Netflix's Best True Crime Documentaries Set In The Dirty South

A watch list to keep you up at night.

​Henry Lee Lucas in handcuffs.
Georgia Contributing Writer

Henry Lee Lucas in handcuffs.

The rise of true crime series has boomed over the past decade, with Netflix pioneering some of the most highly rated series in the genre. From NYC socialite scam artists to a 1980s convict's confession to the murder of more than 600 people — audiences are hooked.

For many people, true crime is one of the genres you can't look away from. You're horrified, you're disgusted, and yet, you can't stop watching. If you fall under that category, this list will provide plenty of hours of nail-biting documentaries outlining gruesome true crimes in the South.

This article contains content that may be upsetting to some of our readers.

​The Staircase

Location: Durham, NC

Rating: 94% on Rotten Tomatoes

When Kathleen Peterson is found dead at the bottom of a staircase, suspicions arise that her husband, crime novelist Michael Peterson, was behind her death. The docuseries investigates the aftermath in the grief-torn family during the trial of Michael Peterson after being accused of bludgeoning his wife to death, among other theories about her demise.

Bad Vegan

Location: Pigeon Forge, TN

Rating: None yet on Rotten Tomatoes

This series chronicles the rise and fall of former vegan restauranteur Sarma Melngailis. While the majority of the crimes involving her and her ex-husband Anthony Strangis occurred in New York City, the two spent several weeks in hiding in Pigeon Forge, TN an eccentric town with lots of distractions.

Unsolved Mysteries: 13 Minutes

Location: Dawson County, GA

Rating: None yet on Rotten Tomatoes

This episode of Netflix's Unsolved Mysteries reboot tells the story of Patrice Endres' disappearance when she mysteriously went missing from her hair salon during a 13-minute window between clients. Several decades later, the tragic case is still unresolved, and many of the details outlined in this episode are perplexing.

The Confession Killer

Location: Huntsville, TX

Rating: 100% on Rotten Tomatoes

Confession Killer centers around convicted murderer Henry Lee Lucas and his confession to the murders of over 600 people during his time in a Texas state prison. But authorities are perplexed by inconsistencies — Lucas can recount graphic unreleased details regarding the murders and burial sites but provides impossible timelines that don't add up.

Mindhunter Season 2

Location: Atlanta, GA

Rating: 99% on Rotten Tomatoes

Though David Fincher's Mindhunter is a fictitious show loosely based on truth, much of the plot and details were rooted in real-life events. The second season's serial killer is inspired by Wayne Williams, "The Atlanta Child Murderer," who was linked to over 30 deaths, per CNN.

Murder To Mercy: The Cyntoia Brown Story

Location: Nashville, TN

Rating: 79% on Rotten Tomatoes

At the age of 16, child sex trafficking victim Cyntoia Brown was convicted of the murder and robbery of Johnny Allen and sentenced to life in prison. After serving time in a maximum-security prison in Tennessee, this series follows Cyntoia's legal journey to reclaiming her freedom.

Conversations with A Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes

Location: Bradford County, FL

Rating: 56% on Rotten Tomatoes

This series revolves around the notorious serial killer Ted Bundy during his time in Florida State Prison. The Ted Bundy Tapes are reflections of his life told in his own bone-chilling voice during his time on death row. Over 100 hours of archived footage was used to piece together this Netflix original.

Maeve Browne
Georgia Contributing Writer
Maeve Browne is a Contributing Writer for Narcity’s USA Desk focused on food and Internet trends and is based in Savannah, Georgia.