Clowns have been a popular scare motif in pop culture. While we usually associate clowns with tricks, jokes and hilarious antics, there is a certain sinister feel to the idea of a twisted psyche hiding behind the joyful facade. Coulrophobia is pretty common among people but when you watch the horrifying true story of a depraved killer clown on Netflix, who went on a bloody rampage fuelled by sexual violence and bloodlust, you’ll really be trembling.
Serial killers have become anti-establishment icons in pop culture with killers like Ted Bundy and Charles Manson inspiring various films and series. While some filmmakers miss the point, often glorifying and justifying their crimes, filmmaker Joe Berlinger does none of that.
Following his acclaimed episodes on Netflix with Ted Bundy, Berlinger’s latest true-crime instalment Conversations With A Killer: The John Wayne Gacy Tapes appeals to the sensibilities of true-crime patrons while bringing to the fore the story of a depraved, narcissist who does not deserve a place in the cavernous bottoms of hell.
Via three episodes, the documentary series features exclusive interviews with the disgraced monster who displays no remorse for his activities.
While Gacy was considered a respectable individual in society and even performed as a clown in children’s hospitals, all of it was a mask to keep suspicions at bay about his monstrous thoughts.
Having murdered 29 young men after brutally assaulting them sexually, Gacy often kept parts of them as trophy memorabilia. The episodes feature interviews with those close to him as well as those who hated him, besides one of the many survivors whose teary eyes will tug at your heartstrings as begin to fathom the kind of trauma and pain he had to endure all his life.
Gacy is despicable. His homophobic mentality also shows the contemporary American take on same-sex relationships and he manoeuvred this hatred like a clever sociopath to coerce these men into performing sexual acts on him, before raping and killing them. In one of the tapes, he is heard saying, “I didn’t see them as human beings.”
Even till his last breath, Gacy kept blaming the victims and expressing his disgust towards them. The docuseries is sick, heartbreaking and poignant as it features the story of Robert Piest and countless other victims who were viciously tortured by this sick homophobic pervert.
Berlinger never lets Gacy justify his actions and presents him as he is: monstrous, vile, depraved and despicable.
Watch the Conversations With A Killer: The John Wayne Gacy Tapes on Netflix now.