Does a fugitive evading capture require a cunning criminal mind, random luck, or both? That is the question that the new CBS reality television series, Hunted, tries to answer. Billed as “the most elaborate game of hide and seek ever,” it features nine teams of two in a real-life manhunt as they attempt to disappear in today’s digital world. Tracked by a team of highly skilled specialists that combine traditional tracking methods with newer, state-of-the-art tactics, a team that manages to elude capture for 28 days wins a $250,000 payday.
Stapleton resident, Dr, Maximillian “Max” Wachtel, serves as the expert behavioral profiler on the show’s law enforcement team. With a clinical practice in forensic psychology, he performs evaluations for private attorneys and the court system. Viewers in Colorado may recognize Dr. Wachtel as a regular contributor on KUSA 9News. He is often consulted about reactions to traumatic events like the aftermath of the Aurora Theater shooting, and everyday events such as the stress related to today’s politics. Wachtel is the author of the book, The One Rule For Boys.
The series was shot in 30 straight days. Wachtel explains that some of the “fugitives” “made smart—and not-so-smart moves.” Wachtel explains that criminal behavior is actually harder to carry out successfully than one would think. “One silly mistake will inevitably lead to capture unless it’s offset by sheer, dumb luck.”
Most impressive to Wachtel was collaborating with the other law enforcement team members. “It was really amazing to see my fellow law enforcement professionals at work,” says Wachtel. “They’re great at their jobs, and it was fascinating to see how a TV show comes together.”
Some of the final outcomes of the show will be a surprise—even to Dr. Wachtel. “I can’t wait to watch the show to see how my behavioral profiles worked. It will truly be a chance to see what works, and what doesn’t.”
If the show is a hit, a second season will be ordered by CBS. Wachtel is hopeful that if that happens, he might get to return. “I’d love to shoot another season and do it all over again,” he says.
For details about Hunted or to watch previously aired episodes, visit cbs.com/shows/hunted/.