The Real ‘Des’: The Dennis Nilsen Story – 17 September 2020 – 17/9/2020 – Thursday – ITV
“I’m sort of an odd one out. Well, my life has been lived on this profile of being the odd one out.” – Dennis Nilsen
This new one-off hour long documentary explores the personality of notorious serial killer Dennis Nilsen, who admitted to murdering up to 15 young men at his homes in London and disposed of their bodies in his garden and down his drain.
Narrated by the star of new ITV drama Des, David Tennant, and timed to follow on from it, this documentary features insight from experts who attempted to get inside the mind of the murderer including criminologist David Wilson, who interviewed and corresponded with Nilsen over several decades.
On the surface, Nilsen was a mild-mannered civil servant, though his true persona was terrifying and deadly. Nilsen was drawn to young men who he murdered and brutalised in bizarre rituals. But he was also a rarity – a killer who wanted to talk and to boast about his crimes from the moment he was caught.
Featuring new material and previously unseen archive, along with interviews with victims’ families, the documentary will also include footage from an astonishing and infamous interview Nilsen gave at Albany Prison in 1992.
The programme documents how Nilsen joined the army in 1961, eventually going on to become a police officer, and then a civil servant, which is when he began his gruesome spree, first at his flat in Melrose Avenue in Cricklewood, London and later at Cranley Gardens in Muswell Hill.
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