Maduro Enraged by Negative Television Portrayal

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By Delisa N. Morris

Impunity Watch Reporter, South America

CARACAS, Venezuela – While there hasn’t been much uproar in North America concerning the new TNT spy drama “Legends”, Venezuelan officials are enraged.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. Photo courtesy of Telegraph Co. UK.

Venezuelan officials are denouncing the show for portraying the socialist government stockpiling chemical weapons such as nerve gas to dispel protesters.  

The show has caused such a rift in the South American country that the telecommunications commission opened an investigation on Tuesday into the series.  The episode in dispute details a character that fingers President Maduro and the socialist party as purchasers of chemical weapons.  On Monday, the script was called hostile and ‘imperialist’ by the Minister of Information, Delcy Rodriguez.

The shows producer, Fox 21, has publicly apologized and detailed that the show was just fictional.

“The producers did not intend to imply that the show was reporting any actual events when it mentioned President Maduro’s name.  We sincerely apologize to President Maduro,”  stated the company.  

The episode in question is titled “Lords of War”, during which the main character intensely questions a terrorist about who was purchasing his chemical weapons.  After a drawn out bout the terrorist leaks the name of President Maduro and the PSUV (the made up socialist party acronym).  The terrorist goes on to say that the President and his socialist group are worried about civil unrest in Venezuela.

This past spring Venezuela was often in the news due to many of the country’s peaceful protests turned violent.  While President Maduro has been cited for violating several human rights in his harsh tactics to quell protestors, chemical weapons were never used.

On her personal twitter page, Rodriguez denounced the script, stating the brief scene had  ”lies and manipulation” that were a part of a “Hollywood-type script typical in its imperialist actions against legitimate governments.”

The show, “Legends”, debuted in August only scoring a 58% on “Rotten Tomatoes.”  The show stars Sean Bean, who was famously killed off in the first season of “Game of Thrones”, as an undercover FBI agent.

The investigation currently holds no clear path, and it is unclear what the governments investigation will consist of.  On Tuesday, critics of the socialist government released 20-second versions of the clip with the heading, “the scene Maduro doesn’t want you to see.”

Venezuela has been in the eye of the US entertainment industry a few times before.  Other quells with the entertainment sector include a video game claimed to seek overthrowing former President Hugo Chavez, and portrayals of the country as a lawless place for escaped criminals on other network dramas.

So far no official repercussions have followed these incidents.

For more information please see,

ABC News - Venezuela Rails Against Portrayal in US Spy Drama - 2 September 2014

the guardian - Venezuela Outcry as US Drama Maligns Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro - 2 September 2014

The Washington Times - Venezuela Rails Against Portrayal in US Spy Drama - 2 September 2014

Reuters - Venezuela Blasts U.S. TV Show Over Maduro Nerve Gas Plot - 2 September 2014

About the Author

Delisa Morris Delisa Morris is a Law Student and Master of Science Candidate in Public Relations at Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York. She is originally from Chicago, Illinois and completed her Bachelor's degree at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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