While you’ve been busy watching every second of every piece of footage ever created about Ted Bundy, Netflix has been whipping up the next true crime docuseries to blow your mind. Killer Ratings is a seven episode Netflix original about Wallace Souza, a Brazilian politician and TV host who committed a string of crimes that I honestly cannot believe actually happened. Here is everything you need to know about the true story of Killer Ratings.

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Who was Wallace Souza?

Welp, that’s a loaded question. Souza was a former police officer, TV show host, politician, and drug trafficker. In short: he was the worst.

What exactly did he do?

In 1989, years after working as a cop, Souza became the host of a show called Canal Livre. “Here in Manaus, we have an issue with gangs,” he’s seen saying in the Killer Ratings trailer. “I said, ‘I’ll see if I can make a TV show to combat this.’ And I started a crime show.”

It was kind of like Dateline in the sense that it covered crime, but they also threw in some lighter content (uh…there were offensive puppets) to keep things fresh. If you can even imagine, it gets more yikes from here.

Souza’s show got incredible ratings because of its rapid, close-up coverage of crime. He was considered a hero for reporting on the murders of Brazilian drug traffickers, and would even air super graphic footage of their dead bodies. Souza’s crew was fast as hell and usually showed up at the scene almost immediately after a murder had occurred. Viewers guzzled it up, but police thought something felt sus. The crew would often make their way to a body before the authorities could, and it something just wasn’t adding up.

Souza used his newfound celebrity status to become a politician (you hate to see it), and for a while, he was powerful enough to get away with the crimes he was committing. It turned out that Souza himself was also a drug trafficker, and was ordering the murders of his rivals to boost Canal Livre ratings and get rid of all competition. (So…that’s why he was able to get to the bodies so quickly.)

So…how did he get caught?

As police suspicion grew, Souza’s own team eventually ratted on him. They exposed him for murder, drug trafficking, and gang activity. (Side note: his gang was made up of fellow former police officers who served as bodyguards for Souza.)

He actually almost got away with it.

Souza basically had a get out of jail free card because most Brazilian politicians can’t legally be arrested. Thankfully, in 2009, the government was like “wait, not this guy, though. We should totally arrest him.” Souza immediately made a run for it, but three days later, he turned himself in. Soon after, he was hospitalized with chronic liver disease and died in 2010 before he ever went to trial.

Killer Ratings is now available to stream on Netflix.

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