How Many Episodes Is 'The Killing Season'? The A&E Docuseries Goes Deep On The Long Island Serial Killer
It's safe to say that the entertainment landscape today is dominated by three rather sweeping phenomenons: superhero movies (like Doctor Strange), '80s nostalgia (like Stranger Things), and true crime stories… and it's in this latter category that A&E's The Killing Season falls. A new docu-series premiering on the network this Saturday, the show from documentarians Rachel Mills and Joshua Zeman will act as an investigation into the unsolved case of the Long Island Serial Killer, a murderer who is thought to have killed around 10 people in New York between 1996 and 2010. But how long will it take A&E to delve into this mystery? How many episodes is The Killing Season ?
Various true crime series have taken different lengths of time to dissect their respective cases, depending on the intentions of their creators and how much material they gathered. The popular podcast Serial, which helped kick-start our current true crime craze, strung listeners along on the mystery of Hae Min Lee's murder for 12 episodes across three months back in 2014. On the shorter end of the spectrum, Netflix just released their chilling documentary Amanda Knox, a single 90-minute film that provided viewers with unprecedented access to interviews with key figures in the case, including Knox herself.
Other series have fallen anywhere and everywhere between those two extremes, including Netflix's Making A Murderer (10 episodes), FX's The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story (10 episodes), HBO's The Jinx (6 episodes), ESPN's O.J.: Made In America (5 episodes), CBS's The Case Of: JonBenét Ramsey (2 episodes), and A&E's own The Killing Of JonBenét: The Truth Uncovered, which aired as a single two-hour documentary film. So where on the spectrum does this new program fall?
According to Deadline, The Killing Season will consist of eight episodes — so pretty much right in the middle of the pack of fellow true crime series. However, though it will run for eight hours, it will actually pass by in the blink of an eye. That's because the network is airing The Killing Season in two-hour chunks, with two new episodes running back-to-back each Saturday night. That means that, after this Saturday's premiere of the first two episodes, "Whoever Fears Monsters" and "The Most Dangerous Game," The Killing Season will come to a close only three weeks later, on Saturday, Dec. 3.
A&E's unconventional scheduling decision seems like a way to combine the in-depth reporting of such longer programs as Serial and The Jinx with the marathon-worthy nature of streaming shows like Making A Murderer. Hopefully it pays off for the network — but there's no reason to believe it won't, based on how eagerly the American television audience has devoured other true crime stories in the past.