Bowe Bergdahl’s legal proceedings still have no end in sight, but Serial does. The This American Life-affiliated podcast, which this year focused on the 23-year-old soldier, will conclude its second season on Thursday, EW can exclusively reveal.
“This has been a different kind of story. It’s a story where, in a lot of ways, a lot of people have agreed on the facts from the very beginning,” executive producer Julie Snyder tells EW. “In that way, it makes it a different kind of way that you’re coming to a conclusion, except that there are these outstanding questions about essentially what can you blame Bowe for. We’re going to go into the heart of that in the final episode.”
The show has spent the past four months digging into myriad aspects of Bergdahl’s controversial ordeal: from walking off his Afghanistan base in June 2009, to his capture by the Taliban, to the exchange of five Taliban prisoners in 2014 for his release. Bergdahl is currently facing federal court martial on charges of desertion and misbehavior before the enemy, which is currently on hold.
Serial host and executive producer Sarah Koenig reiterated at the end of episode 10 that the loss of lives from trying to recover Bergdahl would be addressed in the finale.
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The award-winning podcast broke out in its first season, which focused on the death of Baltimore-area teen Hae Min Lee, and the man, Adnan Syed, convicted of her murder. (The show’s reporting was partially a reason why Syed was given a second chance in court with February’s post-conviction hearings — an event covered by Koenig in special standalone segments this year.) Buoyed by the success of season 1, the podcast’s second season has been a massive success, surpassing the 50 million download mark heading into the finale, according to the show’s reps.