Pumpkin Person rating 8 out of 10

I recently used an adapter to hook up my Apple ipad to my huge screen TV and watched Apple TV’s Defending Jacob. Fantastic show! About a district-attorney investigating the brutal murder of a 14-year-old kid, only to discover that his own 14-year-old son Jacob is the lead suspect. It’s about the conflicting emotions a family feels when a loved one is accused of something horrific, and that trauma being all the more acute in today’s age of cancel culture and twitter mobs. Great plot and great performances by the three leads! Riveting!

I especially enjoyed the part where they take Jacob to see a forensic psychologist who assesses his propensity for violence with DNA testing and psychometrics. She administers a psychopathy test to see how he reacts to images of violence . I’ve never taken a psychopathy test but my mother seems like the least psychopathic person I’ve ever known if this is what they’re like. She is disturbed by even the mildest images of suffering.

Jacob is also given an IQ test and found to be unusually bright. Like the woman who intelligence tested me as a kid, Jacob’s examiner is of South Asian ancestry but unlike the woman who tested me, she is cold and detached and is fully Westernized in her clothing and speaking style.

Jacob’s the kind of kid who you would never know was brilliant unless he took an IQ test. A lot of white kids are like that. I went to school with a red-headed freckled faced guy named Troy who got bad marks in school and never had anything interesting to say. Then one day the Indian woman who had tested me knocked on the classroom door and asked to see him. Knowing she had come to the school to give him the WISC-R I later asked him about it. “It was easy as all hell” was all he could say. The examiner would later meet with his parents to discuss why someone so bright was doing so poorly in school.