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Twitter Reaction to Chris Watts Confessions of a Killer

It’s challenging making a movie where so much is known, and not known, about a high-profile case. In the space of 90 minutes, what do prioritize? What do you leave out?

Below are a few highlights from what social media liked, and didn’t like, about the Lifetime Movie.

Chris Watts actor showing too much emotion.

The reenactment of Shan’ann arriving home is haunting.

Some found the incredible credible.

And the credible incredible.

Some were disappointed.

How Shan’ann was protrayed comes a few times.

The casting was hit and miss..

Several comments highlighted how the drammatization simply left them “feeling sad.”

What did you think? Where there any facts you missed, or you felt they got wrong? What aspect of the relational dynamics was accurate, or artificial?


  1. Sarah

    It irked me how much they got wrong, some weren’t even little details they were big ones

  2. CBH

    Didn’t like that leaving out premeditation in favor of Chris’s concocted tale was not in keeping with the actual facts.

  3. Sylvester

    I enjoyed the Lifetime movie. I didn’t expect them to get everything spot on, it’s a dramatization, not a documentary film. I thought the actor who played Watts was very good – but I didn’t see the necessity for having the audience think he was pill popping Thrive, or “Strive”, and downing shakes as any kind of excuse for what he did. Like it was “roid rage” or something akin to that. Not unless they want to tell us there are ingredients in Thrive that could enrage someone. There are a few details they could have gotten right since everyone knows certain things about this case even if we don’t know everything.

    1) The stairs weren’t carpeted. If he’s dragging a body wrapped in a sheet down the stairs there would have been marks on the back of her head.
    2) There was no baby gate at the top of the stairs. We know there was.
    3) She removed her flip flops at the door, she didn’t walk up the stairs with her shoes on.
    4) How would Nickole Atkinson have been able to say “her car’s in the garage” when the garage doors in the Lifetime movie had no windows.
    5) Nickolas Atkinson found Shan’ann’s phone in the couch cushions – Watts didn’t.

    These were simple enough details that were known, and were correctly portrayed.

    I wasn’t too happy with the ending. After the second confession (or was it the third), Agent Coder says something is wrong with Watt’s story. Tammy Lee agrees, that there were no defensive wounds on Shan’ann and that she didn’t fight back. Her reasoning is that Shan’ann didn’t believe Watts was going to kill her right up to the end. That’s a pretty convenient explanation.

    • nickvdl

      Some great observations, Sylvester. I wonder whether Tammy Lee really believes that, or whether that’s part of the mindfuckery.
      There’s a moment in the clip with the agents, where Watts tells Coder if he or Shan’ann ever decided to be with someone else they would both inform one another, and Coder says, “Oh, really.” There’s a slight inflection in his voice that gives away Coder thinks Watts is talking crap. A moment later he says, “I think that’s ridiculous.” This confirms when he responds by saying “oh really” he may not necessary believe what he’s being told.

    • JC

      Did you notice the sleep mask hanging from Nikki’s bedpost? I thought that was a peculiar little addition to the set of the early intimate scene in her bedroom. The only discussion of the sleep mask appearing on the body cam footage in the basement, that I can recall, was here. Or at least I don’t remember anyone who picked up on that small detail and considered it’s significance other than TCRS. Makes me want to hear more from the set designer on the production crew and where they got the idea that a sleep mask should be placed in the setting of their tryst. Considering the larger inaccurate details portrayed, maybe it’s a coincidence?

  4. Sylvester

    Agreed. Much has been made of how superb Tammy Lee was in this case but I was very impressed with Agent Coder. He got Chris to talk, to open up. He encouraged him, he was sympathetic. But to me the sort of turning point – was when he called Watts out – when he said I think there are two Chris’s. And I remember thinking at the time, wow, Nick Van Der Leek nailed it. And you did. Before anyone else you called him Two Face, and named your series Two Face. And it was also at that point that I started paying closer attention to the titles you give your books.

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