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S31.E12: Grapes of Wrath (Emad Tawflis/Robert Dahl) 2018.01.06

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It was a business deal right out of a Hollywood movie. An investor in a Napa Valley winery ponied up $800,000 cash in an effort to make a fortune in fine wine. What he didn’t realize then was he was investing in his own murder. “He shot me! He’s coming after me in his truck,” investor Emad Tawfilis shouted to a 9-1-1 dispatcher as he tried to outrun Robert Dahl through the California vineyard.

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OMG, Tracy Smith is the WORST narrator on the face of the earth!!!  I can hardly concentrate on the story with her teeth & awestruck facial expressions. Give.me.a.break!!!

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I was annoyed how they went out of their way to hide who was the killer. I was getting sick of them being so careful to say the shooter instead of Dahl's name when they were acting it out. Did that really add to the show? We already knew he was the bad guy. Also they all referred to him in the past tense.

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I don't know if its because I know a lot of people directly effected but it annoyed me that they started out with the fires, when it wasnt connected in any way to the story and it was a toss off.

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It made ZERO sense that they tried to hide Dahl was the killer, especially since they led in with all these other folks that could have been victims. Emad had no reason to kill any of them, especially the brewery guy and the wine writer, since he didn't even know those two guys. It was a waste of time for no benefit.  Then they tease to go to the 48 Hours site to find out Tracy Smith's connection to the story....and the big reveal is she honeymooned there 20+ years ago.  Well, whooptie freakin' do!  I've drunk wine from Napa, so I'm connected too by this logic.  I think I'll watch 48 Hours now only if Susan Spencer or Erin Moriarty are doing the stories.

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59 minutes ago, Lizzing said:

Well, whooptie freakin' do!  I've drunk wine from Napa,

Which makes you a suspected serial killer in that new 48 Hours blonde's "mind".  Give her another fake bag to tote around some more fake money, and send her over to Bravo.

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8 hours ago, Medicine Crow said:

OMG, Tracy Smith is the WORST narrator on the face of the earth!!!  I can hardly concentrate on the story with her teeth & awestruck facial expressions. Give.me.a.break!!!

Thank you.  I thought it was me.

What is her problem?  Why the drama?  I'll even say why the hysterics?

Down this path?  Running down this path?  Running through the grape vines?  Right here.   Calling 911 while running here?

YES you friggin' moron.

I'm with Lizzing.  No more Tracy Smith.  No.

Oh, and for all their theatrics with not revealing the murderer - there's a new thing called "google'.   Look it up.

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She is the worst “reporter” ever.  Was she the producer for the piece as well?  It was just horribly told from start to finish. I guess the new fangled way of telling these stories is to make it appeal to a younger audience?  Make it a guessing game to keep them hooked?  Like searching for “Easter eggs” in a video game?  Stupid.  First, younger people are not home watching CBS at 10pm on a Saturday night.  Second, if anyone has ever watched 10 minutes of 48 Hours, Dateline, 20/20 or ID Channel, it is usually very easy to name the killer before the first commercial break. 

I don’t get the “keep ‘em guessing” angle.  If I know up front Who did it, that doesn’t mean the rest of the story is useless.  How/Why/Where/When are still valid and compelling avenues to explore and complete the story.

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I am SO effing over the "new narrative" style.  If it's a good crime story, just tell it.  Beginning, middle, end - your audience will appreciate a tale well-woven.

Sadly, story-telling seems to be a lost art.  More's the pity for the young'uns.

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Maybe since I play games on my phone while watching these things, I didn't notice how bad the narrator was. I wish I hadn't erased it! Otherwise, this was a very interesting story with a crazy ending. There was no need to resort to gimmicks. I did have to laugh when Tracy was showing us a sound bite of Dahl on her smart phone. I was like WTF? Like they couldn't just show the clip? And did anyone notice her hands while holding the phone? I actually rewound. They looked like they were all bruised. Or maybe grape juice? 

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I was wondering why the “journalist” kept injecting herself into the story.

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I felt bad for Emad, being so close to a rescue but having the deputies arrive just seconds too late. A pox on 48 Hours for letting the murderer's lawyers push any sense of blame off onto Emad as well as Tracy Smith tossing out the statement that there was still no idea where Emad's money came from. I get that this is supposed to be "entertainment" to some degree, but a guy was murdered. And, having Emad's friend get on the record what a nice guy Emad was doesn't negate all that. The shooter was both a criminal and a coward.

On 1/7/2018 at 3:40 AM, Lizzing said:

Then they tease to go to the 48 Hours site to find out Tracy Smith's connection to the story....and the big reveal is she honeymooned there 20+ years ago.  Well, whooptie freakin' do!  I've drunk wine from Napa, so I'm connected too by this logic.  I think I'll watch 48 Hours now only if Susan Spencer or Erin Moriarty are doing the stories.

I owe you a glass of wine. I saw the teaser but was too lazy to find out the connection. I thank you for taking one for the team!

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Not defending this particular episode, but its something I've said before about 48 Hours and Dateline.  They use the narrative structure of a mystery rather than a news report. It is a conscious decision to tell the story in a way that makes the viewer wonder about what the ending will be.  If you watch any of the lower production true crime shows such as those on the ID Channel, you will find that most of them tell you the entire story in the first few minutes and then you are left to watch it unfold for the rest of the episode.

Most of us who watch these programs (46 Hours/Dateline) either already know or can easily guess the ending. But I personally feel it is much more fun to be kept in the dark. I find it more mentally engaging.  This is why I am OK with their decision to format the story-telling in the way they do. 

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