Netflix docuseries Unsolved Mysteries helps rescue kidnapped girl who disappeared 6 years prior – Screen Shot
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Netflix docuseries Unsolved Mysteries helps rescue kidnapped girl who disappeared 6 years prior

Have you ever been out and about in town and found yourself staring a little too long at a stranger, thinking:“I feel like I know this person”? An undisclosed shop owner from Asheville, North Carolina found themselves in this exact position this year. And the person they recognised? None other than Kayla Unbehaun, a girl who had gone missing six years earlier in Illinois—600 miles away from North Carolina.

So how did this attentive passer-by recognise the missing 15-year-old? You can thank Netflix for that one. The story of Unbehaun’s disappearance was covered on the Netflix hit docuseries Unsolved Mysteries, in an episode titled “Abducted by a Parent.”

Unbehaun initially went missing on 5 July 2017, after her father Ryan Unbehaun went to pick her up from a visit at her mother’s, who had visitation rights but not custody of her daughter. On arrival at her residence in Wheaton, Illinois, it was discovered that the young girl and her mother were both missing.

Despite the assistance of the National Centre for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) and the authorities, the trail to find Unbehaun and her mother went cold after years of searching. The story remained forgotten until it was eventually picked up by Netflix for an episode of its true crime series.

The recent update, initially reported by ABC7 Chicago, said that the good samaritan was able to identify the missing girl thanks to the episode covering her story. The police were called and the girl was quickly found and taken into protective custody.

The rescue mission has left the girl’s father overjoyed. The NCMEC shared a statement saying: “I want to thank the South Elgin Police Department, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and all of the law enforcement agencies who assisted with her case.”

“We ask for privacy as we get to know each other again and navigate this new beginning,” the once grieving father added.

The girl’s mother, Heather Unbehaun, has since been arrested and is being held on a bond of $250,000. Although awaiting extradition, the 40-year-old is facing kidnapping and abduction charges over the disappearance.

So, I guess the streamers aren’t so bad. Remember: if you ever go missing, better hope they cover your story on Netflix. You never know where you might be recognised.

Don’t bother with Netflix’s Ancient Apocalypse: debunking the racism of Graham Hancock’s theories

If you’ve ever found yourself idly scrolling through Netflix in search of something to put on, you may have come across a new series called Ancient Apocalypse. Don’t let your curiosity get the better of you however, this one is not worth your time. Starring conspiracy theorist and Joe Rogan regular Graham Hancock, the series follows a historic hypothesis of an ancient world-ruling civilisation that was wiped out in an apocalypse pre-ice age.

What this show unfortunately embodies is a racist line of thinking which perpetuates the idea that ancient civilisations like the Mesopotamians, Indus Valley natives or the Egyptians could simply have not achieved what they did without the assistance of external forces or some form of higher being. These theories go hand in hand with History Channel’s notorious show Ancient Aliens, which began in 2009 and has repeatedly claimed that extraterrestrial input must have played a role in the creation of the pyramids, for example.

Thankfully, the internet is here to save the day and debunk these highly racist theories regarding Indus Valley civilisations and the building of the Old Kingdom Egyptian pyramids, which, unsurprisingly, have links to Nazism.

These internet spooks, long discredited by professionals, tend to focus on the Great Pyramid of Giza and the fact that the stones were simply too big for the ancient Egyptians to move on their own. This hypothesis was further pushed into the limelight in 2020 when Twitter fanatic Elon Musk tweeted out in support of the alien theory. Oh Elon, why must you do these things?

Vice spoke to Egyptologist Dr Nicky Nielsen on the matter, who said that there is tremendous amounts of evidence proving the Egyptians were in fact responsible for their pyramids, as seen via excavated quarries, diaries and tools. As to how they got the stones up the mountain, Nielsen stated that it was simply “pulleys.” Who’d have thought?

The expert went on to say that “they could pull very heavy blocks up a very steep gradient using pulleys and a ramp. The actual ramp that’s preserved is very steep, I think it’s something like 16 degrees.”

So, with that debunked, it’s time to delve deeper into why the internet is so obsessed with secret ancient civilisations, and indeed, the origins behind them and their activities. Dr Nielsen reminds us that these theories are designed to remove “agency from indigenous cultures” and “take their ownership of their own history away from them.”

“Arabic writing from the time pretty unanimously says it was the Egyptians, but nobody bothered to check for a long time,” the egyptologist concluded.

The routes back to Nazism are reflected in well-known Nazi distaste for egyptology. In the 1930s, a chief archeologist was known to despise the sculptures and busts of Pharaohs as it contradicted Nazi ideals of the superior race.

This is why Hancock’s documentary is so problematic—it directly platforms unfounded and poorly researched theories that detract from entire civilisations’ achievements. Ancient Apocalypse was thankfully torn to shreds by YouTuber Milo Rossi, in an engaging video essay on why so many of the featured theories are bogus.

The series has Hancock searching everywhere for an answer to his hypothesis of a hidden, advanced civilisation that bestowed the gifts of agriculture and mathematics to the Neolithic man. In the first episode, the pretend journalist turns to the megalithic site of Gunung Padang in Indonesia. Heavy stones and mysterious chambers are used to support the theory that there must have been a second party involved.

Rossi suggests a far more likely and less insane theory than Hancock’s notions, noting that these chambers are actually the remnants of a lost city used to teach the ancient Indonesians. The mysterious chambers have a much higher chance of being lava tubes, left behind from the days of Gunung Padang’s life as a volcano.

And as for the stones, they are actually lighter than those used to build the pyramids in Giza, and we already know that that was a feat well capable by man. Rossi’s whole takedown is very gratifying to see and really puts the ludicrous series in its place.

Racist conspiracy theorists will look anywhere for an answer that diverts success or legacy away from the world’s ethnic and native ancestors. If you’re interested in understanding the truth of history, I’d stay far away from Netflix’s new pseudohistory hit.