The Vow: Season 1

The Vow: Season 1

The Vow: Season 1

HBO's investigative docuseries delves into the case of NXIVM, a self-help group founded in 1998 that drew in vulnerable people for years until it was faced with charges of sex trafficking and racketeering conspiracy.

2020USAHBO
Documentary

Streaming (1 Provider)

EPISODE 1.7

Blame & Responsibility

Expected arrival: 1 November 2020 

After learning that the New York Attorney General's chief investigator is interested in building a criminal case against Keith, Catherine travels to Buffalo to meet with Frank Parlato, creator of the anti-NXIVM blog "The Frank Report," to build a dossier of evidence. Meanwhile, we're introduced to Toni Natalie, one of Keith's former girlfriends, who takes us back to the '90s to share her experiences and the challenges she faced with Keith during the days of his first company, Consumers' Buyline.

Reviews & comments

RogerEbert.com

RogerEbert.com

press

The amazing access to personal stories as they unfolded likely led directors Jehane Noujaim and Karim Amer to err on the side of inclusion, but the repetitive, unedited nature of the series actually diminishes its intended impact.

IndieWire

IndieWire

press

Once things ramp up “The Vow” becomes as fascinating as expected, but it’s unclear if an audience will stick around to see that assumption bear fruit

A.V. Club

A.V. Club

press

One thing The Vow does well is break down the techniques of emotional abuse Raniere and his inner circle used to manipulate lower-ranking members, so we understand why they stuck around—if not why they were devoted to this man in particular.

Variety

Variety

press

“The Vow” pushes back against its slack pace to become television that compels — both for the access it has and for what it does with that access. ... This series, in its methodical nature, attempts to restage Edmondson’s own coming into consciousness, and that it largely succeeds is an impressive feat of bearing witness.

Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

press

The generous peppering of insider NXIVM videos throughout The Vow renders the dorky, soft-spoken Raniere, who appears not to have participated in the documentary, a thoroughly unimpressive figure, while providing visual relief from the many talking-head interviews.

Vulture

Vulture

press

The measured pacing and focus on NXIVM exposition makes The Vow drag occasionally in its initial episodes. But as this multilayered saga unfolds, that approach becomes an asset.

The Guardian

The Guardian

press

As a portrait of manipulation and, in particular, the masking of female abuse through self-effacement, the series is darkly compelling, unnerving in a way that’s hard to shake.

4.0
CNN

CNN

press

A stunning expose of the self-improvement group NXIVM and its downfall.

Entertainment Weekly

Entertainment Weekly

press

What’s so chilling about The Vow — HBO’s immersive new docuseries about NXIVM, the New York-based “self-help group” brought down by charges of sexual slavery — is how vividly it illustrates the seductive and insidious ways these groups lure intelligent, well-meaning people into servitude.

RogerEbert.com

RogerEbert.com

press

The amazing access to personal stories as they unfolded likely led directors Jehane Noujaim and Karim Amer to err on the side of inclusion, but the repetitive, unedited nature of the series actually diminishes its intended impact.

IndieWire

IndieWire

press

Once things ramp up “The Vow” becomes as fascinating as expected, but it’s unclear if an audience will stick around to see that assumption bear fruit

A.V. Club

A.V. Club

press

One thing The Vow does well is break down the techniques of emotional abuse Raniere and his inner circle used to manipulate lower-ranking members, so we understand why they stuck around—if not why they were devoted to this man in particular.

Variety

Variety

press

“The Vow” pushes back against its slack pace to become television that compels — both for the access it has and for what it does with that access. ... This series, in its methodical nature, attempts to restage Edmondson’s own coming into consciousness, and that it largely succeeds is an impressive feat of bearing witness.

Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

press

The generous peppering of insider NXIVM videos throughout The Vow renders the dorky, soft-spoken Raniere, who appears not to have participated in the documentary, a thoroughly unimpressive figure, while providing visual relief from the many talking-head interviews.

Vulture

Vulture

press

The measured pacing and focus on NXIVM exposition makes The Vow drag occasionally in its initial episodes. But as this multilayered saga unfolds, that approach becomes an asset.

The Guardian

The Guardian

press

As a portrait of manipulation and, in particular, the masking of female abuse through self-effacement, the series is darkly compelling, unnerving in a way that’s hard to shake.

4.0
CNN

CNN

press

A stunning expose of the self-improvement group NXIVM and its downfall.

Entertainment Weekly

Entertainment Weekly

press

What’s so chilling about The Vow — HBO’s immersive new docuseries about NXIVM, the New York-based “self-help group” brought down by charges of sexual slavery — is how vividly it illustrates the seductive and insidious ways these groups lure intelligent, well-meaning people into servitude.

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