UNDER SUSPICION: UNCOVERING THE WESPHAEL CASE is a new Netflix Docu-Series. This is the true-crime case about the Belgian politician Bernard Wesphael who was accused of murdering his wife in 2013. Read our full Under Suspicion: Uncovering the Wesphael Case review here!
UNDER SUSPICION: UNCOVERING THE WESPHAEL CASE is a new Netflix documentary series in the true-crime genre. It covers the 2013 murder of Véronique Pirotten. Her husband, Belgian politician Bernard Wesphael, was accused of having murdered her when she was found dead in a hotel room in Ostend.
The docu-series has 5 episodes each with a runtime of around 35 minutes, so it’s a fairly quick watch. Fair warning: There is a lot of information in various languages, so you will need to pay attention. For this reason alone, it’s a good thing that the episodes are fairly short. It is also very interesting, so it should easily keep you hooked.
Continue reading our Under Suspicion: Uncovering the Wesphael Case review below and find all episodes on Netflix now.
Who do you believe?
This is a docu-series along the lines of The Staircase. You’ll be presented with many facts but no real conclusion which leaves you with the very simple question: Who (or what facts) do I believe?
Sure, there’s a trial and some sort of closure in that sense. Also, there’s a book (which can’t help but remind me of O.J. Simpson) and lots of people giving opposing views.
Ultimately, what is very clear is the fact that Bernard Wesphael and Véronique Pirotton had an extremely dysfunctional and toxic relationship. They married just three months after getting together and she died the following year. During their marriage, she had an affair and appears to have attempted suicide more than once. Also, they both drank heavily!
Naturally, all of the events from their relatively short relationship (and even shorter marriage) play into the case of her death. Was it murder or suicide? Well, since killing yourself by way of a plastic bag over your head isn’t the easiest thing, I’m not exactly on board with that particular explanation.
Then again, that’s my interpretation of the facts presented.
The case as told by Bernard Wesphael
The Under Suspicion: Uncovering the Wesphael Case series does naturally suffer under the circumstance that only one of the two people present, when Véronique Pirotton died, is left to tell the story. This means the accused, Bernard Wesphael, is able to tell the story exactly how he wishes.
It did irritate me a lot while watching this docu-series since I do think he gets way too much screen-time. Especially when he comes to describing his deceased wife in a lot less flattering ways. And yet, this also speaks volumes about him. Plus, we are also presented with evidence in the form of pictures, expert opinions (medical and otherwise) as well as witnesses.
Much like the Crime Scene: The Vanishing at the Cecil Hotel docu-series, the events take place at a hotel. This means two key things perfect for a documentary; Lots of surveillance footage and witnesses at the scene.
In the case of Véronique Pirotton’s death, the witnesses have seen her interact with her (supposedly estranged) husband, Bernard Wesphael, in the public areas. Also, they heard a lot of noises. First the very classic sounds of two people engaging in consenting sex and then something very different. Something strange and sinister that sounded off!
Also, we see them interact which both confirms history and highlights the stranger parts of it. Again, in my opinion!
Watch Under Suspicion: Uncovering the Wesphael Case on Netflix now!
With just five episodes that are all under 40 minutes in runtime, this is a quick docu-series to watch. If you enjoy true-crime documentaries, then this is certainly worth checking out.
Again, I do feel the need to warn viewers that this requires your full attention. Several languages are spoken and you’ll see newspaper clipping where you’ll want to catch what it says. The subtitles are good but there is a lot of information you need to pay attention to. Fortunately, it’s told chronologically which does help a lot.
If you liked the French Netflix documentary series Who Killed Little Gregory (read our review here), then this one should also hold your interest. Plenty of interesting people, with lots of opinions, along with facts that could often be interpreted in more ways than one. Then again, isn’t that always the case if you spin something well enough?
All episodes in the Under Suspicion: Uncovering the Wesphael Case series are on Netflix from March 17, 2021.
This true-crime series follows the high-profile court case of Belgian politician Bernard Wesphael, who was accused of murdering his wife in 2013.