Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness took Netflix viewers by storm over the weekend, as the seven-part documentary series has proven to be an absolutely wild look into the lives of big cat owners in the American midwest.
At the center of the series is the eccentric Joe Exotic, a big cat zoo owner in Oklahoma, and his rival, Carole Baskin, who runs a big cat rescue shelter and publicly criticizes Exotic's zoo for the treatment of its animals. Eventually, their rivalry escalates with Exotic getting arrested for initiating a murder-for-hire plot against Baskin, but while the documentary tracks Exotic's descent into serious criminal activity, it also posits that Baskin may not be a saint either.
One bizarre plot point in the series is about Baskin's second husband, Don, with whom she got in the big cat business running a zoo unlike Joe Exotic's. Don evidently wanted to breed and sell the cats at the zoo, which Carole disagreed with. Tensions escalated, Don evidently filed a restraining order against Carole when she pulled a gun on him. Don went missing in 1997, shortly after filing the order. This led many close to the case and people in the documentary to believe that Carole had possibly murdered Don, put him through a meat grinder, and fed him to her cats. Exotic himself even wrote a song about it (though he believes Don is buried under Baskin's septic tank).
Viewers have come to share the belief in the conspiratorial theory about Baskin's involvement.
I would like an entire docuseries on the murder investigation of Carole Baskin’s husband #TigerKingNetflix— JenNA (@jk_l0l) March 22, 2020
— mellamokendall (@mellamokendall) March 23, 2020
Watched ‘The Tiger King’ on Netflix and that was the wildest ride I’ve been on watching a show.
1. Carole Baskin murdered her husband
2. She is worse than Joe Exotic
3. Joe was definitely set up
4. Jeff and the others should be in prison too
BigCatRescue</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/TheTigerKing?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#TheTigerKing</a></p>— Sean Bennett (Broadcaster005) March 22, 2020
Baskin denied these claims in a lengthy rebuttal to the Tiger King documentary, noting that Don had bipolar disorder, and his erratic behavior led to the restraining order he filed being rejected. "I never threatened him and I certainly had nothing to do with his disappearance," she added. "When he disappeared, I did everything I could to assist the police."