Found is a new missing persons drama from Greg Berlanti and Nkechi Okoro Carroll. According to the NBC release, The show shines a spotlight on the harrowing statistic that in any given year, more than 600,000 people are reported missing in the U.S. Of these reported cases, more than half of the missing people are people of color, too easily neglected by the system. Shanola Hampton stars as Gabi Mosely, a former missing person herself, who now specializes in PR and leads a crisis management team that seeks out these missing people. But unbeknownst to anyone, Gabi is hiding a dark secret of her own. She was kidnapped in the past — and she has tracked down her kidnapper, a sinister man named Sir (Mark-Paul Gosselaar) and turned the tables on him. Sir is trapped in her basement, held captive and forced to help Gabi solve kidnapping cases.
Actress Shanola Hampton came into this role with a genuine heart of service to community as a member of Alpha Kappa Sorority, Incorporated (initiated at Mu Xi Chapter at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, S.C.). A leader specializing in results by following her own rules, Gabi’s character and team (cast members, Kelli Williams, Brett Dalton, Gabrielle Walsh, Arlen Escarpeta, and Karan Oberoi) can be considered modern day superhero’s for the least and forgotten of the lost; they are the rescue team, advocates and voice.
Now methods are another story entirely! NBC called Gabi’s behavior twisted, while torturous seems more fitting when considering one not so member of her team, her captor. On the one hand it is understandable to think of torturing the person that held you captive for years and abused you emotionally and physically. However, on the other hand, to have to look at that person daily and communicate with them seems like it could be torture too, self-inflicted in a sense. Instead of trusting the government to uphold justice for the crimes committed against her and others, Gabi decides to take justice and imprisonment into her own hands and force her former captor to help her solve current missing persons cases. In her mind she is helping the most often forgotten population, missing people of color.
The plot is necessary and on time! We are living in a society in which economic status and race are determining the resources allocated to finding missing persons and Found lets viewers see this grave act of discrimination and watch a survivor become a warrior for others like her. Specializing in PR gives Gabi the perfect edge she needs to spark the attention she wants when she wants it. Her tactics proved profitable in the season premiere on Tuesday night.
Spoiler Alert – In the season premier we saw an example of the disparity in resources allocated for the two children missing in the episode. The child of the prominent white family was being looked for and there were multiple streams of media coverage surrounding her disappearance and efforts to find her. The other child, a child of color was not being looked for and no one knew her name or of her existence publicly. The system had failed her. This is where reality and sadness set in as a viewer because in the US this is fact right now, not fiction.
Watch Found on NBC Tuesday nights at 10:00 PM EST.