Al Capone's Vault - 1986 was the year Geraldo
Rivera lured the American public into watching his April 21, 1986 special "The
Mystery of Al Capone's Vault"
The program offered the potential promise of finding some historic artifacts, cache of
treasure or maybe the bones of some gangsters inside the walls of the Lexington
Hotel, the former headquarters and residence of notorious Chicago mobster, Al
Unfortunately, the whole show was a bust. After watching for an hour, the
American public was given Bupkiss, Zilch, Nada, Nothing but some dirt and debris
found behind the excavated stone walls in the hotel's basement.
Until that time, Geraldo Rivera had built his career on uncovering the truth
with very thorough investigative reporting skills (this legacy was what prompted
many to view the program), but with the fiasco of the Al Capone's Vault, Rivera
was left with egg on face and the lose of his credibility as a reporter.
On the bright side, the programs received achieved the highest ratings for a
syndicated special in television history.
Rivera revealed in his 1991 autobiography "Exposing Myself," his thought on
that particular day, saying, "My career was not over, I knew, but had just
begun. And all because of a silly, high-concept stunt that failed to deliver on
its titillating promise."
Rivera went on to create a new type of talk show with topics like "Men in Lace
Panties and the Women Who Love Them."
The November 1988 front cover of Newsweek magazine with the headline
read "Trash TV: From the Lurid to the Loud, Anything Goes."
As of the Millennium, Geraldo traveled to the war zone in Afghanistan and Iraq
as celebrity war correspondent for Fox News, and reported on the whereabouts of
Terrorists and Taliban criminals.
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