Evan Peters portrays the deceased serial killer in “Dahmer ― Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story." (Photo: Netflix)
It took only one week for “Dahmer — Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story” to earn 196 million hours viewed and become the No. 1 show on Netflix. Not everyone is pleased with the limited series, however. The show has faced rampant online backlash, some of which led Netflix to remove its LGBTQ tag from the series.
“Dahmer systematically kidnapped, drugged, murdered, and defiled the bodies of queer men and someone thought this was an LGBTQ history moment,” tweeted Dr. Jenn M. Jackson. “No, it’s an archive of the ways homophobia masks the degree of violence y’all will allow and enact upon ppl.”
“Dahmer” delivered the most-watched Week 1 premiere for a new Netflix show and beat titanic competitors like “Squid Game,” according to IndieWire. Many were shocked, however, that the streamer branded it as an LGBTQ show and questioned whether the tag was included because of Dahmer’s homosexuality or that of his victims.
Portrayed by Evan Peters in the series, Jeffrey Dahmer raped, murdered and dismembered 17 men and boys in Wisconsin between 1978 and 1991, according to People, many of whom he lured home from gay nightclubs. He engaged in cannibalism or necrophilia with some of the bodies.
“If I need to stay in my lane absolutely tell me but anyone else think it’s pretty gross of @netflix to list Dahmer under #LGBTQ,” wrote Twitter user @FrancesMFDanger, “especially when the True Crime tag would have worked?”
Errol Lindsey was only 19 when Dahmer lured him to his home, according to Yahoo. Dahmer drugged him before drilling a hole into his head and pouring hydrochloric acid into it in hopes of creating a docile partner. Lindsey’s cousin, Eric Perry, was particularly outraged at the Netflix series.
“I’m not telling anyone what to watch, I know true crime media is huge rn, but if you’re actually serious about the victims, my family (the Isbell’s) are pissed about this show,” tweeted Perry.
“Recreating my cousin having an emotional breakdown in court in the face of the man who tortured and murdered her brother is WILD,” Perry added.
The show did indeed portray Perry’s cousin, Rita Isbell, giving her impact statement at Dahmer’s 1992 sentencing. While many social media users argued the series was historically accurate and an important piece of anti-racist, pro-police-reform content, Perry said Netflix acted irresponsibly.
“So when they say they’re doing this ‘with respect to the victims,’ or ‘honoring the dignity of the families,’ no one contacts them,” tweeted Perry. “My cousins wake up every few months at this point with a bunch of calls and messages and they know there’s another Dahmer show. It’s cruel.”
“It’s retraumatizing over and over again, and for what?” Perry added. “How many movies/shows/documentaries do we need?”
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.