Parents' Guide to

Manhunt

By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Gripping crime stories dig into complicated cases.

Manhunt Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.

Community Reviews

age 13+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 14+

Shows the dedicated work a man put into stopping the Unabomber

Manhunt: Unabomber gets deep into the work behind finding and catching a criminal and killer. It also gets into the life and backstory of the killer himself. The show brings up questions and ideas of the lifestyle of the modern world, and about technology. They show the bombings, and they are bloody, and disturbing to see. There is not a whole lot of swearing in the show.
age 12+

History is then predictable

Eight episodes--since I was aware of the basic story, I actually skipped first five because I didn't want the crimes or the false leads--I went directly to the leads to the actual killer, then how they went after him. Quality acting, quality production, easy to binge on, but we're not talking car chases or shoot outs. More a refresher on legal proceedings.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (2 ):

Moving back in forth in time and bringing a complicated investigation to life, this drama paints a gripping picture of men obsessed. Kaczynski's obsessions, of course, were detailed in long media accounts of the criminal and his crimes, as well as his letters and manifesto. Fitzgerald soon emerges as a complicated and tortured man. The same insight and leaps of reasoning that allow him to understand the Unabomber are what connects him too closely to the case. We see at the beginning of the series that he has become a Unabomber-like figure himself: a recluse in the woods. What changed the loving family man and cop (who we soon meet in one of the drama's time jumps) into this grizzled mountain man?

The answers are teased out intriguingly slowly, as we meet the cops on Kacynski's case and see how the FBI closed in on him. One thing this long-form treatment offers that a one-hour procedural can't: We see the grinding effort that building a case requires -- mountains of evidence, dozens of people picking through it, thousands of leads investigated and discarded. And then, ironically, the case's biggest break turns out to be Kacynski's brother, David (Mark Duplass), turning him in (in a roundabout fashion). The strength of Manhunt is that you don't just see the effort and the irony -- you feel it. This is one crime yarn that deserves its running time.

TV Details

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