If you haven’t heard of or listened to Serial (the podcast) by now, please STOP reading this and head on over to http://serialpodcast.org/  to download for free, OR open your handy-dandy iPhone and subscribe to it in this app you may have seen called “Podcasts”.  (It’s already on your iPhone, for free, and you can’t get rid of it even if you wanted to- so check it out!!)  This Serial series is DEFINITELY  worth listening to.  When you’re finished, come back and thank me and then let me know your opinions!

For the past 3 days, I’ve been addicted to Serial like a good book.  It’s interesting, entertaining, and controversial additional reading.  Plus I can listen to it anywhere like in my car, while I’m making dinner, doing mindless work at my stupid job, etc.  I’m definitely going to be checking out more podcasts from now on, but for now we’ll just talk about Serial for a quick minute.

OK, seriously… if you have not listened leave now! There are spoilers below this point.

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I was intrigued from the beginning.  Adnan seems so like-able, so normal, so friendly and honest.  Sarah Koenig does a good job of relating these moments.  She makes us care about Adnan, just as she does.  I wanted him to be innocent the entire time, and I wanted her to find out who murdered Hae and why. I wanted to know the full story, and I wanted everyone involved with this murder to find some peace.  I was pretty satisfied throughout the series.  As soon as a question would pop-up in my head, it seemed like Sarah touched on it.  She was very good about exploring all possibilities, and directions the case would take her in.

Unfortunately the questions she has, and the questions we all have are never fully answered.  I was dreading that ending from the beginning, wondering “is there really going to be a satisfying ending to this?”  I’m not fully disappointed by the ending- its satisfying enough, I just wish there was more.  I did end up kind-of liking how the ending is controversial, and I liked that it left me to try and figure things out in my own head.  It was like once it ended, I still had things to replay, to workout for myself, my own opinions to form.  The afterthoughts are now swirling around, they won’t leave me alone.  Do I think Adnan is innocent?  Do I believe he should have been locked up for this crime?  Who do I believe did it?  Just the thoughts of picturing the community, how it affected that senior class, the Muslim community- everyone.  Its amazing to think how some people’s lives go – Hae’s, Adnan’s, their families’.  How they may never ever know the truth, and they always have to live with this unknowing.  It’s bad enough that I was intrigued by a story and don’t really know the ending, but this is their lives.

What astonished me was knowing that they never tested the DNA under Hae’s fingernails.  This seems so straightforward to me.  You test under the nails to see who the last person she “clawed” could have been.  From all my crime-scene-show watching expertise, I pretty much know this is a HUGE deal.   Actually, the lack of DNA, fiber testing, and everything like that seemed like a huge deal to me.  I mean it was 1999, was our crime-scene investigation so drastically different then?   I don’t know – I was 10 years old, but I do know a lot of technology has changed since then..

In trying to figure it out, the big questions for me & what I’m left with are probably what a lot of people are left with. Jay… and the car.  Why would Jay say anything if he was not involved?  Seriously, why would anyone voluntarily say they helped with a crime when they did not?  It’s weird becuase the whole time the story was going on, I thought Jay was a liar.  I thought he was the liar, and Adnan was maybe lying, but when I look back it seems more like Jay wasn’t lying about a lot of it, and maybe Adnan was. What makes me think this, and what I really cannot get around is the fact that Jay knows so much, especially the one key piece of evidence we are left with- where Hae’s car is.  How could be possibly not be involved when he knows this crucial piece of information? Do you think there is any possibility that Jay was not involved ?  If so, how would he know where the car was?  Maybe he did the whole thing himself….

Also, if Adnan really is innocent why did he not continue to ask questions about Jay, like “Where is he getting this information?  Why is he making this up?” and freaking out about it?  Especially back in 1999 when it happened.. They touch on this briefly, with an audio clip of Adnan asking the police some thing like “why would Jay say this?” or just mentioning “I thought the police put him up to it” but it doesn’t seem this point is stressed enough.  When Sarah does ask him about his feelings towards Jay closer to the end, his answer is not quite as convincing, understandable, relate-able as the rest of his answers.  His answer distanced me from him, which makes me believe Jay a little more…. even when I don’t want to.

This series gave me a lot of uneasy feelings about our judicial system (not that I had great feelings about it before hand).  It made me intrigued, and kind of question how it works, how it can be manipulated, how an entire story can change based on whose telling it and how they tell it.  I like when Sarah even notices that the same piece of information coming from 2 different people, can make the information sound different.  “I can’t help but think, maybe it’s all in the delivery” she says at one point.  This thought not only plays in with Serial, but in everyday life.  How do the way people say things change our opinion on the topic, and the person who said it?  How do you ever know what the truth is in a situation?  Can you trust your information sources and how do you know?  ….. Also, was anyone else completely perturbed to learn that there is an entire FUND for people who have their money misused by their lawyer?!

In the end, I can’t help but think that Adnan really did do it.  I don’t want to think this, because all the things that make me think he’s innocent still exist.  But I can’t find an explanation in which he’s not involved… unless Jay did it all himself, blamed it on Adnan, and fully got away with it.  Do I think Adan should have been locked up for this crime though? No, not really.  I don’t think there’s enough evidence against him.  Innocent until proven guilty, and in this case I don’t think the guilt was proven quite good enough.

Please answer/ discuss:

  • What did you think of Serial?
  • Who do you think did it?
  • Do you have any thoughts on this I didn’t cover?
  • Tell me what you think about any of this.