Although death is an essential part of life, society hides, ignores and makes a taboo out of it. Jon Sistiaga confronts the act of dying and how we can die in five episodes across multiple countries, where euthanasia, suicide or the right to die with dignity are approached with an emotion and depth rarely seen on television.
Episode 1 – Prologue
Every year 57 million people die, but do we die well? Exploring euthanasia, assisted suicide and palliative sedation with patients, doctors, carers and clergyman, Sistiaga takes us deep inside of both side of the debate. This first episode is filmed in Italy, where Sistiaga meets the oldest woman in the world, and in Spain.
Episode 2 – Epilogue
In Switzerland where assisted suicide has been decriminalised, associations like EXIT and Lifecircle controversially help terminally ill patients carry out their final wishes to end their own lives. We also visit Colombia, the only Latin American country where euthanasia is legal and get to know those who have made this ultimate decision during their final days.
Episode 3 – Runaway
The social stigma around suicide has stopped us speaking about what in many countries is a leading cause of death. We meet with those who have survived suicide attempts, those left behind and the authorities responsible for preventing suicide.
Episode 4 – Return
In this fourth episode we meet with sole-survivors, those caught in horrific accidents or crashes who through pure luck escaped death when all of those around did not. Mankind has always questioned what happened just before death; what happens in that exact instant before you lose your life. What do you feel when you come back? Does the fear to die disappear when you have stared death in the face?
Episode 5 – The End
Professor Antonio Aramayona decides to end his life and leave an unprecedented testimony, as we follow him for the six weeks leading up to his death. Amongst his many friends and former students, shock turns to acceptance. The goodbyes come one after another over meals punctuated by tears and laughter until the inevitable day finally comes.