You hear the words "new Netflix serial killer drama" and the mind perks up. Then you hear the words "executive produced by David Fincher," and you get even more excited, knowing that the award-winning director played a huge role in Netflix's original series becoming so successful in the first place, thanks to his work on House of Cards. Then you hear the cacophony of words coming from the first trailer for the show, titled Mindhunter, and there's no turning back. You need this show in your life. (By "you," I meant "me.") Check it out!
Wasn't that hypnotic? At least, in the way that waves beneath a boat will hypnotize people's stomachs and make them feel uneasy. Netflix's library is immensely larger than it was when House of Cards' first trailer hit, and its library is packed with crime thrillers and killer narratives, so Mindhunter was wise to take an off-center approach to how it first delivered its visuals to audiences. The tick-tock pattern, alternating between the bloodied Rorschach patterns and actual footage, lulls the viewer into a permanent state of anticipation, without a particularly large climax to sate that rise. And what it actually ends with is all the more unsettling because of it.
The second layer of interest with this new Mindhunter trailer is the chopped-up string of dialogue behind the visuals. The rat-tat-tat of the lines offers no room for breath, and the imagery being invoked works to convey the dark themes even if your eyes are closed during the video. "The decision to humiliate a corpse....I can choke down the bile...You're so young to be ruining people's lives...It is not our job to commiserate with these people; it is our job to electrocute them." And so on. Again, it implies everything will end with a bang, but it wraps with a mild charge that being in the FBI means you don't get dirty. Which, of course, means they're going to get dirty. All good with me.
Mindhunter is based on the book Mind Hunter: Inside FBI's Elite Serial Crime Unit, written by Mark Olshaker and John E. Douglas, and was developed by playwright Joe Penhall. With a strong focus on behavioral science, Mindhunter will focus on two FBI agents, played by Frozen and Glee star Jonathan Groff and Lights Out's Holt McCallany, who interview incarcerated serial killers and rapists to get insights and clues for unsolved cases. It isn't exactly material fit for bright Sunday mornings, but with David Fincher behind the camera for some episodes, you know it's going to be worth missing the sunshine. I'm really hoping for the closest thing TV will get to Zodiac, but I'm keeping my expectations dampened.
Watch the video again and if you didn't notice the first time, that ink blot starts to look like a person, who then shifts into a horrifying scream-face by the end. Or maybe that's just how I'm seeing it. But it says nothing about me, right? Right?!?
Sucks that we'll be waiting so long to see more from Mindhunter, which won't be available to stream until October, but at least that means we'll get to experience several more unnerving trailers in the meantime. To see when all of Netflix's upcoming programming will be reading for your binge olympics, head to our 2017 Netflix premiere schedule, and then check out our midseason premiere schedule to see when everything is is debuting and returning to TV.