Convicted: Episodes 1 & 2 – First Impressions

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Convicted is a new podcast, narrated by Brooke Gittings, about a man (Mr. Nicholas) convicted of murdering his two year old daughter. This true crime podcast is another venture in the now common trope of a man who claims he has been wrongfully convicted, and the friends and family who support him.

So what’s different?

To this point (episodes 1 & 2), the podcast has only addressed a very high-level overview of the crime and Mr. Nicholas’ experiences from childhood to becoming a father. I’m looking forward to some additionally detail of the events of the crime and the obligatory  podcast dun-DUUNNN revelation moment.

Interestingly, the narrator Brooke Gittings is not an experienced journalist with a dedicated studio as many other podcast narrators of a similar vein has been. Rather she is a social worker with a closet. Despite being inexperienced in this medium, to this point her handling of the subject matter reminds me of Reply All’s Sruthi Pinnamaneni and In the Dark’s Madeleine Baran. I’m interested to see if Ms. Gittings uses some of the same storytelling tricks used in other podcasts to lead the listeners.

The Players

Much like the first season of Serial, a lot of information comes from Ms. Gittings’ conversations with Mr. Nicholas and other peripheral persons including his sister who provides Ms. Gittings and listeners with a good deal of Mr. Nicholas’ backstory. One noticeable missing voice from the story is the mother of the victim. She has had some communication with Ms. Gittins, but she prefers her privacy and I hope the masses of internet sleuths will grant her that.

As a character, Mr. Nicholas is sympathetic. He has a minor stutter but is otherwise well-spoken. This seems to mirror Adnan Syed a bit in that many listeners had trouble reconciling the idea that Mr. Syed, who also came off as well-spoken, could have committed murder. I’m interested to see, if this series gets the same tracking as other true crime podcasts, if listeners are wooed in the same way by Mr. Nicholas.

Yay or Nay

I’m going to continue to listen. I’m looking forward to seeing how this story/podcast develops, and I hope I can resist doing my own “research” on this case. As a true crime and Law & Order junkie, I’m really interested in hearing some concrete evidence if any exists.

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