#PodcastPick – NPR’s ‘Believed’
This week, we’re departing from the celebrity interview and recommending NPR’s podcast documentary series, Believed. This series takes a deep dive into the case of Larry Nassar, the Olympics gymnastics doctor who was last year convicted of serial child molestation and sexual assault, in the midst of the #MeToo movement. He’s currently serving 40 – 175 years in a Michigan state prison.
While this is by no means easy listening, the reporting isn’t morbidly gratuitous like that of so many true crime documentaries. It’s clear from the outset that this show was designed to shed light on the victim’s stories, rather than Nassar’s, as well as clarify how this prolific and lengthy series of abuse was even possible.
Co-hosts Kate Wells and Lindsey Smith interview many of the women who suffered through assault at his hands, at various stages of their lives. They also devote an entire episode to the parents of these women, who were often present for these assaults, but completely unaware of them. Through this sensitive and meticulous investigation, it becomes clear that Nassar shamelessly used his medical qualifications and expertise to bamboozle his way out of trouble with both parents and police, time and time again.
More than a long form exposé, this series is a tribute to the unknowable strength and bravery of the 156 extraordinary women who testified against him. It’s an insightful and devastating series that demonstrates more clearly than ever why women should always be heard.