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Seven Seconds

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Man. does this show give me The Killing flashbacks. Dysfunctional female lead with endearing, quirky partner. A slaughterhouse scene like the Barn of Dying Cows. A crime victim who is infatuated with seagulls as Rosie Larsen was butterflies. Lengthy depiction of the parents' debilitating grief. Twice as long as it needs to be. All the Veena Sud trademarks.

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I wish this was either on cable or Netflix had promoted it. I feel like it's gotten lost in all the programming available. I've watched only two episodes so far, but the underlying theme of white cop killing (and covering up the killing of) a black boy is a very topical social issue that would draw viewers had this been properly promoted.

It's definitely reminiscent of The Killing. I'm trying to ignore that because it's still well done.

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I'm surprised there aren't more posts on this series. I finished it, but it was a long slog. There should have been about five hours of this instead of ten. There was some very good acting in it. I couldn't get past disliking KJ, the prosecutor and the strings of hair hanging in her face. It was really distracting. Regina King was great, although she must have been exhausted with soooo many anguished scenes.  The actors who played her husband and Fish, the detective, were terrific. If Veena Sud makes another series, I'll avoid it if it's this long and repetitious.

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I started it because I was looking forward to a black female detective lead. I haven't picked it back up since the premiere because the premise bothered me. The cop who did the hit and run did practically a 360 skid, leaving exhaust all over the snow, tracks in the snow and I'm sure on the ground as well. He had a red bruise on his forehead. The poor victim was thrown way clear. A rudimentary inspection of the scene of the accident would show he skidded and never ever tried to hit the guy on purpose. The cloak and dagger and lying made no sense.

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I concur that the series could've been shorter than 10 episodes.     The whole thing could've been avoided if Jablonski tried to get the kid help instead of listening to his fellow dirty cops.    But in a post Ferguson world I could see from the cops point of view how they felt it was better to cover up the crime rather than be caught and not even consider that Brenton could be saved.

Mr. Butler totally overplayed their hand to dirty cop Diangelo thinking he'd be charged with being an accessory.    No doubt Diangelo played into Jablonski's daddy issues and figured he would take the fall even though he was telling him to 'save himself'.    That of course wound up being a good move for Jablonski since unfortunately he merely got a slap on the wrist...and will probably serve much less than a year's time.

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On ‎3‎/‎3‎/‎2018 at 9:44 PM, Kenz said:

I couldn't get past disliking KJ, the prosecutor and the strings of hair hanging in her face.

They were driving me nuts! The actress was goog in children of Men but awful here. Perhaps doing an American accent was consuming all her energy.

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We're about halfway through and I think we will finish it (I spoiled myself so I would have a vague idea of how it turned out in case we bail). I wish we could be more excited about it but so far, not so much. It's kind of a "you want to watch Seven Seconds?" "Mmmmm I guess so..." kind of thing.

I know given the premise of the story it's not going to be a happy watch, but I'm exhausted with the mother's grief and KJ's dysfunction. The cops are so mustache-twirling evil that they almost seem like a caricature. I think in those instances, a little nuance would be help - more isn't always more. And the timeline seems off kilter to me. In one scene I feel like it's months after the hit and run and then it's two weeks. This thing is all over the place, regarding the holes in the story, the pacing and the characters.

It feels like this was an overly ambitious project that ended up being pieced together. It's a bit too sloppy for me to call it good. And I certainly wouldn't bother with a season two, if there is such a thing.

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I just finished it. I really liked it, but damn was the end unsatisfying. Obviously, that's part of the narrative (and our reality in the U.S.)--that people of color don't get fair treatment in the legal system.

Jablonski was sentenced to 364 days in prison with parole eligibility in 30 days, so in all likelihood, he'd be out in 30 days. I'm so pissed that the other three cops weren't charged with anything.

I also think it was a little bloated in the first third to middle of the season. Probably two episodes could've been cut and not much would've been lost. It just could've been tightened up. The last episode felt rushed because there was so much dallying early on.

I still wish this had been on network TV or cable to get more attention. The race issues will always be relevant to a wide audience.

Regina King was excellent. She was mired in grief, and it felt exhausting because grief is exhausting. I kept hoping her character and her husband would reconcile (and it's left open at the end), but losing a child often causes the dissolution of a marriage.

If there is a second season, I'd like to see a civil suit pursued and won. I'd also like to see KJ move on to a practice that focuses on community support/pro bono work, maybe something in the vein of the ACLU. She's clearly overwhelmed working for the city, which is certainly a thankless job. When she had a clear purpose, she stopped her self-destructive behavior. I'd like to see more of that journey. It's an understatement to say there are not nearly enough shows with women of color in the lead, and her story was compelling.

This was far from perfect, but it was good.

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On 3/7/2018 at 6:22 PM, Maysie said:

The cops are so mustache-twirling evil that they almost seem like a caricature. I think in those instances, a little nuance would be help - more isn't always more.

I'd agree except that (1) there are so many real-life cases of police violence (especially toward blacks) and corrupt cops; (2) the attitudes and behavior shown by the evil cops are probably common in real-life urban areas with a high level of gang and/or drug crime; and (3) it is obvious from real-life cases that cops defend their own, right or wrong, and will rarely cross the "thin blue line" to report or admit to illegal or unethical conduct. I'm not saying all cops are bad, but the evil cops depicted here are intended to be representative of these problems.

Also, I think there was some nuance--Jablonski clearly had a conscience and a sense of integrity that was overridden by the pressure to be part of a team and to obey/please DiAngelo. Osorio also seemed to have a conscience, though I found it hard to believe that he killed Nadine after expressing disgust and/or shock earlier at the idea that DiAngelo planned to kill her (or supposedly had already--I don't remember when that exchange took place). Wilcox, on the other hand, was pure evil with no redeeming features that I could see. 

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I'd agree except that (1) there are so many real-life cases of police violence (especially toward blacks) and corrupt cops; (2) the attitudes and behavior shown by the evil cops are probably common in real-life urban areas with a high level of gang and/or drug crime; and (3) it is obvious from real-life cases that cops defend their own, right or wrong, and will rarely cross the "thin blue line" to report or admit to illegal or unethical conduct. I'm not saying all cops are bad, but the evil cops depicted here are intended to be representative of these problems.

I absolutely agree with this. I know a former NYPD cop and if he's any indication, there is definitely that brotherhood thing that goes on with cops. And I understand where that comes from to an extent because they have to rely on each other to have each others' backs, no matter what, though I don't agree with the "us vs.them" mentality that seems to pervade law enforcement.

I think part of my problem with it is that it was such a huge leap from Jablonski hitting Brenton accidentally to "because of Ferguson it means you did this on purpose." (because seriously, how could anyone logically look at how that accident happened and believe that Jablonski, on his way to see his wife who was in danger of miscarrying again, purposely ran over Brenton?). The whole set up made no sense to me. In fact, when the accident first happened, I assumed Brenton was dead from the way they were behaving. To know that they knew he wasn't dead, but instead left him to die and then cover it up (and very sloppily I might add - I mean, the blood - my god, the blood!) - it seemed like a series of super extreme reactions to a tragic accident (including killing a teenage girl to cover it up, because why not kill two teenagers?).

I think there are probably plenty of more realistic scenarios that would have provided a jumping off point for the cops' behaviors and their inner conflict. It seems that this is a situation of the story being very character-driven with the plot being built around characters that had already been fleshed out.

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I liked it a lot.  Parts were too preachy and some characters too sanctimonious but overall I found it engrossing and topical.  I thought the court stuff was riveting.

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I agree this show had some issues and was a bit slow to hit its groove, but I ended up really liking it. The episodes in court were pretty good and I actually liked the Young’s cops wife going all Lady McBeth when she finds out. It gave a subtle insight into them as a couple and what what bring them together. They’re both monsters kind of that can justify leaving a boy to die, but they’re the kind of monsters who think of themselves as good people who will always claim to be the victims.

i also found the relationship between Fish and KJ great. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen alchoholoism presented as not the most important thing happening today. I sort of loved the way Fish would call KJ on her shit and was nice to her and there for her, but had no interest in saving her and actually very little interest in getting her sober. 

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On 3/9/2018 at 10:18 PM, bilgistic said:

I just finished it. I really liked it, but damn was the end unsatisfying. Obviously, that's part of the narrative (and our reality in the U.S.)--that people of color don't get fair treatment in the legal system.

Jablonski was sentenced to 364 days in prison with parole eligibility in 30 days, so in all likelihood, he'd be out in 30 days. I'm so pissed that the other three cops weren't charged with anything.

I also think it was a little bloated in the first third to middle of the season. Probably two episodes could've been cut and not much would've been lost. It just could've been tightened up. The last episode felt rushed because there was so much dallying early on.

I still wish this had been on network TV or cable to get more attention. The race issues will always be relevant to a wide audience.

Regina King was excellent. She was mired in grief, and it felt exhausting because grief is exhausting. I kept hoping her character and her husband would reconcile (and it's left open at the end), but losing a child often causes the dissolution of a marriage.

If there is a second season, I'd like to see a civil suit pursued and won. I'd also like to see KJ move on to a practice that focuses on community support/pro bono work, maybe something in the vein of the ACLU. She's clearly overwhelmed working for the city, which is certainly a thankless job. When she had a clear purpose, she stopped her self-destructive behavior. I'd like to see more of that journey. It's an understatement to say there are not nearly enough shows with women of color in the lead, and her story was compelling.

This was far from perfect, but it was good.

I agree with all that you write - but the bolded is a nice succinct way of saying how I felt about the series overall.  Good - not great - with an unsatisfying (yet probably, sadly very true to life) ending. 

KJ and Fish weren't quite the dynamic duo that Linden and Holder were, but they were still interesting to watch together. 

I was holding out a shred of hope that Fish would somehow find "Whiskey" and take him(her?) home.  Or that the homeless boy who (I think) saw the cops put Nadine in the car would somehow come forward. 

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I just watched the first episode and didn't understand many things. Some dealt the psychology of the charcaters and others the US culture. Can someone please explain them to me?

The cop drove the car and spoke to the mobile phone because he was worried about his pregnant wife. Probably that's why he didn't notice the boy driving a bicycle in time? Or was it because of snowing? In any case, it wasn't a homicide but an accident, although due his neglicence. So why an earth the other cop said that his collegue would be crucified? He couldn't even have seen what kind of a victim was.    

Speaking of which, is it really possible that the victim had flown several meters out of the road? I have once seen an accident where a cyclist turned surprisingly in front of the car and she at first flew to the car's bonnet and down the road.

I didn't understand the cop's reaction. If he really was worried about his wife, why didn't he continue to drive to the hospital? That I could have understood although not accpeted. Despite his profession he became paralyzed and didn't go the victim in order to see whether he or she was alive and call the anbulance, but instead he called his cop collegues.

In any case, it was only after the victim was left without help that the case became serious.

How could the collegue be sure that the victim was dead without examining him? And how could he sure that he would be never found as there were blood in the ground? And woudn't the victim have a moblile phone, so he could easily be found? 

Also, the girl who waited outside the school for his brother, why did she call her mother but not her brother? And when the victim's parents came home, why had they contacted their son via the mobile phone and noticed much earlier that something was amiss because he didn't answer?

Lastly, why did the mother think that having the bicycle showed to the cops that her son belonged to a gang? Isn't a bicycle it quite a normal thing to own?     

Edited by Roseanna · Reason: corecting spelling
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A lot of your questions are answered in later episodes, and I don't want to spoil you by answering. I can answer your question about U.S. culture: black males are disproportionately (as part of the overall population) being killed by police. (Here's some supporting data.) The police are also almost never held accountable for using excessive force (killing when other, non-fatal tactics would suffice) or killing citizens when police think a suspect has a weapon and it turns out they didn't.

My father was a police officer and detective. My parents split when I was five and my father is a deadbeat. He's never really been a part of my life since I was young (past about 10 or so). I do remember going to the station with him and meeting people he worked with. He hung out with fellow officers on his time off. We had cookouts and went on family vacations together, etc. I remember doing that kind of thing before he quit being involved with my sisters and me at all. The police have a very strong "brotherhood" and are extremely loyal to one another. That's an underlying theme in this show.

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Great story and acting.  Not the ending I wanted but I guess that's the point.  Little sad KJ and Fish just parted ways like that....she needs a good friend.  Oh, and a job.  And rehab.  And a stylist.  And a maid.  And......

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Just finished the series and damn, I bawled my eyes out after the verdict was read. I expected it and dreaded it but seeing the aftermath was heartbreaking.

I got frustrated in the middle because of how some characters were behaving...like the mother not fingering Jablonsky when she could have etc. and the sloppy police work but it somehow all felt true to life.

Why did he back off of testifying against the other cops after the wife told him Diangelo wanted to have him killed? Afraid they would put a hit on his wife and son? Why didn't they investigate and expose the blood money they were taking? Why give up so easily on Nadine's murder? Couldn't they ping her cell which was still on Diangelo for some time...there were multiple witnesses like the guy on the street and the shelter...and they could have placed the three cops there using cell towers again or something. Maybe another witness would have turned up...someone who heard her screaming. But they didn't even try...

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On ‎1‎.‎4‎.‎2018 at 10:54 PM, bilgistic said:

A lot of your questions are answered in later episodes, and I don't want to spoil you by answering. I can answer your question about U.S. culture: black males are disproportionately (as part of the overall population) being killed by police. (Here's some supporting data.) The police are also almost never held accountable for using excessive force (killing when other, non-fatal tactics would suffice) or killing citizens when police think a suspect has a weapon and it turns out they didn't.

My father was a police officer and detective. My parents split when I was five and my father is a deadbeat. He's never really been a part of my life since I was young (past about 10 or so). I do remember going to the station with him and meeting people he worked with. He hung out with fellow officers on his time off. We had cookouts and went on family vacations together, etc. I remember doing that kind of thing before he quit being involved with my sisters and me at all. The police have a very strong "brotherhood" and are extremely loyal to one another. That's an underlying theme in this show.

I could (with difficulty) understand the brothershood of the cops, but I couldn't understand the trial and jury and that estranged me from the show. 

That it would matter what kind person the victim was, was really outrageous. Even if he had been a member of some gang, nobody had a right to kill or maim him.   

The defence that the cop looked at Statue of Liberty, did in no way prove that he was a good man, it was just sheer nonsense. Whether he was guilty of hurting, and ultimately killing, the bicyclist or whether it was a sheer accident, he had a duty to to call the ambulance. As he didn't do that, he was at least guilty of exposure and unfit of working as a cop.

Evidently the white members of the jury thought that the life of the black boy was worthless so long the cops protected them. But that was proved false as the cops were corrupt and benefitted from drug sales.      

Edited by Roseanna · Reason: adding a word to make the sentence clear
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On 4/23/2018 at 8:12 PM, bilgistic said:

Bummer. I was looking forward to DNA under the girl’s fingernails nailing the three cops. 

 

The secondary story confused me. Who was the guy in the wheelchair? Was the cop in the goatee doing illegal stuff?  Why wasn’t the military botother fully welcomed? Was the deceased’s boyfriend a gang leader? 

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One major contrived thing that stands out for me with this show was when KJ and Fish talked to Latrice in the park.  During the talk, they didn't ask her who did she follow.  They're actively searching for the police officer, Latrice says she followed a guy to his house, and since she didn't identify Jablonsky in the precinct photo (he wasn't there), they never asked her anymore?!?!  That was a logical question to ask.  Also, Latrice doesn't offer it up either.  She knew his name from the newspaper she found on the lawn. 

Latrice: "He's not in this photo, but I followed a guy named Jablonsky.  Does he not work at this precinct?" OR

KJ/Fish: "Are you sure you don't see him in the photo?  Well, who did you follow?  Do you know his name?  Where does he live?  Why did you follow him?"

It's organic to the story.  Leaving that out is contrived.  Of course, having that occur would have cut the episodes in half.  KJ and Fish didn't figure out Jablonsky until, what, three episodes later?  Over all I did enjoy the show, but stuff that like that bothers me to no end.

Edited by PsychoDrone

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