When you start watching the first episode of the Netflix original series The Keepers, you get the idea that this is a series which is all about the unsolved murder of Cathy Cesnik, a nun who was a teacher at a catholic school in Baltimore. It paints a picture of who she was, how she saw life and what she meant to others. She disappeared unexpectedly, her deserted car was found near her house and finally her body was found in a deserted location during winter. Two older women have made it their main priority to solve this murder case as they feel the police hasn’t done enough. When you watch the other episodes you realize that much more was going on, which means there are more victims than just Cathy Cesnik.
The catholic church Cesnik worked at was under control of Joseph Maskell. A man everyone at the school feared and unfortunately also someone who abused his power to take advantage of the young girls in various ways and it turned out he wasn’t doing it alone either. So this documentary series isn’t only about the murder, but the things that were happening in the environment she was working in which might have led to her death. During the seven episodes various aspects are looked at. One is a court case of two anonymous victims against the school, another the possible suspects for the murder. Various victims tell about the horrible experiences they have gone through and still struggle with today.
It doesn’t make The Keepers an easy series to watch. Hearing the horrible experiences that the victims had to go through will make your blood boil and unfortunately shows that within the church (as the Spotlight team would later uncover) religion and position were abused to create a position of power teenagers didn’t dare to challenge. Was Cathy Cesnik someone who wanted to change that? The Keepers doesn’t give definitive answers, but has been well made with a cliffhanger at the end of each episode. A very interesting true crime show.