Netflix has created some scary villains over the years, but nobody is quite as heinous as real-life murderer/cannibal Jeffrey Dahmer. Dahmer murdered seventeen men and children in the 80s and 90s, and was eventually convicted and sent to prison, where he died after being beaten to death by an inmate.
The gruesome story is the backdrop to Ryan Murphy’s series Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story which premiered on Netflix last week. A whopping 196.2 million people tuned into the series, which consists of 10 episodes chronicling his murder spree told from his victim’s point of view. Evan Peters stars as the titular killer alongside Richard Jenkins, Molly Ringwald, Michael Learned, and Niecy Nash.
This puts Monster on the list of most-watched debuts on Netflix, sitting right behind season two of Bridgerton, season four of Stranger Things, the popular Korean drama All Of Us Are Dead and, of course, Netflix’s new favorite child, Squid Game. Monster narrowly beat out this year’s Inventing Anna, which scored 195.97 viewers in the first few days (it should be noted that Netflix restructured its rating report last year, so anything before then is hard to track down).
The series was initially supposed to highlight the systematic failures that enabled Dahmer to keep killing for over a decade. Though critics have praised the acting, the series has attracted a fair share of criticism for its portrayal of the victims and their families, who were allegedly not informed about the show before it aired. That combined with viral TikToks painting Dahmer as a “victim“…it’s a scary time to be on the internet. Maybe everyone should take a little time outside today.
On the bright side: Joe Pera has never murdered anybody.