“I didn’t kill anyone that didn’t deserve killing in the first place” – Mickey Cohen
What is it about gangsters that have the media and public so infatuated? Why are both The Godfather trilogy and The Untouchables the top grossing gangster films to date?
When I say gangsters, I don’t mean the ones you see on the corners with their pants below their waist or the ones that replace –ster with –sta because it sounds tough. I’m talking the well dressed, fedora sporting, tommy gun toting, booze bootlegging and even the charismatic gangsters of the 1930s-60s. While there may be many reasons as to why we fill the theater seats to see a disgusting amount of corruption, drug trafficking, betrayal and violence many of the infamous gangsters inflicted on society, we cannot help but admire the “take matters into my own hands” attitude of mobsters reenacted in some our favorite movies.
Captured by real-life events, TNT’s new gritty TV series, Mob City, illustrates the sordid side of the LAPD police force, gangsters and their dangerous criminal network in the 1940s. One of the main characters in the series, (alongside Ben ‘Bugsy’ Siegel) is the notorious, dangerously-tailored gangster, Meyer Harris “Mickey” Cohen. This isn’t the first we’ve heard or seen Mr. Cohen being depicted on the big screen. The multi-talented Sean Penn recently portrayed the Chicago-gangster in the 2013 film, Gangster Squad. Cohen’s role and character reference has emerged in other films such as Bugsy, L.A. Confidential and The Black Dahlia. The public has experienced a taste of how ruthless Mr. Cohen was during his reign in Los Angeles, but rarely had the chance to look into one of his areas of business that we appreciate today.
To celebrate the premier of Mob’s City three-week television series, we attended TNT’s re-creation of the haberdashery Mickey Cohen once had on the Sunset Strip. Mickey’s Haberdashery housed everything from a selection of vintage three-piece suits and apparel, sunglasses, silk ties and books. The purpose of the shop was to allow the audience to travel back in time to Cohen’s glory days and get an insight on the gangster’s interest in menswear.
No one is going to force you to stop by Mickey’s Haberdashery… but I think you should take the trip if you know what’s good for ya.
What: Mickey’s Haberdashery
When: December 2-4
Where: 75 9th Avenue New York, NY 10011