Viewers are raving about Netflix’s latest true crime documentary, on the murder trial and prison time of star football player Aaron Hernandez. It was most high profile American athlete trial since OJ Simpson. But why watch?
Since Making a Murderer completely took the streaming world by storm and dominated conversations for months, it seems Netflix has knocked out a new true crime hit one after the other. But if recent hysteria over Don’t F*ck with Cats is anything to go by, the demand isn’t slowing down. This time the streaming service has turned it’s focus to a very high profile case, Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez arrived on the platform last week.
The dark three-part documentary tells the story of the 2013 shooting of semi-professional American footballer Odin Lloyd and the subsequent arrest, trial and conviction of NFL player Aaron Hernandez.
Lloyd and New England Patriots star Hernandez had been dating sisters when the murder took place in an industrial park in Massachustetts. Hernandez was charged with first degree murder.
There was intense media coverage around the crime and trial. Hernandez, who had recently signed a £31 million deal with the Patriots, was convicted and sentenced to life in prison without parole. At age 27, after two years in prison, he took his own life in his cell.
The documentary covers the murder, trial (with footage), conviction and Hernandez’ time in prison. Featuring interviews from those close to Lloyd and Hernandez and letters and calls from his time inside, Netflix says the show lays bare “a tumultuous and often abusive upbringing, a growing fascination with gang life, and other discoveries that painted a maelstrom of motivations behind his violent behaviour.”
Keen viewers who have watched the series have been divided in their emotions, with people feeling everything from empathy to scepticism and outrage. One thread that has received a lot of attention concerns the fact that Hernandez was diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) after his death. CTE is brain damage from head trauma, with suspected links to behavioural issues and has been long connected with American football players and the injuries they sustain.
Others praised the documentary makers’ approach to the many lives involved in the story, with one Twitter user saying: “Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez is utterly engrossing. Props to the filmmakers too for establishing Odin Lloyd as more than just a ‘victim’. Too many crime docs get caught up in the celebrity of the killer.”
Looking into the world of violent criminals can often leave us appalled at psychopathic behaviour we can never understand, but it’s also interesting to unravel the motivations behind people’s actions.
Exploring the impacts on the mind from childhood trauma or possible repressed sexuality, but also the material damage to the brain from physical trauma and the impact that has on behaviour, we get an insight into the mind of a murderer.
Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez is streaming on Netflix now, are you ready to watch?
Images: Courtesy of Netflix