There’s no denying that the world has gone crazy for true crime. Whether it’s streaming on Netflix, docudramas on the big screen, or investigative podcasts, we can’t seem to get enough of the genre.
That’s where Netflix’s latest true crime offering Trial By Media comes in – a tasty morsel of crime and high drama perfectly designed to satiate our appetite for all things illegal. Packaged into six hour-length episodes, the docuseries shines the spotlight on six notorious cases in which the true prosecutor was the media.
Trial By Media dives deep into the American psyche of the 1980s and 1990s, analyzing how the changing media landscape permeated the legal system. High profile court cases quickly became the most fascinating television program on the air, changing the course of history.
What makes the show interesting is that while the cases were game-changing at the time, they have largely fallen out of the collective consciousness. While the interviews all assert that the cases still remain household names, the lack of coverage in recent years makes watching these episodes incredibly rewarding.
The series focuses on the Jenny Jones talk show murder, the Subway Vigilante, the killing of Amadou Diallo by four police officers, the HealthSouth fraud case, Big Dan’s rape case, and Rod Blagojevich’s corruption case. Each case is dealt with tact and limited bias – the aim of the doco is not to lean too heavily to one side, but spotlight the often harmful role of the media in the justice system.
Trial By Media is a slick production. But what else would you expect from executive producers George Clooney and Jeffrey Toobin; it was always going to be a bit of a masterpiece. Not only is the archival footage cut together seamlessly, but the narrative is also maintained and prioritized. The interviewees are so evocative and unique that you’d be forgiven for thinking they were professional actors playing a stylized character.
Trial By Media is an interesting and easy watch. The stand-alone episodes make it perfect for those tiring of massive Netflix binges but be warned – the episodes will have you down a rabbit hole of Google searches in no time as you investigate the stories for yourself.