While CBS is currently telling the story of a superpowered alien learning how to save the world, the network is gearing up to head in a much more realistic direction for a new project. TV viewers can get ready to once again head back into the past for a 20-year-old atrocity, this time not involving O.J. Simpson, as CBS is putting together its own true crime anthology series, with the first season focusing on the high-profile murder of 6-year-old beauty pageant participant JonBenét Ramsey. Expect some old scars to open anew with this one.
The unscripted series, which doesn’t have a title just yet, isn’t quite set in stone just yet, as CBS is currently working out the last bit of negotiations. But the plan is to, like American Crime Story and the podcast Serial, center on a different mainstream criminal case each season. 48 Hours producer Tom Forman will be working behind the scenes with the company Critical Content for it, and while the number of episodes also hasn’t been disclosed, each season is expected to get a limited run of ten episodes or so.
Set to coincide with the young girl’s death, which occurred on Christmas in 1996, this docu-series aims to bring back the original investigators who worked on the case. According to THR, new experts will be given a chance to go back and reexamine the entire case, which remains unsolved to this day.
JonBenét Ramsey was reported missing on that fateful holiday and, despite there being a ransom note demanding money for her safety, she was found tied up in the basement of her family home on December 26. The cause of death was strangulation in connection with a skull fracture. The investigation initially put parents John and Patsy as the prime suspects, and almost every aspect of their treatment of their daughter was scrutinized, largely in the public eye. They were later cleared of the crime, two years after Patsy died of ovarian cancer, and the case was later reopened without much definitive progress coming. As it goes with most unsolved crimes, many people suspected the investigators working the case made drastic errors along the way, and I’m sure we can expect the show to play up that angle among many others.
News of this new series comes just one day after NBC and Dick Wolf announced they were teaming on a Law & Order spinoff that will dramatize true crime cases, in the vein of American Crime Story, with the first season taking on the Menendez brothers murders. And, of course, there are also the other headline-grabbing leaders of the pack, such as Netflix’s Making a Murder and HBO’s The Jinx,
Expect CBS to put a name to this series fairly soon, later giving it a fall release date. Are you guys ready to relive this grisly murder?