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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez Review: Pain, lies and deceit make lurid feature

Photo courtesy IMDB/Netflix. Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez’s tragic upbringing that leads to football stardom and ends in murder.
Photo courtesy IMDB/Netflix. Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez’s tragic upbringing that leads to football stardom and ends in murder.
January 29, 2020 | Jill Bold | editor-in-chief
Photo courtesy IMDB/Netflix. Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez’s tragic upbringing that leads to football stardom and ends in murder.
Photo courtesy IMDB/Netflix. Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez’s tragic upbringing that leads to football stardom and ends in murder.

Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez showcased layers upon layers of tragedy unfolding in the three-episode Netflix docuseries. It explored the complicated and tragic story of football phenom and convicted murderer Aaron Hernandez and the people ensnared in his sphere of influence.

The documentary profiles him from a young age and through his career at the University of Florida and as a New England Patriots tight end, revealing many previously unknown details of his life that provide context for what is to come.

Some of the most revealing aspects of Hernandez’s mindset are laid bare in jailhouse phone calls with his friends and family after his arrest for first-degree murder. As if he’d forgotten that these conversations are recorded, Hernandez candidly provided slices of insight into his upbringing through his dysfunctional phone conversations with his mother. This also permitted Hernandez to be heard in his voice and his own words, allowing viewers to judge for themselves what they think about his conversations with loved ones.

The generous use of archival footage gave an objective feel to the storytelling, as well as interviews with close friends of Hernandez and the victim of Hernandez’s murderous rage, semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd. This documentary takes great care to respectfully tell the story of Lloyd’s life and death through interviews with his loved ones.

The conclusion of this documentary weaves in an element not often seen in murderers or any other human beings for that matter – CTE. Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy is a degenerative disease that is found in the brains of athletes who have a history of repeated blows to the head. Scientists in this documentary point to the extreme damage found in the brain of Hernandez to be consistent with CTE and a possible contributing factor to the dysfunction of his brain, his violent and erratic behavior and his way of thinking.

This docuseries contains references to violence, mature themes and strong language and is recommended for mature audiences only. With each of the three episodes at about a one-hour length each, this is binge-worthy viewing for those who enjoy a good mystery told in an entertaining format. True stories of violence can be the most tragic, and this tale is no exception. 

Although the title theme was full of strange instrumental fanfare that didn’t quite fit the tone of the story and the ending of the docuseries seemed a bit abrupt. Overall, it was cohesive and entertaining.

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