How to make a murderer turned us all into detectives, judges and juries

adminOctober 18, 2018

The creators of Making a killer He did not set out to unleash a crime wave.

In regards to our viewing habits, that is.

"I think people are responding to the series because it really relates to the question" How do we define justice? " Laura ricciardi, who directed, produced and wrote the docu-series with Demos of Moira, he told E! News at the Webby Awards 2016, held about six months after it became clear that they were following the tragic and twisted path that led to Steven AveryBeing convicted of murder had become a national pastime.

"So, you know, in that sense, I think it's understandable that people get involved and have a lot of emotions about the roller coaster that rides on the Averys, the Dasseys and the Halbach family and all the experienced subjects in the series."

Ricciardi added: "We are definitely exploring the idea of ​​future episodes because history continues to develop."

So he did, and Making a killer Part 2 debuts Friday on Netflix, continuing with Avery's nephew Brendan DasseyThe tortuous legal saga and a renewed effort to obtain the sentence for murder of Avery in 2007 for the death of a young man of 25 years. Teresa Halbach tipped over

Only now, the series returns to a television and broadcast scenario replete with authentic criminal programs, and with an integrated audience that has very firm opinions about what happened in the first season.

Crime has historically been a theme that unites people, even those with different theories of what happened, because everyone can agree that it is entertaining.

The mysteries of fictitious murders fill the shelves of the airport bookstores for a reason, and since Jack the Ripper's nineteenth century, the media has known how to spread his bread and butter: A publication and channel TV. Add to the mix the rise of cable news and more hours to devote only to analyzing the great mystery of the day or, very often, a long time ago, and we ended up with a prosperous genre that now has a home in all media. , from books and miniseries to podcasts and Reddit forums.

However, there has never been such a proliferation of so-called true high-level crime as there is now.

When Making a killer premiered, still fresh in the minds of television enthusiasts The jinx, Six HBO series, The truth is stranger than fiction about Robert Durst. The 75-year-old son of real estate, was a person interested in the unresolved disappearance of his wife in New York in 1982, was acquitted of killing and dismembering a neighbor in Texas in 2001 (claimed to be self-defense), and is accused of murdering Susan Berman, a friend of his in Los Angeles, who perhaps knew too much about his wife's fate.

Durst, who maintains his innocence in Berman's murder in 2000, was recorded in an audio (his microphone still in the bathroom) while muttering, "What the hell did I do, I killed them all, of course" during the production of The jinx. The apparently successful moment caused a lot of controversy: the director did Andrew Jarecki and his team sits on the evidence that he could have been helping the authorities to keep his explosive ending surprised – and all sorts of free publicity for HBO.

"The truth is that we expected Robert Durst to be arrested as soon as possible, and we were surprised that he had not been arrested for so long," Jarecki said. CBS this morning in 2015. "But the authorities never communicated with us more than cordially, they were investigating."

However, what people tuned in to see was an evil character, one who was already suspected of serious crimes. The aim of that series was not to make people wonder if Durst had been unfairly accused. Rather, you are left wondering how he had been a free man for so long.

More like Making a killer, the podcast Serial, Hosted by journalist and This American life producer Sarah Koenig, also focused on a potentially problematic murder conviction. It ignited like a forest fire when it was released in 2014 (and continues, with Kim Kardashian just entered this summer and out of breath survey their Twitter followers to see if they think Adnan Syed is guilty), being parodied in Saturday night live, Turning minor celebrities into the cast of characters and generating a large number of podcasts about real crimes, including an impressive number dedicated only to unpacking what happened in Serial.

Syed, convicted of the 1999 murder of an 18-year-old boy. Hae Min Lee, he was sentenced to life imprisonment and that's where he remains, since his request for a new trial breaks through in Maryland courts: the renewed massive interest in the case due to SerialThe investigation His sentence was overturned in 2016 by a judge in Baltimore, but the judicial system that put Syed behind bars is struggling at every step to keep him there, convinced that they already have the right man.

"He was not, nor were we, trying to create problems where there were none," said Koenig, who never defended his claim that Syed was guilty or innocent. Fresh airis Terry Gross in 2014 after SerialThe first season of 12 episodes ended. "… Obviously I do not want anyone to suffer for the work I'm doing, but I also feel that there is a strong tradition of doing this type of research story, and we were not doing anything different than what we would do." do in any other story. "

That along came Making a killer in December 2015. It was not the first series of its kind, nor was it the only one in production in all those years, but it certainly exploded at the right time, both for Netflix and for an entertainment industry that was struggling with how to keep audiences absorbed in anything these days when viewing habits are so fractured and dating television no longer exists.

Moira Demos said that Netflix was "the perfect partner" and told E! News: "They let us have a lot of creative control, they offered us to everyone as our audience and they let us do the format we needed to tell the story correctly."

Netflix has become famous for that in the following years. The transmission giant, which surpassed the current HBO champion in the Emmy nominations this year, is expected to spend an estimated $ 13 billion on programming in 2018, 85 percent of that in original content.

Whether Demos and Ricciardi have told the story correctly or not, that has also been a matter of debate since the show was filled with steam, with seat researchers (and real investigators) noting that Dassey confessed and evidenced make point out to him and to Avery, however, as the series also astutely points out, the injustices that remain in our criminal justice system, which especially affect the poor and people of color, are a real thing. The arc of the story seems to suggest that the system was the culprit, and not Avery.

"If there is ambiguity, that we think there is, about who killed Teresa Halbach, then the question is, what do you do with that ambiguity?" Ricciardi told the Los Angeles Times in June 2016. "We try to show the experience of the accused in the criminal justice system, do we really give importance to individual rights?"

"There's definitely some pressure," Ryan White, director of Netflix's 2017 docu-series The Guardians, He told E! News from last year. The program examined the still unsolved murder in 1969 of Sister Cathy Cesnik, a Catholic high school teacher in Baltimore, who may have been killed as part of a cover-up after she suspected there was a priest in the school (now deceased ) for student sexual abuse

"When we started this, Serial I still had not left, "White said." So while we were doing it, Serial he left, The jinx he left, Making a killer he left. It is a pressure that people are asking if ours can be so successful, but if we could have a fraction of the success of any of those series, I will be a happy storyteller. My goal, and I know that the goal of the people I followed, was to draw attention to this issue, and the more people look at it, the more people will demand responsibility for the murder and sexual abuse, and also demand justice "

An additional boost to the real crime boom in the meantime was the resurgence of O.J. Simpson in the pop culture conversationMore than 20 years after he was acquitted of the murders of his ex-wife. Nicole brown and her friend Ronald Goldman In one of the most followed trials in history.

In 2016, Ryan MurphyEmmy award winner American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson in FX and Ezra EdelmanOscar winner (despite its premiere on ESPN), documentary of more than seven hours. O.J.: Made in America I would paint complementary portraits of the perfect storm of race, celebrities, media hype, deep-seated tensions between the Los Angeles Police Department and the citizens they have sworn to protect and a litany of legal errors that converged on the Simpson murder trial and how the defense skillfully (and understandably) exploited such problems.

Just when you thought it was impossible to portray the case in a new and useful way, both Murphy and Edelman were successful, and with that the lid of Pandora's box opened irreversibly. Also with the O.J. the rebirth in 2016 came the twentieth anniversary of the unsolved murder of a 6-year-old boy JonBenét Ramsey, and multiple special news offers, the Lifetime movie required (years after a miniseries based on one of the many books on research) and a strange Dr. Phil Interview with the older brother of the queen of the deceased children's contest.

In fact, in the last two years, apparently no criminal stone of the 90s has been left unresolved.

Inevitably, the Law The franchise ventured into a true-real crime (instead of just tearing off the headlines), addressing the 1988 assassinations José Y Kitty menéndez at the hands of their children, Erik Y Lyle, who was tried for the first time in 1993. Edie Falcowas nominated for an Emmy Award for his performance as Erik Menéndez's defense attorney Leslie abrams, but otherwise it was difficult to shake the smell of melodrama that can not help but cling to the THE canon. 2017 also appears Paul Bettany Playing Ted Kaczynski in the limited series of Discovery Hunting: Unabomber, and this year Taylor Kitsch it was a convincing David Koresh on Paramount Network & # 39; s Waco, While Josh DuhamelDetective Greg Kading was in the case in the USA Unresolved: The murders of Tupac and Biggie.

From Murphy History of the American crime He also returned earlier this year with The murder of Gianni VersaceY Darren Criss He won an Emmy for his chilling but very human portrait of the spree killer Andrew Cunanan, who was already the target of an FBI chase when he shot the fashion designer in cold blood in 1997.

So, everything that is horrible is new again, and thanks to truth-seeking projects like Serial Y Making a killer, the stories are still ongoing, even once the cameras are turned off and those addicted to real crimes find new sagas in which they can be robbed.

The real crime section of Netflix alone could keep you busy for years. Now, by the way, it includes Stairs, a docu-series of 2004 that followed the author's trial. Michael Peterson, accused of the 2001 murder of his wife. Kathleen Peterson. The saga, which was resumed in 2013, was broadcast in the US. UU On Sundance Channel and preceded for a long time the recent explosion of real crime, but inevitably ended on Netflix in June with three new episodes.

Making an Assassin Part 2


And now, Making a killer is back, this time with the weight of expectations and the built-in counter-attack.

Because, while stories like The archer it can not stop being somewhat unsatisfactory because the question of who did it has not been answered, the difficult situation of Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey, very similar to the difficult situation of Adnan Syed, does not rip out the hearts of the families of the women were convicted of murder.

"It's still hard to see so many running to defend someone who committed a horrible crime, who destroyed our family, who refuses to accept responsibility, when so few are willing to defend Hae," said Hae Min's family. Read in a statement. by the Maryland Attorney General's office before Syed's retrial was granted on June 30, 2016. In March, the Maryland Court of Special Appeals upheld the lower court's decision to overturn his conviction, but the fight continues .

"It's terrible," said Kay Giordana, an aunt of Teresa Halbach, about Making a killer in 2016, counting People"I can not believe this has come out, it's really unfortunate."

The program "really presents misinformation," Avery prosecutor Ken Kratz said. New York Times.

And here it comes again, with Avery's new lawyer. Kathleen Zellner, which specializes in fighting against alleged wrongful convictions, saying: "If this case is solid, if it is guilty, I will fail".

But Zellner did not take over the planning of the case to fail.

After the first part, Moira Demos and Laura Ricciardi were criticized for omitting certain facts that would have given more weight to the case of the prosecution. They were, in turn, accused of having an activist agenda.

Demos and Ricciardi contend that considering the series as a defense of Avery's innocence is misinterpreting his intention.

Making a killer "It was not based on an opinion, at the beginning or end, that he was innocent of this crime, or that he was guilty of this crime," Demos told Buzzfeed News before the premiere of the second season. "The question was:" Is this process fair for him? "That does not matter if you committed the crime or did not do it, it was never part of what we talked about with Steven."

He added that "most of the criticisms that I heard or heard seemed to come from people who misinterpreted what the series was about."

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