Arts & Entertainment

Netflix’s Gacy documentary will give you chills

by Chloe Pieper–Netflix premiered a new limited series called “Conversations with a Killer: The John Wayne Gacy Tapes” on April 20. The show traces the life of John Wayne Gacy and what led him to commit some of the worst crimes. 

Gacy was one of the most prolific serial killers and sex offenders in America. He  assaulted and killed a minimum of 33 young boys between the years 1972 to 1978; five of those victims were never identified. Gacy would often dress up as “Pogo the Clown” and “Patches the Clown” and perform at charity events and children’s hospitals to keep up with his persona. 

As stated in the first episode, Gacy was interviewed from November 1979 to April 1980 by a member of his legal defense team while awaiting trial for murder. Over 60 hours of conversations were recorded. The tapes were not publicly released until recently. 

The first episode goes over the disappearance of a teenager named Robert Piest in December 1978. He was working at a pharmacy the night that he disappeared. Gacy was one of the few people at the pharmacy that night but he was there as a contractor for the building remodel. When the police were looking at possible suspects and criminal history, Gacy came up as a red flag. Gacy was put at the top of the persons of interest list and under surveillance by the local police department.

The first episode switches between the years 1966 to 1978. It gives the viewer perspective about what happened between the years and explains different events that led to catching a killer. This series will leave you in chills. 

Towards the end of the third episode, I was almost in tears. Its includes footage of the victims’ family members talking and audio from the court case. They finally tells us what happen2d to Piest’s body and the events mentioned in episode one.

The show also describes the psychriatric evaluation that the defense did. They go through his childhood to find any sort of mental illness. He came from a rough childhood where his father was physically and verbally abusive to Gacy. The conclusion of this psych evaluation concludes that Gacy was a neurotic psychopath with obsessive and compulsive disorder. 

John Wayne Gacy was executed by lethal injection on May 10, 1994. 

This show is directed by Joe Berlinger who also directed “Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes” which is also on Netflix.  

This series currently has three episodes which last around an hour each. Be advised that there is mature content. 

April 24, 2022

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