The NYTimes’ Brian Stelter takes a hard look at NBC News’ new summer series “The Wanted.” Debuting Monday, the show is “a dramatic new television format for the so-called age of terror: conducting international manhunts for suspected terrorists and war criminals,” Stelter writes, “filming them and selling the finished product to television networks around the world. Its first bidder is NBC News.”
Some have called the series an extension of “To Catch a Predator,” the “Dateline” franchise during which correspondent Chris Hansen and the group Perverted Justice worked alongside police officers to catch possible sex offenders as they tried to hook-up with minors.
Jane E. Kirtley, a professor of media ethics and law at the University of Minnesota, said she was stunned that NBC would use some of the same tactics that led to the harsh criticism of the “Predator” series. When she first learned of the new program, she “thought it was something that The Onion was doing as satirical summer silliness,” referring to the satirical newspaper.
In an NBC press release, Dateline EP David Corvo says, “We hope this program sheds light on an overlooked story. It is surprising how many people with serious accusations against them are living openly and avoiding any sort of judicial process.”
“‘The Wanted’ is about seeking justice for the many victims of terrorism and atrocity around the world,” says David Crane, a decorated former US intelligence official who is working alongside NBC News producer Adam Ciralsky (center in photo) on the project. And it’s that cooperation that has critics wondering.
When Stelter asked
Lucy Dalglish, the executive director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press about the series, she asked, “Is this supposed to be journalism?”
Read more about “The Wanted” in the NBC press release after the jump…