True crime is booming these days!
A few years ago, when Netflix debuted Making a Murdered and the Serial podcast was talking about Adnan Syed, true crime content was a thing, but not like it is now. Serial opened the podcast floodgates to countless shows about unsolved murders and other cases, and barely a day goes by without some new true-crime documentary or docuseries popping up on streaming services.
Before the streaming boom, these kinds of stories were usually on Dateline, or maybe some niche cable network, or, if you’re an 80s kid, they were emanating from Robert Stack’s golden pipes on Unsolved Mysteries.
Stack was the host of the popular true-crime series. You know, the show that made you terrified that the next time you left your house would later be described, via Stack’s ominous voiceover, as the last time anyone saw you? Each story offered viewers a 1-800 number to call if they had any information on the case.
Netflix knows the public can’t get enough of this stuff, so they’re bringing Unsolved Mysteries back! This time with a website instead of a phone number.
“The cross-generational fan base for UNSOLVED MYSTERIES is amazing,” executive producers Terry Dunn Meurer and John Cosgrove said in a statement. “We’ll hear from viewers — now in their 20s and 30s — who say, ‘I used to sneak episodes behind my parents’ backs when I was young.’ Everyone seems to have a favorite segment that totally freaked them out. We’ve learned that audiences like to be scared, and real stories scare people.”
On July 1st, the first 6 episodes of a 12 episode season will be debuting on the streaming service with a slightly new format. Instead of covering multiple stories in each episode, the new series will tackle one at a time, and, according to the episode descriptions, some of these mysteries might have a slightly supernatural bent.
Check out the list of episodes, per iHorror:
“Mystery on the Rooftop,” directed by Marcus A. Clarke:
The body of newlywed Rey Rivera was found in an abandoned conference room at Baltimore’s historic Belvedere Hotel in May 2006, eight days after he mysteriously disappeared. While the Baltimore Police maintained that the 32-year-old committed suicide by jumping from the hotel’s roof, the medical examiner declared Rey’s death “unexplained.” Many, including his devastated wife, Allison, suspect foul play.
“13 Minutes,” directed by Jimmy Goldblum:
Patrice Endres, 38, mysteriously vanished from her Cumming, Georgia, hair salon in broad daylight, during a 13-minute timeframe, leaving behind her teenage son, Pistol. Patrice’s disappearance intensified the existing tensions between Pistol and his stepfather as they dealt with the loss and searched for answers.
“House of Terror,” directed by Clay Jeter:
In April 2011, French police discovered the wife and four children of Count Xavier Dupont de Ligonnès buried under the back porch of their home in Nantes. Xavier, the family patriarch, was not among the dead and nowhere to be found. Investigators gradually pieced together clues and a timeline that pointed to Xavier as a devious, pre-meditate killer. For instance, they now know that shortly before the crimes occurred, Xavier inherited a gun that was the same model as the murder weapon.
“No Ride Home,” directed by Marcus A. Clarke:
Alonzo Brooks, 23, never returned home from a party he attended with friends in the predominantly white town of La Cygne, Kansas. A month later, a search party led by his family locates Alonzo’s body — in an area that law enforcement had already canvassed multiple times.
“Berkshire’s UFO,” directed by Marcus A. Clarke:
On September 1, 1969, many residents in Berkshire County, Massachusetts were traumatized by a sighting of a UFO. Eyewitnesses — many just children at the time — have spent their lives trying to convince the world that what they saw was real.
“Missing Witness,” directed by Clay Jeter:
At age 17, a guilt-ridden Lena Chapin confessed to helping her mother dispose of her murdered stepfather’s body four years prior. In 2012, Lena was issued a subpoena to testify against her mother in court, but the authorities were never able to deliver the summons — because Lena had disappeared, leaving behind a young son.
Here’s the spine-tingling original series intro in case you don’t want to sleep tonight: