Entertainment

Netflix Dropped a Ton of New Evidence from 'Unsolved Mysteries' Cases on Reddit

The Netflix reboot of the true-crime series has activated the internet hive-mind -- and people have theories!

unsolved mysteries netflix
Courtesy Netflix

When Netflix releases a new true-crime documentary or series, there's often an accompanying scramble online as curious viewers head to the internet to play amateur detective after watching the story unfold. Making a Murderer, which was originally released back in December of 2015, was one of the first Netflix's original series to inspire obsessives to do some digging (and posting) of their own to support various possible theories. Given its title, it's no surprise that the new reboot of Unsolved Mysteries, which dropped last week on the streaming platform, has already set off a firestorm of speculation. 

This time, Netflix is giving armchair sleuths some homework. In a Reddit thread started on Tuesday, July 7, Netflix posted a link to a Google Drive folder including possible clues for fans to begin their own investigations. "Hey guys, Netflix here!" reads the post on r/UnsolvedMysteries. "We've created a public drive with all the assembled evidence, case files, interviews, and video clips for each story that didn't make it into the final episodes." The drive is helpfully organized by episode, with each section containing video clips and images.

"House of Terror," the third episode of Unsolved Mysteries, which gets into the murder of an aristocratic family in the French city of Nantes, has generated a lot of speculation. But the biggest file relates to the first episode, "Mystery on the Rooftop," which examines the mysterious death of Rey Rivera in Baltimore. Of all the episodes released -- there are six in this batch and 12 were initially ordered when the show was first announced, so expect the rest of them soon-ish -- "Mystery on the Rooftop" has captured the internet's attention the most.

Earlier this week, a Reddit theory that connected Rivera's death to David Fincher's 1997 movie The Game, a twist-filled story of a man caught in a wild conspiracy that eventually leads him to jump through a glass ceiling towards the end, went viral. Rivera was an aspiring screenwriter and a note his wife discovered after his death contained references to director Stanley Kubrick and other movies. 

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly,Unsolved Mysteries co-creator Terry Dunn Meurer said he brought up the theory with Rivera's widow, Allison. "She doesn't place any significance on the movie The Game," the producer said. "Allison feels that she's been through all the journals just trying to find any clue that could help her figure out what happened to him, and she couldn't find any real or strong connections in The Game."

Though the investigative work of people online can be queasy and potentially harmful, Unsolved Mysteries has a history of calling on viewers to help solve cases. Part of the idea of a show like this is that it can draw more attention and public scrutiny to a crime with no resolution. The show's Twitter account has been responding to viewers who reach out with cases they'd like to see the show take a close look at with a link to a submission page, and there's a similar online form to submit tips to the show's producers. They're looking for your help. 

Ditching the host and the often cheesy reenactments of the original, which ran from 1987 to 2010, the new version of this pulpy favorite takes a more grounded approach, often focusing on the fallout of violent crimes over paranormal or supernatural incidents. (The fifth episode, "Berkshires UFO," does chronicle some alien shenanigans.) It remains to be seen if Unsolved Mysteries will carry on one of the other legacies of the original series: occasionally solving some cases. But people are out there digging. 

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Dan Jackson is a senior staff writer at Thrillist Entertainment. He's on Twitter @danielvjackson.