Netflix Review: “Night Stalker: The Hunt For a Serial Killer”

January 16, 2021

Written by Kelli Marchman McNeely

Kelli Marchman McNeely - Horror Fuel CEO & Executive Producer Email: [email protected]

 

 

Three decades after the story began, Netflix has now unleashed their new limited docuseries  “Night Stalker: The Hunt For a Serial Killer” which delves into the investigation of the crimes committed by Richard Rameriez, the serial killer known as the “Night Stalker.”

 

Director Tiller Russell takes us back into the 1980s world of the prolific killer and through his crimes without glamorizing Ramirez in any way or doing a disservice to the survivors or the relatives of Rameriz’s victims. He lays out the timelines for both the murders and assaults in a straight forward way while introducing us to the mindset of the investigators Gil Carrillo and the legendary investigator Frank Salerno in their own frank and sometimes brutally honest words. The fact that we hear so much testimony from so many involved with the case, including survivors and detectives, elevates its status above many other documentaries.

 

The series gives true crime fans a ton of detail and information about the investigation and a lot of the original news footage. But you should know that the series is just as much about the investigation and the survivors as it is about the killer himself, if not more.

 

Ramirez, whose level of violence had never before been witnessed, is well known for his series of murders that have been confirmed at 13, but the series also sheds light on his other crimes which include torturing, kidnapping, and the sexual assault of multiple children. A killer who commits multiple series of distinct crimes at once is a rarety, leaving many investigators believing they were searching for two different criminals. Thankfully, Gill Carrillo was determined to prove his belief that they were looking for one man.

 

Thanks to dedicated investigators, Richard Ramirez was arrested in 1985 and sentenced to execution, however, he died in prison before his sentence could be carried out, passing away due to complications from B-cell Lymphoma.

 

I believe the reason Richard Ramirez never gained the fame of killers like Bundy and Dahmer has a lot to do with the fact that his crimes were so brutal. Back in the 1980s details could not be publically released. He also did not fit that “pretty boy” profile like Bundy, in fact, he was always described in the media as having bad teeth and body odor. Make no mistake, the Night Stalker is one of the most brutal killers ever to be caught. I mean he’s terrifying. If you were walking down a dark alley and came face to face with him wouldn’t you be nervous?

 

 

 

I’ve heard others say the series “goes too far”, but I think they’re wrong. People tuning in should already have a clue what to expect, we are talking about a serial killer docuseries after all. If viewers don’t want to be shocked and disgusted, why even tune in? Let’s be honest folks, that’s the whole point. But at no point do I think that series went overboard with gore. In fact, I think the series goes just far enough. Sure we see clips of blood dripping to the floor along with bloody weapons, and it’s a little overdramatic, but I understand that the director is trying to educate us while entertaining us. But it is what it is, dark entertainment.

 

If you haven’t seen “Night Stalker: The Hunt For A Serial Killer,” you should. I highly recommend it. It is now streaming on Netflix.

 

 

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