The Truth About Amanda Knox And Lorena Bobbitt's Relationship

In recent years, especially in the advent of the #MeToo movement, it seems that fans of true crime have increasingly taken a second look at some of the most famous cases involving women. Do gender, bias, and the patriarchy inform how women are portrayed — or even vilified — by both the media and the public? While obviously wondering such things doesn't entail exoneration or excuses (take the story of convicted killer Jodi Arias), a nuanced lense inarguably has changed the ways in which we view true crime as a whole. And for some of the women who were unceremoniously, and sometimes unfairly, forced into the spotlight and scrutinized to the brink of harm, it's even changed their lives for the better. For some examples, look no further than Amanda Knox and Lorena Bobbitt.

Their cases and the media frenzy both Knox and Bobbitt found themselves embroiled in were continents, and over a decade, apart. Bobbitt's 1994 trial centered on seriously injuring her husband at the time, John Bobbitt, in reaction to enduring years of domestic abuse and sexual assault, and Knox's case on being accused of murdering her roommate, Meredith Kercher, during a 2007 semester abroad in Italy. 

Both were ultimately vindicated from much negative media attention and ridicule they received by way of finding their agency in telling their own stories. Not only that — it inspired them to forge a real-life connection. Here's a closer look.

Amanda Knox and Lorena Bobbitt had similar experiences

As many familiar with the stories of Lorena Bobbitt and Amanda Knox might know, both were acquitted of the crimes they were accused of, but their respective adjudications came after years of being hounded and negatively portrayed by the press. 

Bobbitt, whose retaliatory attack on her husband (and the particular groinal area it had to do with) made her trial fodder for comedians and proto-memes for years, eclipsing the very real terrors she survived in the grips of a domestically abusive John Bobbitt. Knox, who spent years locked away in an Italian prison and underwent three separate trials in court despite little to no evidence of her involvement in Meredith Kercher's murder, was nonetheless mocked and derided from the very beginning for, as The New Statesman said in 2016, being "a photogenic young woman" who was sexually active.

Years after their legal tribulations had ended (like Knox, Bobbitt was also acquitted in the end), both experienced a renaissance of sorts, thanks to widely acclaimed documentaries which allowed them both to tell their stories, in their own words and in full — the 2019 Amazon docuseries "Lorena" and the 2016 multi-part documentary "Amanda Knox." The reception both received served as an apparent turning point, with both women being regarded as survivors and, in their own way, feminist icons. It seems this link actually led them both to each other and resulted in a blossoming friendship.

Lorena Bobbitt and Amanda Knox are examples of true crime evolving

Amanda Knox and Lorena Bobbitt have opened up about how their friendship was forged — and, how despite the vast differences between them, they found more similarities in their experiences than not. During an appearance on "Good Morning America," both Knox and Bobbitt recounted how they met after Bobbitt agreed to appear on an episode of Knox's podcast "The Truth About True Crime," which led to their bond.

"She's been there — in the darkest moment of her life, through trials — and me, the same. So we feel that connection," Bobbitt told "GMA" in 2019 (via In Touch Weekly).  "We've both been not only judged when we went to trials, but we've also been judged by society, by the media." Drawing comparisons between how their stories had been appropriated by the media, Knox relayed how her experience, like Bobbitt's, made her feel like "who I am and what I've actually done doesn't matter to people," which made the public regard her as "not a person," but "an idea." 

It was an experience Bobbitt recognized as her own — and which prompted both women to continue to speak out publicly about their stories. "This is an example of how women can actually, you know, do something positive and keep working ahead to break this cycle of miscommunication, misunderstanding, and you know, vilification against women," Bobbitt concluded. "I think it's beautiful."