I bet you thought Ronan Farrow’s HBO Special was about Harvey Weinstein.

I did, too.

Jan Blount
3 min readJul 27, 2021


Before watching this six-part show on HBO, my opinion of Ronan Farrow was pretty neutral. I knew he was Mia Farrow’s son. I had seen him briefly appear on MSNBC a few times. I promise you, I was not harboring any ill attitudes about Ronan Farrow or his work when I decided to watch this show.

But jeez, someone with this much ego needs to have cured cancer or something.

For the first couple of episodes, this show seems to be exactly what was advertised — a blow by blow account of how Farrow and other journalists brought down Weinstein.

By the third episode, I noticed a strange pattern seeming to emerge in the way the story was being told. It was narrated by Farrow, and that’s understandable. But the narration was as much about Farrow as the supposed subject matter. How he reacted, what he felt, his fears; his first, second and third thoughts upon meeting an interviewee. But not just that. More than half of the time, the camera is trained on Farrow’s face, not the person he’s talking about, or to. It really comes off like something that should have been titled “Ronan Farrow-Brave and Handsome Investigator/Journalist (catching Weinstein)”. If this show was intended as a showcase for Farrow, maybe that’s how they should have packaged and sold it.

I am someone who doesn’t like to leave something I’ve started watching. I’ve watched a hundred terrible movies all the way through, solely because-well, because I started watching them.

So I was determined to hang in with “Catch and Kill: The Podcast Tapes” until the bitter end.

It was in episode five (of six total) that it almost became too much Farrow to absorb. The opening narration went like this: “ We are living in a precarious moment, when it comes to the free press. But there are people in the front lines of that fight who make sure the truth doesn’t get buried.”

He briefly mentions David Remnick, the editor of the New Yorker. But it is Farrow’s face that fills the screen. Farrow with furrowed brow, pressing for the truth. Farrow with his hand on the microphone. The narration is about Farrow’s dogged determination; his fearlessness to speak the truth, Farrow, Farrow, Farrow. I spoke aloud to the tv screen, “What the €%#*@?? is this story about?” Extra-close closeups of Farrow’s face. From all angles. When the camera shot took in both Farrow and an interviewee, it was 2/3 Farrow, 1/3 other person.

Now, I was fascinated when the story being told was about how powerful Weinstein was, and how many he hurt, and what ultimately got him jailed. But was it worth wading through two hours of Farrow’s self-aggrandizement for one hour of how Weinstein fell?

Not to me.



Jan Blount

Educated, but averse to sophistry. I write about what I know, what angers me and what moves me. I ponder about race, politics, and whether true love exists.