The Murders Before the Marathon Review 2022 Tv Show Series Cast Crew Online
Journalist Susan Zalkind has spent almost a decade looking into the murders of Brendan Mess, Erik Weissman, and Raphael Teken, who were found with their throats slashed, pot sprinkled over their bodies and $5,000 of cash laying nearby. Zalkind, who was admittedly a stoner before seeking a journalism career, was friends with Weissman, whom most people in their circle considered more of a cannabis connoisseur than a drug dealer. One person says that all three guys would be running dispensaries if they were alive now, in an era when recreational pot is legal in many states.
We hear from Zalkind, a producer on whose book the docuseries is based, through most of the documentary, along with Ed Davis, the Boston police commissioner at the time of the bombing. As the manhunt for Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev continued in the days after the bombing, Zalkind’s interest in the Waltham case, which had pretty much gone cold in the intervening 18 months, was rekindled.
There was a connection between Tamerlan and one of the Waltham victims, Brendan Mess; Tamerlan Tsarnaev considered Mess to be his best friend and the two of them did MMA training in the same gym. Another man, Ibragim Todashev, indicated that he and Tsarnaev were in the Waltham apartment on the night of the murder, but for some reason, he was shot and killed by law enforcement in Florida before he could complete his confession.
We’re never fans of docuseries produced in the style you see on network true-crime newsmagazines like 48 Hours, Dateline or 20/20. They tend to all have similar formats that are graphics-heavy, lean on ominous music and never really linger on a particular interview segment or aspect of a story. The Murders Before The Marathon is presented in this style. But in this case the story is so intriguing, full of what-ifs and how-could-this-happens, that the network-style brute-force presentation doesn’t hamper the storytelling.
The first episode dives more into the Boston Marathon bombing than one might expect, describing what first responders saw that day and how affected they were by it. Given that the tragedy was only nine years ago and still relatively fresh in people’s minds, you’d think that we wouldn’t need to explore the bombing and the manhunt of the Tsaranev brothers in any kind of depth. But what director Jesse Sweet is trying to establish with this is just how horrible the bombing was, and how it might have been prevented if the police had been looking in the right direction in 2011.
What Zalkind is trying to portray in this docuseries is how the Middlesex County DA’s office, who was in charge of the investigation, treated the murders more as a drug deal gone bad or a hit by the cartel, despite evidence that showed otherwise. Even as recently as 2011, marijuana dealers were considered to be felons, and law enforcement’s biases and blind spots were apparent. What she is trying to look at is if Tamerlan Tsaranev was investigated for the triple murder in 2011, would the marathon bombing ever have happened? Those kinds of questions carry a lot of speculation and second guessing, of course, but it sure is fascinating to contemplate.