In 1985, at age 18, Steven Avery from Manitowoc, Wisconsin was sent to prison for the assault and attempted rape of a Manitowoc woman named Penny Beerntsen. The Wisconsin Innocence Project took Averys case, and with the help of DNA evidence, proved Steven Averys innocence and presented evidence of corruption within the Manitowoc county police. After 18 years in prison, Steve Avery was released.
Steven Avery sued the Manitowoc county for 36 million dollars and the Avery Bill, named in his honor, was passed to prevent other wrongful convictions. Then, in november 2005, after two years of freedom, Steven Avery was arrested for the murder of Teresa Halbach.
Making a Murderer was filmed from 2005 to 2015, and follows Steven Avery, his family, his legal team, the police officers investigating the case and the reporters covering it. The ten episodes rely on a combination of interviews, footage from the trial and video entered into evidence to weave a tense, instantly engaging story of violence and corruption.
If you’re not a Netflix subscriber already, you will be by the time you’ve finished the first episode.
Director and writer duo Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demos have done a masterful job of pacing the ten episodes. By the end of the first episode, you have started to root for Steven Avery, who’s innocence to the first assault is beyond question. He has regained his freedom, his family and his standing in the community. It’s a beautiful redemption story. When he’s charged with murder, you want to believe him. Is he innocent? Is he being set up? Or is he using the sympathy and trust of his legal team and family to get away with murder?
I started watching the first episode of Making a Murderer at a whim, ten o’ clock in the evening. It seemed like something suitable to have in the background while doing another replay of Rogue Legacy. Before I knew it, it was four in the morning, I had forgotten all about Rogue Legacy and I was eight episodes into Making a Murderer.
I can’t think of a equivalent term for “page turner” for tv shows, but whatever it is, it applies to Making a Murderer. Once you’ve started watching, it’ll be impossible to stop. The first episode of the show is available for free on YouTube, and I highly recommend that you give it a shot. If you’re not a Netflix subscriber already, you will be by the time you’ve watched the first episode to the end.