Back in late February I finished reading Journey Into Darkness, another set of brutal and horrific true crime stories from famed FBI Special Agent John Douglas. This book goes along with his previous book, Mindhunter.
Just like Mindhunter, Journey Into Darkness takes a look at a few bloody and brutal cases that John Douglas either worked on personally, or that he had heard about during his time with the FBI.
This time around, authors John Douglas and Mark Olshaker seem to be generally focused with sex crimes and the murders that accompanied them. The book begins with a short story of a man abducting and killing a young lady in the Marine Corps, told from his point-of-view. We later learn that the story is what Douglas believes happened as he helped investigate the crime and placed himself in the killer’s shoes, searching for his motive and methods in an effort to later capture him.
Like in Mindhunter, Journey Into Darkness has several true crime cases. Most of these tend to showcase the murders of women and young children, and most of them were sexually assaulted as well. Some of it is quite graphic as we read about what monsters can do when they strike and release their rage. Read more…
Back in 1999, the movie NetForce was released as a direct-to-video movie.
The movie was based on Tom Clancy‘s NetForce series of books. It’s believed that if the made-for-TV was successful, then it would have spawned a television miniseries based on further stories in the books.
NetForce is about a division of the FBI that specializes in high-profile computer crimes. In the movie, the director of NetForce is assassinated, and it’s up to the Deputy Director and his fellow agents to not only find the assassin, but to also stop a brilliant software engineer from launching further attacks on the Internet and the world.
Directed by Robert Lieberman, NetForce stars Scott Bakula as Alex Michaels, the Deputy Director / new Director of the FBI’s NetForce. Supporting him are Joanna Going as Toni Fiorelli, Kris Kristofferson as Steve Day, Judge Reinhold as Will Stiles, Brian Dennehy as Lowell Davidson, Paul Hewitt as Jay Gridley, and Frank Vincent as Mafia boss Johnny Stompato.
Set in 2005, NetForce begins with a raid by the FBI’s NetForce against a compound of a known computer hacker. NetForce Deputy Director Alex Michaels (Scott Bakula) and Colonel John Howard (Sterling Macer) lead the agents into a shootout, but the raid itself is unsuccessful. The enemies destroy the computers before NetForce Agent Jay Gridley (Paul Hewitt) can extract the files. Later, the FBI takes serious heat from the White House for the unsuccessful raid. Read more…
Last night I finished reading Net Force, the first in a series of books created by military and political thriller author Tom Clancy. Although this story concept was created by Tom Clancy and Steve Pieczenik, the same creators of the Op-Center series of novels, the book was actually written by Steve Perry.
First published in 1999, Net Force is set ten years later in 2010 and focuses on a world dominated by supercomputers. To help investigate international computer crimes, Congress authorized the creation of Net Force, a branch of the FBI.
Net Force begins with the assassination of Steve Day, commander of Net Force. Day had just finished having dinner in the city when his armored limousine is attacked and gunned down by a team of gunmen. It’s not a complete victory for the assassins though as Day is able to shoot and kill one of his attackers. By the time that the police arrive, the gunmen are long gone, complete with their dead companion.
Because of the assassination of his boss, Deputy Commander Alexander Michaels is quickly promoted to commander of Net Force. His first assignment is to bring Steve Day’s killers to justice. His team members include Assistant Deputy Commander Antonella “Toni” Fiorella and computer programmer Jay Gridley. Read more…
In September of 1993 the world was introduced to The X-Files, a science-fiction / horror television show that investigated government and extraterrestrial conspiracies.
The X-Files was a smash hit as FBI Special Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully dove deeper into the conspiracies. Mulder continued to investigate mysterious claims along with extraterrestrials, while Scully was there to invalidate Mulder’s claims and attempt to bring the rogue special agent “back to reality.” While Scully has been able to disprove many of Mulder’s conspiracy claims, many cases left her and the viewers questioning what they really witnessed.
It was just a matter of time before the success of The X-Files led to its first full-length feature film.
The X-Files: Fight the Future was released on June 19, 1998, between the fifth and sixth seasons of the television show. Directed by Rob Bowman and written by Chris Carter and Frank Spotnitz, the film brings along several major players in the TV series. David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson reprise their roles as FBI Special Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully. Mitch Pileggi reprises his role as FBI Assistant Director Walter Skinner, William B. Davis is the Cigarette Smoking Man, and John Neville plays the role of the Well-Manicured Man, a key player in the Syndicate.
The X-Files: Fight the Future (1998) – (c) 20th Century Fox
The X-Files: Fight the Future begins in 35,000 B.C. during the last major Ice Age. The area is what would ultimately become North Texas. We see two cavemen follow a path through the snow and run into a cave. Inside the cave they light torches and begin searching for something, exactly what it is we don’t know.
The two cavemen search deeper into the ice cave until they discover the frozen body of a fellow cavemen. Suddenly an alien jumps out and viciously attacks the two cavemen. One caveman dies while the other is wounded but still manages to stab the alien. The alien scampers away and the cavemen goes hunting for it. He finds the alien in another cavern and the two of them fight again. The cavemen manages to kill the alien, but as the alien’s black blood pours out of the dead body and into the caveman, we see that the “winning” caveman still lost the battle.
Fast forward to 1998. Read more…
Book Review – John Douglas & Mark Olshaker’s “Mind Hunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit”
It’s said that the truth is stranger than fiction.
It’s also stated that the horrors of reality will always exceed the deepest and most chilling images that Hollywood could ever create. That statement couldn’t be more true than in John Douglas and Mark Olshaker’s horrifyingly true book, Mind Hunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit.
Inside Mind Hunter you’ll learn just how sick and twisted some people can become as they torture and murder innocent victims. Not only will you learn about some of the most horrific murders in the late 1970s and early 1980s, but you’ll also take a trip into the mind of the killers as the FBI’s Behavioral Science Unit learns how to profile the killers with precision and accuracy.
Mind Hunter takes readers through a brief trip in the career of FBI Special Agent John Douglas, from his childhood through his prestigious career in the FBI’s Behavioral Science Unit (BSU) at Quantico, Virginia. It’s at the BSU though where Douglas works his magic and fine tune his skills, turning a gray area of police investigation into a critical tool.
The art of criminal profiling takes a close look at the physical evidence at a crime scene and then attempts to create an accurate description of the suspect, from his age to his education level to his occupation to any disability to the person’s vehicle. It’s a gray area of investigation because it involves common behavioral statistics and composes a sketch of a suspect. Unbelievers call it guesswork until they see it in action and the “guesswork” can accurately pick out the correct criminal out of a stack of suspects.
Throughout Mind Hunter you learn how pathetic most of the serial criminals really are in real life. Many of these people are weaklings or people trying to compensate for something whether it’s a disability or impairment, an inability to speak or perform in bed with women, or simply a matter of jealousy. When you study a crime scene and any additional evidence, you can accurately predict the attacker’s mental problem.
We’re not talking about mercenaries, assassins, Mafia hitmen, or any other professional or contract killer. This is about seemingly ordinary people who decide to strike back against a person or group of people, all because that attacker, that killer, decided that things weren’t going well for him. Read more…
Willpower is perhaps the biggest difference between dreamers and doers.
If you have the willpower to do whatever it takes to conquer your fears, overcome your weaknesses, and the drive to make yourself succeed, then you will be unstoppable. It doesn’t matter if you’re rich or poor, black or white, fat or skinny, or anything else for that matter. The bottom line is your own desire to succeed in your quest.
That quest for ultimate willpower is the basis for much of G. Gordon Liddy’s autobiography, Will. Much of his book should be required reading for middle and high school students. It’s that inspirational with positive examples of pushing yourself to be the best person.
Yes, that’s the same G. Gordon Liddy who was involved with the Democratic National Convention break ins at the Watergate hotel complex, a conspiracy that ultimately led to the resignation of President Richard Nixon. Take note that Will takes you well beyond the Watergate incident and much more not only in that event, but into the legendary man himself.
Will beings with a brief look at Liddy’s childhood days. From an early age he learns to conquering his fears, from scary Zeppelins that flew over his home to even scarier thunderstorms full of lightning and strong wind.
Liddy’s later schooling involved challenging himself to be a top student in both athletics and his studies. He quickly learned how to outsmart and defeat bullies, making sure none of them challenged him again. He forced his body to overcome pain. In college, Liddy pushed himself, striving to beat his father’s outstanding academic and athletic records.
After college, Liddy was an officer in the Army and close to being sent to Korea. A medical emergency took him off a listing to be eligible for Korea, but even in severe pain and at risk for further injury, Liddy still participated in a gruelling physical challenge to prove his combat readiness. The Army had the final say, and Liddy was kept state side at a few different posts. His smarts kept control of the men under his command, and his seriousness and toughness prevented them from challenging his authority. Read more…