New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was arrested back in February for his involvement in a prostitution scandal. Kraft allegedly solicited sex from a massage therapist in the Orchids of Asia Day Spa, a massage parlor in a strip mall in Jupiter, Florida. The 78-year-old was able to avoid prosecution and having videotapes of the alleged incidents released due to a judge ruling that these videos were illegally obtained by local law enforcement.
Needless to say, this is an incident that Robert Kraft would prefer that no one ever spoke about again. But unfortunately for Kraft, Tom Brady’s recent cameo appearance on the Netflix show “Living With Yourself” has brought these prostitution charges back into the headlines. In his brief appearance on the show, Tom Brady is seen leaving a strip mall massage parlor. Football fans quickly connected the dots and assumed that Brady was in on this shot at Robert Kraft.
How the scene played out in “Living With Yourself”
Paul Rudd plays the main character in “Living With Yourself”. Rudd’s character Miles Eliot finds out about the Top Happy Spa from a coworker who tells him that it is a place that helps people reach their full potential. What the spa actually does is produce a perfect, new-and-improved clone of the subject to replace the original version of them.
When Eliot arrives at the Top Happy Spa, he is unimpressed with its exterior, which looks like the sort of place that one might solicit illegal prostitution from. Out walks Tom Brady, who looks extremely refreshed. Brady sees Eliot and asks, “First time?”
“Uh-huh,” responds Eliot. “You?”
“Sixth,” Brady responds with a smile before entering his vehicle.
The joke here is that Tom Brady has been cloned and perfected once for every Super Bowl that he has won. But football fans couldn’t get past the visual of Tom Brady coming out of a shady strip mall massage parlor on a show just months after Robert Kraft’s legal issues.
Tom Brady vehemently denies it was intentional
Tom Brady was clearly agitated when asked about this cameo’s connection to Kraft’s prostitution arrest.
“That’s not what that was about,” Brady said. “I think that was taken out of context, just like you’re taking it out of context and trying to make it a story for yourself, which has a negative connotation to it, which I don’t appreciate. It was meant to be something different than that. The fact it’s a distraction or you’re bringing it up is not something I want to be talking about.”
“It was agreed to a year ago. It was written four years ago,” Brady explained. “Again, it’s unfortunate that people would choose to think I would ever do something like that about Mr. Kraft. I think that’s a very bad assessment of my relationship with him. I would never do that.”
Tom Brady spoke at length about his positive relationship with Robert Kraft over the last 20 years, and blamed the media for this line of questioning. “I think it’s this type of media atmosphere that you create. The blame-and-shame media atmosphere that has kind of percolated for a while. I think there is a lot of things that are said that are taken out of context that you choose to make a headline of, as opposed to understand what it’s actually about.”
An unfortunate coincidence
It’s pretty clear that this correlation between Brady visiting the Top Happy Spa in the show and Robert Kraft’s real-life run-in with the law at the Orchids of Asia Day Spa is a total coincidence. Timothy Greenberg, the show’s director, told the Wrap that he wrote this scene years ago during the “Deflategate” scandal.
“There was this implication that maybe he’s a clone and he’s cheating,” Greenberg said. “When I wrote it, he was 37 and had won four Super Bowls. And then by the time I actually make the thing, he’s now 41, and he’s just coming off his sixth Super Bowl win. So he became even more perfect. He was our number one choice for that.”
It makes perfect sense that Brady isn’t happy that what was supposed to be a fun little cameo has turned into a distraction around his relationship with Robert Kraft. But he can’t really blame the media; when your team’s owner gets in trouble for soliciting sex from a strip mall massage parlor, and you show up on Netflix later that year strolling out of a strip mall massage parlor, people are going to make this connection.
Sure, it was just an unfortunate coincidence. And Brady likely didn’t know what the spa would look like since he was filmed in front of a green screen. But when fans from 31 other NFL teams are looking for any excuse that they can to knock on the New England Patriots, this scene was delivered up on a silver platter.