The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News


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COLUMN: The perfect Netflix series that feature serial killers
Brie Coder
Brie Coder is a graduate student studying graduate student in communication and leadership and can be reached at [email protected] or 217-581-2812.

According to the Oxford Dictionary, a ‘Serial Killer’ is “a person who commits a series of murders, often with no apparent motive and typically following a characteristic, predictable behavior pattern.”

Before you cancel your Netflix subscriptions, there is some content to feast your eyes on before officially saying goodbye to your Netflix and chill routine.

If you are looking for some spine-chilling, riddling and captivating true crime shows to watch this weekend, let me recommend the trilogy series, “Conversations with a Killer.”

These stories are recalled by none other than the evil trinity themselves: Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer and John Wayne Gacy. Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? All answers may or may not reveal themselves when these serial killers take the microphones.

This show explores how three men went from “average” American citizens to the most diabolical murderers of the 20th century. Each docuseries has three to four episodes ranging from 45 to 74 minutes.

Entering first into the fray is “Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes.” Known as “The Handsome Devil,” Bundy was notorious for committing and confessing to luring and murdering 30 young women and other unspeakable acts across the country between 1974 and 1978.

Reporters Stephen Michaud and Hugh Aynesworth visited Bundy on death row and recorded up to 100 hours of interviews before his execution at the Florida State Prison in 1989.

It said a lot about Bundy’s character when hundreds of people celebrated his execution to the point of dancing, singing and launching fireworks.

Next in this unnerving trilogy is the “John Wayne Gacy Tapes.” Thanks to Gacy’s antics, it’s hard to trust clowns. Wait, did anyone ever trust those obnoxious fools? I digress.

Beginning in 1968, Gacy’s crime spree started with a sexual assault charge against a minor. During his sentencing, the Psychiatric Department of The University of Iowa recognized and recorded the disturbing nature behind Gacy’s tendencies, which his documentary acknowledges for the first time.

Some of the university’s notes include; “The most striking aspect of the test results is the patient’s total denial of responsibility for everything that has happened to him. He can produce an “alibi” for everything.

He presents himself as a victim of circumstances and blames other people who are out to get him… the patient attempts to assure a sympathetic response by depicting himself as being at the mercy of a hostile environment.”

Despite U of I’s red alert warning to the Anamosa State Penitentiary of how Gacy would remain a repeat offender if not convicted of a lengthy sentence or suggested treatment, with ignorance, the prison released Gacy after only serving 18 months out of 10 years due to good behavior.

Never taking responsibility for his first sexual assault, Gacy would return to the general population, Pogo persona and all, to stalk the streets and prey upon young, vigorous men for the next decade. Thanks, Anamosa State Penitentiary!

Gacy’s record made the United States legal history books (and not in a good way) by having an overall conviction of 33 murders (26 victims buried in the crawl space of his house, three buried elsewhere on Gacy’s property and four discarded in the Des Plaines River).

Still, to this day, more victims are being found.

Lastly is the most gruesome and unforgiving of all three killers, “The Jeffrey Dahmer Tapes.” Comparing herself to Clarice Starling from “Silence of the Lambs,” Wendy Patrickus, Dahmer’s defense attorney, conducted hours of interviews with the “Milwaukee Cannibal.” And to think this was her first assigned case after passing the bar.

Describing himself as an emotionless human being, Dahmer invited jaw-dropping gasps from everyone nationwide in 1991 when he was exposed for a string of unimaginable crimes on 17 innocent men and boys, including murder, necrophilia and cannibalism.

Not only does the documentary recount the horrifying incidents that occurred at his family home in Ohio, his grandmother’s house and his apartment 213 in Milwaukee, but it also examines the failings made by the Milwaukee Police Department, who were called numerous times on the matter, yet did nothing to intervene and save these victims.

If true crime meets the criteria on your definition of Halloween, you’re in for an indescribable ride told by the three faces of evil.

Brie Coder can be reached at [email protected] or 217-581-2812.

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About the Contributor
Brie Coder, Columnist
Brie Coder is a graduate student in communication and leadership. She previously served as a columnist for The News.

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