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TV & Film

Netflix to air chilling new Dennis Nilsen documentary with never-before-heard tapes of killer

Another day, another Netflix true crime doc

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ITV

Netflix’s latest true crime documentary offering will be delving into the chilling crimes of Scottish serial killer Dennis Nilsen with never-before-heard tapes from his police interrogations.

Directed by Michael Harte – the man who brought us the 2019 masterpiece Don’t F**k With Cats Memories of a Murderer: The Nilsen Tapes will be offering a deeper look into the mind of the calculated killer and necrophile, who confessed to brutally murdering fifteen young men and boys between 1978 and 1983.

The official synopsis reads: “Over a five-year period, he picked up vulnerable young men, lured them back to his home and strangled them, before disposing of their bodies under the floorboards.

Netflix

“The truth about how and why he killed has been the subject of much speculation in books and documentaries over the decades since. Now, with unique access to a wealth of personal archive left in his cell after his death, including over 250 hours of never-before-published cassette tapes of his private recordings, this film will take us into Nilsen’s world.

“From a young boy growing up in a quiet Scottish fishing village to a cold-blooded murderer prowling the streets of London.”

The synopsis continues: “Set against the backdrop of 1980s Britain, when mass unemployment drew young men to London in search of their fortunes, only to find themselves destitute and easy prey, and weaving together interviews from police, journalists, survivors, bereaved families, and – for the first time – the killer’s own voice, this feature-length documentary explores how Nilsen was able to get away with multiple murders and attacks, unchallenged, for five years.”

Nilsen, who died at the age of seventy-two in 2018, was catapulted back into the spotlight last year when David Tenant portrayed him in the gripping ITV mini-seires, Des.

Speaking to the Radio Times ahead of the series’ release, Tenant said he felt it was ‘right and proper’ that Nilsen didn’t live long enough to see the series, saying: “After he was arrested, Dennis Nilsen became obsessed with was the legend of Des, the reputation that he left behind.

“Whenever he slipped out of public consciousness, there was almost a sense that he wanted to get back into it. That’s why I’m relieved he’s not alive. I would hate for this to go out and for him to be sitting in some cell somewhere imaging we were in any way glorifying him.”

Memories of a murderer: The Nilsen Tapes will be available to stream on Netflix from tomorrow, Wednesday August 18th.

TV & Film

Netflix viewers say new true crime documentary about stalker is ‘craziest and scariest’ ever

‘It’s absolutely terrifying, I’m only one episode in but it’s CRAZY’

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Viewers of a new crime documentary on Netflix about Britain’s most prolific cyber stalker have called it the ‘craziest and scariest’ they have seen.

If you’ve finished binge-watching one Netflix series and are looking for something new to watch, you might want to give this one a try.

There’s several new additions to the streaming platform that viewers are jumping on at the moment, including the emotional, tear-jerking romance One Day and the plot-twisting dating series Love Is Blind.

Netflix

But if you’re into true crime then this could be the one you can sink your teeth into – called Can I Tell You A Secret?, the brand new true crime documentary is about the life-shattering realities of cyberstalking.

The docu-series follows the harrowing story of Matthew James Hardy, from Cheshire, who was sentenced to nine years in prison for five counts of stalking, the longest custodial term in British history for online stalking.

For those unfamiliar with the concept; cyberstalking is the use of the Internet or other electronic means to stalk or harass an individual, group, or organisation. 

Netflix

It may include false accusations, defamation, slander and libel. It may also include monitoring, identity theft, threats, vandalism, solicitation for sex, doxing, or blackmail. 

Cyberstalking is considered a serious crime in the UK and a conviction can result in a restraining order, probation, or criminal penalties against the assailant, including jail time.

Between 2016 and 2021, Hardy infiltrated the social media accounts of a number of women, using fake profiles so he could befriend his victims online.

Netflix

Targeting mostly young women, he would then terrify and spread lies about them to create rifts among their families and friends, forcing some of them to sleep with a weapon under their pillow.

The series also hears the terrifying personal accounts from the victims, who were each approached by a mysterious social media profile which appeared to be used by another woman. This mysterious user introduced themselves by asking those six dreaded words – ‘Can I tell you a secret?’

One of the victims, Gina Martin, recalls: “He would use the same picture as my actual account. He would strike up conversations with people, spreading rumours and lies.”

Netflix

“He has caused such damage to people, relationships have been completely severed. He said one of his other victims was sleeping with her mum’s brother,” she continued.

The two-part miniseries explores three of the women’s experiences, discussions with his former school friends, the police investigation, and how Hardy was ultimately brought to justice. It is also produced by legendary documentarian Louis Theroux.

Since landing on Netflix last week, hundreds of viewers have since taken to social media to express the profound effect it has had on them.

One fan wrote: “Can I tell you a secret on Netflix I can say is one of the craziest and scariest documentaries I’ve watched. It’s literally about stalkers and their victims, I recommend y’all to watch especially women.”

Netflix

Another said: “Watching Can I Tell You A Secret on Netflix and realising it’s about the same person who made fake profiles of me and literally every single one of friends from home in Cheshire – This is wild.”

Someone else wrote: “I have a new Netflix recommendation for all the true crime documentary lovers. Can I Tell You A Secret? On Netflix. It’s absolutely terrifying, I’m only one episode in but it’s CRAZY.”

And a fourth added: “Watching ‘Can I Tell You a Secret?’ @netflix A superb documentary that perfectly evokes the horror of cyberstalking. Much of our life & many of our vulnerabilities end up on social media & there ‘s no telling who is at the other end.”

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TV & Film

Online stalker from Cheshire focus of new Netflix true crime documentary

It’s out this week

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Netflix & Cheshire Constabulary

A new Netflix crime documentary will retell the story of a prolific cyber stalker from Northwich, Cheshire.

Can I Tell You A Secret? will land on the streaming site on February 21st and tells the story of Matthew James Hardy – Britain’s most prolific cyber stalker.

Hardy was sentenced to nine years in prison for five counts of stalking, the longest custodial term in British history for online stalking.

Netflix

Between 2016 and 2021, Hardy infiltrated the social media accounts of women, using fake profiles so he could befriend his victims online.

Targeting mostly young women, he would then spread lies about them to create rifts among their families and friends.

On one occasion Hardy pretended to be a small business owner and on another, he spread false rumours about a woman having a sexual relationship with her father-in-law.

Netflix

He also told a woman that her late mother had been cheating on her father, and taunted her by telling her he was going to speak to her dad. And he told another woman’s fiancé, on their wedding day, that she had cheated on him.

Judge Everette said Hardy had an ‘innate criminality’, highlighted by his ‘sophisticated’ form of harassment. “Over a period of five or years, you conducted a campaign principally against young women who I am sure you researched on social media,” he said.

“They had done nothing to harm you – most, if not all, did not know who you were. You chose them at random and they had to pay for it with sheer misery.”

Cheshire Constabulary

“You sat there in your room, wherever you were, and you deliberately sent these spiteful messages. It’s difficult to imagine the fear and shock and worry that you caused to your victims and their families,” he added.

Following the sentencing on January 26th, 2022, PC Kevin Anderson from Northwich Local Policing Unit, said: “Having led on this case for more than 18 months I have seen the emotional distress and turmoil that Hardy has inflicted on his victims – he did all of this while hiding behind his computer screen.”

The two-part miniseries explores three of the women’s experiences, the police investigation, and how Hardy was ultimately brought to justice.

Netflix

The first part will relive the impact Hardy’s actions had on his victims as he reigned terror on their lives from behind his screen and keyboard.

The second part will see PC Kevin Anderson, who was assigned to the case in 2019, as he finds over 100 complaints made from 62 victims on Cheshire’s systems alone. The episode focuses on the evidence that eventually leads authorities to Hardy’s home in Forest Place, Northwich.

Can I Tell You A Secret? is available to stream on Netflix from Wednesday, February 21st.

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TV & Film

Blue Lights: Gripping police drama set in Northern Ireland shares first look of season two

Can’t wait for this!

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BBC / Two Cities Television

The BBC has shared a first look ahead of the second season of the hit police drama Blue Lights.

The broadcaster has also confirmed which cast members will return as well as the fresh faces who have joined the series for new episodes.

Set in Belfast, the drama followed a batch of new constables as they navigated a post-conflict Northern Ireland.

Before the first series came to an end, a second series had already been commissioned. The new series will follow on one year later.

BBC / Two Cities Television

Reprising her star role as Grace Ellis is Sian Brooke, also joined by Martin Mccann as Stevie Neil, Katherine Devlin as Annie Conlon, Nathan Braniff as Tommy Foster and Joanne Crawford as Helen McNally.

Also returning are Andi Osho as Sandra Cliff, Hannah McClean as Jen Robinson, Paddy Jenkins as Happy Kelly, Desmond Eastwood as Murray Canning, Andrea Irvine as Nicola Robinson, Aoibhéann McCann as Geraldine Gilroy and Abigail McGibbon as Tina McIntyre.

New cast members joining the show are Frank Blake (Sanditon) as new Constable Shane Bradley, along with Seamus O’Hara (An Irish Goodbye) as Lee Thompson, and Seána Kerslake (Bad Sisters) as his sister Mags.

As well as Craig McGinlay (Cobra) as Craig, and Dan Gordon (Bloodlands) playing Mags and Lee’s Uncle Rab.

BBC / Two Cities Television

At the end of the last season, viewers watched on as the team lost Gerry, who tragically died after being shot by Sully, and the McIntyre Crime Gang collapsed.

In new episodes the new recruits, Grace, Annie and Tommy, are now fully fledged officers who have to face new turmoil as rival gangs try to fill the void after the downfall of the McIntyre’s.

More drama is promised in season two, as the synopsis continues: “Constable Shane Bradley is drafted in to help, but his motivations are unclear. Tommy is dangerously seduced by the world of intelligence policing, while Grace struggles to deal with her son’s absence, and growing feelings for fellow officer Stevie. 

“As a young loyalist threatens to take over the city, the officers face a major gangland feud – culminating in a violent and devastating confrontation.”

BBC / Two Cities Television

Commenting on the series and teasing the upcoming episodes, writers and directors Declan Lawn and Adam Patterson, said: “Blue Lights is a very personal project for us, set in the city where we live, so for us making this show is a special kind of privilege. 

“In series two we join our officers exactly a year after the events of series one, and now they’re facing a whole new set of professional and personal challenges. We’re very excited indeed about bringing you this next chapter of the Blue Lights story. Take a beat!”

Season one landed on screens in March 2023 and received a slew of five-star reviews as well as more than 7 million viewers (28-day figure). 

BBC / Two Cities Television

It was in the top ten new drama series of 2023 across all broadcasters and streamers, and the biggest drama series in Northern Ireland in 2023. More than half of the 28-day audience (56%) came from BBC iPlayer.

The BBC has not yet announced a release date for series two, but as filming took place over summer 2023 we expect it to come out some time this spring.

If you haven’t seen it yet or need to refresh your memory, season one is still available to watch on iPlayer.

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