We started watching Defending Jacob last night. For those of you that haven’t seen it, the basic premise involves the Barber family. The father, Andy, (Chris Evans) is an Assistant District Attorney. The mother, Laurie, (Michelle Dockery) is a director at a children’s home, and Jacob, (Jaeden Martell) their son, is a fourteen-year-old student. One of Jacob’s classmate’s is found murdered in a park and Jacob is accused of his murder. The once happy and successful family plunge into a world of secrets, ostracism and despair as they try to defend Jacob.
We are only beginning episode four, so don’t know how this will turn out, but last night’s episode, found the couple losing their jobs. They couldn’t go out in public. People spray painted horrible things on their garage door and Laurie even loses her best friend. Literally overnight they become ostracized hermits. This is all happening in Newton, Massachusetts.
Of course, one reflects on what would happen if one found themselves in a similar situation. Would friendships stand and wait out the verdict or would they disintegrate with judgement. If you found out one of your friend’s family members was implicated in a murder, not convicted, just implicated and accused. Would you be all in to help, bring casseroles and talk behind their back, simply start avoiding all contact or actively engage in making your disapproval known to the family and everyone involved?
I live in a small town that has seen its share of crisis. More often than not that person and their family are shunned. Church goers lose their Christian ways, and people become self-righteous in their judgement and superiority. In fact, they do exactly what happens in this movie and it’s crunchy to watch. I wonder why we go there? Why is the first thought, distance and judgement? Are we glad it’s not us? Do we get pleasure out of people’s pain? Or are we just curious, like lookiloo’s at a car wreck, to sit back secure in our safety and watch?
It doesn’t help with the 24-hour “news” cycle. The soul-less stations, anchors and reporters that devour and create the message of the story, regardless of facts or who they hurt in the process. I love shows that provoke thought and try to make us a little more human.
What are some of your favorite shows to watch and why? Do you like drama, crime, and mystery or do you like comedy, fantasy and documentaries?
**Okay, we finished Defending Jacob and Oh My God, there’s a whole new level of what would you do!!! Although I do stand by what I wrote above, in regard to sensationalism and the strange thought processes we go through when a catastrophic event occurs involving people we know. I’d love to get your take as parents on what would you do, if the events in Defending Jacob occurred in your own life. Beware there may be spoilers ahead!