Netflix Responds to Criticism of Jeffrey Dahmer Series by Lengthening Show’s Title

Written by: Jeannie Kim

Netflix recently announced they would be partnering with Monster Energy to fund season two.
Photo by Amit Roth

This September, Netflix released Dahmer — Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, which has become their ninth most popular English language television series of all time. The show has been widely criticized for exploiting a horrific tragedy and humanizing a serial killer for profit. In response to the backlash, Netflix has announced that they will be modifying the title of the series to “more accurately reflect the true sentiments of the show.”

“Dahmer — Monster: The Sick and Twisted Story of Sick and Twisted Jeffrey Dahmer, A Disgusting Guy is a story about the victims,” said Ian Murphy, co-creator of the series. “I hate Jeff. I don’t care about him. He was a horrible guy. Do I know what he did? No, I care about the damage he did to all those innocent people. Jeffrey might have been the guy whose perspective you follow through most of the show, but the protagonists of the show were always the victims. That’s why we dedicated almost three whole episodes to them in the latter third of the show. They were the least popular episodes according to IMDb, but they were the most popular. To us.”

“Our show, Dahmer — Monster: The Nauseating Story of Jeffrey “Monster” Dahmer, The Murderous Milwaukee Guy Whose Actions Were Evil is an exploration of one of the darkest, least redeemable minds of Milwaukee, Ohio,” said co-creator Ryan Brennan. “It’s a story about a human. But it’s also a story about a monster. A human, who was also a monster, who was also often shirtless in our show. But, y’know, the show is not sympathetic to that human-monster … guy. I don’t agree with that critique. It’s more, like, empathetic, because, well, y’know, how many of us have killed a person?”

Brennan was interviewed separately from Murphy and has since been unreachable for further comment.

Backlash against Dahmer has remained strong. This stems from the fact that the showrunners purportedly did not get permission from the victims’ families to fictionalize their loved ones using their names, likenesses, and any other details the Dahmer writers could find about them. To this, the showrunners have responded that they did, in fact, contact the families about the show, but did not get a single response back.

“Here’s the rundown. We made Dahmer — Monster: The Frightening Tale of the Frightening Man, the Monster, the Dahmer Monster, the Jeffrey Monster, Ew! Yuck! We Hate Him!” said Brennan. “And then we asked the families if all of this was cool with them or not. We sent them an email, one email, and no one responded! Not one family! So of course, since we already made the whole show and the Netflix execs were chomping at the bit to release it, we gave them the go-ahead. Those poor families really should have checked their spam folder.”

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