The Dahmer dilemma: Impacts of the New Dahmer Series on Netflix

Netflix’s new Jeffrey Dahmer series is charting rapidly, but some viewers have mixed emotions on the new show.

Netflix has made yet another big hit series, Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, which entails all the gruesome and saddening details of famous serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer’s murders. The show has caught the attention of many; however, some viewers are upset with it.

Official poster for “DAHMER – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story” from Netflix.com.

The series consists of strikingly accurate recreations of Jeffrey Dahmer’s crimes. Evan Peters, who is most known for his roles on the FX show American Horror Story, plays the role of Dahmer. Peters shows his dedication to the role by copying Dahmer’s speech patterns and mannerisms, making it feel like you are watching Dahmer himself. The producers also made sure to make every set as close to the real event as they could.

Though the series is very much commended for its cinematics and efforts to ensure that Dahmer is not praised, the producers lacked a code of empathy and ethics regarding the families of Dahmer’s victims.

Rita Isbell, the sister of Errol Lindsey, one of Dahmer’s victims, released a statement with Insider describing her exact emotions and opinions towards the new series. Isbell was featured in the show for her famous court statement at Dahmer.

Isbell describes how realistic her actress was in portraying herself. Isbell said that she almost thought she was watching herself. Because of this, the show brought back emotions and feelings about that day, which was a very traumatic time for her.

Isbell also revealed that Netflix did not contact her nor any of her other family members for their opinions or consent on the series.
Junior Kennedie Tan shares her own opinion on Netflix’s shortcomings in inquiring with the families of Dahmer’s victims.

“I think it’s messed up not asking the families if they could have their family members in the show,” Tan said. “It’s personal information.”

For another local opinion on this controversy, English and true crime teacher Lindsay Edwardson shares her thoughts about the resurfacing of the Dahmer murders.

“We pretty much know everything there is to know about the Dahmer story already,” Edwardson said. “So why do we continue to rehash it and bring about trauma and pain for the surviving family members of victims?”

Some people have even stated that they do not want to start watching the show because of Netflix’s lack of notice for the victim’s families.

“The creators of the show did not receive permission from the families or even notify the families that their stories were going to be recreated,” Edwardson said. “That’s partially why I have not started watching it yet.”

Tan also believes that Netflix should have had a different approach when making the series and been more sympathetic toward the family members.

“They should have tried to reach out,” Tan said. “So either, asking them if it was okay if their names were mentioned, or not even being in the episode at all.”

As of now, some viewers of the show have organized a petition to make Netflix apologize for their insensitivity towards the victim’s families. Netflix has yet to form a response or apology for the families.