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Nope, that's not a typo: Best Evidence publisher Eve Batey joins me to talk about a movie that's still in "theaters," Most Wanted. Featuring Josh Hartnett's foxy 'stache and a breakout ugly performance from Jim Gaffigan, Most Wanted interrogates the role of budgetary concerns in law-enforcement corruption and/or incompetence...and we interrogate th…
 
[CW: The episode reviews series that discuss sexual assault, harm to children, and suicide. Please listen with care.] Omar Gallaga returns to discuss two very grim and infuriating properties, starting with Lifetime's Surviving Jeffrey Epstein, which centers the survivors of Epstein's monstrousness while also indicting a society that let him manipul…
 
Wondery’s Even the Rich gives you a behind-the-scenes look at the stories of some of the greatest family dynasties in history. This season, three siblings — Gianni, Donatella, and Santo Versace — built one of the greatest fashion labels the world has ever seen. But when Gianni is murdered on the front steps of his Miami Beach mansion, the label los…
 
Two guests, no waiting this week, as ...These Are Their Stories co-host Kevin Flynn joins me to talk about Ann Rule's Sleeping With Danger, starring Elisabeth "Serena Southerlyn" Röhm and Leslie "ME Rodgers" Hendrix. It's a thumbs-sideways from both of us on the movie, which is not quite good, but not all that bad, and has some anachronism issues a…
 
Is this the widest gulf in quality between the two shows under discussion in Blotter history? Maybe! But Netflix's new three-part series on the "Commission Case" that brought down the New York Mob is disciplined, compelling, and reminds me and guest Jeb Lund that Rudy Giuliani didn't always completely suck at everything...and that barbers really ha…
 
Filmmaker and baseball-Twitter-improver Randy Wilkins joins me to talk about Netflix's The Business Of Drugs, a six-part series hosted by Amaryllis Fox that tries to take a value-neutral look at the economics of black-market substances. But is it TOO neutral? Does it try to do too much in each episode? Might it have been better off only following a…
 
[content warning for discussions of child sexual abuse, suicide] Stephanie Green ventures back into the grim case against Larry Nassar with me this week, this time with Netflix's Athlete A, which sets itself apart from other properties by also making a case against USA Gymnastics, the Karolyi Ranch, and the messed-up ways we think about child athle…
 
[content warning for sexual assault, neonaticide, truly egregious Foley design] When the subject is the Golden State Killer, the guest is Mike Dunn, who's back to talk about the first three episodes of HBO's I'll Be Gone In The Dark. Directed by Oscar-winner Liz Garbus and others, the six-part docuseries seems to struggle to integrate two narrative…
 
How to describe Miles Hargrove's documentary about his father's kidnapping by FARC guerrillas in 1994 -- a kidnap memoir? Found footage meets ransom procedural? It's all of that, and it's unique in the genre; my guest Jeb Lund and I don't know when you'll be able to watch it, but if it comes to VOD or Independent Lens, Jeb and I agree that you shou…
 
[CW for references to domestic violence, racial violence, and medical malpractice.] The podcast staycations on the doc-festival circuit this week with a couple of films from the Human Rights Watch Film Festival: Belly Of The Beast, a harrowing account of involuntary sterilization in the California penal system, and the sickening persistence of euge…
 
The Dirty John franchise, clumsily named though it is, is back -- and Marcia Chatelain is back to talk about it. It doesn't feel "necessary," in These Times...and yet we're both planning to keep watching, thanks to Amanda Peet's fearless performance; the comparisons we can make with Mrs. America; and the fond memories it recalls of Meredith Baxter'…
 
First-time guest and Best Evidence contributor Margaret Howie joined me to talk about Quiz, the miniseries about the UK Who Wants To Be A Millionaire scandal now airing on AMC. Is it as good for what it leaves out as what it puts in? Are there class issues at work that non-Brits can't get at? And how does Matthew MacFadyen manage to play Charles In…
 
After our plans to cover Amazon docuseries The Last Narc got disappeared along with the show, Jessica Liese and I pivoted back to familiar ground: Fake Heiress, a late-2019 pod on everyone's favorite art-foundationing NYC scammer, Anna Delvey/Sorokin. The podcast isn't good, and across-the-pond class issues read weirdly to us North Americans...but …
 
Allison Lowe Huff returns for a UK docudrama two-fer, starting with A Confession, ITV's miniseries from last year about the murders of Sian O'Callaghan and Becky Godden, and the confession to them that cracked the cases but ruined a detective's career. Did we need more than six episodes with these people? Did Steve Fulcher's book have more crackpot…
 
Piper Weiss returned for a 1993 Lifetime movie about Tennessee baby broker Georgia Tann, Stolen Babies, that won Mary Tyler Moore an Emmy. Is this a notch above the usual '90s Lifetime fare, or do the accents ruin the relatively snappy pacing and shockingly direct villainy of Tann's actions? We dug into the Tann story thanks to the second part of t…
 
Toby Ball takes a break from refilling the Clorox shot-ski to talk about HBO's ripped-from-the-2004-headlines docudrama, Bad Education, in which Wolverine and CJ Cregg defraud the Roslyn school district -- and Toby and I really liked it, but did it need a stronger or more singular point of view? Should it have embraced its All The President's Ameri…
 
Australio-Irish icon Ned Kelly got the very first big-screen treatment in 1906, and now the director of Snowtown is back with yet another one. Does Justin Kurzel's time-shifted "punk" take on Peter Carey's novel hold Alex Segura's and my interest? Later, we'll talk about whether The Catch & Kill Podcast With Ronan Farrow needs to exist, what we'd r…
 
A new hour-long documentary confronts the deaths of Jen and Sarah Hart and their six adopted children in A Thread Of Deceit: The Hart Family Tragedy -- but did this doc need to exist? And does it do anything the Broken Harts podcast didn't? Later, we'll talk about a docu-nactment hybrid, American Animals, from the director of The Imposter, and whet…
 
[CW for violence against children] Toby Ball returns to discuss -- from a safe distance -- HBO's limited series on the Atlanta child murders of 1979-1981, Atlanta's Missing and Murdered: The Lost Children. Is it too ambitious? Did it set out to be a true-crime docuseries, or a sociological study of the rise of The New South? And what did Wayne Will…
 
Mike Dunn returns -- from a safe distance -- to talk about HBO's college-hoops bribery-scandal doc The Scheme. Did we like it so much because we really miss sports, or is Christian Dawkins just that charismatic? Actually, it's probably both, and between this and Disgraced, director Pat Kondelis has really found his lane. Later, we manage to avoid g…
 
[Mgmt. apologizes for various sound issues, incl. 1) construction noise next door; 2) dog being a yappy heller; and 3) Skype throttling Kevin's sound.] Kevin Smokler is back to discuss Liz Garbus's feature on one fragment of the Long Island Serial Killer case -- Lost Girls, based on Robert Kolker's excellent book. We like everyone involved, but are…
 
Can FX repeat its American Crime Story success in the unscripted space? The Most Dangerous Animal Of All takes a big swing, but Gary Stewart may get stuck on the bench with me, my guest Eve Batey, and everyone else whose dads aren't the Zodiac. Would this have made a good feature just on the criminal drama that was Stewart's birth parents? What is …
 
I'm so grateful Dr. Marcia Chatelain made time for even more discussion of fast-food malfeasance; she's my guest again as we take a look at the back half of Monopoly-scam docuseries McMillion$. The character-based future seasons we wanted, "poor man's Sante Kimes" used as a verb, the ways in which McMillion$ is the most American of stories, and muc…
 
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