Column: Netflix's "MindHunter" brings life to a stale genre

Column: Netflix's
Photo courtesy of Rotten Tomatoes

The world of TV is changing right before our eyes. The allure of a basic cable channel run is seemingly gone, as more and more of our entertainment moves online. The leader of the online revolution has to be Netflix. Seemingly every home has a subscription to the streaming giant, which begs the question: Do people subscribe to re-watch their favorite shows, or are they more interested in the originals put out by Netflix? The newest and hottest original show to premiere on Netflix recently has got to be the David Fincher-produced-and-directed drama "MindHunter". Has Netflix knocked it out of the park again, or is this show bound to be lost to the endless catalog of shows available to stream?

"MindHunter" follows two FBI agents Holden Ford (Jonathan Groff) and Bill Tench (Holt McCallany) as they study the behaviors behind late 1970s serial killers, as they begin to classify and study these killers through interviews in jail. This is a time in history that many crime dramas that I’ve seen have not tackled, so seeing a world where the idea of a serial killer is foreign is really interesting and unique. I really loved the camera work and directing, especially in the first two episodes of the series. I felt bringing the legendary David Fincher to direct four of the 10 episodes was a great idea. He really knows how to do grimy and dark crime stories, and his eye for directing really captivates you. This show is honestly hard to watch at times. Since the show is on Netflix, they’re able to show significantly more details about the crimes than if the show was on CBS or ABC. The gruesome nature of the cases really brings you into the world these characters are living in. 

Now, I was only able to finish the first seven episodes, so I can’t give a full season review. However, I will say that there are two actors in this show so far that have blown me away on multiple occasions. The first is Holt McCallany, who plays Bill Tench. He does an insane job playing the stereotypical “bad” cop; however, he balances those harder moments with soft and quiet moments, really giving the actor time to bring his character alive. I also loved Cameron Britton as Edmund Kemper, the real life serial killer. Watching the way Britton was able to match the mannerism of Kemper spot-on made every single scene he was in impossible to look away from.

This show is dark and hard to watch, yet is the most captivating show I’ve seen all year. It’s a fresh take on a semi-stale genre that really sucks you in from the first scene. This is not a show that I can recommend to everyone; however, if crime dramas or the idea of the early days of serial killers interest you, this is absolutely the show for you. As soon as I can, I’m finishing the last three episodes.  

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