Tag Archives: Netflix

Whispers on the crack that will shatter that wall

21 May

I just finished binge-watching The Keepers on Netflix. It only has seven episodes, but it made for a slow, uncomfortable torturous viewing. (Spoilers hereafter.) The story starts with the disappearance and murder of a nun, Sister Cathy Cesnik in 1969. A captivating whodunnit all of a sudden morphs into something more sinister in the next episodes. And from here on out it becomes very painful to watch. Sister Cathy’s murder is still unsolved to this day, but it becomes apparent that it is only one piece of a puzzle, one that leads to a dark web of abuse within and protected by the Archdiocese of Baltimore, apparently aided and abetted by at least the Baltimore Police and the State Attorney’s Office (that interview with Sharon May was one of several instances where one is tempted to punch the screen). The abuse was perpetrated by the counselor of the all-girls Catholic school Keough, Father Joseph Maskell. The details provided in the interviews were spare, but enough to make one’s hairs stand on end: Father Maskell kept an eye out for troubled girls, especially those who experienced sexual abuse previously, so that he could snare them. And he didn’t work alone. Jean Wehner, who later on tried to sue, said that she was marked by a different priest, Father Magnus, when she confessed about being abused by her uncle when she was younger. After getting the attention of Maskell, she experienced horrific and unspeakable violence in the hands of these priests and other men. Sister Cathy must have noticed that something was happening, and she assured Jean that she would do something about it and that things would be alright. It didn’t, because Sister Cathy ended up dead. And in Jean’s recovered memories, decades later, she recalled that Maskell himself took her to Sister Cathy’s body in the woods to warn her about speaking out against him.

Despite the many numbers of victims that reached out after Jean and another victim, Teresa Lancaster, decided to sue in the early 90s, and other evidence such as the documents that Maskell asked to be buried and was later recovered by police, and the incessant coverage of local media, Maskell was never brought to court. There apparently was no paper trail, evidence were destroyed or lost, and the words of 35 to 100 women were not enough to move it forward. For the viewer, this is where the intense feeling of helplessness and anger just builds up. And it wasn’t even the worst of it: it turned out that Maskell had an earlier victim: an eight grade boy whose mother went to the office of the Archdiocese of Baltimore and reported the abuse in 1967. The Archdiocese knew about Maskell, and instead of punishing him or turning him over to the police, transferred him to Keough where he went on to abuse dozens of young girls for years. Had they taken action, these young women would not have had their lives and futures taken away from them. And perhaps Sister Cathy would not have died.

The most disturbing thing about this entire series is not just the role of the Church in the cover up and the lies to make Jean think that she was the only victim and no one can corroborate her story: it is also the possibility that the Church colluded with the authorities to keep things hush-hush. I think Maskell was ultimately running a pedophile ring, and the reason for the apparent incompetent investigations and the lack of legal action against him was because he had too many friends in high places. People who have a lot to lose if the atrocities were brought to light.

I think The Keepers will cause much more of an outrage than Making a Murderer did. Ultimately there were many lives which were destroyed, real people died, and the injustice continues on (interestingly, the Church had apparently made a way to stop a bill regarding the extension of the statute of limitations for child sexual abuse cases to be passed). I read somewhere that the city of Baltimore is actually bracing itself from the public reaction from this series. It only got released this week, so the uproar will only get louder in the coming days and weeks.

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13 Reasons Why

9 Apr

Just so you know, spoilers galore.

I just finished watching the Netflix series 13 Reasons Why, mostly because I was down with the cold and could only roll around in bed. There are 13 episodes, but unlike most I guess I couldn’t binge more than 3 episodes at a time, which does not really constitute bingeing. Anyway, I had to force myself to watch it, especially halfway through, because I actually put it in my bujo list. Lol. Gotta shade ’em squares, right. The middle part was excruciating slow and everyone seems to be painfully stupid and self-absorbed except for the “unhelpful Yoda” Tony.

So, I finished it today. The last three episodes were good. Although I do feel like Hannah was just trying to fuck people over with killing herself. Okay, that’s actually a real reason why people kill themselves: to get revenge. That was pretty evident with the last episode, when she goes to the counselor’s office. She secretly records her conversation with Mr. Porter. She speaks about her assault. Mr. Porter asks if she told the guy no, and if she wants to press charges. Negative on both, and Mr. Porter tells her that if she is unwilling to go to court, then she should just move on. Admittedly, that is cold. But Hannah herself stands up and ends the conversation. She goes out of Porter’s office, looks back, and waits for him to call her back in to his office. He doesn’t. So his door is closed behind her. She goes home, gets into the tub, and slits her arms.

There is no epilogue. There are still some unsettled stuff, such as Alex’s attempted suicide. Justin going away with a bottle of vodka and a gun, creepy Tyler prepping to become a school shooter, Hannah’s parents starting to listen to the audios. I guess the producers were fishing for the possibility of a new season. I haven’t read the book so I wouldn’t know. But I think doing a season 2 would be a bad idea. For one, it’s not a crime procedural. We can pretty much guess how it will go for Porter. And for Bryce, for that matter. Poor Porter, though. Hannah fucked it up for him real good. Everyone has something going on for them, but of course with the state of mind Hannah was in, everything was about her and the punishment she has in store for everyone who she thinks wronged her, including Porter whom she thinks as someone who didn’t save her.

So yeah, while all of it is valid (i.e., high school can be terrible, we should be mindful of how our actions affect other people, what we do have consequences) I didn’t have much patience for all the self-centered teen angst. Actually, I can relate. I have some points in my life (even as an adult) where I have felt something similar. But looking back at those days, I wish I had realized that I didn’t have to go at it alone, that the world was not out to personally make my life hell. Everyone has issues. I wish I wasn’t so focused on mine.

I think even if one is hurting really bad, it is necessary to ask for help. Essentially it is not a move to find a savior: it is a decision to save oneself. Because your life is yours, and at the same time it is not yours. Your life is also tied to the people who love you and care for you. Should you decide to end your life to end all your suffering, you are consigning everyone else who loved you to suffer for the rest of their lives.

Depression is real. But it is also something that can be managed if one has support. The first step you take should always be your own, but you can only know that if you know your options and their consequences. That is not something we see with 13 Reasons Why. If there is any epilogue or last message that should have been shown, it is for suicide support hotlines. I think the producers missed an opportunity to reach out to kids who might be going through the same thing Hannah does in the show.

Thirteen reasons why….

5 Apr

I should stop watching this show. Okay, I have fewer than 13, but still…..

The slow pace is totally frustrating. But then the only way to get to 13 episodes is to slow dance through the tapes, one side at a time. I’ve already read spoilers elsewhere, because really, it’s getting tedious. I’m two-thirds done with episode 7, and the pace is just maddening. 

Damn Clay for listening to it one at a time instead of bingeing like what mere mortals do with Netflix and Game of Thrones. But wait, it wouldn’t be 13 reasons if he binged on em rite. 

Sigh. 

Holiday denial

8 Dec

Just one more week before I fly back home for the holidays. I think this will be my first Christmas home in four years. Previously I had spent those in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. It’s a little weird to be spending it at home again, without him. 

Maybe a little change is good for the both of us. I’ll see him again in June, this time in his part of the world. I’m excited because I’ve never left Southeast Asia, lol. Germany is gonna be a whole new experience. 

Anyway, exams are done although markings aren’t. I’ve been a little lazy and had procrastinated a lot. I just couldn’t seem to get into the zone, lol. I have to, now, or I just might have to spend the long weekend with papers. :(

I haven’t progressed much with my readings because…. I’ve been marathoning Bondi Vet. Well, I’m only six episodes shy of finishing the available season on Netflix, so I will be resuming reading Dictator once again. Hopefully. 

Still not decided whethere I should change my reading goals or not. Probably not. I’ve still got a lot of unread Penguin Little Black Classics anyway. Lol.

Long weekend

4 Dec

It’s another long weekend, this time courtesy of the paranoia about the protests in Jakarta. I won’t be complaining because that’s one less day of work for me. Anyway, not that it mattered because I still went on Saturday for extra class for those who wanted to revise for Monday’s test.

So it is Sunday now and the weekend was spent mostly watching Bondi Vet on Netflix. Season 1 was produced as far back as 2007. I’ve followed a few vet reality shows on NatGeo and Animal Planet, but Bondi Vet is different in that they actually included clips where animals died or had to be put down. Pretty distressing sometimes but that is the reality in an actual vet clinic, I guess. You get dogs that get run over. :( Kinda sad but that keeps it real.

I’m still reading Waltzing with a Dictator, but only a few pages at a time. I have a four-book backlog on Goodreads, and I’m a little torn about changing my reading goal to something more achievable. Let’s see. I still got three weeks left, anyway.

I’ve had some cycling of moods recently. Mostly sad because of something that happened a week ago. But yeah, shit happens, I should be able to get over it, etc. The problem is I have a tendency to dwell, and sometimes it is difficult for me to pull myself from a rut. The only thing that would likely help is to have  a routine with activities that can keep me busy and productive, instead of just lying around and thinking of things that cannot be changed. So yeah, I’m trying to catch up on an EdX course that I am currently enrolled in, and then work on my bullet journal later. Cooking also helps keep me busy, although I get annoyed by the fact that I always seem to forget to buy something I had meant to get. Like yeast for my homemade pizza. Lol. Also mozz for said pizza. I suck. Especially since I blow money every time I do the groceries, and then I end up not getting what I need.

Ugh.

Thursdays are great.

18 Aug

Only three periods, one for each class. After prepping for them, I’m catching up on episode 4 of Line of Duty on Netflix. I can’t really watch in the flat because my mobile signal was weak and the internet provider bans Netflix. Soo, catching up and I’m so conflicted about DCI Gates. Good cop or bad cop? Very complicated. And then there’s DS Arnott. He’s not on season 2. Will he die???????

Netflix list: documenting my lack of self-control

5 Mar

Currently watching:
Atelier
Dear White People
Gilmore Girls S1
House of Cards
Jane the Virgin
Master of None S1
Outlander
Peaky Blinders S1
Small Animal Hospital
Top of the Lake

Finished:
3 Türken und ein Baby (2017)
13 Reasons Why (2017)
Audrie & Daisy (2016)
Brooklyn Nine-Nine S1-S3
Black Mirror S3 (2016)
Bondi Vet: Collection S1 (2016)
Chewing Gum S1(2016), S2 (2017)
Contagion (2017)
Crazyhead S1 (2017)
Designated Survivor S1 (2016)
Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency (2017)
Empire Records (2016)*
Good Morning Call (2016)
Hurricane Bianca (2017)
I Don’t Feel at Home in this World Anymore (2017)
ISIS Women Unveiled (2016)
Ivory Wars (2016)
Josef Fritzl: Story of a Monster (2016)
Kurt and Courtney (2016)
Line of Duty S1-S2 (2016)
Love (2016)
Lovesick S1-S2 (2016)
Making a Murderer (2016)
Matt Shepard is a Friend of Mine (2016)
Orange is the New Black S4
Penny Dreadful S1-S2
Real Crime: Hannah’s Killer (2016)
Requiem for the American Dream (2016)
Sherlock S1-S3
Stand by Me (2016)
Stranger Things (2016)
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (2016)
The Crown S1 (2017)
The Fall S1
The Garden of Words (Kotonoha no Niwa) (2016)
The Hunting Ground (2016)
The Lost Honour of Christopher Jefferies (2016)
The Keepers (2017)
The White Helmets (2016)
Top Gun (2016)
Touch S1-S2 (2016)
Trading Places (2016)
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt S1-S2 S3 (2017)
Versailles S1 (2016)