As John B and Sarah Cameron relax on a beach in the teaser trailer, the Pogue leader looks at his girlfriend and says, “Back in the G-game, baby.” I’m ready to go hunting for some gold in Outer Banks Season 2.
I’ve spoken about my obsession with Outer Banks ad nauseam. For a “too long, didn’t read” version, I started watching Outer Banks on a Friday night in April 2020, right in the middle of the lockdown. I started on a Friday night and completed the 10-episode first season by Saturday night. The world wasn’t doing too well in April 2020, so the show provided the perfect escape from reality.
The young adult drama was an instant hit as it quickly climbed to the number 1 spot on Netflix’s Top 10. One year later, the show is back for Season 2, which premieres on July 30.
In Season 1, John B and his fellow Pogues, JJ, Kiara, and Pope, join forces with Sarah Cameron to investigate the disappearance of John B’s father. During their investigation, they learn about the treasure of the Royal Merchant, which is rumored to be worth $400 million in gold, and how it tied to John B’s missing father. The Pogues eventually find the gold, but it’s later stolen by Ward Cameron.
In the season finale, John B and Sarah attempt to flee from the authorities during a storm via boat after John B was wrongly accused of killing Sheriff Peterkin. The boat capsizes in the storm, and the two young lovers are believed to be dead. However, John B and Sarah survive and are saved by a cargo ship. The ship is headed towards the Bahamas, where Ward Cameron stashed the stolen gold.
From the trailer above, Season 2 ups the ante with more drama, romance, and explosions. John B and Sarah make it to the Bahamas, but they’re considered fugitives with a $50,000 reward to anyone who turns them in. While the duo tries to find the gold in the Bahamas, JJ, Pope, and Kiara are trying to move on with their lives in the OBX. However, they soon learn that their best friends survived the storm. A Pogue reunion was rumored to happen at some point, but it’s now been confirmed.
Now, the Pogues will look to take back the gold that they found. However, Ward is not the only one trying to claim the gold. A new villain named Limbrey (Elizabeth Mitchell) is interested in the treasure, and it seems that she has a bone to pick with Ward, who may have doublecrossed her in the process.
In true Outer Banks fashion, things will get complicated, people will get hurt, and someone will die. I wouldn’t want it any other way! Below are a few of my predictions for Season 2.
There’s either a second treasure or more gold from the Royal Merchant. Right now, Ward has under half a billion worth in gold. In the trailer, the Pogues are exploring the island and find a key that leads to another room. Perhaps this room holds another treasure or even more gold.
Topper joins the Pogues. One of the Kooks has to help the Pogues at some point. It’s not going to be Rafe so Topper is the likely choice because of his previous relationship with Sarah.
John B’s mother arrives at the end of Season 2. With the show’s popularity, Season 3 is inevitable so setting up storylines at the end of Season 2 makes sense logistically. We know about John B’s father, but his mother is still a mystery. Nothing would shake things up more than her arrival.
Grab your favorite bandana, tie it around your neck, and play some “Left Hand Free.” See you later, Pogues.
What are your predictions for Outer Banks Season 2? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter, @unafraidshow.
To my Pogue family, our long, national nightmare is over. Outer Banks Season 2 hits Netflix on July 30.
It was only a matter of time before Netflix dropped the date for the new season. Production on Season 2 wrapped in April, and exclusive photos released in mid-May. You had fans like myself writing prediction articles as to when Season 2 might air. My best guess was August 6, which means I was exactly one week off. Unfortunately, close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.
Although my incorrect predictions are important, it’s nothing in comparison to the footage that Netflix released from the upcoming season. According to my spirit animal, John B, they are “back in the G-game baby.”
I couldn’t be more amped for the show’s return. Last April, the world was not in a good place. New York City, in particular, was a ghost town. You could walk through Times Square without Elmo, Iron Man, or Cookie Monster asking for a picture and a cash tip. Believe me, that’s very rare for the City.
Anyways, I stumbled upon Outer Banks thanks to the Netflix Top 10 list. 24 hours later, I finished all 10 episodes and bought a pack of bandanas. You could say I was obsessed. What can I say? I’m a sucker for a teen drama.
As we get closer to the show, I’ll provide a breakdown of the official trailer with Season 2 predictions. For now, here are my takeaways from the 39-second clip.
– The Pogues still believe John B and Sarah are dead. It’s a matter of time before the Pogues find out that John B and Sarah are alive in the Bahamas. Also, JJ might be the van Gough of tree memorials.
– John B and Sarah have settled down in the Bahamas as evidenced by their “Middle-Aged Man at a resort” clothing. They’re on the hunt for the gold that Ward Cameron stole from the Pogues before shipping it to the Bahamas. Later in the teaser, the Pogue couple speeds down a road in the Bahamas as they’re most likely on the run from one of Ward’s associates.
– Is this John B and Sarah leaving the cargo ship for the island? Perhaps. It also could be JJ, Pope, and Kie since there is a third person in the motorboat.
– The romance between Kie and Pope is alive! Kie is also seen running away from an enemy. Life in the OBX will be just as crazy as it is in the Bahamas.
– Some beers for the boys?
– Rafe is a train wreck, and I can’t look away. Every person knows a Rafe in their life. He’s a spoiled, pretentious, drug-fueled guy that will be sweating profusely at the bar as he orders shots for everyone in sight. The show needs more Rafe.
Fast forward to July 30 when I don’t leave my apartment until finishing Season 2. See you soon, Pogues.
Are you excited for Outer Banks Season 2? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tweet me, @danny_giro.
Is Stranger Things‘ scary? The debate over the show’s scariness dates back to its debut on Netflix in 2016. Stranger Things is arguably more sci-fi than horror, but it’s not something I would show to a kid under the age of seven.
Stranger Things perfectly blends horror with sci-fi and comedy. It’s not the scariest show to be created, but it does mix in timely jump scares and spine-tingling visuals. Creepy is a better way to describe the show’s horror.
A possessed Billy going AWOL and fighting the gang? Actually scary!
After watching the newest teaser for Season 4, the horror will eclipse new levels in Stranger Things.
I’m a big enough man to admit when I’m frightened and after watching the teaser, I’m scared. Gaten Matarazzo said that this season will be the scariest one yet so I’m intrigued to see how frightening it will be.
I’m more excited for the show to return, but I’d be lying if I denied the chill sent down my spine when Dr. Brenner said, “Eleven, are you listening?”
The teaser highlights the Hawkins National Laboratory, where Dr. Brenner would experiment and train children with psychokinetic abilities like Eleven. It’s unknown whether this is a flashback, dream sequence, or the present-day. I bet it’s s flashback, but we know that Dr. Brenner is alive so it’s possible that he will capture Eleven once again.
Unfortunately, we won’t receive any answers on Eleven and Dr. Brenner until the Season 4 premiere, which will probably arrive in 2022. I’m still holding out hope for a Thanksgiving/Christmas debut. Drop it early, Netflix!
Are you excited for Stranger Things Season 4? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tweet us, @danny_giro.
I live on Twitter, or as I like to call it, “The Tweeter.” Do you know what I also love? Watching movies, which is what I did the other weekend when I streamed Extraction and Love Wedding Repeat. Put those two together and you have my next segment, One Tweet Reviews.
I once heard that if you can describe the plot of a movie or television show in one sentence, then that movie has a better chance to succeed. It’s not the be-all and end-all, but there’s some truth in it. In today’s age, people tend to gravitate to short, quick bits of information so if you can win the audience over with a one-sentence logline, that’s a good start.
I wanted to take that mindset and apply it to my reviews. Sometimes, I wish I had more words and more time to describe shows like Normal Peopleand Devs. On the other hand, for these two Netflix movies, a simple tweet will suffice. So that’s what I did. I reviewed these movies in 240 characters or less.
Without further ado, here are my One Tweet Reviews for Extraction and Love Wedding Repeat.
Synopsis from Netflix: Tyler Rake (Chris Hemsworth) is a fearless black market mercenary who embarks on the deadliest mission of his career when he’s enlisted to rescue the kidnapped son of an international crime lord. Directed by Sam Hargrave, this action-packed, edge-of-your-seat thriller is produced by Joe and Anthony Russo, the visionary directors of Avengers: Endgame.
Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Rudhraksh Jaiswal, Randeep Hooda, Golshifteh Farahani, Pankaj Tripathi, and David Harbour
One Tweet Review: Extraction
I don’t have the exact numbers, but Chris Hemsworth shot and killed approximately 50,000 bad guys. The 12-minute tracking shot was an adrenaline rush. The perfect “Netflix movie.” I loved every second of it.
Love Wedding Repeat
Synopsis from Netflix: While trying to make his sister’s wedding day go smoothly, Jack (Sam Claflin) finds himself juggling an angry ex-girlfriend (Freida Pinto), an uninvited guest with a secret, a misplaced sleep sedative, and the girl that got away (Olivia Munn) in alternate versions of the same day.
Cast: Sam Claflin, Olivia Munn, Eleanor Tomlinson, Joel Fry, Tim Key, and Aisling Bea
One Tweet Review: Love Wedding Repeat
I’ll always make time for a Netflix rom-com. However, the storylines were confusing at times and a bit messy in the middle. However, a charming cast and strong ending were enough to keep me entertained. Main takeaway: If I don’t get married in Rome, I failed.
How’d we do? Agree or disagree? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tweet us, @unafraidshow.
This past Friday night was business as usual in the Girolamo Apartment. Pizza at 8, ice cream at 10, and television/movies before, during, and after my meals. After watching Extraction, an entertaining action movie where Chris Hemsworth killed approximately 500,000 bad guys, I broke out the ice cream and fired up Netflix’s latest teen drama, Outer Banks. To be honest, I knew almost nothing about the premise going in. Outer Banks has only been out since April 15 so it’s a fairly new show. It’s been consistently sitting in Netflix’s Top 10 since it dropped so I gave it a shot.
I started watching the show at 10 PM on Friday night. By the next night, I binged the entire 10-episode first season, and folks, I’m addicted to “Pogue Life.” I’m going on the record saying that I’m officially obsessed with Outer Banks. I’m a sucker for a good teen drama. Give me a bunch of kids who like to hang out, drink, hook up, and get into trouble and I’ll watch. I promise you that.
So what’s it about? The basic storyline revolves around the lives of four teenagers: John B, JJ, Pope, and Kiara. These four friends make up “The Pogues.” The Pogues live on the blue-collar, working-class side of the Outer Banks called “The Cut”. Like any good story that deals with economic and social status, the Pogues need rich rivals. Enter “The Kooks,” the preppy, entitled elitists who live on the other side of the island called “Figure Eight.”
While battling with the Kooks, John B and the Pogues discover a legendary tale about a treasure in the Outer Banks worth over hundreds of millions of dollars. It turns out that John B’s father, who went missing a year prior, had been working on finding the treasure for twenty years and was on the brink of discovery before his disappearance. John B believes that if he finds the treasure, he’ll find his father. I’m attempting to not reveal any spoilers so I’ll stop with there. Watch the trailer below.
P.S. Obviously, there’s a Romeo and Juliet storyline with the princess of the Kooks, Sarah Cameron.
Outer Banks is a coming of age story that follows a tight-knit group of local teens (aka the Pogues) in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. When a hurricane kills the power for the summer season, it sets off a chain of illicit events that force the friends to make life-altering decisions. The search for their ringleader’s missing father, forbidden romances, a high-stakes treasure hunt, and the escalating conflict between the Pogues and their rivals turn their summer into one filled with mystery and adventure they’ll never forget.
If you love teen dramas and that synopsis doesn’t get you fired up, then something’s wrong with you. I’ve seen Outer Banks compared to The O.C.and Gossip Girl. If I’d say if those two shows had a baby with a murder mystery, Outer Banks would be the result. I appreciate how Outer Banks throws conventional storylines out the window. In no world could teens outsmart the local police on a daily basis, but in Outer Banks, the teens are geniuses and the police are dumber than rocks. That’s not a dig at the show, by the way. I appreciate how Outer Banks embraces its chaotic and crazy nature. In the final few episodes, the show becomes unhinged, and I loved every second of it.
Let’s be honest. There’s one main reason to watch the show and his name is John B.
John B, the legend himself and captain of The Pogues. This kid could not have more swag if he tried. He oozes coolness. I would follow John B into battle any day of the week. From his immaculate hair to charming persona, it’s so easy to believe in this kid. He’s what I like to call a “save some for the rest of us” guy. All the girls want him so he needs to save some for the regular shmucks like myself. I can’t get enough of this kid. Do you know what I did the other night? I bought bandanas. It’s been at least five years since I tied a bandana around my neck, but since John B wears bandanas, so will I. I’m ready to drop everything and move to the Outer Banks in order to become a Pogue. Do not even get me started on how he buttons his shirts. If you don’t see me like this at a beach bar in July, then I’m a fraud.
I’m an addict and Outer Banks is my drug. I’ve already formed my group of Pogues (shoutout Dan and Katie). I still have two spots open so if you think you’re worthy of joining my group, let me know. It will not be easy, but if you’re lucky enough to make my tribe, it will be the greatest accomplishment of your life.
Pogues for life.
What did you think of Outer Banks? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter, @unafraidshow.
Criticisms of Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez
Not Enough Focus
At times, the docu-series felt extremely sporadic. Yes, it was still compelling as they “uncovered” the secrets in Hernandez’ life. Nonetheless, each episode lacked focus. It bounced around too often and didn’t allocate time well. If “Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez” stuck to its focal points better in each installment, the documentary would improve.
Too Much Speculation and Not Enough Facts
Even though the documentary spanned 200 minutes, many aspects of “Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez” were shallow. It left viewers wanting more. Again, this was most likely due to the editing and story-line choices. With a better episode-by-episode focus, his story would unfold.
Additionally, Netflix’ access to speakers on the subject were likely very limited. This story involved high school, collegiate and professional football suspicions. Those are accusations against the giants of sports. Because of football’s power, it’s probable that many remained silent. With an underrepresented sources, the story can’t be completely told. For that reason, the docu-series hurt.
Dennis Sansoucie “Star Quarterback”
Speaking of sources, Dennis Sansoucie earned heavy criticism. He’s been called a liar, fake, greedy or just another looking for the spotlight. Coming from Dennis Sansoucie himself, Aaron Hernandez and him were both friends and young lovers. At one point, Sansoucie delcared that he and Hernandez were the two best players on the field. Quarterback and tight end. That point received the most condemnation.
Dennis Sansoucie’s Actual Stats
In his four years of high school, Sansoucie only managed four starts at quarterback. But, each of those starts came at the start of the 2005 season. He was their starting quarterback for four games. In those, he threw 11 touchdowns, nine of which went to Aaron Hernandez. On his short resume, Sansoucie also posted one start with nearly 300 yards (297) and five touchdowns.
Sep. 16, 2005
New Britain Golden Hurricanes
Sep. 23, 2005
Sep. 30, 2005
South Windor Bobcats
Oct. 7th, 2005
Hartford Public Owls
Oct. 16th, 2005
Matt Coyne Completions
Moreover, additional speculation came out surrounding Sansoucie’s junior season.
This would explain why Dennis Sansoucie felt that he was a star of the team, yet lacked a full season as quarterback. Whether or not this story is true, it gives light into Sansoucie’s reasoning. There are certainly many adults that look back into their high school days with glory. If Sansoucie lost his starting job because of an off-field issue, he would still think of himself as the star.
Strengths of Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez
After its January 15th release, “Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez” immediately gained popularity and intrigue. The three-part Netflix true crime documentary explores court cases and circumstances that could lead to those.
Overall, it was well received. “Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez” boasts:
On first watch, “Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez” is highly entertaining. It’s certainly binge-worthy and captures your attention immediately. We all want to know the whole story. Aaron Hernandez’ psyche is a an enthralling reason. There’s no watching just one episode. Instead, it compels every viewer to watch all three episodes in a row. For that, the Netflix documentary succeeds.
Access to Prison Phone Calls
Without a doubt, the highlight of “Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez” is hearing the phone calls from prison. Those phone calls give us a greater insight into Hernandez’ character. They’re personal, private, unfiltered. Viewers hear him talk to his fiance, daughter, mother, agent. It added a layer of realism to the story.
Most Importantly, Aaron Hernandez’ Story Raises Questions and Concerns
Homophobia in Football Culture
In the series, Dennis Sansoucie and Ryan O’Callaghan both discussed the plight of growing up as closeted gay men. Sansoucie talked about his and Hernandez’ fathers as men that would beat the gay out of a kid. And although the documentary speculated that Aaron Hernandez was “gay” instead of acknowledging other sexual orientations like bi-sexuality, it was still an important subject. Mental health is a massive issue in our society. Denying your own identity out of fear would derail anyone.
It’s the NFL’s biggest Boogie Man: CTE. Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy. The disease continues to appear in professional football. In a 2017 study published in the medical journal JAMA, the results were shocking. Of the 111 post-mortem brains of former NFL players, 110 had CTE. CTE plagues the well beings of current and former players. It’s symptoms include:
Impulse Control Problems
Do any of those symptoms sound like Aaron Hernandez? Completely. Does CTE excuse his actions? Of course not. However, would he be a murder if he didn’t have CTE? That is the million-dollar question. And that’s important not only for the lives of football players, but to the victims of criminal acts by those players.
Yes, the NFL says it’s doing its best to get ahead of this issue. But, as pointed out in this documentary, it starts long before the NFL. Additionally, how often has the league ignored player health and safety?
College and NFL Teams Make Injured Players Play
“My body is so fucked up… They banned that shit from the league saying you can only get that if you have a serious injury,” he said. “Guess who they gave that shit to every fucking game? Me.”
Aaron Hernandez, prison call with his fiance
Fill them up with pills or injections and put them out on the field. It’s a part of the game. Organizations want wins. Players want money. No player wants to be labeled as injury prone or soft. Adding to that, the next man up could always be the replacement. Injured players need to heal. Instead, due to a lack of integrity by teams, they are pushed onto the field to play sports most brutal game.
Football wrecks bodies. It’s a gladiator’s sport. Understanding it’s brutality, coaches and team medical staff need to support players. Player health and safety should be a top concern. But, wins secure jobs for coaches and staff. As a result, players need to play. Irregardless of injury. Why else would teams constantly refer to injuries as a “pain-tolerance” issue?
It becomes an especially-jarring concern when Aaron Hernandez stated that the Patriots gave him Toradol every single game. Again, the case of Aaron Hernandez showed why NFL players deserve better advocates. Whether it is mentoring mental, emotional or physical health, these athletes need help. They shouldn’t have to ask. And they certainly should have to commit suicide before football anwers.
The wait is over. Jesse Pinkman, welcome back to our lives. After six long years, Jesse Pinkman has returned to our television screens in El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie. After taking the weekend to process my thoughts, I’m ready to talk. Here’s what worked and what didn’t work in El Camino.
This post will contain major spoilers for El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie. If you have not watched the film yet, stop reading now.
Seriously, spoilers ahead. You’ve been warned.
What Worked: Jesse’s Ending
Out of all the major characters in Breaking Bad, Jesse was the biggest name to have an open-ended future. In the series finale, Jesse escaped in Todd’s El Camino and his future was up to the audience to decide. Part of me believes that Gilligan created El Camino because of his unsatisfaction and guilt with how Jesse’s story ended and felt like he needed to properly close his saga. In 2013, Gilligan stated that he hoped Jesse moved to “Alaska to live a peaceful life.” Then, in the first scene, Mike mentioned that he would go to Alaska if he were Jesse. Right then and there, I knew Jesse was making it to Alaska. Did that ruin the film for me knowing that Jesse would stay alive the entire time? No, it did not. After being tortured for the last season and a half of Breaking Bad, Jesse deserved a peaceful resolution.
What Didn’t Work: The Entire Film Being Set In Albuquerque
I have no problem with Jesse getting to Alaska successfully. However, I wish the film spent more time in Alaska and less time in Albuquerque. Between Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, we spend so much time in Albuquerque. It would’ve been awesome to see a Breaking Bad movie in Alaska. Imagine if we saw Jesse adjusting to life in his Alaskan cabin and had to interact with the townspeople. If El Camino spent the first half of the film in Albuquerque and the second half in Alaska, then I’d sign up for that film in a heartbeat. Setting the film in Alaska would have been a risk, but these Gilligan could have pulled it off.
What Worked: Todd
TODD! My biggest takeaway from the film revolves around Todd and how amazing he was as a villain. Breaking Bad highlighted on a few of Todd’s evil tendencies (most notably, shooting Drew in “Dead Freight” and Andrea in “Granite State“), but the show never fully displayed how Todd broke Jesse, both physically and mentally. The scene where Todd convinced Jesse to give him the gun in the desert while persuading him with a pepperoni pizza and some beer is equally horrifying as it is impressive. This scene is why Jesse exacting his revenge on Todd in “Felina” is so satisfying. Jesse Plemons is a fantastic villain as evidenced in Breaking Bad, Fargo, and Black Mirror. If Breaking Bad ever wanted to do a spinoff on Todd’s life and how he got mixed up with Uncle Jack and the drug universe, I’m all in for “Breaking Todd.”
What Didn’t Work: Walt
It truly pains me to type this, but Walt’s flashback scene did nothing for me. In El Camino, the flashback takes place during a season two episode titled, “4 Days Out,” where Walt and Jesse go on a meth-cooking bender in order to try and secure enough money for Walt’s family. The scene takes place sometime between leaving the desert and dropping off Walt at the airport. The significance is that it takes place a few episodes before meeting Gus Fring and Jane’s death. In other words, it’s a few episodes before Walt breaks bad. The scene at the cafe is purely fan service, which is both good and bad. If Walt was not featured in some capacity, fans would have rioted. It was a light, semi-fun scene that highlighted the initial friendship between Walt and Jesse. But that friendship was so long ago that it’s hard to remember Walt as a “good guy.” I preferred Heisenberg Walt in a flashback over “I’m selling drugs for my family” Walt.
What Worked: Aaron Paul
Jesse might have been Walt’s sidekick, but Aaron Paul was equally as good as Bryan Cranston. Just like his character, it took some time for Paul to find his own as Jesse, but when he got it right, it was magic. Walt might have been the brains behind the show, but Jesse was the heart. Walt may have broken bad, but Jesse tried to hold onto his morality throughout the entire show. El Camino gave Paul a chance to shine as the true lead, and he made the most of this opportunity. Paul’s Jesse is the perfect mix of a criminal trying to make up for previous mistakes. Paul’s performance is full of heartbreak, compassion, and finally, satisfaction as the book of Jesse Pinkman came to an end.
What Didn’t Work: It Felt Like A Long Episode of Breaking Bad, Not A Film
To some, this is a positive. A long episode of Breaking Bad is better than no Breaking Bad at all. El Camino was a fan service at its finest. The montage in Todd’s apartment, the return of memorable characters, and the aerial camera shots were all familiar elements from the series. However, I wouldn’t consider El Camino a film. El Camino felt like an episode during the middle of a season. Spending time at Skinny Pete’s house and searching for money at Todd’s dragged out and could have been shorter. I expected the film to be more action-packed and to the point. The film didn’t really “get going” until Jesse interacted with the Kandy Welding Company at Todd’s apartment. As I said earlier, a long episode of Breaking Bad is better than no Breaking Bad at all, but that doesn’t necessarily work for something billed as a film.
El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie was a satisfying film that provided a lot of fan service thanks to cameos from memorable characters. Will it be ranked towards the top of the Breaking Bad universe? No. Will it be ranked towards the bottom? No. It will stand on its own as a tribute to a phenomenal show, which is where it should be.
Did you enjoy El Camino? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tweet us, @unafraidshow.
During one of the episodes in Netflix’s Unbelievable, Detective Karen Duvall (Merritt Wever), lashes out at a team member due to her frustration over a recent rape case. When describing how rape triggers more than a physical emotion, Duvall said, “This is not something people get over. This is something they carry with them forever like a bullet in the spine.”
Sexual assault is a tough subject matter to discuss, but what about witnessing a sexual assault and watching how the justice system failed an innocent victim? That notion is on full display in Unbelievable, which premiered on September 13. The pilot introduces Marie Adler (Kaitlyn Dever), an 18-year old Washington resident who in 2008, reports that she has been raped and assaulted by a man at her apartment. While reporting the crime to Detective Parker (Eric Lange) and Detective Pruitt (Bill Fagerbakke), the audience gets to see quick, spine-tingling flashbacks of the rape.
However, Marie’s calm demeanor and small inconsistencies in her stories lead both the police and her former foster mothers to question the validity of the assault. As Marie relives the horrific trauma through constant questioning and badgering from the police, her crippling anxiety wins out as she’s coerced to admitting the rape was a lie she had made up. This causes the police to charge Marie with filing a false report and they drop the case entirely.
Netflix’s Unbelievable Trailer
Tragically, Unbelievable is inspired by the ProPublica and The Marshall Project’s report, “An Unbelievable Story of Rape,” which chronicles the 2008-2011 Washington and Colorado serial rape cases. The Unbelievable pilot focuses on Marie’s story entirely as she tackles this awful situation practically alone. Marie has been in the foster-care system since she was 3 and struggles to trust those in power. Can you blame her? Dever’s performance is raw, emotional, and gut-wrenching. Dever is a star in the making after a tremendous year of performances in this series, which will lead to an Emmy nomination in 2020, as well as the film, Booksmart.
The pilot episode left me with tears in my eyes and I worried that seven more episodes of this would take a toll on my psyche. However, the series shifted to a parallel timeline in Colorado 2011, where we meet Detective Grace Rasmussen (Toni Collette) and the aforementioned Detective Duvall. Rasmussen and Duvall are from neighboring towns but are brought together after both detectives find similarities in their respective rape cases. When Duvall interviews one of her rape victims, Amber (Danielle Macdonald), it’s clear from the details of the attack that Amber’s assaulter is most likely the same criminal who attacked Marie.
The brash veteran persona of Rasmussen and the meek, religious persona of Duvall mesh perfectly to create a much-needed break from the horrors of Marie’s tragedy. The chemistry between Collette and Wever is magnetic. Collette and Wever are both Emmy winners that have been admired for years so having two stars at the top of their games only adds to the greatness of Unbelievable.
Essentially, Unbelievable becomes two shows-in-one. One portion of the episode is an upsetting and horror-filled view into Marie’s conflict. The other portion is a buddy cop drama that follows the entertaining duo of Rasmussen and Duvall as they attempt to catch their serial rapist. I found myself dreading Marie’s timeline as the pit in my stomach increased every time Marie struggled to get the help she so desperately needed. On the other hand, I internally cheered whenever Rasmussen and Duvall gained a step closer to catching the criminal. Thanks to Collette and Wever, the buddy cop scenes are so fun that for a few minutes, your spirits increase and feel hopeful that justice will finally prevail, which makes Marie’s saga that much more uncomfortable and heart-breaking.
When the two stories finally intersect towards the end, it’s impossible to not immediately think about how the police botched their initial assessment in Marie’s case. If Marie received the same care and dedication towards her case that Rasmussen and Duvall showed towards their victims, then maybe they would have caught Marie’s attacker and given her the justice she deserved.
Sexual assault is a difficult topic to portray onscreen. Instead of just focusing on the assault itself, Netflix’sUnbelievable successfully crafted a harrowing look into how sexual assault not only affects the victim but everyone around it. Collette, Wever, and most notably, Dever, all give superb performances that treat this subject matter with respect and professionalism. It may be tough to watch, but Unbelievable is an eye-opening experience and a masterclass in storytelling.
What are your thoughts on Unbelievable? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tweet us, @unafraidshow.
In Jim Hopper’s letter to Eleven in the Season 3 finale of Netflix’s Stranger Things, Hopper wrote, “I know you’re getting older, growing, changing.” Just like Eleven, all of the kids are all getting older and growing (most noticeably, Mike). Just like the kids, Stranger Things is changing.
*Warning: This article will include major spoilers. You’ve been warned.*
As I’ve said in previous reviews, Stranger Things is an extremely fun and enjoyable show that successfully balancers nostalgia with science-fiction and horror. The Season 3 finale was a great ending to a delightful third season. The final scene depicts the Byers’ family packing up and moving out of Hawkins (FINALLY!) to start a new life. Joining them is Eleven, who lost her father, Hopper, when Joyce shut down the gate room, which disintegrated everyone in the room including Hopper.
Let’s just skip to the elephant in the room for Season 4. (Season 4 has not been officially confirmed, but it’s a stone-cold lock to happen.)
Is Hopper alive?
That’s the million-dollar question. There are a few ways to tackle this. You either believe a) Hopper is alive, b) He’s is dead, but will be brought back to life or c) Hopper is dead.
How is Hopper still alive? There are a few clues that support the idea that our beloved Police Chief of Hawkins is still breathing. Look at his adopted daughter, Eleven, as someone who we thought was dead by was instead trapped in the Upside Down. When Dr. Owens enters the gate room, the gate to the Upside Down is still open. Just like Eleven, there’s a chance Hopper made his way into the Upside Down and is trapped there, which is the most likely option of the “Hopper is alive” theories.
Then, there’s Hopper’s letter. The letter was beautifully written and so heartfelt that it brought a tear to my eye. I urge you to reread it again and when you do, you’ll see that a few sentences are clues to his whereabouts.
“I’ve been stuck in one place. In a cave, you might say.” – The Upside Down?
“But, please, if you don’t mind, for the sake of your poor old dad, keep the door open three inches.” – See the photo above.
Does this mean Eleven has to rescue Hopper in the Upside Down? Maybe. Plus, we never see Hopper’s body when he “dies.” He doesn’t vaporize onscreen. It goes back to the old saying, “Never found the body” TV trope. If the viewer doesn’t see the death, it tends to mean that the person might still be alive.
Then, there’s the post-credits scene in Russia. Two soldiers are walking through cells when they come across a first door. One says, “No, not the American.” And they go to a second door and take a Russian prisoner down to feed to the Demogorgon. Is this American, Hopper? It might be, but I believe it’s Dr. Brenner, who we learned is still alive in Season 2.
Now, there’s Option B. Hopper is dead, but he’s going to be brought back to life. Huh? Does Eleven now have the ability to raise the dead? Last time I checked, she doesn’t have that power. However, there’s an ’80s pop culture reference that was seen in the third season of Stranger Things that could be the key to Hopper’s resurrection. That reference is Back to the Future.
Great Scott! We can go back in time to save Hopper! I don’t believe the kids of Hawkins have a DeLorean, but that doesn’t mean time travel can’t play a part in the show. Notice how the final two scenes are edited. When Eleven reads the letter during the montage, the kids are seen saying goodbye to each other and drive out of Hawkins. However, when she finishes the letter, Eleven brings out her stuff to the truck and the kids say goodbye to each other. Perhaps this editing is a clue about time travel and Season 4 will explain that time travel is possible and necessary in order to save Hopper.
Finally, the last possibility is that Hopper is dead and not returning. Fans would most certainly be upset if Hopper was dead, but his death would be of the utmost significance and shape the remaining 1-2 seasons of the show. Once again, look at Hopper’s letter to Eleven when he says, “I don’t want things to change. So I think maybe that’s why I came in here, to try and make stop that change. To turn back the clock. To make things go back to how they were. But I know that’s naive. It’s just not how life works.” The themes of change and growing up were hammered down in Season 3. Things changes whether we like it or not. Hopper could be dead and whether we like it or not, there may be nothing we can do about it. That’s life.
Even if Hopper is dead, I don’t see David Harbour leaving the show entirely. Harbour is too important and valuable to remove from the show completely. Maybe Hopper will be used in flashbacks all next season or perhaps he’s some ghost dad from heaven. Dead or alive, Hopper’s future remains unknown but his impact on the show will never be forgotten.
Stranger Things makes me happy. That’s the best way to describe this series. Season 3 of Stranger Things was a fun, enjoyable show that successfully combines childhood nostalgia with science-fiction and horror. I was not a child of the 1980s, but I can relate to that feeling of playing with your friends and going on adventures in the summer. (Of course, I never had the threat of being attacked by Demogorgons present.) Nothing excites me more than sitting down on my couch, firing up Netflix, and seeing what the gang is up to in Hawkins, Indiana.
*There will be spoilers in this article. You’ve been warned.*
Season 1 was magnificent. Season 2 was good, but a step back from Season 1’s brilliance. This time, Season 3 was stellar.
Season 3 is set in the summer of 1985. We return to Hawkins to see that the kids have grown, their hormones are rising, and the Mind Flayer is back. Love is in the air at the start of the season as Mike and Eleven are inseparable and can’t keep their faces off each other. Lucas and Max are still an item, though, at times, their constant bickering might make it seem like they’re enemies. Nancy and Jonathan aka the Woodward and Bernstein of Hawkins are still going strong.
Joyce and Hopper (Jopper?) also share a few intimate moments as well as continue down their detective path as they try to solve another supernatural mystery. Magnets, anyone? Will aka Peter Pan is back and all he wants to do is never grow up. The bromance between Dustin and Steve shines once again and they even add new girl Robin into the mix along with Lucas’s sister, Erica. Last, but certainly not least, Billy continues to wreak havoc on the kids except this time, he’s possessed by a former foe. Oh yeah, there’s also the presence of our Cold War enemy, Russia. The 80s, baby!
As a whole, the season had a lot of highs, but there were some small complaints I had. Here are my winners and losers from Season 3 of Stranger Things.
In my notes for this review, I had “Robin” in all caps. That’s how good of an addition Robin was to the cast. She is the greatest addition to the show since its inception. Her wittiness and quirky attitude matched perfectly with Steve’s charming and dimwitted personality. I could have watched a spinoff of Robin and Steve in the ice cream shop for eight episodes. Which leads me into my next winner…
Winners: Dustin And Steve Adding Robin Into Their Bromance
One of the highlights of Season 2 was the bromance that developed between Steve and Dustin. Steve gave Dustin tips with the ladies and Dustin shared his knowledge about science-fiction and Demogorgons with Steve. Adding Robin to the mix was a seamless transition. The three of them teaming up to crack the Russian code and save Hawkins from a potential nuclear and alien invasion was my favorite storyline of the season. I’m not forgetting about Erica, who’s genius and sassiness turned the successful trio into a quartet.
Loser: A Separated Gang
My major issue with Stranger Things over the last two seasons has been the lack of interaction between the original group of Mike, Lucas, Dustin, and Eleven. The chemistry between this group is one of the main reasons why Season 1 was so successful. Though Dustin and Steve’s friendship has blossomed, part of me wishes that Dustin had a chance to recapture his magic with Mike, Lucas, and Eleven. Stranger Things can be formulaic in a good way, but separating the kids and teenagers from each other until the very end leaves me wanting more huge team-ups instead of separated groups.
Winners: Dustin And Suzie’s Song
I was initially torn on this scene. Like Hopper, I was entirely confused when I first watched Dustin and his girlfriend, Suzie, belt out the song to The Neverending Story. However, after I rewatched the scene for a second time, I couldn’t stop humming along and eventually, singing the lyrics. The finale was so intense and emotional that a silly and playful musical number to remind us that this show is about children was a good break in the action.
Losers: The Beginning Of The Season
I’m fully aware that this could be a “me problem,” but the first couple of episodes in Season 3 of Stranger Things dragged out a little too much. I was excited to see our favorite characters back, but it felt plotless. The Mind Flayer abducted Billy and Joyce had a magnet problem, but the mission of each group was still up in the air. It wasn’t until the fourth episode, “The Sauna Test,” where the action picked up and the “what do we have to do to save Hawkins” question started to have an answer.
That fit >>>>. Eleven may be the MVP of the show, but Hopper is the most interesting character. Hopper is a broken and flawed man with a big heart but struggles to express his emotions. Sharing his true thoughts with those he loves (Joyce and Eleven) is a struggle, but that’s because he cares about them so much. Did the arguing with Joyce drag out? Yes. Did he spend way too much time fighting Russian terminators? Probably. However, did Hopper continue to captivate my attention in a way that no other character can do? Absolutely. It’s why his death is so special and heartbreaking. I’m going to have more on the finale in the coming days, but for now, let’s assume Hopper is dead for now. That’s a huge loss for the show. Hopper is the only father figure in the entire series and removing him means there’s a serious void in men who like to pound cigarettes and alcohol. All joking aside, Hopper will be severely missed if this was his final farewell. Nominate David Harbour for every award.
Winner: Hopper’s Letter To Eleven And Final Montage
I will be the first to admit that I was a mess after watching Eleven read her letter from Hopper. Joyce put Hopper on the right track, but he absolutely crushed my soul with the second half. Here’s the letter in its entirety.
“There’s something I’ve been wanting to talk to you both about. I know this is a difficult conversation, but I care about you both very much. And I know that you care about each other very much, and that’s why it’s important that we set these boundaries moving forward so we can build an environment where we all feel comfortable, trusted, and open to sharing our feelings.
Feelings. Feelings. Jesus. The truth is, for so long I’d forgotten what those even were. I’ve been stuck in one place. In a cave, you might say. A deep, dark cave. And then I left some Eggos out in the woods and you came into my life. For the first time in a long time, I started to feel things again. I started to feel happy. But lately, I guess I’ve been feeling distant from you. Like you’re pulling away from me or something. I miss playing board games every night, making triple-decker Eggo extravaganzas at sunrise, watching Westerns together before we doze off.
But I know you’re getting older, growing, changing. I guess, if I’m being really honest, that’s what scares me. I don’t want things to change. So I think maybe that’s why I came in here, to try and make stop that change. To turn back the clock. To make things go back to how they were. But I know that’s naive. It’s just not how life works. It’s moving, always moving, whether you like it or not. And yeah, sometimes it’s painful. Sometimes it’s sad. And sometimes, it’s surprising. Happy.
So you know what? Keep on growing up kid. Don’t let me stop you. Make mistakes, learn from ’em. When life hurts you, because it will, remember the hurt. The hurt is good. It means you’re out of that cave. But, please, if you don’t mind, for the sake of your poor old dad, keep the door open three inches.“
Rereading that last paragraph has me in a puddle of tears. “When life hurts you, because it will, remember the hurt. The hurt is good. it means you’re out of that cave.” That’s a beautiful line that perfectly represents the father/daughter relationship between Hopper and El. Both have been hurt numerous times and yet both continue to find love with each other. It’s a beautiful message.
Throw in the cover of “Heroes” by Peter Gabriel and the finale leaves on an emotional note. It’s not a coincidence that my two favorite endings to the show include that song. The ending of Season 1, Episode 3, where Mike and the crew find “a dead Will” and the Season 3 finale are both elevated thanks to the moving voice of Peter Gabriel.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed Season 3 of Stranger Things. It was terrifying, devastating, emotional, and funny. I can’t ask for much more from a television show. Here’s to hoping that Season 4 follows the same release date pattern of the previous seasons and drops sometime in October 2020.
Check back later this week for more Season 3 of Stranger Things content. Click here for previous articles on Stranger Things.