Original Run: December 8th, 2015 – October 19th, 2018
Created by: Laura Ricciardi, Moira Demos, Lisa Nishimura, Adam Del Deo
Directed by: Laura Ricciardi, Moira Demos
Written by: Laura Ricciardi, Moira Demos
Music by: Kevin Kiner, Jared Forman, Dean Kiner
Cast: Steven Avery, Brendan Dassey, Kathleen Zellner, various
Synthesis Films, Netflix, 20 Episodes, 47-77 Minutes (per episode)
Being that I’ve been binging the shit out of Netflix crime shows, I figured that I’d finally delve into the longest one, which is also probably responsible for Netflix leaning so hard into this type of content.
Making A Murderer is the story of Steven Avery, a man who was released from prison after eighteen years. He was falsely sent to prison for a rape he didn’t commit. However, not too long after his release, he was arrested once again for the murder of a young photographer.
The thing is, the system targeted Avery and had no interest in any of the other people who were obviously suspects, as well. And as more and more details are revealed, it appears that Avery is possibly innocent of this crime, as well, and that the police and the legal system are trying to lock him back up, as he was on the verge of successfully suing them for his previous false imprisonment.
As twisted as that all sounds, there are so many other layers to the story that come to light with each episode. There is also Avery’s nephew, Brendan Dassey, who was possibly duped into giving the police a false confession. With that, Dassey has also been sitting in jail from the first time that he ever talked to police.
The first season of the show goes through the details of the case and the investigation with a fine tooth comb. However, after it aired, it was criticized for leaving out key elements of the story.
The second season addresses these criticisms and it switches gears, focusing more on the lawyers trying to free both Avery and Dassey from imprisonment.
While I liked the second season and seeing the sloppy police investigation being torn to shreds, I think the show was strongest during the first season. It’s honestly two very different shows and also, despite season two being focused on freeing these two men, things are still left pretty unresolved. Because of that, I wouldn’t be surprised if there was eventually a third season if any significant changes were to occur.
I binged the hell out of this and blasted through it in a few days. I wanted to absorb it all in with the details being fresh in my mind. I think that the scariest takeaway from this story, is how easy it is for the system to try and make an example out of someone that they’ve targeted over their own biases. The level of narcissism and ego that the prosecutors and police officers had was astounding.