There are two things I’m often on the lookout for on Netflix. Anime, horror series, and true crime. There’s so much of each on the platform that it can be hard to get around to new stuff when it drops. If you’re a true crime fanatic, Netflix is a buffet of true crime documentaries and mini-series. Yes, Netflix true crime is serious.
We’ve all heard of Making A Murderer, now in its second season but one that really gets me is Wormwood. Dropping in 2017, this Errol Morris project details the questionable death of Army scientist Frank Olson. Now when you get a true crime series on TV, often each episode details a case. Wormwood is dedicated to just this incident and paces everything across six episodes.
Netflix True Crime: The Case!
Wormwood is a story that spans decades. During the 1950s and 1960s, the U.S was secretly doing experiments on drugs, chemical agents, and other unorthodox methods for war and espionage. Yes, “unorthodox methods” means anything psychic and yes, I’m talking about MKUltra and related projects.
These projects produced a number of personalities in the intelligence and military community. These figures would become known over the decades starting with the Church Committee and Rockefeller Commission investigations in the 1970s.
Frank Olson’s case starts in 1953 when attends a party for scientists and officials working on MKUltra. At the party, several guests are given LSD and the reactions are documented. Olson remembered the events and is appalled by his reaction to the drugs. It’s the lack of control and being compromised that puts him into a depressive state.
Basically, he broke down bad and was having a crisis. Olson offers his resignation to a CIA official but isn’t released. Instead, some sort of getaway is scheduled for him. Nine days later, he dies as a result of falling ten stories from his hotel room.
Netflix True Crime: Wormwood!
The docu-series goes into Olson’s death and the impact on his family—especially his son Eric, the main interviewee. His insight on his father’s death, growing up without him, and his family’s investigation into it drives the series.
It also flows into the government’s hearings into the CIA’s projects decades earlier. All of this makes for a compelling story that never lulls. Each part revisits something earlier in the story before dropping more secrets and revelations on you. Before you know it, you’ve taken in a story that went from the suspicious death of a scientist to the peeling back of a cover-up before climaxing into what closure Eric Olson could get on everything.
The story is a lot but most true crime stories end up being tangled, messy, and leaving those impacted feeling somewhat unfulfilled. Something escaped them. The truth gets out but it’s 50/50 that anyone is held accountable. That’s something you’ll take away from Wormwood.
Netflix True Crime: Netflix True Crime Verdict – 9/10
I’ll say that Wormwood is one of the crown jewel documentaries in Netflix true crime. It’s also one of the best-paced documentaries on the platform. Wormwood is totally worth watching. For any other soap opera and entertainment news, please visit Daily Soap Dish. For more royal and celeb baby news, come back to Celeb Baby Laundry.