Netflix Series Review: Making a Murderer

So this series has been extremely popular, and I’d wager everyone and their dog that has an opinion has expressed it.

Here’s mine:

Don’t watch it.

It will just make you angry. If you like being angry, then sure, but if you like being angry, I have other concerns about you. And if it doesn’t make you angry, I have a lot of other concerns about you.

Making a Murderer is a documentary about the state of the justice system in Wisconsin. The creators managed to cut down 700 hours of footage into a ten-hour mini-series.

I can’t remember where I read (if required, I’ll track it down later), but someone said if you manage to distill 700 hours into 10, you’ve got to end up with a good story. That’s the power of editing. I believed that statement before I actually watched the story.

I think those ten hours could have been two, honestly. I think my soul would hurt less if it had only been two. Then again, I think the people who made this wanted my soul to hurt. They couldn’t have had the same impact with only two hours.

I was also viewing this story from a background of series like The First 48 and Forensic Files. This felt like stretching and extending one of those episodes over ten hours, which made it feel long, grindy, and soul-hurting.

In the end, I’m not sure if protagonist Steve Avery is guilty. The series is heavily weighted to the side of his innocence, which the cynic in me cringes from. I did do a little bit of digging into the things that didn’t make it into the show, and what got left out definitely throws more questions into the ludicrously massive question pile.

What I do know is based on what was presented in the series, there is absolutely no way in hell he should be in jail. Whether he committed the crime or not, reasonable doubt was all over the place. It was everywhere. If you can put people in jail when reasonable doubt is all over the place, the system has collapsed.

I hope he does find his evidence and exhonerate himself again (yes, again), because there is no way he should be in prison. The county this all started in made such a bloody mess (I’m so witty) of the whole thing. If Avery had committed this horrible crime, and they had done the logical thing (i.e. stay the hell out of anything having anything to do with him) he could have been caught on real evidence, instead of bullpoopy.

He’s not some sort of hyper-intelligent serial killer. He would have left evidence behind, real evidence, thoroughly untainted real evidence. But nope. People who should have been nowhere near anything to do with this were all over it all the time, and being shady about it constantly.

What a mess. The show isn’t a mess. It’s a very effective show. But what this show is showing is such a huge mess that it makes my heart hurt. Maybe it was needed, especially in the county in question, so that maybe the people with good hearts out there (there must be some) would stand up and realize that the system in place is rotten garbage.

But even if this show is needed, because corruption like this needs as many flashlights as possible all honed in on it, I wish I hadn’t watched it. I watched it like that cliché trainwreck, night after night. I’d finish an episode, say I wasn’t going to watch anymore, then twenty-four hours later, I’d find myself watching the next episode.

Do yourself a favor. Unless you want this to be your fight, and maybe you do, but I’m betting you don’t, unless you want to be waist deep in the crap pile that is justice for poor people in America, you should instead turn up the music that makes you happy, rather than turning to see where the crashing sounds are coming from.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on TumblrPin on PinterestEmail this to someone

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *