TheWrap, The Lovecraft E-Zine

Acclaimed HBO Series Accused of Plagiarism

Aug 8, 2014  •  Post A Comment

An HBO series that has been in the headlines mainly for its almost universal acclaim is now getting attention for a different reason, having been accused of plagiarism.

TheWrap.com reports that HBO and creator Nic Pizzolatto are defending “True Detective” against the allegations. In a statement, HBO said: “’True Detective’ is a work of exceptional originality and the story, plot, characters and dialogue are that of Nic Pizzolatto.”

Allegations of plagiarism arose when The Lovecraft E-Zine founder Mike Davis and John Padgett of Thomas Ligotti Online published a report that alleged Pizzolatto had “plagiarized [American horror writer] Thomas Ligotti and others — in some places using exact quotes, and in others changing a word here and there, paraphrasing in much the same way that a high school student will cheat on an essay by copying someone else’s work and substituting a few words … .”

HBO said that “philosophical concepts are free for anyone to use, including writers of fiction, and there have been many such examples in the past.” It added, “Exploring and engaging with ideas and themes that philosophers and novelists have wrestled with over time is one of the show’s many strengths — we stand by the show, its writing and Nic Pizzolatto entirely.”

Pizzolatto also denied plagiarism, but has noted his influences for the show, although he didn’t name Ligotti.

“The philosophical thoughts expressed by Rust Cohle do not represent any thought or idea unique to any one author; rather these are the philosophical tenets of a pessimistic, anti-natalist philosophy with an historic tradition including Arthur Schopenauer, Friedrich Nietzche, E.M. Cioran, and various other philosophers, all of whom express these ideas,” Pizzolatto said in a statement.

“True Detective” is in the running for five Emmy Awards following its first season, including Best Drama Series, the piece notes.

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  1. Their article is nonsense. That is more homage than it is plagiarism.

    I bet even if the article creators had plagiarized they couldn’t have produced what Pizzolatto has done.

    This is just like many of the ridiculous copyright infringement cases going on in court now – too focused on “MINE MINE MINE”, and not enough on producing for the betterment of the world.

  2. Imitation is the sincerest form of larceny.

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