Ryan Green/ABC

American Crime: When A Boy Cries Rape

Spoiler Alert

I don’t watch very much television. As a matter of fact, I don’t even have a TV plugged in at my house. I most certainly don’t have cable and because of that I have extra time for more important things. That also allows me to keep a few additional dollars in my pocket every month. Last night, however, I felt the need to “veg” out for a while, so I used a free app on my phone to watch a show in its second season on ABC, American Crime. This show has been described as a weekly “anthology crime drama” that has garnered quite favorable reviews since its start.

American Crime’s storyline this season seems to be ripped from several headlines across the country. The story opens with a 911 call being placed by an apparently distraught woman reporting a rape. There’s no new writing there. Countless shows and movies have begun that way and from the start, I have to admit, I was expecting the typical storyline. But to my surprise, American Crime isn’t walking down that same dark alley.

The primary plot swirls around a high school boy named Taylor who is enrolled at a ritzy private school. Taylor gets drunk at a “jock” party while trying to fit in with the cool, rich kids. A few days later, he discovers pictures of his “unconscious self” circulating on social media. Once his school’s headmaster is informed that his near nude and inappropriate photos are trending around the school, Taylor and his mother are called into the headmaster’s office where he is suspended. All of that might sound like something that has and often still does occur in some high schools around the country, public and private, but here is where the story gets a bit more complicated. Upon receiving the nude pictures of himself through text, Taylor also kind of admits to his mother that he believes he was drugged and sexually assaulted at the party.

“I think someone did something to me.”

Taylor’s distraught mother returns to the head master’s office and demands that someone be held responsible for her son’s assault. The headmaster did what has so often been done in cases of rape- she vehemently rejects the mother’s use of the word “rape” and turns the entire focus on the behavior of the victim who, in this case, just happens to be male.

Though ABC has only aired the first episode of Season 2, the can of worms is already all over the floor. Of course there are other characters and other underlying storylines that have yet to unfold, but I’d say American Crime has already put the pedal to the metal of what I think could be a very controversial, yet ground breaking season.

If you get the chance, check it out.

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