Netflix has greenlit a new limited series, Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, focusing on the notorious American serial killer from American Horror Story creator Ryan Murphy and his frequent collaborator Ian Brennan. The order follows the launch of Murphy’s Netflix psychological thriller drama Ratched, which is ranked #1 on the service across several countries around the world. Murphy had notably inked an overall deal with Netflix in 2018, following which, he quickly began developing a proliferate slate of originals for the streamer. In recent years, Murphy has produced the TV shows and movies, including The Politician, Hollywood, and The Boys in the Band for Netlfix, and now he has set his sights on the infamous murderer Jeffrey Dahmer for his latest outing on the service.
According to Deadline, Murphy’s Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story will chronicle the tale of one of America’s deadliest serial killers from the perspective of his victims. The show will follow the Wisconsin native through his various murders of men and boys between 1978 and 1991, while also shedding light on the legal and judicial incompetence and indifference that enabled Dahmer to execute his crimes smoothly. There were several times when Dahmer was almost apprehended for his crimes, but he was ultimately let go due to his white privilege. Monster will now seek to dramatize at least ten such instances. While casting for Jeffrey’s role is still underway, Oscar nominee Richard Jenkins has already been brought on board to play Dahmer’s father Lionel.
With a prolific serial killer at its core, and an opportunity to render a biting commentary on the failure of America’s justice system on the side, Ryan Murphy’s Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story has a lot of potential to emerge as a big hit for the TV creator. That is, however, if Murphy does not attempt to sensationalize his show. While Ratched has a high viewership on Netflix, one cannot deny how excessively it relies on grotesque and salacious plotholes for its storytelling. For Monster to not repeat the mistakes of Ratched, it needs to update the signature Murphy formula, and for that, it will have to adapt to more sensitive handling of its gruesome subject.
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