Murder in the Valleys True Crime Documentary Review, Killer in Clydach

What Murder in the Valleys is all about without spoiling the show

Never judge a true crime documentary by its title. Nothing about Murder in the Valleys seems attractive by looking at the title. It gets lost in the world of much more inventive true crime documentaries like The Hatchet Wielding Hitchhiker or Don’t Fuck With Cats.

Despite early odds, Murder in the Valleys comes away with an intriguing story. Three generations from the same family are all found murdered in a home that has also caught fire. Slowly, suspects are revealed as we learn more about the life of who is believed to be the main target of the attack, Mandy Power. The daughter of one of the victims and mother of the other two has been involved in several relationships, including an affair with the wife of a police officer, Alison Lewis.

At first, it seems the affair has a lot to do with the murders. However, a new suspect, David Morris, emerges. Another lover of Mandy’s, it’s a case of whether or not he’s the scapegoat for two police officer twins and/or the mistress or if David is the guilty one.

What was good about Murder in the Valleys

Once you wake up after reading this title, you’ll immediately get thrown into the action. This true crime documentary reminded me of a mix between Two Shallow Graves and The Staircase. It’s a huge compliment as those are two of my favorites.

Murder in the Valleys does everything right. In four parts, the story evolves and we are presented with several twists. David is hardly introduced at all early on and even when he does become the focus of the investigation, this documentary turns into a defense of him.

The crime was committed in 1999 with the documentary coming out in 2022. Because of this, we don’t get too much behind-the-scenes looks like we did in Two Shallow Graves and The Staircase. Instead, police audio and some video is used along with interviews more than two decades later.

This documentary is evidence focused instead of driven by a trial. I really liked this choice. Documentaries that spend too much time in the courtroom can drag if not done right.

Murder in the Valleys accomplished the most important thing any true crime film should. It kept me interested and wanting to see what comes next. Once it was over, I was left questioning what’s true and who the actual killer was.

What could have made Murder in the Valleys better

A different title would have helped. A little more flash might have done it some favors too. This story takes place in Wales and with many true crime documentaries coming out of the United Kingdom it shares a slower pace. 

The pacing of this one, however, wasn’t so bad. It sped along and aside from a little confusion at the start, there wasn’t much else Murder in the Valleys could have done to improve. Another episode would have been welcomed.

Is Murder in the Valleys worth watching?

This one left a mark on me. It’s the kind of case and documentary that has helped make me a fan of the genre. It’s binge-worthy television. The semi-solved nature of it will leave you with some sort of feelings. Was justice provided or did someone get away with murder? I’m torn. I feel like I could watch this all over again and come away with a different conclusion of my own.

Overall Score: 10 out of 10

This is a brilliant little true crime documentary nobody is talking about. It won’t sizzle like many over the Netflix documentaries about swindlers on dating apps. This is true crime in its purest form and done remarkably well by the filmmakers.

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