Earlier this week, True Detective creator and known schmuck Nic Pizzolatto was accused of plagiarism—largely of works by author Thomas Ligotti—in an essay from two dudes: Mike Davis and Jon Padgett. Today, Pizzolatto and HBO reached out to Deadline to refute the accusation.
The statements deny any plagiarism or wrongdoing on the parts of both Pizzolatto and HBO—first up, Nic Pizzolatto's statement:
Nothing in the television show True Detective was plagiarized. 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 Schopenhauer, FriedrichNietzsche, E.M. Cioran, and various other philosophers, all of whom express these ideas. As an autodidact pessimist, Cohle speaks toward that philosophy with erudition and in his own words. The ideas within this philosophy are certainly not exclusive to any writer.
HBO's is next, which begins by calling True Detective "a work of exceptional originality," with "story, plot, characters and dialogue" that come from Nic Pizzolatto alone:
Philosophical concepts are free for anyone to use, including writers of fiction, and there have been many such examples in the past. 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.
Hmm. Sounds fair enough! Have you woken up from the nap you had to take after reading about the original accusations? If so: what do you think? Not a plagiarist, just a schmuck? Both a plagiarist and a schmuck?
If you haven't yet woken up: stay sleeping, please. For as long as you can.