Waco (2018)
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The Strangers Across the Street 

ATF agent Jacob Vasquez begins undercover surveillance and befriends David Koresh.


John Erick Dowdle


John Erick Dowdle (developed for television by), Drew Dowdle (developed for television by) | 5 more credits »


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Shannon ... Gary Noesner
Taylor Kitsch ... David Koresh
Andrea Riseborough ... Judy Schneider
Paul Sparks ... Steve Schneider
Rory Culkin ... David Thibodeau
Shea Whigham ... Mitch Decker
Melissa Benoist ... Rachel Koresh
John Leguizamo ... Jacob Vazquez
Julia Garner ... Michele Jones
Camryn Manheim ... Balenda Thibodeau
Christopher Stanley ... Edward Wiggins
Demore Barnes ... Wayne Martin
Annika Marks ... Kathy Schroeder
Steven Culp ... Peter Hardwick
Andy Umberger ... Perry Jones


ATF agent Jacob Vasquez begins undercover surveillance and befriends David Koresh.

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Release Date:

31 January 2018 (USA) See more »

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Did You Know?


John Leguizamo (Jacob Vazquez) & Andrea Riseborough (Judy Schneider) also worked together on Bloodline (2015) as Ozzy Delvecchio & Evangeline respectively. See more »


Ed Wiggins and his media liaison are taken by surprise when they see the "Sinful Messiah" article in the Waco Tribune-Herald. The ATF had actually been aware of the article and tried to stop its publication. See more »


Barry Skinner: Okay, so, gentlemen, this raid is going down today. Plans have changed. We need you to go in there and make sure they don't know we're coming.
See more »

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User Reviews

The Strangers Across the Street
11 September 2019 | by Prismark10See all my reviews

ATF Agent Robert Rodriguez (John Leguizamo) is one of the agents placed at a nearby house to keep watch of David Koresh.

Rodriguez pretends to be a rancher when Koresh comes knocking and he invites Rodriguez to visit his church. Koresh knows he is a government agent of some kind and it is an opportunity for Rodriguez to snoop around the compound.

The more Rodriguez talks to Koresh, the more conflicted he becomes. Rodriguez sees the group as less of a threat.

However this series is showing in both Koresh and Special Agent Gary Noesner, how belief in institutions can easily be rocked.

Noesner is seeing the FBI becoming a militarized force. Negotiations are seen a way to lure people out in the open so they can be shot dead. Complaining about erratic colleagues is taboo.

Koresh needs to cover up his wrongdoing. He had a sex with a minor and fathered a child with her. Koresh has arranged for Michelle to be married off to newcomer Thibodeau in a sham wedding.

However Michelle tells one of Koresh's other wives she never had a choice as to who she slept with and whom she married. As a minor she was paired off to Koresh and no one raised an objection that she legally could not make an informed choice.

This episode wants to present a human face of David Koresh. He wants to turn Agent Rodriguez, he chides a child in a humorous way for eating ice cream on the sly. He even brushes aside child sex abuse with the inner circle of the Branch Davidians figuring a way out for him.

Even though he has a smaller role, I still think Michael Shannon is the stand out in the second episode. Leguizamo showed more nuance as someone who was out to get Koresh at all costs but is now unsure. However I find that Waco lacks grittiness. There is something unrealistic about this episode, at times I thought I was watching a Lifetime movie.

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