True crime Netflix shows are the most sure-fire success stories, at least when it comes to charting on Netflix's own Top 10. So, unsurprisingly, the latest new entry in the Top 10 TV Shows in the U.S. Today chart revolves around one of the most notorious criminals in history.
And this show is such a hit, it already jumped to the No. 3 spot in the time since it dropped yesterday (Wednesday, July 13). It sits with lofty company in the aforementioned Top 10, with only Stranger Things 4 and the competition reality TV series Alone above it.
The series is D.B. Cooper: Where Are You?!, a four-part limited miniseries that shows how D.B. Cooper's historic crime is still under the microscopes of amateur sleuths around today. New theories emerge, and interviews with potential persons of interest take place in harried tones.
So, if you're wondering if D.B. Cooper: Where Are You?! is the the choice for what to watch this weekend, you've come to the right place. Let's dive into what this series is and how people are reacting to it — and if it has a shot of entering our best Netflix documentaries or best shows on Netflix lists.
What is D.B. Cooper: Where Are You?!?
They don't make cold cases like they used to, as the myth of D.B. Cooper, the 1971 plane hijacker who got away without hurting a single innocent, is still under investigation. And D.B. Cooper: Where Are You?! begins with the investigation of one of the lat remaining suspects: Robert Rackstraw.
The chase, as shown in this docuseries, begins with D.B. Cooper investigator Tom Colbert on the beat, demanding a denial from a "Bob," who we'll later understand is Mr. Rackstraw. We then cut to a delightfully 70's-appropriate opening credits that will make you feel like you're watching the next Mad Men season. Then, we meet Colbert and learn about how interesting the Cooper case — where he extorted $200,000 in ransom and leapt out of the plane, to never be seen again — is.
We then learn that D.B. Cooper isn't even the right name. Dan Cooper was the name Cooper gave to the airlines, and a bad game of journalist 'Telephone' led to the name D.B. Cooper being the truth that people learned.
Historical interview footage then shows how Cooper begins to become a folk legend. Since he didn't hurt anyone, and managed to get rich off of it, members of the public would see him as an underdog hero. A modern Robin Hood, if you will. We then learn more about Mr. Rackstraw, and the odd reasons for why he's a suspect. Colbert's investigation and need for answers becomes as interesting as the mystery itself.
What do critics think of D.B. Cooper: Where Are You?!?
Rotten Tomatoes hasn't assigned the series a rating, as it hasn't found a lot of reviews of D.B. Cooper: Where Are You?!, but the ones it has found are positive. Michael Hogan at The Daily Telegraph gave it 4 out of 5 stars declared it " a cracking yarn, full of derring-do and colourful characters," before stating "You won’t discover definitively who Cooper was but you’ll enjoy the journey and have huge fun speculating."
M.N. Miller for Ready Steady Cut called it "addictive and a bit ridiculous," but noted it "is a tad too long." Which, as you may know, is a common complaint for Netflix series.
Dan Einav at Financial Times writes that the "series is more compelling in the infrequent moments when it shifts from asking where Cooper is to the more human questions of why people are so taken by him."
Veteran critic Richard Roeper, writing at the Chicago Sun-Times, calls the series "expertly crafted" in his 3.5 out of 4-star review. Joel Keller at Decider says you should stream it, calling the show a "stylish docuseries that fills in a lot of blanks about a legend that has made a permanent home in our pop culture firmament."
Should you watch D.B. Cooper: Where Are You?! tonight?
True crime addicts don't even need a spoiler tag, the answer is "yes." D.B. Cooper: Where Are You?! looks like a fun series that shows off the sleuthing side of the D.B. Cooper hunt.
Of course, go into this series without expectation for real answers about who D.B. Cooper is. If that mystery had been solved, we wouldn't be waiting for a fun Netflix documentary to see the answer. It's a big enough piece of lore — referenced in both Breaking Bad and the Loki series — that the public would want to know more. Which is why the show's popularity is so self-explanatory.
Next: Be sure to check out the one Netflix show you need watch right now with 94% on Rotten Tomatoes. And here's the best new movies and shows to watch this weekend on Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu and more.
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Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.