This past weekend, I started watching the new Netflix miniseries 'Unbelievable'. At first, I was interested because it seemed like a true crime type of show, which I have been obsessed with recently. However, I found myself crying at the end of the episode because this show is a lot more than your everyday crime drama.
Unbelievable follows Marie, a teenager who was raped in her own home. Marie follows everything she's supposed to do. She calls her friend, her foster mom, and the police. Yet, the moment the police arrive, you can tell what type of story this is going to be. The police force Marie to relive her trauma countless times, only do not believe her in the end. Not only did the police accuse her of making up her rape, but in the end she is charged with false accusation. The trauma of her rape, and the reactions of police and those around her, lead to the collapse of Marie's life as she knows it.
Marie's story is masterfully contrasted by the investigation of a separate rape in a different state. This story line made me hurt for Marie even more because the respect that she was entailed in the first episodes, is given to this victim. The police officer, who is also a female, attempts to console her, support her through the investigation, and ultimately fight to find her rapist.
Through many twist and turns, this series truly examines the criminal justice system, and the way in which police officers handle sexual abuse cases, and the way they ideally should be handled. Marie's story in "Unbelievable" is based on a true story of a woman who was not trusted when she reported her rape, and ended being charged with false accusation. If you are interested in the true story behind Unbelievable, you can read the tragic events in "An Unbelievable Story of Rape" an article written by Ken Armstrong and T. Christian Miller.