Infamous serial killer Ted Bundy is getting another 15 minutes of fame in the spotlight, thanks to Oscar-nominated director Joe Berlinger (Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory). Berlinger has released a biopic about Bundy's life, (Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile) which is currently making its first big splash at the Sundance film festival. However, Berlinger did so much research for that film that he had enough material for an accompanying documentary, Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes, which is currently streaming on Netflix.
Well, apparently reactions to Conversations with a Killer aren't quite what Netflix expected. That's because some viewers are coming away from the documentary feeling enamored with Bundy due to his looks - causing Netflix to issue the following statement:
I've seen a lot of talk about Ted Bundy’s alleged hotness and would like to gently remind everyone that there are literally THOUSANDS of hot men on the service — almost all of whom are not convicted serial murderers— Netflix US (@netflix) January 28, 2019
Wow. WOW. That's pretty much all there is to say about that.
The fact that there's been significant enough chatter for Netflix to issue this statement already says a lot. Of course if we're being honest, this is just an example of America's 'cult of killers' fascination that's perhaps just a little more shocking than most. It's not too far away from other pop-culture phenomenon like "The Hot Felon" a few years back. Even the worst serial killers (Bundy, John Wayne Gacy, Charles Manson, Jeffrey Dahmer) seem to maintain a level of celebrity in modern culture, with books, films, TV shows and other studies of their character (or lack thereof) attracting great deals of intrigue and interest. Bundy, as stated, has come around again to reclaim national attention, thirty years after his death in January 1989.
Netflix itself has captured a lot of cultural intrigue in the last half-year, thanks to a string of releases that have captured major attention. In addition to this controversy around Conversations with a Killer, the Netflix hit film Bird Box got some backlash when viewers tried to recreate the film's sequences of traversing dangerous terrain while blindfolded - to some disastrous results. It should also be noted that as of writing this, director Joe Berlinger's Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile is splitting audiences, with The Playlist review stating this:
"By the time ‘Extremely Wicked’ ends and has the audacity to puts its many female victim’s names on the screen, silently and somberly, trying its best to cast itself as some kind of concerned ally and not the fraud that it is, you’ve felt insulted and cheated enough. [D+]"
The post from Netflix didn't take long to attract the usual amount of social media shade - like this perfect-snark post by ET, referencing the other psycho who's real popular on Netflix right now (Joe in You):
Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes is now streaming on Netflix.