TV viewers who are fascinated by true crime have not been at a loss for series lately. O.J.: Made In America documented the rise and fall of O.J. Simpson; exonerated prisoner Ryan Ferguson looks into other controversial cases in MTV's Unlocking The Truth; and a second series of the Netflix hit Making A Murderer is in the works. 2016 has also seen the resurgence of interest in one of the most high-profile investigations in history: the murder of 6-year-old Colorado girl JonBenét Ramsey. She was found dead by her father John Ramsey in the basement of their family home the day after Christmas in 1996. That makes 2016 the 20-year anniversary of the unsolved case, and networks have been responding. Monday night, it's the finale of The Case Of: JonBenét Ramsey, CBS's two-part special on the case. Considering this tragic event and the aftermath has captivated people for two decades, there's no lack of material. Are more episodes of The Case Of: JonBenét Ramsey on the way?
At this time, CBS has not declared any plans to make more episodes of the show. In fact, The Case Of: JonBénet Ramsey was originally intended to be a three-night event, according to Variety. But, earlier this month, the outlet reported that CBS cut the six hours initially scheduled for the special down to four. "Producers and network executives subsequently came to the decision that, given the material gathered, the project would make more sense as a tighter, two-part, four-hour miniseries than as a more languid six hours spread out over three parts," Variety wrote. The last installment of the series was meant to air on Sep. 25. It's been replaced by a two hour NCIS: Los Angeles season premiere.
The Case Of: JonBenét Ramsey didn't make it to air until after A&E's The Killing Of JonBenét; Investigation Discovery's JonBenét: An American Murder Mystery; NBC's special Dateline edition, Who Killed JonBenét?; and Dr. Phil's exclusive interview with JonBenét's brother, Burke Ramsey. The amount of screen time allotted to this case in the past few weeks could fatigue even the most interested viewers. CBS's decision to cut The Case Of down is a smart one if the network is worried that its audience has already been bombarded with Ramsey content.
CBS still promised on their site that the re-cut four-hour special will include "new theories" in its shorted run-time. The Case Of assembled a team of investigators and experts trying to find new answers in existing evidence, plus interviews with individuals who have worked on or been close to the case. The producers even built and dressed to-scale replicas of certain rooms in the Ramsey home.
If the relevant information and interviews can fit inside two episodes, it's a fair guess that new episodes of The Case Of: JonBenét Ramsey won't be produced until and unless there's another break in the case. Certainly, the victim's family is still hoping for one. Otherwise, it's very likely that the 20th anniversary will pass and networks will move on to other true crime programming.