Even random members of New Kids On The Block have opinions about Making A Murderer. For whatever reason, Donnie Wahlberg—who stars in the CBS police drama Blue Bloods and has played a cop in a number of other productions—penned an op-ed in today’s Chicago Sun-Times expressing his opinions about the show and attempting to debunk the fact that there are bad cops out there. In his essay, “Making A Murderer, or Making A Martyr?,” Wahlberg stumbles toward his point, comparing Steven Avery’s case to that of O.J. Simpson (a fact he incorrectly calls “ironic”) and using a hell of a lot of quotation marks to accent words like “evil,” “key,” and “found.” Wahlberg, who’s apparently investigated or at least read about all the damning evidence left out of the Netflix show, believes there are a number of parallels between Avery and Simpson, all of which are fairly convoluted. For example:
In “Making a Murderer,” the police are made to look like “evil” men by the defense. Just like Johnny Cochran argued about the cops in the O.J. case. But did the Manitowoc officers ever show anything in their history that would make us think that they were any more evil than Detective Mark Fuhrman was in the O.J. trial? Mark Fuhrman: A cop who put his hand on a Bible and swore to have never said the “N-word” in his life, but was then proven to have uttered it hundreds of times only weeks earlier.
He also seems to believe Avery is guilty, and that the show’s filmmakers, Moira Demos and Laura Ricciardi, are guilty of manipulating supple audience sentiment. (Which Blue Bloods has certainly never done.) As Wahlberg puts it,
It seems the show’s apparent goal was for the audience to believe that the police, in a rush to judgment, “created” a murderer in Steven Avery (hence the title of the series).
But one can’t help but wonder if it is the producers — and now the viewers — of the series, who are actually the ones doing the “creating.”
By creating a martyr of Steven Avery.
Wahlberg even has thoughts about the intersection of race and Making A Murderer:
Ironically, despite all the similarities between the O.J. and Avery cases, there is one striking dissimilarity that has been revealed: that while most people assumed O.J. was guilty, most of those same people assume Steven Avery is innocent.
Two different cases, sure, but why the hypocrisy?
Many would suggest that race is a factor in that hypocritical thinking. It undoubtedly is. (However that subject is another discussion entirely.)
I’d like to think there is also another reason for the hypocrisy. That is that the viewers were only given half of the story — and that if most viewers looked at all of the evidence in the Steven Avery case objectively, and considered the many facts from the docu series that were conveniently withheld from them, that those people would come to this very logical conclusion: that all signs point to only one man, Steven Avery.
Because if you truly believe the cops were guilty of framing this man, and if you truly believe the evidence was planted, and if you truly believe that an injustice occurred involving an innocent man and “police with an agenda,” or if you simply believe that the cops who had an agenda shouldn’t have been allowed to investigate this murder case at all, and if you actually believe that Steven Avery is innocent after hearing only HALF the evidence in his case …
Then shouldn’t you at least be willing to consider the same for O.J. Simpson, after hearing ALL of the evidence in his case?
Wahlberg goes on to state that he doesn’t “truthfully” expect anyone to feel as strongly that O.J. Simpson is innocent as they do Steven Avery, but notes that “Even if O.J. was innocent of murdering his wife, he should spend the rest of his life in prison for the many times he physically abused her.”
The whole confounding thing is over on the Sun-Times’ site and is worth a read, if for no other reason than just to wonder why in the world a major newspaper would let Donnie fucking Wahlberg write an opinion piece.