Netflix has a great record of getting it right with documentaries and true crime. In fact, for India, Netflix became big with Making a Murderer, before the Daredevil and Jessica Jones web series were just a buzzword in foreign media. Since this year, Netflix is beefing up their collection of true crime-based web series. This week, we saw the excellent Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes and then comes The Innocent, which is based on a John Grisham novel of the same name.
The documentary series is about a murder that took place in the early eighties in Ada, Oklahoma, a murder that baffled the town and the authorities doubled down to find out the culprit or culprits. The murder of Debbie Sue Carter prompted multiple arrests and convictions, two of which were overturned after 30 years, when new evidence possible because of DNA came into the play. The documentary documents the murders that took place around that time, the people who were arrested and charged, and introduce you to people who don’t believe the arrests and convictions were correctly done.
The case is a complicated one and the timeline of this case goes down to thirty years. There’s a lot of information, emotion and facts that need to be got out there. Casual viewers might find the series exhausting to watch – and even get confused as the torrent of information and data hits down in a spate of six episodes.
The series takes the audiences into a deep dive into the American justice system, and the incident itself hints at a dark secret that Grisham and co only hint at, but don’t really offer any proof about it. In fact, the documentary brings in only one person from the other side, and he has what seems to be one extended conversation with the interviewer. Of course, we
That’s not the mistake of the director or anything, the case is still on, and there’s just too much of information to be digested. But this miniseries paints a compelling story of how justice delayed is justice denied. This is a fascinating viewing for everyone on both sides of the law, and anyone who’d like to how a small mistake can have devastating effects.
The Innocent Man makes for a compelling watch.
Caste and crew:
Cast: Ron Williamson, Dennis Fritz, Tommy Ward, and Karl Fontenot
Created by: Ross Dinerstein, Clay Tweel, John Grisham
Director: Clay Tweel
The Innocent Man is now streaming on Netflix