Waco The Story That Shocked the World
The FBI and ATF seize religious leader David Koresh’s Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas in the spring of 1993. On Paramount Network.
Getting it out of the way, almost every Hollywood production about a real life event is going to have some fluff. Some extra steps in the story process even. But after episode one, I think this is going to give an honest take on something that hits close to home.
A little background: I was in elementary school when everything was going down. My mom was a friend of one of David’s wives (woman named Debbie). We spent a lot of time with her while she tried desperately to get her two children out of the compound. My mom would go up there with her and was greeted with armed guards while Debbie would argue with David and people, even begging her children to leave with her. Eventually, one daughter escaped and one stayed behind. While everything went down, my mom was with her friend while she heard her daughter had been killed and burned in the compound. So this show touches a bit home for me.
A lot of conspiracy theorist like to pretend David didn’t do nuffin but that’s not accurate. This show has so far given good examples of why the government was involved. Gun and explosives running, abusing children, beating women; your fun typical 90s cult! And while the ATF/FBI didn’t handle things well, neither did the Branch Davidians.
The best thing is the show tries to be as accurate as possible in regards to both sides. It doesn’t show as perfect government trying to just do the right thing. It shows government failure, even showing right from the start an innocent killed by the ATF breaking the rules of engagement in Ruby Springs. And how the ATF was trying to prove their worth to the government for funding.
It also doesn’t show some perfectly stable compound like non-Waco people believe. It shows brainwashed individuals who fell for a belief that David Koresh was a returned Jesus Christ. He even died at age 33. But I do like how it humanizes the Branch Davidians. Not everyone in there was a piece of crap but just either trapped or brainwashed stupid.
It’ll be interesting to see how the end plays out and the controversial “who started the fire?” question.