Jeffrey Dahmer rises again in controversy


Kai Arellano, Staff Writer

The show “Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story,” which came out Sept. 21 on Netflix, has become a huge hit for the streaming service. The story goes over the entire life of serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer and it goes over everything from his upbringing and his family to what he’s done personally and everyone he had murdered in his run from 1978 to 1991.

This show, since coming out, has gotten a lot of controversy. A lot of it being understandable and a lot of it being something that isn’t. The first being how individuals are mad at Netflix for profiting off of the story of Dahmer and making the victims of Dahmer relive the trauma they dealt with all those years ago.

It shouldn’t be taken lightly on how the families that had been affected by Dahmer had a serious traumatic experience when having to see Dahmer in person and watching him go to jail all those years ago. It’s also understandable that they have to see this story replay in their minds as they watch it on a streaming platform, although this shouldn’t be hated on because of Netflix and its actors. These people are playing roles and are profiting off of these roles that they’re playing. If you want to have a nonfictional story like this played exactly how it played out in real life, we need these actors to understand what could’ve been going through their heads as they were with this murderer. 

It’s also one of the first times where they showed vivid scenes of the killing of these victims. So that can also be seen by the families of the victims as too much. But because of the creators Ian Brennan and Ryan Murphy, they wanted to come up with a realistic view on this whole Dahmer story. They wanted to put something out that people may not have seen behind closed doors. It’s not that the actors and Netflix do not care about these people. They are just doing a job to put out a true crime story.

Another controversy is how people can’t differentiate between liking true crime as a genre, or liking what the true crime is talking about. A big discussion has come up with how people have started feeling some type of way about Dahmer himself. Not the story, the serial killer. People have put out on social media on how they care more about Dahmer or they feel bad for him. As in the last episode they showed Dahmer being killed by an inmate while in jail. 

This is something that isn’t new but needs to be addressed. It’s similar to how women had felt something for other serial killers like Richard Ramirez, The Night Stalker and Ted Bundy. These people were still alive and in custody when these women were fawning for them. Now that we have social media, women have gone and spoke out on how they feel about Dahmer. This shouldn’t be a topic for debate when it comes to these kinds of people. It’s almost like being in love with the “bad boy” archetype, but to the extreme.

If you need to question yourself and whether you like the genre or what the genre is talking about, you need therapy. It isn’t normal for people to feel something for these literal serial killers. It’s not normal for people to make videos about why they believe Dahmer was a misunderstood individual. It’s not normal to even really think that Dahmer was a lonely individual that needs some sort of care. Dahmer was already a sick individual from the beginning of his childhood to when he died in prison.

As time goes, this show may fizzle out and we might not talk about Dahmer ever again. Although the complicated feelings that people have for shows and these real life people can’t be swept under the rug so easily.