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The Disappearance of Madeleine McCann

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I've watched episode one and I found it very choppy. There were quite a few interviews with the police chief, but I was dismayed that there weren't any subtitles, as he spoke entirely in Portuguese, It's a very disturbing story that I know has not been solved to this day, but I am very surprised that there are so many episodes. So far it has been a lot of random interviews with local residents, other tourists, the police, and many many journalists. There are interviews with the McCanns (on camera and voiceover) but since they are completely opposed to this Netflix series, I know they are taken straight out of the archives. I just don't know how they are going to fill the rest of the episodes up without any new information. Is anyone else watching this, and do you intend to watch the full series? At this point I am still on the fence. 

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I watched the whole thing last night/today, and my strong advice would be to save yourself the 7 hours and watch a good series instead (Fauda is good, also When Heroes Fly).

The choppiness/pacing issues don't improve, and it's very padded with repetitive storylines and footage. If you have a passing familiarity with the case, there is no real "revelation" or new info shared here...it' hard to understand why this doc was made now. The content they have is reaaally dragged out over 8 eps, when it could have easily been 2-3 max.  

One thing they did very well though was to insert seemingly-promising cliffhangers at the end of each ep in order to get you clicking through to the next on in hopes of learning something meaningful...but NOPE...just more rehash, same footage of the parents holding hands and yet more interviews with the forlorn forsaken neighbor. I'd like my 8 hrs back Netflix

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I enjoyed it. As much as one can enjoy such an upsetting story. 

But I went into it very fresh. I had a lot on my plate 2007-2008 and I really only knew the bare bones of this case. So, for me, it was interesting to see all the details. But still insanely frustrating to watch, knowing that there's no resolution. 

I do agree with much of the criticism with its length. There was a LOT of padding. The series could have easily been cut in half. I'm almost wondering if they signed on with Netflix for "x amount" of episodes and then learned that the McCanns would not be participating; and had to fill it up with other stuff. But, even though some of the extraneous stuff wasn't imperative to the story, I can't say I didn't find it interesting as well. 

I thought the doc did a fairly good job at being objective and presenting information from all sides. I say this because, as someone who didn't have a firm opinion about the case, I went on quite the roller coaster ride while watching. At first I was fairly certain the parents were innocent of any wrong-doing. Then about halfway in I was convinced that they had killed their daughter. But I finished back in the camp of - "they didn't do it". So I never felt a real strong bias coming from the doc, even if many of those who participated were on their side. 

If I had to guess, I lean towards a pedophile ring taking her. The stories about creepy men asking for donations to a non-existent charity in the week leading up to her disappearance really raised my hackles. The one woman even recounts a man coming back and being in her home with her daughter. How fucking scary. I think they were watched. I think their patterns were learned, and Maddie was taken in between checks on the kids. 

I do think it's a bit reckless to leave such small children alone in a hotel room like that. But I'm sure they tell themselves that every day. 

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I'm watching episode 5 & I am so glad that got rid of that Portuguese Inspector. Just listening to him ignoring facts & then blaming people for getting him fired just made me want to smack him.  I think the police incompetence is a large factor in this case never being solved.

Edited by GaT · Reason: Added a couple of words
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8 hours ago, GaT said:

I'm watching episode 5 & I am so glad that got rid of that Portuguese Inspector. Just listening ignoring facts & then blaming people for getting him fired just made me want to smack him.  I think the police incompetence is a large factor in this case never being solved.

Agreed - this case was hopelessly bungled from the get-go. It made me angry that he wrote a book to make $$$ after his own incompetence (and probable corruption) got him fired in the first place.

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15 hours ago, Cheezwiz said:

I'm almost done watching this. I didn't pay much attention to the case at the time, so all the information presented was new to me, and thus, interesting. That being said, it's waaaaaay too long - it could have been cut in half, if not more. Far too much padding - just endless, endless shots of the McCanns holding hands walking to press appearances, holding hands walking to church, holding hands walking here, there, and everywhere.

I felt the show was reasonably objective and didn't seem to lean too far in one direction or the other. For those who followed the case closely as it happened, there is no new info or anything revelatory.

This was my thinking from the very beginning as well.

I don't think the McCanns murdered their daughter. I think someone close by at the resort had been listening in on their convos, learned their routine, and began stalking them, figuring out the best opportunity to snatch Madeline.

I do think the McCanns were shifty and evasive - I think they were lying about some of the events leading up to the abduction. I 100% believe they sedated all the children, which is how a stranger was able to enter and carry Madeline off without waking her or the other little ones. I think they were drinking more heavily than they wanted to admit and they may not have been checking as regularly as they claimed. They were embarrassed and knew they'd be crucified in the media, so they covered that part up. 

After a time they were also subjected to a change in the wind of media and public opinion - much the same as what happened to Lindy Chamberlain in Australia in the early 80's when her infant was carried off by a dingo.

I think the Portuguese Police (Commissioner? Chief?) was publicly humiliated by how badly the police had botched things, and rather than widening the search, doubled down and made the McCanns the prime suspects (and yes, I know statistically parents usually are responsible), but the police theory of how Madeline's murder may have occurred was totally ludicrous. I think the only thing he may have guessed correctly was the sedation of the children. It sounds like there were predators everywhere in that resort area that should have been followed up on. The translator dude who was assisting them and got hauled in for questioning seemed strange to me as well. I think the gut instincts of some of the journalists were probably correct.

As tragic as this case was, I found myself more angry at the McCanns than sympathetic. I don't think they murdered their child, but at the same time, I did not like them AT ALL. I did not like their constant appearances at church which felt like phony staged piousness (although I imagine they may have been trying assuage major guilt too). If you're going to make a night of chugging wine and tapas, why not use the resort babysitting service? Or if you insist on leaving the children asleep in the suite, WHY NOT LOCK THE FREAKING WINDOWS & DOOR? It's still making me shake my head. I actually felt as angry watching this as I did when watching the idiot parents in "Abducted in Plain Sight". It wasn't an accident or a moment of forgetfulness or inattention, it was a dereliction of duty as far as I'm concerned.

This. I’m watching the first episode and I don’t even understand this kind of behavior.  How in the hell do they think sitting at a restaurant in basic view of the resort is equivalent to being in the backyard when your kids are asleep inside?  My favorite part is when the one guy joined them at 10 and said everything was peaceful when he walked by the resort.  Why couldn’t they get take out as that one guy did and take it back to the resort?? So much neglect...

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16 hours ago, Cheezwiz said:

I'm almost done watching this. I didn't pay much attention to the case at the time, so all the information presented was new to me, and thus, interesting. That being said, it's waaaaaay too long - it could have been cut in half, if not more. Far too much padding - just endless, endless shots of the McCanns holding hands walking to press appearances, holding hands walking to church, holding hands walking here, there, and everywhere.

I felt the show was reasonably objective and didn't seem to lean too far in one direction or the other. For those who followed the case closely as it happened, there is no new info or anything revelatory.

This was my thinking from the very beginning as well.

I don't think the McCanns murdered their daughter. I think someone close by at the resort had been listening in on their convos, learned their routine, and began stalking them, figuring out the best opportunity to snatch Madeline.

I do think the McCanns were shifty and evasive - I think they were lying about some of the events leading up to the abduction. I 100% believe they sedated all the children, which is how a stranger was able to enter and carry Madeline off without waking her or the other little ones. I think they were drinking more heavily than they wanted to admit and they may not have been checking as regularly as they claimed. They were embarrassed and knew they'd be crucified in the media, so they covered that part up. 

After a time they were also subjected to a change in the wind of media and public opinion - much the same as what happened to Lindy Chamberlain in Australia in the early 80's when her infant was carried off by a dingo.

I think the Portuguese Police (Commissioner? Chief?) was publicly humiliated by how badly the police had botched things, and rather than widening the search, doubled down and made the McCanns the prime suspects (and yes, I know statistically parents usually are responsible), but the police theory of how Madeline's murder may have occurred was totally ludicrous. I think the only thing he may have guessed correctly was the sedation of the children. It sounds like there were predators everywhere in that resort area that should have been followed up on. The translator dude who was assisting them and got hauled in for questioning seemed strange to me as well. I think the gut instincts of some of the journalists were probably correct.

As tragic as this case was, I found myself more angry at the McCanns than sympathetic. I don't think they murdered their child, but at the same time, I did not like them AT ALL. I did not like their constant appearances at church which felt like phony staged piousness (although I imagine they may have been trying assuage major guilt too). If you're going to make a night of chugging wine and tapas, why not use the resort babysitting service? Or if you insist on leaving the children asleep in the suite, WHY NOT LOCK THE FREAKING WINDOWS & DOOR? It's still making me shake my head. I actually felt as angry watching this as I did when watching the idiot parents in "Abducted in Plain Sight". It wasn't an accident or a moment of forgetfulness or inattention, it was a dereliction of duty as far as I'm concerned.

Agree with all this^^^. I’m in episode five right now. They could have done this in a couple of hours, not seven. A lot of padding, backtracking and so many, many scenes of the Mccann’s walking to church, to appearances, etc...

I don’t think they killed their child either. I’m on the fence about the drugging. I work at a daycare, some kids (especially infants and toddlers)can sleeps thru a ton of noise and getting jostled about. 

I think somebody in a child trafficking ring took her. The main thing the McCann’s were guilty of was leaving those kids alone in an unlocked room while they partied. That guilt has to be hell to live with for the rest of their lives. 

Edited by Straycat80
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It's way too many episodes.  I'm not sure I'll watch the last 2. 

I don't think they killed their child. I can't believe they left the kids alone night after night. Yeah, my bet so.eone had been watching.  It was said the group booked the same table at the same time every night. As far as the drugging goes.  I'm not sure but one thing that stood out was that the kids were so exhausted when the got home from day camp.  I thought they said they didn't even make through a story. I'm wondering if someone at the day camp gave the kids something? So sad. I'm definitely thinking sex ring.

One thing that I cant stop thinking about isn't even about Madeline, it's about the Portuguese mother, her son went missing.  The police found all the DVDs of awful sex acts and took stills pics of the children's faces to Id them. The mother saw her son on one of those pictures.  I can't imagine her pain.  She knows what's happening to her son but has no idea where he is.

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2 hours ago, Straycat80 said:

The main thing the McCann’s were guilty of was leaving those kids alone in an unlocked room while they partied. That guilt has to be hell to live with for the rest of their lives. 

Yep. Given that I had absolutely no opinion one way or the other before watching this, I was a bit taken aback by how vehement my dislike for these people was. It takes a certain amount of arrogance to go to a foreign country and do something like that.  Even if they were scrupulously checking every 20 minutes as they claimed (which I sort of doubt), there are SO many things that can go haywire with unattended toddlers within the space of  just a few minutes. Who's to say one wouldn't wake up and wander into the street? Open a window from their crib and fall onto the pavement? Get into something dangerous in the luggage?.

57 minutes ago, Coffeewinewater said:

I'm wondering if someone at the day camp gave the kids something?

That's a definite possibility - someone who worked there may have been working with accomplices. It's also possible that the intruder may have administered something at the time of the abduction, but I would think they would prefer to grab the kid and exit as quickly as possible.

The main reason I suspected the parents may have dosed the kids with sedatives was because one of the grandparents offhandedly let slip to the media that it may have been a possibility. Why even mention it at all unless you'd seen the parents do this in the past? Knowing the kids were in a deep sleep and unlikely to wander may have given the adults the false confidence that nothing would go awry while they partied in the restaurant.

I dunno. I just know I wanted to reach through my TV and shake them.

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I've watched six episodes thus far and I'll watch the rest of it as well. I remember when this case was in the headlines, but I didn't follow very closely at the time, and a lot of the document was new information for me. It IS needlessly long, though. They could've crammed all this is three episodes easily. 

I find myself thinking that it isn't really that hard to believe - for me, at least - that they sedated the kids and accidentally gave Madeleine too much, or that she had an allergic reaction or something and died, OR that something else happened in that hotel room - an accident - and she died, and the parents wanted to cover it up. (What I do find hard to believe is that they would store the dead body of their daughter for 25 DAYS before renting a car and getting rid of it! And where would they even store it??) With that said, it isn't hard to believe she was kidnapped, either. It happens, even though most people don't want to believe it (especially not in their country / city / neighbourhood / housing complex / jurisdiction etc.). I wouldn't trust ANY one person out of those who were initially handling the case in Portugal if my life depended on it, especially after what the document told about the Joana Cipriano case. When Amaral said he believed the evidence they collected was tampered in the UK, I was like "ok get the fuck out of here".

Like the others, it does astonish me how they just left the kids, though. I don't like leaving my CAT unsupervised for more than 15 minutes, let alone THREE TODDLERS. Granted not everybody's as anxious as I am, and I don't have kids so who am I to even say anything, but I just. don't. get it. Okay, they were fast asleep, but how long is it going to take for a three-year-old to wake up, get scared in an unfamiliar environment and wander off to look for mommy (especially if the door wasn't even locked)? Not that long, I suspect. And even if the door was locked, there are plenty of things that can go wrong just within that room. I believe that's a possibility, too - that she woke up, wandered off and drowned or fell into a well or some such. Although I don't know how likely that is, because someone ought to have seen her and raised the alarm - or that's what I'd like to believe, anyway. And could she have wandered so far off that they never found the body.

I thought it was suspicious that Murat didn't "remember" why he called that Sergey guy on the night of the disappearance. I mean yeah, I don't remember all the calls I make or receive either, but I find it curious that he would call someone he had purely a professional relationship with (as they both stated) in the middle of the night. And it was the night of disappearance as well! And then Sergey erasing his hard drives and not telling what for (and implying the police found porn in there, but never elaborating). That whole thing I find very sketchy, but maybe it had nothing to do with Madeleine.

On ‎3‎/‎19‎/‎2019 at 4:06 AM, Cheezwiz said:

I actually felt as angry watching this as I did when watching the idiot parents in "Abducted in Plain Sight". It wasn't an accident or a moment of forgetfulness or inattention, it was a dereliction of duty as far as I'm concerned.

I thought about that as well! OH MY GOD THOSE PARENTS!

8 hours ago, Coffeewinewater said:

One thing that I cant stop thinking about isn't even about Madeline, it's about the Portuguese mother, her son went missing.  The police found all the DVDs of awful sex acts and took stills pics of the children's faces to Id them. The mother saw her son on one of those pictures.  I can't imagine her pain.  She knows what's happening to her son but has no idea where he is.

Yeah, the Rui Pedro case. Imagine being a parent and knowing that your son's last moments were likely in the hands of pedophiles and torturers, however NOT knowing who those people were. Knowing that they were never caught or punished for what they did. Nobody looks for your son, nobody cares, and the sick fucks watching your child get tortured are caught and get a year in prison (which really happened). It broke my heart when the mother was like "they have helicopters looking for Madeleine, I didn't have that nine years ago, I had nothing". All the missing children should be equally important, but they aren't, and it makes me sad to my core.  

Edited by Rosenrot
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1 hour ago, Rosenrot said:

Like the others, it does astonish me how they just left the kids, though. I don't like leaving my CAT unsupervised for more than 15 minutes, let alone THREE TODDLERS.

I don't understand how anyone could possibly have been able to relax and enjoy wine and dinner in that scenario, no matter how often they were checking. It seemed like they were unnecessarily tempting (or taunting?) fate. Still face-palming.

1 hour ago, Rosenrot said:

"they have helicopters looking for Madeleine, I didn't have that nine years ago, I had nothing". All the missing children should be equally important, but they aren't, and it makes me sad to my core.  

Yes, heartbreaking. Just like they said on the show, the majority of children abducted are from very poor backgrounds - families have fewer (or no) resources to launch investigations, and they are simply viewed as disposable. That poor little boy - his family will be tormented forever by the most terrible imaginings.

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17 hours ago, Coffeewinewater said:

One thing that I cant stop thinking about isn't even about Madeline, it's about the Portuguese mother, her son went missing.  The police found all the DVDs of awful sex acts and took stills pics of the children's faces to Id them. The mother saw her son on one of those pictures.  I can't imagine her pain.  She knows what's happening to her son but has no idea where he is.

So so sad. It was horrible hearing about the extent of human trafficking/pedophile rings, period. And while I would never begrudge Maddie the efforts made to find her; I did find it very upsetting how many children from poorer circumstances just fall by the wayside, with no one to fight so hard to find them. 

9 hours ago, Rosenrot said:

I thought it was suspicious that Murat didn't "remember" why he called that Sergey guy on the night of the disappearance. I mean yeah, I don't remember all the calls I make or receive either, but I find it curious that he would call someone he had purely a professional relationship with (as they both stated) in the middle of the night. And it was the night of disappearance as well! And then Sergey erasing his hard drives and not telling what for (and implying the police found porn in there, but never elaborating). That whole thing I find very sketchy, but maybe it had nothing to do with Madeleine.

I thought that was so odd too. I really don't think Murat and/or Sergey had anything to do with it. But they BOTH claimed not to remember that phone call; and that did give me pause. It was very late at night. One usually recalls a reason they have to make or receive a call outside of normal hours. 

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I am still amazed that a lot of people in that city really believed their town was always safe.  I guess I'm more cynical and distrustful.  I will say there is no way I would have left my kids there in that apt. by themselves regardless of whether there was known crime or not.  Why couldn't they alternate a couple staying with the kids each night?  Then again, I don't trust anyone.  That being said, it should never have been a reason to not look elsewhere beside the parents.  I don't think they had anything to do with it.  I can not, for the life of me, believe that Portuguese guy in charge.  It seemed as if he'd never actually worked a case.  It was almost like he would simply turn the facts onto whomever complained or reported something so that he wouldn't have to actually investigate.   Tourism seemed to be the priority.  So very much time was lost looking for her.  

I can't imagine having cameras following me and reporting on what they think I'm thinking 24 hours a day.  Nor, can I imagine having a book written about what that Portuguese guy decided with no evidence and have people believe it.   Seriously, he says they hid the child for 25 days and then moved her in a car they rented.  I guess in some circles that could have been done, but I don't see how you can that theory "fit" this story.  

I can't remember which episode it was, but didn't they show her one pupil had a defect in it?  I hope some couple who really wanted a child, not some sex ring, has her and she sees that on tv one day.  

Every child should be looked for immediately.  If all our investigative people over the world came together to fight against child abduction, trafficking and sex rings, I believe so many could be found.  I don't know why this hasn't happened.  I know it would be a fight against evil people, money, and anything else you want to throw in there, but a concerted global effort should be made.  

As for the parents stating the kids were so tired, I thought they went ahead and said that so that they wouldn't be questioned about possibly giving them something to sleep.   Who knows?

Edited by kelslamu
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What were your takes on the guy who was arrested for killing his niece because she saw him and her mother having sex?  Then, it became that he said he sold the child for money and he was an addict.   I don't think they ever found that child either.

Sidenote, I could swear they were directing those dogs to bark at certain areas.  I've never seen such shoddy police work.

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 I'm not sure but one thing that stood out was that the kids were so exhausted when the got home from day camp.  I thought they said they didn't even make through a story. I'm wondering if someone at the day camp gave the kids something? So sad. I'm definitely thinking sex ring.

I concur on this. I definitely thought they kids may have been drugged to be so exhausted when put to bed. Whether by the staff or the parents. AND I thought all along that someone on staff would be a likely candidate to be involved with the child trafficking ring. To me, the first thing the local cops should've done was halt everything on the premises and interview each and every tourist staying and there and staff member.

The hero of the entire horrible story, to me, is the Spanish investigator who subjected himself to interacting with pedophiles in order to infiltrate. That would have to effect you for the rest of your life. I loved that his sharing of his investigation prompted actual results in rounding up some of these people. It was the only satisfying thing about the series.
Also, I couldn't help but look up the Wonderland case afterward and it is criminal and horrible how little time those convicted felons were imprisoned for. Just terrible! Luckily the ringleader was able to be arrested again after his release for diving right back into his internet "hobby" at a public library no less!!!

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On 3/18/2019 at 10:06 PM, Cheezwiz said:

As tragic as this case was, I found myself more angry at the McCanns than sympathetic. I don't think they murdered their child, but at the same time, I did not like them AT ALL. I did not like their constant appearances at church which felt like phony staged piousness (although I imagine they may have been trying assuage major guilt too). If you're going to make a night of chugging wine and tapas, why not use the resort babysitting service? Or if you insist on leaving the children asleep in the suite, WHY NOT LOCK THE FREAKING WINDOWS & DOOR? It's still making me shake my head. I actually felt as angry watching this as I did when watching the idiot parents in "Abducted in Plain Sight". It wasn't an accident or a moment of forgetfulness or inattention, it was a dereliction of duty as far as I'm concerned.

^This a hundred times over!

If you saw people hanging around outside an apt or hotel room that didn't belong, would you say something to the people?  If I were staying at the hotel and saw it more than once, I like to think I would have.  

Edited by kelslamu
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2 hours ago, kelslamu said:

Sidenote, I could swear they were directing those dogs to bark at certain areas.  I've never seen such shoddy police work

I agree. And I am not opposed to the idea of cadaver dogs. The blood-dog thing is something I'm new to. But either way, I was prepared to be convinced by those dogs; but as I watched, not so much. For one, the blood dog doesn't park. He just "points". I think that's rather subjective. What qualifies as a "point"? 

Then there was the dog in the parking garage. He sniffed that car several times and ran off. The handler kept making him come back to that car until he finally alerted on it. I found that really suspect. 

2 hours ago, BonnieD said:

The hero of the entire horrible story, to me, is the Spanish investigator who subjected himself to interacting with pedophiles in order to infiltrate. That would have to effect you for the rest of your life. I loved that his sharing of his investigation prompted actual results in rounding up some of these people. It was the only satisfying thing about the series.

YES. That guy was so amazing. Can you imagine the horrors that now fill his head? Nobody wants to wade into that mess. But somebody has to. He was a true hero, indeed. 

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2 hours ago, BonnieD said:

The hero of the entire horrible story, to me, is the Spanish investigator who subjected himself to interacting with pedophiles in order to infiltrate. That would have to effect you for the rest of your life. I loved that his sharing of his investigation prompted actual results in rounding up some of these people. It was the only satisfying thing about the series.

That poor guy seemed seriously traumatized. Probably the same for the N. Irish investigator heading up the human trafficking unit at Scotland Yard. I honestly don't know how investigators can do this day and and day out, but I hope the joy of actually finding children and reuniting them with their families makes the horrors they have to absorb worthwhile.

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I agree with the others who said this could have been wrapped up in fewer episodes, I am only on the 3rd episode and can't imagine how they are going to stretch this story out.

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I am bothered by the people they interview that are suspicious of the McCanns because they feel that the McCanns didn't act the way you "normally" would in the circumstances. As if there is anything normal about the situation! Two instances stuck out to me - the female Portuguese reporter they interviewed several times (the one that spoke in English, Sandra Felguiras) said that it was suspicious that the family didn't immediately treat their room like a crime scene, and let people come in and out. I think I might tear the room apart looking for clues if my child was missing, and they had 4 hours before the police showed up to tell them not to disturb anything. Secondly, there were a couple people that thought it was highly suspicious that the twins didn't wake up with all the comings and goings, that this was impossible. Then later in the same episode (#4 I think) they show the McCanns getting off a plane in England and give an interview, and the whole time the son is fast asleep on dad's shoulder!

This strikes me as the same kind of attitude that some people have towards rape victims - if the victim isn't "perfect" and behave in some exact prescribed way, then they shouldn't be believed. You never know how you will respond to a situation until you are in it.

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4 hours ago, kelslamu said:

Every child should be looked for immediately.  If all our investigative people over the world came together to fight against child abduction, trafficking and sex rings, I believe so many could be found.  I don't know why this hasn't happened.  I know it would be a fight against evil people, money, and anything else you want to throw in there, but a concerted global effort should be made.  

This! It's exactly like that "Innocence in Danger" woman said, in here where I live, anyway. By god if there's money missing, but human life's not worth a lot. 

BUT, I digress… 

1 hour ago, OldWiseOne said:

I am bothered by the people they interview that are suspicious of the McCanns because they feel that the McCanns didn't act the way you "normally" would in the circumstances. As if there is anything normal about the situation!

IKR! There's always that one dumbass who goes "he / she didn't cry a single tear while giving their statement, it isn't normal, he / she must've done it!" PLLLEASEEEE. People react differently. You go lose a child and then come tell me what's normal and what isn't! Also that reporter who was like "if my child went missing from a hotel room I would treat it as a crime scene and wouldn't let anybody in." … Jeez, lady. Not all of us can act so rational when facing a shocking event. 

Watched the rest of it today. I still think it's possible she died by accident and the parents covered it up, but I lean towards kidnapping - especially after those shady guys collecting money for an orphanage that didn't exist (and by the way, why did it take YEARS for somebody to even remember that hey, this also happened??) and the numerous sexual predator incidents in Praia da Luz (which I'm sure the authorities   would try to bury because of the negative impact on tourism). If the parents were responsible, the logical thing would be to bury the whole thing, talk about it no more and wait for the public to forget as well, but they've pretty much made sure that the case isn't forgotten and that it stays on the media, and that to me says they sincerely believe she was taken. I don't think guilty people would hire private detectives and such years on end.

While the alternatives - like a lone predator or being kidnapped to be sold to a different family - aren't great either, I really hope she wasn't taken by some child pornography ring. Somehow I'm inclined to think that if that's the case, material of her would have to exist and someone - a decent person - would have seen it and, since Madeleine's face is very well known, reported it. But then again, maybe not. Maybe I'm just having false hope in humanity.

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7 hours ago, OldWiseOne said:

I am bothered by the people they interview that are suspicious of the McCanns because they feel that the McCanns didn't act the way you "normally" would in the circumstances. As if there is anything normal about the situation! 

Yes, people always do this, unfortunately. Lindy Chamberlain went to jail for a few years in Australia simply because people felt she didn't behave the way people assumed a grieving mother should behave. She was imprisoned based on public opinion. She was only released because new evidence came to light that proved her story - evidence that was found by a complete fluke. She likely would have spent life in prison had it not been found.

None of the evidence presented in this documentary made me think the McCanns were guilty.

4 hours ago, Rosenrot said:

While the alternatives - like a lone predator or being kidnapped to be sold to a different family - aren't great either, I really hope she wasn't taken by some child pornography ring.

My hope is that Madeline was stolen by a family who simply wanted a child very badly. She has distinctive pupil in one of her eyes. Perhaps if she's alive she will recognize herself from the recent publicity and come forward.

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Sadly, I feel as though if Madeleine was still alive and living with a family somewhere, she would have been most definitely spotted by now because of her pupil.  To say that photos of her were (and still are) heavily circulated, especially in Europe, is an understatement and someone would have recognized her by now. 

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18 hours ago, OldWiseOne said:

I am bothered by the people they interview that are suspicious of the McCanns because they feel that the McCanns didn't act the way you "normally" would in the circumstances. As if there is anything normal about the situation! Two instances stuck out to me - the female Portuguese reporter they interviewed several times (the one that spoke in English, Sandra Felguiras) said that it was suspicious that the family didn't immediately treat their room like a crime scene, and let people come in and out. I think I might tear the room apart looking for clues if my child was missing, and they had 4 hours before the police showed up to tell them not to disturb anything. Secondly, there were a couple people that thought it was highly suspicious that the twins didn't wake up with all the comings and goings, that this was impossible. Then later in the same episode (#4 I think) they show the McCanns getting off a plane in England and give an interview, and the whole time the son is fast asleep on dad's shoulder!

This strikes me as the same kind of attitude that some people have towards rape victims - if the victim isn't "perfect" and behave in some exact prescribed way, then they shouldn't be believed. You never know how you will respond to a situation until you are in it.

I agree with this. There is no ONE, perfect way to act in the aftermath of a tragedy. The part about preserving a crime scene really stood out to me. Who naturally thinks like that? Police and true crime junkies, okay. But I'm not sure the average person would have that gut reaction, even on a good day. But your child is missing from her bed? You lose your fucking mind. You're pulling the sheets off the bed, looking behind curtains, etc. It's unfortunate, because strong evidence may have surely been destroyed. But I'm not going to fault them for that. 

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15 minutes ago, ghoulina said:

I agree with this. There is no ONE, perfect way to act in the aftermath of a tragedy. The part about preserving a crime scene really stood out to me. Who naturally thinks like that? Police and true crime junkies, okay. But I'm not sure the average person would have that gut reaction, even on a good day. But your child is missing from her bed? You lose your fucking mind. You're pulling the sheets off the bed, looking behind curtains, etc. It's unfortunate, because strong evidence may have surely been destroyed. But I'm not going to fault them for that.  

This. That cop suggested that the mom was lying because she said she checked under the bed but she couldn't have because the mattress goes down to the floor. But in a hotel, I wouldn't remember that in a panic. Of course I'd check under the bed. I'd be pulling back couches and opening every drawer and cupboard. And yes, I'd be closing the window where my other kids were.

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The Portuguese Inspector was just full of it.   His version was implausible on the face of it.   The McCanns, who are visitors remember, kill their daughter, then hide the body so well in an area they are unfamiliar with that those who are familiar with the area can't find it?   Yeah no.

He's like every horror movie official "But, but, but the tourists!!!!   If we announce there is a crime/monster going on here, the tourists won't come.    Then our economy will tank."    If he admits there is a pedophile ring operating in the area, no tourist income.   But if he says its a one time thing by the parents of the missing kid, the tourists will come because they surely won't kill their own kids.

I'm glad the McCanns sued his ass.  

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On 3/18/2019 at 8:23 AM, ghoulina said:

I enjoyed it. As much as one can enjoy such an upsetting story. 

But I went into it very fresh. I had a lot on my plate 2007-2008 and I really only knew the bare bones of this case. So, for me, it was interesting to see all the details. But still insanely frustrating to watch, knowing that there's no resolution. 

I do agree with much of the criticism with its length. There was a LOT of padding. The series could have easily been cut in half. I'm almost wondering if they signed on with Netflix for "x amount" of episodes and then learned that the McCanns would not be participating; and had to fill it up with other stuff. But, even though some of the extraneous stuff wasn't imperative to the story, I can't say I didn't find it interesting as well. 

I thought the doc did a fairly good job at being objective and presenting information from all sides. I say this because, as someone who didn't have a firm opinion about the case, I went on quite the roller coaster ride while watching. At first I was fairly certain the parents were innocent of any wrong-doing. Then about halfway in I was convinced that they had killed their daughter. But I finished back in the camp of - "they didn't do it". So I never felt a real strong bias coming from the doc, even if many of those who participated were on their side. 

If I had to guess, I lean towards a pedophile ring taking her. The stories about creepy men asking for donations to a non-existent charity in the week leading up to her disappearance really raised my hackles. The one woman even recounts a man coming back and being in her home with her daughter. How fucking scary. I think they were watched. I think their patterns were learned, and Maddie was taken in between checks on the kids. 

I do think it's a bit reckless to leave such small children alone in a hotel room like that. But I'm sure they tell themselves that every day. 

I agree with all this. I also didn't know details and found it a bit of a roller coaster ride, although I just never saw the mom as guilty. Their pain was very real, and there was no way she could have hidden or disposed of the body in the time frame. A freezer? Please.

 I would add that I found the first 3 episodes were pretty redundant and dragged on. But I,m glad I stuck with it because it does pick up. I just finished episode 6.  The highlight so far is seeing that horrible lead detective or whatever he was disgraced. The fact that he was also involved with the previous missing girl's case is troubling  I tend to agree that both she and Madeline were trafficked and I wouldn't be surprised if that cop was involved. Most large crime rings have higher ups such as police and politicians working with them.

It's also an indictment of the press and their reckless printing of lies and innuendos, many fueled by unscrupulous police. They're like a bunch of hyenas feeding on grief.

I found that man Murat very creepy and his insinuating himself into the investigation suspicious. What was on those erased hard drives? we all know they can be recovered. Or maybe they were - but didn't fit in with the police theory that Kate did it. Or again, cops could be covering up their own involvement in a trafficking ring. I know they searched the house, but I have no faith in their ability to do a good search. His house was huge and so close. It would have been so easy to take her there. And the phone call nobody remembers. No. Not buying that at all.

Leaving young children alone is never OK of course. That's something they'll live with forever.

As far as the drugging, we'll never know now if or who drugged them. Again, great police work.

Edited by Lady of nod
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I finally finished the series, & you can add me to the list of people who felt it was too long, waay too much filler. I don't believe the McCanns had anything to do with the disappearance, & I don't think they drugged the kids. I can't imagine what it must be like to not know what happened to your child & to have to live every day wondering if at that very moment your baby girl was in pain & crying for her parents & you don't even know where she is. I really hope I never get into trouble in Portugal, because the 2 guys in charge of the investigation were the worst, & were probably greatly responsible for the case not being solved. Then the poor McCanns end up with one bad private investigation company & one scam investigation company, I don't know how they manage to get out of bed every day. I almost hope that Madeline has been dead this whole time instead being horribly abused for 11 years. The whole thing is depressing.

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17 hours ago, Lady of nod said:

I found that man Murat very creepy and his insinuating himself into the investigation suspicious. What was on those erased hard drives? we all know they can be recovered.

Just to clarify - the erased hard drives were from the freelance web designer guy's computer. I think his name was Sergey? I'm assuming he had porn of some sort on it. 

Murat was a little odd. But I think he was just a lonely guy and liked feeling important by helping the investigation. 

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I cannot imagine that child wasn't killed fairly soon after she was taken. The most likely scenario to me is that a local pedophile or one on vacation spotted Maddie and stalked her. It wouldn't take long to figure out the pattern of the kids being left alone. He swooped in and snatched her, did what he intended, and then killed her. I'm sorry to be so grim, but it would be incredibly easy to get rid of a 3-year-old's body.

Even if she was taken with no intention of killing her, with the worldwide coverage the case gained, she would either have to be in a basement somewhere or killed pretty soon after she was taken to avoid detection. I thought it was an interesting point by one of the policemen that publicizing the information about her eye was almost certainly signing Maddie's death warrant. But I'm sure it's agonizingly hard to know the right thing to do in that situation.

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5 hours ago, ghoulina said:

Murat was a little odd. But I think he was just a lonely guy and liked feeling important by helping the investigation. 

I tend to agree with this, largely because I think that if there was even a shred of actual evidence against him, the Portuguese police wouldn't have turned against the McCanns.  I found it horrifying that the press immediately and openly started identifying him as a pedophile even though there appears to be no real evidence that that's the case (though, having said that, I'm only 5 episodes in so I don't know whether the doc circles back to him and presents a stronger case against him).  The series feels as much like an indictment of the press as anything.

I agree with the criticisms about the show's pacing. There's no good reason for the episodes to be as long as they are and some of them certainly feel much longer than they actually are.

I also found it somewhat difficult to focus whenever they cut to an interview with Robbyn Swan, because the slow, precise way that she speaks always makes me think she's auditioning to get her own podcast.

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10 hours ago, ghoulina said:

Just to clarify - the erased hard drives were from the freelance web designer guy's computer. I think his name was Sergey? I'm assuming he had porn of some sort on it. 

The police confiscated not also Sergey's computer(s), but his clients' as well (or that's what he said). He never admitted there having been porn, but he did say in the document that the police said (to him, apparently?) that they found porn on the hard drives. He never elaborated though, or said whether it - whatever it was - was found on his or his clients' computers. And that raises a bunch of new questions - like did he empty his clients' computers as well (which would be… questionable) or just his own? Did the police ever manage to restore what had been there? I mean, I'm pretty sure there was porn, and that's fine, I've nothing against that, but I can't help but think what kind of porn it was since it needed erasing, and since Sergey still, over 10 years later, refuses to talk about the whole thing.   

Because of that hard drive thing and because it's just weird that you wouldn't remember calling a business associate outside business hours, I still say there's something off about Murat & Sergey. On the document they quickly showed that call transaction paper, and if I understand correctly, that call went on for 39 minutes. That is not an accidental pocket call, nor likely a call that both parties would soon after forget having. Although I do also agree with the previous commenter - if there was any real evidence against them concerning Madeleine, I don't think the officials would've abandoned that line of investiagtion as quickly as they did. And I feel for them both for the press coverage, which was all sorts of awful.

Edited by Rosenrot
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5 hours ago, Rosenrot said:

On the document they quickly showed that call transaction paper, and if I understand correctly, that call went on for 39 minutes. That is not an accidental pocket call, nor likely a call that both parties would soon after forget having.

Wow, I didn't realize the call was that long. That IS weird. Certainly not something both parties would "forget". On the other hand, if there was something substantive, you'd think the police would continue pursuing it. S

Someone mentioned above that they wondered if some of the higher-ups in the police could have had some involvement in trafficking, which is an interesting thought. Sadly, child abduction/traffic rings will never be eradicated, because too many wealthy powerful people around the globe are involved.

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18 hours ago, Steph J said:

I tend to agree with this, largely because I think that if there was even a shred of actual evidence against him, the Portuguese police wouldn't have turned against the McCanns.  I found it horrifying that the press immediately and openly started identifying him as a pedophile even though there appears to be no real evidence that that's the case (though, having said that, I'm only 5 episodes in so I don't know whether the doc circles back to him and presents a stronger case against him).  The series feels as much like an indictment of the press as anything.

I agree with both points. I think, more than anything, the police just didn't want negative attention on their little, tourist spot. They weren't open to ideas of a pedophile ring or anything like that targeting children in the area. So Murat would have been a great suspect. He wasn't Portuguese, after all. But nothing panned out. So they turned on the McCanns. 

I also think this doc, maybe more than any I've watched, really highlighted how vicious the press can be. They were really reckless with people's lives and reputations. 

14 hours ago, Rosenrot said:

Because of that hard drive thing and because it's just weird that you wouldn't remember calling a business associate outside business hours, I still say there's something off about Murat & Sergey. On the document they quickly showed that call transaction paper, and if I understand correctly, that call went on for 39 minutes. That is not an accidental pocket call, nor likely a call that both parties would soon after forget having. Although I do also agree with the previous commenter - if there was any real evidence against them concerning Madeleine, I don't think the officials would've abandoned that line of investiagtion as quickly as they did. And I feel for them both for the press coverage, which was all sorts of awful.

I didn't realize it went on that long! But even without knowing that, I thought not remembering the call was weird as well. I definitely think it's possible that those two were up to something shady, maybe even illegal. I just don't think it had anything to do with Maddie. 

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With the distinct spot on her pupil, I would think if she had been kidnapped by a sex ringif any photographs or video of her being  abused were in circulation someone would have seen them. Police agencies all over the world routinely confiscate child porn and view the pictures hoping to find a clue as to the identity of the kids. 

So many young kids disappear in this country... just vanish one night out of their bed or crib, and never found. Most times one or both of the parents/step parents/gf/bf of child’s parent are suspects but they never find a body or evidence. 

I think of the little boy in the Midwest who disappeared when his dad was loading him and his siblings into a car for the ride home. He just vanished in a matter of seconds. They searched everywhere and days later it turned out he had fallen into the septic tank, it had a faulty top, he must have stepped on it and it tipped open enough for him to fall in and then closed. No one thought to look there, until later. And the boy who disappeared from school, Kyron. Lots of suspicion on step mom but no body was ever found. 

Perhaps Madeline wandered away, fell into some small obscure spot, died of exposure or injury... if not found, she decomposes...any number of things could have happened and have happened.. 

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On 3/19/2019 at 5:03 PM, Cheezwiz said:

It takes a certain amount of arrogance to go to a foreign country and do something like that. 

This. And as someone with relatives from a small tourism driven island, this is the aspect of situations like these that really stick in my craw. Rich, privileged and yeah, I'll say it, white people who visit these places and engage in risky behavior, do dumb shit they might not do in their own country and when something bad happens, it becomes an international incident where suddenly the location is so dangerous and unsafe and the local police incompetent, etc. 

And the fact is that yes, many times the authorities in these small locations (not saying that was the case specifically in Portugal, where that just seemed like corruption, as well criminal police practices) are not equipped to handle major murder/missing people investigations. But it just upsets me when people do dumb shit, don't take precautions as they should, bad things happen and then an entire location, which most of the time their economy largely depends on tourism, gets trashed by international media.

It's unfair because many of these larger countries, per capita, have far more violent crimes or criminal activity than these small islands/tourist destinations. But rich people come in, act the fool, their kid, spouse, etc. gets killed or goes missing and they want to declare the island, tourist destination, country, the worst.

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I thought it was suspicious that Murat didn't "remember" why he called that Sergey guy on the night of the disappearance. I mean yeah, I don't remember all the calls I make or receive either, but I find it curious that he would call someone he had purely a professional relationship with (as they both stated) in the middle of the night. And it was the night of disappearance as well! And then Sergey erasing his hard drives and not telling what for (and implying the police found porn in there, but never elaborating). 

I may be wrong but the way I understood that whole thing is that the police seized all the computers/hard drives in Sergey's home, many of which were not his and instead belonged to other people, whose computers/hard drives he was fixing/working, etc. Makes sense for someone with an  IT-related business.

And what he said to the interviewers was that the police never said which hard drive they found stuff on or what specifically it was they found. And he did have a point that if the police searched many ordinary people's hard drive, they likely would find some type of porn-related content. That doesn't immediately make them a deviant because not all porn is illegal.

And if you're searching hard drives in a home of someone who has an IT related business, where he's handling multiple people's computers/hard drives, then yeah, it's really not strange if they found some porn somewhere on one of them. The call though was definitely a major red flag, even though it was merely seconds. 

So short enough to have been an accident but the timing of it, in terms of the day and the exact time, where based on timeline, it likely would have been around the time Madeline was taken - definitely suspicious. That said, the way things escalated with Murat, just off those two journalists' "suspicions" and "bad feeling" was scary. And a reminder of how easily you can be criminalized just in the court of public opinion. Also how dangerous and irresponsible the British tabloid press is and still very much are. 

The thing is, the two journalists weren't wrong that many guilty people of crimes like these, try to stay close to the case so they know what's going on and ensure they're not a suspect. And the proximity of Robert's house to where the McCann's were staying gave him more than enough opportunity to one, observe them and learn their patterns and two, be able to sneak in and take Madeline when they were out to dinner. All that was true.

But it was all just suspicion and instead they ran with stories that full on tried and convicted this man, with no solid evidence. Also, the three dinner friends who later came and finger pointed seeing Robert around that night, were totally lying. Because come on, Robert had been hanging around all those days, talking to the police, the McCann's, aiding in searches, etc and not one of those three would have realized then that they saw him that night?

I don't think they did it because they were guilty themselves but because again, the media had painted such a picture to where they made it seem like Robert's being guilty was a certainty, that I suspect they decided to lie if they thought it would help the police convict him and get him to confess what he did to Madeline. I can actually see how easily these people slipped into that motivation and convinced themselves that the ends justified the means. 

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I don't understand how anyone could possibly have been able to relax and enjoy wine and dinner in that scenario, no matter how often they were checking. It seemed like they were unnecessarily tempting (or taunting?) fate. Still face-palming.

I've always been a true crime buff but oddly, I didn't pay much attention to this case when it happened. I just knew that the child had been left alone in the hotel room as the parents ate with friends and then she went missing.

True story, for a long time, I was certain this happened during the day and that was why people were especially confused as to how she was taken and no one saw or heard anything. I didn't realize it was night time. Because leaving your kid alone in a hotel room during the day was already inconceivable to me, that it being night time is even crazier, when anyone could be hiding in a bush, etc. 

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I am bothered by the people they interview that are suspicious of the McCanns because they feel that the McCanns didn't act the way you "normally" would in the circumstances.

Unfortunately, in cases like these, you're always going to find people who think this way because the true crime craze and well, history itself have made many subscribe to the belief that in most of these cases, the guilty person is usually a family member or someone close to the family. And so it makes people automatically suspicious of the parents and look for something that points to their guilt. 

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On the document they quickly showed that call transaction paper, and if I understand correctly, that call went on for 39 minutes. 

Really? I'd have to check again but I could have sworn it was 39 seconds, which made Robert's "accidental call" excuse, actually seem plausible. 

Edited by truthaboutluv
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7 hours ago, truthaboutluv said:

Really? I'd have to check again but I could have sworn it was 39 seconds, which made Robert's "accidental call" excuse, actually seem plausible. 

I don't have the energy to go back and check, but if it was a matter of seconds (under a minute), then it certainly could have been an accidental pocket dial, which would explain why neither Murat or Sergei remembered it when questioned. 39 minutes, on the other hand, is all kinds of suspicious, and makes it look like they were up to something nefarious, even if it had nothing to do with Madeline's disappearance.

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18 hours ago, truthaboutluv said:

Really? I'd have to check again but I could have sworn it was 39 seconds, which made Robert's "accidental call" excuse, actually seem plausible. 

You are correct.  It was 39 seconds.

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On ‎3‎/‎31‎/‎2019 at 12:56 AM, truthaboutluv said:

Really? I'd have to check again but I could have sworn it was 39 seconds, which made Robert's "accidental call" excuse, actually seem plausible. 

It's entirely possible that I interpreted the paper wrong. But it said "Min/Seg" ("Minutos/Segundos", I must assume) and under that the number 3934. It would make sense that it read as 39 minutes and 34 seconds, but again, I may be wrong. 

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On 3/18/2019 at 8:23 AM, ghoulina said:

I do think it's a bit reckless to leave such small children alone in a hotel room like that. But I'm sure they tell themselves that every day. 

I still can't believe they did that.  Why don't they have one set of parents watch all the kids?  Why didn't they put them in the kids club that had nighttime babysitting?  Why would they think a resort would be safe?  Why would they leave the door unlocked though it seemed like he got in by the window.  The kids asked why the parents weren't there when a man came in and yet they still went out again and left the kids alone.

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I will say it. I am not totally convinced that the parents did not have anything to do with it (which also means that I am not convinced they had), but this documentary was way too long and filled with characters I wanted to shake. The son of the guy helping the Spanish investigator is high on that list.

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On 3/18/2019 at 8:23 AM, ghoulina said:

I enjoyed it. As much as one can enjoy such an upsetting story. 

But I went into it very fresh. I had a lot on my plate 2007-2008 and I really only knew the bare bones of this case. So, for me, it was interesting to see all the details. But still insanely frustrating to watch, knowing that there's no resolution. 

I do agree with much of the criticism with its length. There was a LOT of padding. The series could have easily been cut in half. I'm almost wondering if they signed on with Netflix for "x amount" of episodes and then learned that the McCanns would not be participating; and had to fill it up with other stuff. But, even though some of the extraneous stuff wasn't imperative to the story, I can't say I didn't find it interesting as well. 

I thought the doc did a fairly good job at being objective and presenting information from all sides. I say this because, as someone who didn't have a firm opinion about the case, I went on quite the roller coaster ride while watching. At first I was fairly certain the parents were innocent of any wrong-doing. Then about halfway in I was convinced that they had killed their daughter. But I finished back in the camp of - "they didn't do it". So I never felt a real strong bias coming from the doc, even if many of those who participated were on their side. 

If I had to guess, I lean towards a pedophile ring taking her. The stories about creepy men asking for donations to a non-existent charity in the week leading up to her disappearance really raised my hackles. The one woman even recounts a man coming back and being in her home with her daughter. How fucking scary. I think they were watched. I think their patterns were learned, and Maddie was taken in between checks on the kids. 

I do think it's a bit reckless to leave such small children alone in a hotel room like that. But I'm sure they tell themselves that every day. 

I'm not done yet but I think I'm of the same opinion as you are (I feel like we are often in sync in various forums here!), especially in the flip-flopping. I think that many things might look bad for the parents, but that's just it--look bad, not the least of which is leaving the kids alone (and try as I might, pausing a bazillion times, I cannot see how they thought the apartment was in view of the dinner table). But I can't judge; I have parents that thought nothing of leaving us alone when I was 8 (meaning my sister was 4! That's nuts). Even when the cold meds thing came up, I was like, "a-ha!"...until I thought that, even it it had happened, doesn't mean the parents are the ones that dosed the kids. Same with the possibly dubious blood and cadaver scents. 

Then I thought that, even if the parents had drugged the kids and Madeleine died, wouldn't they just call 911 (or whatever the equivalent is), which would not necessarily even incriminate them (they could claim an allergic reaction or something)? And di no one ever ask around at the resort if there was an employee with a key who maybe never showed up again for work after that night? 

I apologize if these are dumb speculations; like I said, I haven't finished yet.

Edited by TattleTeeny
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I definitely would like to know how closely they looked at resort employees. I think it's quite possible that if there were a child trafficking ring, someone working there could be in on it. Helping procure the children. 

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I just finished the series. I agree that it was a bit too long, but I also kind of liked how involved it was. Not knowing anything about the case, it was interesting to be taken along for the ride of the investigation... what was done initially, how suspicion cycled through different suspects, what steps the McCann's took to protect their family and keep the investigation alive... then what came out later about the investigation and how it was possibly mismanaged, and what was turned up years later that hadn't been followed up on at the time. It's frustrating from a storytelling perspective, but absolutely true to life for how these things go. I LOVED that it highlighted a lot of the good that came from the case (not just that Portuguese detective losing his job, which couldn't happen soon enough), but the more stringent guidelines being put in place about what the tabloids can and can't say about private citizens, the other children that were found because of leads in this case, and I really appreciated that it didn't shy away from the reason so many children are abducted, and highlighting the efforts being made (or not made) to combat the rising.... ugh... "demand" for pedophilic material, or sexual access to children. It's a refreshing change from "We'll never know what happened to so-and-so" or a refusal to speculate. This is a problem that we have to acknowledge. We may not have to stare it directly in the eye (lest we all lose our souls), but we can't solve a problem by pretending it doesn't exist.


What I did NOT appreciate was the way it let some things drop without follow-up. Like the dogs. The trainer was exactly right when he said you can't put the dogs on the stand and ask them to explain exactly what they found: they only indicate where to look. So it seemed SUPER sketchy that dogs finding blood or cadaver scents in a RENTAL property, or RENTAL car, was seen as some sort of conclusive answer to what had happened to Maddy. People die on vacation. People use rental cars for shady shit. Even if the dogs were accurate, why did the authorities think this was related to Maddy? Did anyone ask if the resort have any record of a guest ever passing away in that room? What was the record of those dogs before and after this case? How accurate have they proven themselves to be in retrospect? And OF COURSE Maddy's DNA was going to be found in her parents' car (I was actually surprised it wasn't conclusive). I don't have a 3-year-old, but even I know they are DNA MACHINES! Her DNA was going to be on everything they owned, even months later, because no toddler can ever keep their fluids to themselves. Mom carried that stuffed toy around everywhere after the disappearance. How much drool and snot do you think was on it? I can understand the cadaver dog reacting to the mom's clothes being something of a "woah" moment, but didn't it also react to the spot beside her bed where a suitcase probably would have been kept? (And a part of the car where a suitcase would have been kept?) If a previous guest died on that bed, I feel like that would explain ALL that evidence more sensibly than this ridiculous "she hid the body and used the rental car to dispose of it 25 days later in the middle of a media circus somehow" theory. I would have liked some closer interrogation of the assumptions made by investigators and the press here.

On 3/20/2019 at 6:25 AM, ghoulina said:

while I would never begrudge Maddie the efforts made to find her; I did find it very upsetting how many children from poorer circumstances just fall by the wayside, with no one to fight so hard to find them. 

This is so true. And Maddy's case is about the most privileged it can possibly be. There was a ton of media attention, she was blonde and white and adorable, had parents with the time and resources to devote their lives to finding her... Not only that, but they had a MILLIONAIRE bankrolling their efforts and hiring PI's and PR reps, and following every single lead, and ensuring that the pressure stayed on in the public consciousness to find her... And how many years went by without one single police department actively investigating this case? With all the media attention, public pressure, lawsuits... no one in a position of authority was doing a damn thing. If Maddy, the most privileged case I've ever seen, gets absolute zero from the two police departments who should have been engaged in finding her, imagine what chance those kids have who don't come from such advantageous backgrounds.

Overall, without knowing all the details of the case, I thought this was fair and well done, and I'm really glad I watched it, as upsetting as it all was.

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I started the series not realizing that it had 8 episodes. By the time I got to the end of the fifth episode, I checked and couldn't believe there were still 3 whole episodes left. So I definitely agree that it was far too long. Unfortunately, since we still don't know what happened to Madeleine, watching a documentary on the case is always going to be frustrating since there still aren't any answers.

Part of the length was taken up by the plodding way many of the interviews were conducted, both in Portuguese and English. The whole thing could have benefited from much better editing. We don't need a shot of the American flag every time we hop over to talk to the guy in DC from the NCMEC. But overall I was impressed that they used the McCann case to highlight other cases in Portugal and in the UK, along with the larger problems of child predators and human trafficking.

The local prosecutor reminded me a lot of Giuliano Mignini, the prosecutor in the Amanda Knox case. Especially when this documentary brought up the previous case where the prosecutor and police accused the brother and sister of incest, then killing and chopping up the little girl, Joana, I flashed to the "Satanic sex game gone wrong" theory that Mignini kept putting forward in the Knox case. The Portuguese prosecutor here just seemed completely overwhelmed and misguided, with investigative "techniques" that were behind the times, but with too much pride to admit he was in over his head and accept outside investigative help.

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Two things that stood out for me:

- How arrogant and unlikeable the McCanns are.  Leaving your kids alone so that you can go off drinking and having fun?  You may not have killed Madeleine, but it's your fault she disappeared.  What horrible people.

- I don't understand the purpose of that rich guy's son.  The rich Scottish guy who was funding the McCanns' search, I get the point of him.  But the son?  He was giving some pretty strong opinions in his interviews, considering his only qualification seemed to be 'my dad is rich'.  What a prick.

Oh, and.... why are British people so arrogant and unlikeable? 

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5 hours ago, Token said:

I don't understand the purpose of that rich guy's son.  The rich Scottish guy who was funding the McCanns' search, I get the point of him.  But the son?  He was giving some pretty strong opinions in his interviews, considering his only qualification seemed to be 'my dad is rich'.  What a prick.

He was pretty annoying - it seemed to me that he got off on any sort of media attention, and feeling like "an important person", which he was certainly not.

5 hours ago, Token said:

Oh, and.... why are British people so arrogant and unlikeable? 

There are loads of nice, kind British people. The McCanns however, certainly seemed arrogant and unlikeable to me.

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