Murdaugh Murders just soared to No. 1 on Netflix — stream it or skip it?

Murdaugh Murders on Netflix
(Image credit: Netflix)

It comes as little shock to see a new true crime show at the very top of the Netflix most-watched list. Over the past few years, the streaming service has developed a reputation as the home of engrossing true crime documentaries like Murduagh Murders: A Southern Scandal.

The first season of this docuseries debuted on Netflix back in February and also rocketed right to the top of the viewing charts, and now a three-episode second season picks up right where the first installment left off. And it would seem the latest chapters of the grisly story have been similarly well-received by Netflix subscribers desperate to feed their true crime obsession. 

However, if you’re starting to suffer from true crime burnout, or are just a little more selective about which entries in the oversaturated genre you consume, then you might be wondering if Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal season 2 is worth streaming or if it can be safely skipped. That’s a question I'm here to help you answer, so let’s jump right into it. 

What is Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal about? 

Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal recounts a string of shocking tragedies that shattered a tight-knit South Carolina community. At the center of these horrifying crimes is the powerful Murdaugh family, and in particular, Alex Murdaugh who made national headlines after he was accused of multiple murders. 

The show’s first season explores the murders themselves and looks at how detectives arrived at the conclusion that Alex was the one responsible. The freshly-released part 2 of the story focuses on Alex’s trial, where new evidence comes to light and shocking secrets are exposed in the courtroom. It’s a twisting tale that will keep you guessing until the very end. 

Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal reviews — what do critics say?  

Murdaugh Murders season 2 was released on Netflix last week (Sept. 20) and to date has not received enough reviews to earn a Rotten Tomatoes score. However, it has received a fairly respectable 71% audience score. Granted, this current total comes from fewer than 50 ratings and may change in the weeks ahead as more viewers finish watching the season and rate it.  

RT does currently list three reviews, all of which are positive. Nick Schager’s write-up for The Daily Beast notes that there is definitely enough material for a potential third season: “For all the interesting material offered here, recent headlines suggest there’s still more to tell—making this non-fiction affair akin to a sequel rather than a finale.”

Looking back at the show’s first season, it received a strong 82% score on Rotten Tomatoes. However, its audience score wasn’t quite as impressive at a very average 68%, perhaps suggesting that some Netflix subscribers didn’t enjoy the first part of this particular true crime docuseries as much as the critics did. 

Should you stream Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal on Netflix?  

A shot of Alex Murdaugh in a courtroom in Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal on Netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

The decision to skip or stream Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal mostly comes down to your tolerance for true crime. If you find explorations of the horrible things that humans can do to each other deeply fascinating, then you’ll likely find this series hooks you right out the gate, and now you have two seasons to binge-watch. Plus, if you already enjoyed season 1, you don’t need me to tell you, that season 2 is likely to also appeal (you may have even watched it already). 

Alternatively, if you’re looking for something that adds a new spin on the true crime genre, then there’s not really anything new that will grab you in Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal season 2. It’s very much just another true crime docuseries, but clearly, that's exactly what many Netflix viewers want to watch right now. After all, it has shot straight to No.1 in less than a week. 

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Rory Mellon
Entertainment Editor (UK)

Rory is an Entertainment Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on gaming and streaming. When he’s not reviewing the latest games, searching for hidden gems on Netflix, or writing hot takes on new gaming hardware, TV shows and movies, he can be found attending music festivals and getting far too emotionally invested in his favorite football team.