Many true crime series are whodunnits that are never fully answered, but in the Netflix docuseries I Am a Killer, the murderer's identity isn't in doubt — because they confessed.
I Am a Killer season 3, which dropped on Aug. 30 with six new episodes, has already rocketed up the Netflix Top 10 list. It's the latest in a string of hit Netflix true crime documentaries, following I Just Killed My Dad, My Daughter's Killer and Girl in the Picture.
Here's what you should know about I Am a Killer.
What is I Am a Killer about?
I Am a Killer conducts exclusive interviews with death row inmates who are in maximum-security prisons across the U.S. after confessing to capital murder. They give firsthand accounts of their crimes, explain their motivations and reflect on their actions after time spent behind bars.
The show also talks to their victims' families, their own families and friends, law enforcement, journalists and interested observers to add context.
In some cases, the inmate or their supporters blame their upbringing, mental health or societal forces. Others question the idea of capital punishment itself. And sometimes, the confession itself is called into doubt.
Who's in I Am a Killer season 3?
Season 3 consists of six episodes, with each episode focusing on a convicted killer. Here are the episode details.
Episode 1: A Question of Loyalty
Subjected to abuse throughout her life, Victoria Smith confesses to killing her husband; however, someone close to the case has doubts about her admission.
Episode 2: Someone Else
On death row for murder, Deryl Madison reflects on his struggles with mental illness and finds support from an anti-capital punishment advocate.
Episode 3: History Repeating
Daniel Paulsrud says his fatal shooting of partner Leslie was an accident; however, accounts from her family and his handwritten notes raise doubts.
Episode 4: Blackout
James Walker claims he has no recollection of the 2001 murder he confessed to committing; an investigation into his traumatic past offers more context.
Episode 5: Rolling the Dice
Three men receive radically different prison sentences for their roles in the fatal shooting of a cab driver.
Episode 6: A Bad Day
David Cameron Keith recalls the day he took a young hostage before heading to an airport and killing the pilot who volunteered to take the youngster's place.
I Am a Killer season 3 reviews
I Am a Killer season 3 doesn't have many reviews from critics, so it doesn't have a Rotten Tomatoes rating.
Decider's Johnny Loftus recommends streaming the new season, writing, "I Am a Killer is dour, grim, somber stuff. But its straightforward style should continue to appeal to true crime fans, and it retains the hook of its confessions coming right at the viewer, straight from the murders themselves."
Jordan Russell Lyon at Ready Steady Cut says, "Overall, I Am a Killer is an uncomfortable watch; there’s no other way to describe the show. But it’s a great watch that will totally please true crime fans."
Should you stream I Am a Killer season 3?
Within the vast true crime genre, I Am a Killer is somewhat unique. Not many documentaries include the perspective of the criminal. It makes for a fascinating look at the "why," not just the "who," "what," "when" and "where" of the case.
While there's no case to solve, I Am a Killer does provide an insightful and thought-provoking examination of the criminal justice system. With a title like that, you'd expect a more black-and-white take on each situation, but you may wind up seeing things in shades of gray.