Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story is the latest addition to Netflix's growing true crime library. Currently sitting in Netflix's overall Top 10 streaming chart in the U.S., the new series from Ryan Murphy has generated plenty of buzz on social media, with many viewers finding the show incredibly difficult to watch.
Debuting on Sept. 21, the chilling series stars Evan Peters as convicted serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer and tracks his crimes throughout the late '70s and into the early '90s. Dahmer committed the murder and dismemberment of 17 men and boys between 1978 and 1991, with the series centered around the victims and the communities impacted by Dahmer's heinous crimes. Per the show's official synopsis, "DAHMER – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story is a series that exposes these unconscionable crimes, centered around the underserved victims and their communities impacted by the systemic racism and institutional failures of the police that allowed one of America's most notorious serial killers to continue his murderous spree in plain sight for over a decade." Along with Peters, the series also stars Richard Jenkins (Lionel Dahmer), Molly Ringwald (Shari Dahmer), Michael Learned (Catherine Dahmer), and Niecy Nash (Glenda Cleveland).
While most of Netflix's true crime series generate some amount of chatter on social media upon their debut, conversation surrounding Dahmer has flooded Twitter. As Netflix subscribers have sat down to watch the series, many have expressed online how difficult the show has been to watch. Dahmer, however, hasn't been without controversy, and many have also expressed discomfort with yet another show about real-life crimes, sharing that such series are disrespectful to the victims and their families.
'Hard to watch'
#DahmerNetflix is a grotesque and emotionally chilling biography about one of the most sadistic and inhumane people to walk this earth. It's hard to watch as these victims had no chance and the police are as they always are. Evan Peters and Richard Jenkins are phenomenal.
8.9/10 pic.twitter.com/s0SSKHP8MO— #GothamKnights (@WesleyW626) September 25, 2022
"I knew dahmer on Netflix was gonna be hard to watch. But the description they gave at the police station and the photos had me gaggy with my eyes closed," tweeted one viewer. "I may be crying. This is mad disturbing. My god."prevnext
#DahmerNetflix is such an uncomfortable watch Its a true horror masterpiece, what makes this all more dreadful is that it was all real— RegularGuy🏳️🌈🌈 (@IndianRainbow19) September 27, 2022
"The series has me conflicted," wrote somebody else. "I don't wanna say its great and I liked it,because I didn't like it,it was harrowing.And that's how every one of yall should feel. It should make you uncomfortable,it shouldn't be easy to watch.But it was so well made,the acting."prevnext
'Most disturbing things I've ever seen'
This has to be one of the most disturbing series I’ve finished. Jeffery Dahmer was a disgusting serial killer who avoided being arrested on several occasions due to his white privilege and homophobia in the 90’s. The police didn’t care for the victims at all #DahmerNetflix— Eliza Thornberry (@MiZz_Virtuous) September 24, 2022
"I think this has to be genuinely one of the most disturbing things I've ever seen, more so as is based on factual events," wrote another person. "Hearing the real life phone calls to the police threaded in between scenes makes your skin crawl. Can't stop watching though."prevnext
Left viewers in tears
So I just finished #DahmerNetflix and wow. I’m about ready to cry.— Joani (@camkin) September 26, 2022
"I'm not easily disturbed and I already knew of Dahmer of course... yet to say [Dahmer] made me want to scream, run, hide, cry and throw up all at once would still be an understatement," tweeted one person.prevnext
Viewers 'heartbroken' by preventable crimes
Just binge watched #DahmerNetflix and I’m beyond angry and heartbroken for these victims AND that more people had to suffer due to homophobia/racism/negligence of the police. Absolutely sick.— 𝖄𝖔𝖚𝖗 𝕱𝖚𝖙𝖚𝖗𝖊 𝕾𝖙𝖊𝖕𝖒𝖔𝖒 (@horrorwhore666_) September 24, 2022
"Homophobia, racism, police negligence the perfect recipe for this man to continue for as long as he did," added somebody else. "So many lives lost because this man was left to his own devices because of his privilege. All of the signs were there!"prevnext
Respect for the victims
"When you watch these glorified serial killer series like [Dahmer] which is #1 trending, remember the victims! Remember their families, go watch the very real impact statements," one person tweeted amid the rush of discourse surrounding the show. "This isn't entertainment. These were real people who's lives were destroyed."prevnext
Victim's family speaks out
I’m not telling anyone what to watch, I know true crime media is huge rn, but if you’re actually curious about the victims, my family (the Isbell’s) are pissed about this show. It’s retraumatizing over and over again, and for what? How many movies/shows/documentaries do we need? https://t.co/CRQjXWAvjx— eric. (@ericthulhu) September 22, 2022
As Dahmer premiered and the show began trending on social media, Eric Perry, cousin of Errol Lindsey, one of Dahmer's victims, spoke out, sharing on Twitter that the show was "retraumatizing" the victims' families, who were not required to give the "ok" for the series to be produced due to the the murders being public record. Perry wrote, "So when they say they're doing this 'with respect to the victims' or 'honoring the dignity of the families,' no one contacts them. My cousins wake up every few months at this point with a bunch of calls and messages and they know there's another Dahmer show. It's cruel."prev