Something is enthralling about hearing crime and murder stories from the perspective of the perpetrators. Whether it’s a pedophile clown or a cannibal serial murderer, hearing it from the perpetrator’s voice adds a lot more weight and substance.
In comparison to documentaries that solely cobble together accounts from ancillary individuals like victims, family members, or law enforcement officers, we honestly prefer this style.
One we found most compelling was a three-part docuseries about a young guy who murdered his father. Hearing this youngster relate the gruesome details of the incident and its context had us completely gripped. So when we found out that there would be a third season of “I Am a Killer,” we were ecstatic.
Real-life death row inmates provide frightening descriptions of the violent acts they’ve committed in this crime docuseries. The fact that they are scheduled for death opens the door to stark honesty. The question is whether “I Am a Killer” can deliver the same spine-chilling thrills as its previous two seasons. Let us investigate!
Typically, each season of the show would feature roughly ten episodes. However, because of the Covid-19 pandemic, we’ll only be getting six episodes this season. Despite the smaller number of episodes, there are still very heartbreaking and terrible stories to be shared here.
This season, a recurring subject has been how trauma and mental illness may influence someone to execute horrible deeds. The first episode featured an abused victim, Victoria “Vicky” Smith, who killed her partner after years of misery. When you combine that with her limited mental capacity, you get a tremendous concoction of conflict within us.
Then there are the events that make us question the reality of the situation rather than our feelings. The second episode delves into Deryl Madison’s odd circumstances. Madison, like Pyro Joe from the second season, was a pyromaniac who set fire to buildings and houses. The man even masturbated while the buildings burned.
He also stated that he was not in control of himself when he murdered his victim. As he stated, something had taken over his head. You’re left with a hollow sense at the end of it. You’re filled with fear because you’re not sure if he’s telling the truth or not. Can someone really snap like that? Or is it a careful charade? It doesn’t help that he remains weirdly calm throughout.
We found “I Am a Killer” to be most fascinating when it is tense. “Blackout,” the fourth episode of the season, delves into a similar case involving James Walker. He claims that when he was killed in 2001, he was fully blacked out.
He maintains he has no recollection of the murder at all. Previous incidents of physical and emotional abuse may have caused major damage to his brain and mind. This begs the question of nature vs. nurture, and whether such people should be imprisoned at all.
However, not all of the episodes are of the same quality. Some of them strongly favor an unambiguous guilty finding. Particularly when there is clear evidence of the killer’s purpose. At that moment, you’re probably wondering why we’re hearing them try to excuse themselves. Having said that, the concluding episode “A Bad Day” of “I Am a Killer” did not disappoint. In this tale, we learn how David Cameron Keith kidnapped and held a 13-year-old boy captive. All the while planning a dramatic escape aboard a plane. It was an absolutely spectacular succession of blunders.
If there’s one thing that bores us to tears, it’s talking-head interviews that continuously retell the same incident from multiple perspectives. Its presentation is frequently boring and uninspiring. Fortunately, “I Am a Killer” has avoided this issue by keeping each episode’s format lean and efficient.
We get an outline of the story from the killers before going on to a few people who were engaged in their life. Where the series falls short of being innovative is in its graphics and over-reliance on forced subtitles. They can help set the scene, but they rapidly become distracting to our feeling of immersion.
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We’d like to think that by now, “I Am a Killer” has budgeted for dramatic reenactment scenes. We’re not looking for photorealistic actors performing daring stunts. Perhaps a small animated scene to add energy and enthusiasm to the recounting. Do you want a glorified clip show with genuine killers poring through the most intimate aspects of their crime? At the very least, they could display some of the offenders’ interrogation tapes.
Despite a limited season, “I Am a Killer” presents fascinating stories from real-life death row inmates. Its presentation lacks any type of real innovation in terms of visuals and aesthetics, limiting the series’ potential. When compared to other of Netflix’s sleeker true-crime docuseries, the series’ minimalist approach can only take it so far.
Despite a limited season, “I Am a Killer” presents fascinating stories from real-life death row inmates. Its presentation lacks any type of real innovation in terms of visuals and aesthetics, limiting the series’ potential. When compared to some of Netflix’s sleazier true-crime docuseries, the series’ lean style can only take it so far.
If you’re a true-crime lover looking for a hearty dose of death row stories, you can watch the third season of “I Am a Killer” on Netflix right now!