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THE NIGHT OF: “Part VIII: The Call of the Wild” Review

by Alexandra Mitchell
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The limited series reaches its finale in epic fashion, and we finally know the full fate of our desperate “hero” and more about what happened the night of.  Now that we’ve arrived at this moment, do you still believe Naz is innocent?  Or has jail time brought out the true Naz and his violent past?  Is he misunderstood or manipulative?


Part VIII: The Call Of The Wild

A controversy surrounding the defense puts Stone (John Turturro) in the spotlight.

Detective Box has an inkling that perhaps his police work at the beginning was dismissive.  He goes back to camera work and finds someone previously unknown in the investigation, but not the show.The minute I saw the figure, I freaking knew who it was. I have watched a lot of crime procedural shows. So the fact that this one kept me guessing who did it until the end of the season is pretty amazing.  But as soon as the figure was seen arguing with Andrea, I just waited to see how this would pan out.

At trial, Chandra is doing everything she can to disprove the prosecution’s evidence. And I think as a defense attorney, she did quite well. Unfortunately, her tongue tangle with Naz ends up costing her a first seat and a job. Was it worth it?  I’m intrigued as to Freddy’s motives for passing along the dvd footage. Was he trying to help force a mistrial. Maybe, he was hoping that the state would decide to retry and Naz would stay in lock up with him. Admittedly, it seems Freddy took quite a liking to Naz, especially more than other guys in his crew.  He says he values Naz for who he is. Freddy’s unicorn of innocence.  He wasn’t there to say goodbye, but sends a parting gift. Maybe he really cares. However, he also got Naz hooked on crack.  I don’t know many friends who aim for that.TheNightOf_finale-300x200

Stone is a mixed bag this episode. He still believes that Naz is innocent, but he hopes for a mistrial because he figures that the prosecution would not press charges again. After doing quite well with his backroom Chinese powder remedy, the panic of becoming first chair for closing arguments sends him straight to the hospital. I think we have finally put a finger on what exacerbates his eczema: stress. Perhaps if he chose a more relaxed job, it would clear up. After Naz is put on the stand, Stone is convinced it will end in a conviction.  In an ever metaphoric manner, Stone decides to give up the cat and drop it back off at the shelter. I was very disappointed.  This act to me was Stone giving up on Naz and his furry friend.  I spent the rest of the episode wondering if the cat was dead.  Very upsetting.

Weiss took a back seat as prosecutor with all the defense witnesses called to the stand. As Stone perceives, she wants the jury to think she’s not worried but she is.  He’s spot on.  While she may not have been asking any questions, her facial expressions show concern. Box brings his new evidence to her and for a split second you hope she’ll do the right thing and drop it.  But it is all about evidence and she has more against Naz. Even during her closing arguments, you wonder if she still believes that he is guilty.  Top notch acting skills.

Eventually, the jury comes back and declares it is deadlocked. The judge is not pleased and tells them to go back and continue. I found this incredibly worrying. Judges are supposed to be impartial. So for a judge to tell them go back and hope they will convict is very suspect. However, the jury would not meet a mutual decision and it is done. Weiss decides not to retry, because at that point I think she realizes Naz is innocent. She does not waste much time asking Box to help nail the killer. I am disappointed that for all the flashbacks of the night that we didn’t see how it actually played out with the real killer.  I feel like that would have been a solid way to end the show. Instead, Naz is back out and while he is still innocent, he is not the same kid as when this all started. He spent some time in jail, has some tattoos, and a nice crack habit.  What will truly be ahead for him now?  Maybe we’ll know one day.  But at least for now, we know the kitty is safe.

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