The 12th Victim

Watch The 12th Victim

  • TV-MA
  • 2023
  • 1 Season
  • 6.7  (394)

Opening with an eerie and atmospheric score, The 12th Victim presents a compelling new anthology series from Paramount+. The world of true crime is taken to the next level in this series that explores notorious American murder cases with a bold and fresh approach. Each episode tells a different story while using interviews, archival footage, and dramatic recreations to capture the high drama and dark allure of each criminal case.

The 12th Victim is not just another television true crime series that attempts to view criminals in a humanizing light or locate the mitigating circumstances that led to their actions. This show investigates the unsolved murders that have gripped the public imagination and challenges the audience to consider new theories about what really happened. Given the fact that true crime is one of the most popular genres on television today, it is refreshing to see a series that takes risks with the storytelling styles.

The first episode, The Lovers’ Lane Murders, examines the 1970s murders of high school sweethearts in rural Virginia. The two young lovers were found by a river, shot execution-style in a crime that remains unsolved to this day. Situating the crime within the social, political, and cultural events of the period, the episode weaves together a tapestry of possible theories ranging from petty vengeance to cover-ups by authorities to the potential involvement of international spy agencies. The dramatic recreations of the crime scene and the interrogations complement the interviews with family members of the victims and the investigators who worked on the case.

Another standout episode is The Black Dahlia, which examines one of the most infamous unsolved crimes in US history. The episode counteracts the common assumption that Elizabeth Short, the victim of the murder, was a promiscuous party girl. The series director instead emphasizes the root of Short’s unfortunate life circumstances and emphasized how the patriarchal societal norms of the time may have impacted the investigation of the case.

In The House of Horrors, The 12th Victim delves into the chilling realm of serial killer Hedwig Margaritha Schall, also known as the “Butterfly Woman.” The episode paints a disturbing picture of how Schall gained the trust and respect of locals before murdering them. The episode doesn't glorify Schall or provide any excuses for her actions; instead, it provides a disturbing window into the mind of a killer who believed that she was doing a service to her victims. The use of dramatic recreations heightens tension and imbue the show with a chilling atmosphere. It is a particularly difficult episode to watch and will leave viewers feeling uneasy for days to come.

Perhaps the most provocative episode of the series is titled The Cold Case Killer, which deals with the infamous “Zodiac Killer,” who struck California in the 1960s and 1970s. The show depicts never-before-seen footage and new revelations to add a fresh take on a case that has been studied relentlessly in books and documentaries in recent times. The episode also features interviews with those who have personal experiences related to the case.

An aspect that sets The 12th Victim apart from most true-crime series, apart from its emphasis on addressing societal evils and providing deeper insights into each case, is its focus on the families and loved ones of the murder victims. It's been said that such shows always provide a platform for the criminals; however, that’s not the case with this series. The focus remains on the victims and the impact of their lives and the crime that directly impacted their families.

The series creator has made a bold take on true crime documentaries with The 12th Victim. The series differs from others that rely on sensationalizing gruesome details of violent crimes with cheesy, unsatisfying conclusions. Instead, each episode is a well-crafted blend of true crime, investigative journalism, and documentary filmmaking. The series packs a punch, with each episode leaving viewers wanting more. This show's creative storytelling techniques and its dedication to exposing new evidence or theories for every story has given it an edge within the oversaturated true crime genre. This show is a must-watch for all true-crime enthusiasts.

The 12th Victim is a series that is currently running and has 1 seasons (4 episodes). The series first aired on February 17, 2023.

The 12th Victim
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4. Afterlife
March 10, 2023
Out of prison, Caril attempts to set the record straight by participating in a variety of media appearances. She retreats into anonymity, gets married, and for the first time has something that resembles a normal life, until a horrible car crash throws her back into the spotlight. Caril remains stuck under the rock of a famous murder spree. A crusading attorney files a pardon for Caril. Series finale.
3. Caged
March 3, 2023
Caril is determined to make the most of her time in prison and prove to the world that they got it wrong. We meet Warden Jackie Crawford who describes her as a model prisoner. Meanwhile, the mythology around the case begins to grow. The story is being refracted through movies, books and songs - many painting Caril in a bad light. Caril is released from prison.
2. Judgement
February 24, 2023
Examining the crime spree and trial from Caril's perspective and how she thought her parents were still alive when Charles took her away. A look at her difficult upbringing and PTSD that contributed to her compliance during the spree. We learn about Charles' mental illness and derangement, how poorly Caril was treated by law enforcement and the criminal justice system and how she was doomed from the start at her trial.
1. Death
February 17, 2023
The story of the murder spree, manhunt and capture from the perspective of a Lincolnite in 1958, immersed in fear and horror. Information unfolds across the news, which depicts Charles and Caril as teenage lovers on the run, and public opinion is shaped against Caril. She is made to seem not just as guilty as Charles, but perhaps the mastermind of the whole event. The archival crime spree story is intercut with present day interviews with those close to the case. There is much more to this story than people think.
Where to Watch The 12th Victim
The 12th Victim is available for streaming on the Paramount+ website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch The 12th Victim on demand at Paramount+, Vudu, FuboTV, Apple TV and Showtime Anytime.
  • Premiere Date
    February 17, 2023
  • IMDB Rating
    6.7  (394)