This article constructs a transmedia topology of the Making a Murderer text, mapping the ecologies of interaction, participation and creation with and of the text by the audience. Firstly we explore the mixed textualities of the series delivered through the streaming service Netflix. We then expand the analysis to consider the wider transmedial textualities and trace the thresholds of the transmedial text to investigate new approaches to analysing transmedial work in the context of non-fiction media forms. We explore the relationships between the core series and the participatory engagement in the production of the text as a whole which includes online engagement, active investigations, and the production of a wide range of new material in response to the core series. Here we define transmedia topology as a tracing of what we could call the geography of the text, as defined by its features and boundaries (or lack thereof).We situate the series as a piece of Complex TV, but explore how the series invites active participation from the audience; through its structure, complexity and form. The article maps the series textual connections with more traditional documentary form, and more experimental transmedial approaches, relating it to Alternate Reality Games. We consider (at the time of writing and publication) the tangible, real world outcomes of the text and the audiences participation in the production of the text. This mapping situates the text within a number of media discourses to understand its media geneology and explore its textual trajectories.This mapping explores both the 10-part series, and the wealth of paratextual material as a text together, mapping the connections between the documentary series and the emergence of a transmedial textuality that is owed largely to audiences and the textual terrain.

transmedia, Making a Murderer, textual analysis, complex TV, paratextual analysis
Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision
dx.doi.org/10.18146/2213-0969.2016.jethc117
VIEW Journal
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)
VIEW Journal of European Television History and Culture; Vol 5, No 10 (2016); 124-139

Hook, Alan, Barrios-O'Neill, Danielle, & Mairs Dyer, Jolene. (2016). A Transmedia Topology of Making a Murderer. VIEW Journal, 5(10), 124–139. doi:10.18146/2213-0969.2016.jethc117