Web of Death
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Web of Death
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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Web of Death is a true crime docuseries about the successful work of amateur online investigators. It contains descriptions of gruesome crimes, as well as partially-blurred crime scene photos that show blood, wounds, and other disturbing images. Backstories of victims and families also address mature topics, such as past criminal behaviors and racism towards indigenous peoples. Social media outlets like Facebook are featured, as are podcasts hosted by various amateur investigators. The Innocence Project of Texas, DNA Doe Project, and others are also discussed. There are some subtle references to sexual activity, and drugs and drug dealing are sometimes briefly discussed.
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What's the Story?
WEB OF DEATH is a docuseries featuring online sleuths who have successfully investigated crimes and helped law enforcement solve cases. solved crimes and secured the freedom people incarcerated for crimes they didn't commit. Each episode tells the story of an unsolved homicide case, the details of which are often strange and extremely violent. Using a combination of old-fashioned research and DNA databases, social media outlets, and other digital resources, these amateur investigators work hard to uncover details that were originally missed by police investigators in order to put a name to murder victims, identify their killers, and help exonerate those wrongly convicted for the crimes. With the help of a large and growing community of online detectives, they are able to help bring closure to families, and hopefully bring criminals to justice.
Is It Any Good?
This surprisingly positive true crime series reveals how web sleuths and their supporters have successfully contributed to solving cold murder cases. From Michigan podcaster Bob Ruff, whose investigation of the grisly 1993 murder of Elnora Grifin helped the The Innocence Project of Texas secure the release of Ed Ates after serving 20 years for the crime, to Violet Soosay of the Samson Cree Nation, who was able to identify her murdered aunt after decades of searching for her with the help of the DNA Doe Project's use of genetic genealogy, it showcases how smart and capable individuals commit their time, money, and resources to help victims' families find some peace years after the unimaginable has happened. While some of their work reveals mistakes made by law enforcement, most of the focus is on how the combination of digital technology and social media now makes it possible to find evidence that investigators were unable to collect before now.
Meanwhile, law enforcement officials, attorneys, and other professionals in the criminal justice system speak highly of these amateur crime solvers, and credit them for doing outstanding work. Granted, Web of Death features a lot of disturbing imagery, and describes terrible crimes. But its overall theme is how regular people are finding new ways to help one another.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about how full-time web sleuths find the time and resources to investigate crimes. How do they fund things like traveling to do research, and hosting podcasts?
What are some of the stereotypes associated with online crime investigators and the audiences who enjoy reading and listening to true crime stories? Does what Web of Death reveal about this online community challenge these generalizations?
- Premiere date: January 19, 2023
- Cast: Bob Ruff, Violet Soosay, Kalvon Hawkins
- Network: Hulu
- Genre: Reality TV
- Character Strengths: Communication, Compassion, Empathy, Gratitude, Perseverance, Teamwork
- TV rating: NR
- Last updated: February 7, 2023
Our Editors Recommend
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The Innocence Files
Humanizing docu describes graphic violence, has cursing.
Cold Case Files (2017)
Sensational docuseries reboot best for serious crime buffs.
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