Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story: Writer’s review



With Netflix’s newfound true crime “obsession,” the platform adds yet another disturbing serial killer-based show to its already lengthy selection. 

On Sept. 21, Netflix released Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, a ten-episode limited series. Created by Ryan Murphy and starring Evan Peters, Niecy Nash and Richard Jenkins, Monster dramatically parallels the real-life story of Jeffrey Dahmer and his victims, successfully combining true crime and horror. 

Episode One opens with one of Dahmer’s (Peters) victims fleeing Dahmer’s apartment after being drugged and almost murdered. The victim, Tracy, is able to escape and later encounters the police, who hesitantly approach him. After explaining his traumatizing experience, the police investigate and later arrest Dahmer. 

Viewers watch the life of Jeffrey Dahmer as he grows up: his mother (Penelope Miller), a mentally ill woman, and father (Jenkins), a sympathy-lacking man, raise Dahmer in an unstable home. At a young age, Dahmer is introduced to animal dissection by his father, which sparks his future “interests.” 

Monster gives the audience an overall traumatic viewing experience, highlighting the gore and violence spewing from Dahmer’s crimes. Throughout the show, Dahmer’s neighbor, Glenda Cleveland (Nash), calls the police multiple times to report the suspicious activity next door. The police repeatedly dismiss and ignore her calls, leaving viewers feeling helpless and sympathizing with the Cleveland community. 

Yet again, Evan Peters takes on a role in a horror series – and excels. Peters successfully uses his previous experience from his multiple roles in American Horror Story to perfect the title role of Jeffrey Dahmer. As an expert in TV horror acting, he nails Dahmer’s mannerisms, and his voice and tone leave viewers feeling as if they are listening to the real Dahmer speak. 

Generally known for her role in the comedy series RENO 911!, Niecy Nash shows viewers a different side of her acting abilities in this series, taking on and perfecting the very serious role of Dahmer’s neighbor. 

Monster has been a huge success for Netflix, drawing the largest audience since the release of Stranger Things Season 4. However, even with its success, the show is not for everyone – especially the weak-stomached.