Making a Murderer was a big hit for Netflix back when it premiered in 2015. It had people speculating on the guilt or innocence of Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey, who were convicted for the murder of Teresa Halbach. It was the right story to tell—the drive of police organizations and prosecutors to get convictions no matter the cost—and the wrong case to tell it because this wasn’t a clear case of two men being railroaded by the system. To keep the “whodunnit” aspect alive, the docuseries raises questions it can’t answer so that you’re never completely certain if Avery and Dassey are innocent. That’s a bad way to go if your larger point is about flaws in the justice system.
Today, Netflix announced Making a Murderer Part 2, which will look at the incarceration of Avery and Dassey. Per Netflix, “Emmy Award-winning filmmakers Laura Ricciardi and Moira Demos return to the Midwest where they have exclusive access to Steven Avery and his co-defendant and nephew Brendan Dassey, their families and the legal teams fighting for justice on their behalf. Over the course of 10 new episodes, Making a Murderer Part 2 provides an in-depth look at the high-stakes postconviction process, exploring the emotional toll the process takes on all involved.”
Again, this is a story worth telling, but it’s debatable if Avery and Dassey are the best people for the center of this story. There are people locked up who definitely got a raw deal, and certainly Brendan Dassey, whose low intelligence allowed him to be easily manipulated by those around him, should be in a place where he can be looked after rather the sentenced to prison. But Avery is a different character, and it seems like the filmmakers truly believe his innocence. I wish I shared their faith in Avery, but instead I wouldn’t be surprised if we got another muddled season where the intentions are good, but the story can’t support it.
Check out the Making a Murderer Part 2 teaser below. The series premieres on October 19th.