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American Nightmare review – the woman who went through **** … then got blamed for it

This true-crime show examines the case of Denise Huskins, who police accused of faking her own kidnap in a Gone Girl-style plot. It’s an elevated example of the normally schlocky genre … but it will make you squirm

The plethora of podcasts, documentaries and bingeable TV series has led to swathes of the global population being infected by a condition known as true-crime brain. So many tales of white suburban women’s abduction and annihilation have fuelled both content and extreme paranoia (although *****, Black and Indigenous women have far more reason to feel at risk than the women who feature here).

David Fincher and Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl satirised and solidified the sense that we may be surrounded by criminal masterminds, with its hero, Amy Dunne, concocting an elaborate plan to fake her ****** and frame her husband, Nick (as any true-crime brain sufferer knows, the husband always did it). But, as Netflix’s new docuseries American Nightmare reminds us, beautiful blond women from suburbia aren’t safe, the husband doesn’t always do it and the police have watched Gone Girl, too.

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