yeah, when we when we pull this guy over? Yeah, I don't think they went to the house. The cops weren't looking for him. It's such low on the list.
No, but you know what that means? I think it's entirely possible. It says here, it used the word magistrate, a magistrate, which is like it's like a judge right? I signed up.
Again, pretty good. Why is he watching Freddy Got Fingered. I'm gonna get that guy. That's hilarious. You know, I just came to mind back to Blockbuster before I worked there. I was, you know, this put me in high school. I didn't work there. Then I had other jobs. And I was really into the game tech mobile. For my Nintendo loved mobile before I owned tech mobile, we would rent it because blockbuster started renting games. And I had it and it was overdue, not quite eight weeks, but several weeks late, right, several weeks late. And they even called and left a message like, Hey, you're gonna return that tech mobile. I was like, I gotta do that. I gotta do that. I know, I'm gonna pay a little bit of a fee, I understand. And one time, there was a knock on the door. I went through the people. And there was someone there with like a blue shirt on like a blockbuster type shirt. And I thought they sent somebody they said, I was convert. Hi, where are you? No, no. And I was convinced. And it turned out it was a guy who is doing door to door sales are very quickly booked.
They sent the goons
Yeah, they did. They said, We gotta get that tech mobile back in. So that was pretty funny. And I know it's scary at the time. So now, according to the Concord Police Department warrants in the state, as you were talking about must be carried out if they're active, because this is like 2016. So as in meyers's case, it can only be disposed of in court. So I can only imagine the disbelief of the arresting officer, what he must have been going through when they when they shot him the warrant details like coming in for a VHS tape in 2002. But here he is, his hands are tied, literally. He's got to follow through on this.
Well, the funny thing is, is this, this whole story is about a guy with an overdue movie, and also the movie itself, right, for example. But I think that we've heard similar stories of the people who had library books. 50 years that was on Seinfeld episode for sure. Yeah. Do we remember the names of the books that were overdue? No, it was just an episode
where he went around the guy went around collecting money from Jerry because he had an overdue library book and like, that was his job and I actually just passed away recently rest in peace. But yeah, it's pretty funny. So I don't know why they didn't send that guy out here the Ray Donovan to get the movie back. But they did do this and this, here's this cop going. Okay, I gotta go through with this. But now here's what Meyers because you got to imagine what he's being told what the arresting officers is relaying to him who's in disbelief of his own. And he shared the statement with local news stations. I thought he was joking. And adding that he felt surprised when the arrest was carried out for the first time. I got put in handcuffs. They're not focusing on the crimes I think They should be focusing on. And as for j&j video they had closed in the years since he rented Freddy Got Fingered. And he could barely recall renting the film in the first place. So that sheds some light on more of what was going on.
I would think at this point Myers should at least get a t shirt. Totally like a commemorative Freddy Got Fingered t shirt to commemorate because because he's gone at this point, meta and viral. Oh, absolutely. Over an overdue movie, but in particularly an overdue Freddy Got Fingered movie?
Yeah, you're right. And this thing did go viral. For whatever reason, it just popped up on my crime list this week. So I was like, there's this recent. Well, it's not that old, but it is 2016. But when this thing happened, it did go viral. And we're getting to what that led to next. But before that, why don't you take what the Concord police said in a statement of their own.
The warrant, which is signed by a magistrate directs law enforcement officials to arrest a person and take them before a judicial official without unnecessary delay to answer to the charges. In lieu of arresting Meyers on the scene of the traffic stop. The officer allowed Meyers to arrange a time to come to the Concord police department to be served with the arrest warrant. Officers are required by policy to handcuffed anyone in custody prior to entering the secured area inside of the magistrate's office.
Okay, so that sheds some light on things too. So although the arresting officer could have arrested him, put him in handcuffs, they basically said, hey, you've got to show up, come to this date. Okay, I agree. Officer, I agree. But upon getting their cell, cuffed him. So that's how it went. It's like a formality, formality. So it sounds better than throwing them against the squad car and spreading amazing him. He's got his child in the car. It's like what up and he's got an overdue movie. So that at least softens it some but still, what a pain in the butt for something he can't even recall. And like you saw you were convinced you had returned the movie?
Yeah, when I look back on that memory. I think the thing I think is silliest was how certain I was. Exactly. Yeah. And how like, How dare you? How dare you, sir,
check under the seat. Oh, that's so funny. When that's out? You're probably wondering if Tom Green got word of this? And the answer is yes, he did, indeed. And he tweeted the following. I just saw this and I'm struggling to believe it is real. Same with me. And I'm sure you and then green. Tom Green, who was on a stand up comedy tour. And Australia at the time back in 2016. said that he was happy to support fans of his film, those few fans who stood by and embrace the film, which was the subject of terrible reviews, and currently has an 11% Tomato meter rating on Rotten Tomatoes. It's pretty low.
So the movie it wasn't just like I'm wrapped up in the subject matter and the synopsis, but the movie just wasn't funny is that the deal? It just
missed. It missed on lots of levels, a couple of funny moments here and there. But people wanted to laugh. They wanted to like Tom Green because he was coming off MTV. And this is his first bigger role. He was a funny character quirky. And then it was this way. It just wasn't what people wanted it to be. And yes, the subject matter probably turned off all of those other people who weren't even a fan is like, what is this? So there you have it. There's that now as for James Myers, Jr. You'll be pleased to know, Sal, that the charges were indeed dropped. Nice. And he shared the following. Tom Green calls me from Australia at 1:30am to personally apologize for what happened. When I answered the phone. He said, Daddy, would you like some sausage, which is in the movie and is like one of the funniest. It is the funniest scene in the movie. And I just about died. He was so cool. He was a class act. It made me feel a lot better because of all the stress that was going on.
All's well that ends well. Yeah.
I mean, he gets to meet someone that maybe he held in high regard. Maybe it was a Tom Green fan. But here he is getting a call this thing kind of made its way around the internet and social media. But what a great exchange they had and he got off so he had his 15 minutes out in the end. That's what he got.
That's very nice, happy ending. Yeah, kind of
a cautionary tale. If you get in this type of trouble. You're probably not going to get that much trouble. But still funny nonetheless. And I'm sure caught him out of nowhere. The shock the reality like wait, what? So those of you out there sitting on VHS tapes are underneath your driver's seat or or anywhere in your house or even DVDs or blu rays as blockbuster rolled into those but other blockbusters bankrupt so I don't know if any warrants are out there, but maybe there's an outstanding warrant that was never asked. Get on so you never know.
But you know what Jason this whole story is I think also evidence on why we went to the subscription based model to right yeah,
you're paying no matter what you keep it. We're doing whatever you
want. Yeah, whatever whatever we don't care. We got your credit card on file. Don't worry about us.
So that really covers the man arrested for overdue VHS rental of Freddy Got Fingered. And 2016 came out of nowhere. So kind of a hybrid episode I say we had little let's talk movies in there a little that's a crime. Because so what do we cover here on that's a crime.
We cover everything from a VHS to a Betamax. That's a crime. We cover everything from a misdemeanor to a murder.
And this was indeed a misdemeanor. Was it a misdemeanor? The warrant was for a misdemeanor.
Oh, yes. There we go. Yes. For holding on to hired property right. Yeah, that was so weird. Interesting. I like it.
So any closing thoughts? Anything else? I'll leave the listeners with? No, just
want to give a shout out to Mr. Myers and Mr. Green. Thanks for giving us a nice fun tale. I do think in the end all's well that ends well. I think we're all happy now. And hey, yeah, be happy that you can just watch as much as you want on your computer. Now I don't have to be schlepping videos back to a store and getting arrested later for it. Imagine that. Imagine a true
and maybe this buzz 2016 could eventually maybe potentially lead to Freddy Got Fingered to
I like it. Let's hope not. Or
Freddy Got two fingered. Okay.
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