October 1, 2020 – The relationship between fictional Kanas City gangland figures Loy Cannon and Doctor Senator in the new season of the hit television show Fargo is inspired by the real-life friendship and business relationship shared by former K.C. Black mob bosses James (Doc) Dearborn and Eugene (Seal) Richardson.

The FX drama explores a power struggle in the 1950s Kansas City underworld pitting the Italian mafia against an African-American crime syndicate run by Chris Rock’s Loy Cannon character. Cannon’s most-trusted advisor and No. 2 in charge is dapper and deliberate Doctor Senator played by Glynn Turman.

The main difference from reality to the television-scripted narrative unspooled in Fargo is that Doc Dearborn’s “Purple Capsule Gang” (PCG) worked in concert with Kansas City’s Civella crime family. The groups were not rivals, although Dearborn was slain in a 1985 murder that might have been connected to a power shift in the Civella mob organization.

The similarities when comparing the TV show and real life begin and end with the Loy Cannon and Doctor Senator characters. Like you see in the show with the dynamic between Cannon and Doctor Senator, Doc Dearborn relied heavily on counsel from the educated, more refined Richardson. Doctor Senator was revealed to have a PHD in Economics from Howard University in the first episode aired Sunday.

“Doc was the gangster, Eugene Richardson was the scholar,” one retired FBI agent recalled. “Richardson dressed like a banker and was very well spoken, very intelligent. On the other hand, Doc was a straight hoodlum.”

Richardson was indicted with Dearborn for narcotics trafficking in 1970 and did federal prison time. He died of natural causes in 2005 at 93 after moving to Arkansas to live out his final years.

The 73-year old Glynn Turman is a familiar face to television and film fans, having appeared in classic fare like Peyton Place, Cooley High, Gremlins, A Different World and The Wire, among others. Turman was married to the Queen of Soul herself, Aretha Franklin from 1978-1984.

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