Catch and Kill

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22 June 2020

Lately I've been reading Ronan Farrow's personal account of his reporting on Harvey Weinstein, Catch and Kill. It's a fairly engrossing account of how Ronan's reporting was repeatedly killed because of NBC's management being complicit in the coverup of Weinstein's misdeeds. Of course Farrow comes out as the plucky hero reporting against powerful men à la All the President's Men. While enjoyable to read, it does stretch credulity as the later chapters detail how nearly everyone it seems at NBC knew about the sexual harassment and abuse perpetrated by management and the top talent.

Farrow is very much in his element telling the story of Weinstein, his investigation of Weinstein, and the coverup. I'd highly recommend this book's telling of the tale because it is a well-written firsthand account. Unfortunately after Weinstein's arrest the tale gets off track and one wonders if Farrow is just trying to argue that all powerful men sexually abuse the women around them. Farrow talks about the National Enquirer, Donald Trump, Israeli private espionage firms, etc. in a series of vignettes following the Weinstein story that seem unrelated to the main tale and eachother. I think good editing could have saved him here, but he clearly doesn't have it. At one point he even proposed marriage to his boyfriend in the pages and says that in reading a draft he accepted. Sure, this is cute, but does it belong in a journalistic book about a powerful rapist? I don't think so.

Seeing that Farrow has other books out I may check them out because I like his self-heroic style and he's been around for some interesting stories. Catch and Kill was definitely worth the time to read, and I'm sure with more experience Farrow will find better editing.

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This file last modified 23 June 2020 by Bradley James Wogsland.

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