Netflix Series Shows the Dark Side of 1970s New York in the Hunt for the Times Square Killer
Netflix’s true-crime series Crime Scene will return in December with an investigation into the Times Square Killer, also known as the Torso Killer, Richard Cottingham. The season begins with a gruesome discovery at a Times Square motel in 1979, which was set aflame to hide a much worse crime.
Oscar-nominated filmmaker Joe Berlinger returns to direct and executive-produce the three-part series, which focuses on the serial killer who largely preyed on sex workers in both New York and New Jersey. “I had covered crime, but I had never covered crime as salacious and as evil and as brutal,” a journalist says in the docuseries of the Times Square murder scene. Cottingham — who was notorious for dismembering his victims — was arrested in 1980, but has since confessed to still more crimes.
“As a lifelong New Yorker, I’ve watched Times Square become the tourist mecca it is today — but many people have forgotten about the darker era of the late Seventies and early Eighties when it was a near-lawless sexual playground that enabled predators to exploit sex workers, or worse,” Berlinger said in a statement. “Through the location-focused lens of this series and this particular season, we unpack how this particular time and place, and a confluence of social forces, created an environment that allowed terrible things to happen and a killer to go unnoticed for too long.”
Crime Scene will profile several people involved in both the police’s investigation as well as citizens who attempted to solve the mystery of the Times Square Killer, including the daughter of a porno king. The docuseries also features an interview with Jennifer Weiss, the daughter of one of the Times Square Killer’s victims who continues her quest to identify the remaining Jane Does who were killed.
Crime Scene Season 2 premieres on Dec. 29 on the streaming service.
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