A woman scorned: The disturbing true story behind the second season of Dirty John.

Get ready, true crime fans.

For those of us who devoured season one of Dirty John on Netflix, there’s good news: A second season of the gripping true crime series is in the works.

With a whole new cast, the second season, called Dirty John: The Betty Broderick Story, will again focus on a deeply troubled marriage, this time following the relationship of Betty Broderick and her husband Dan.

“The first season of Dirty John was a story of twisted love and coercive control and both these insidious elements are also present in and integral to the story of Betty Broderick, whom I have wanted to write about since I became a writer,” series creator Alexandra Cunningham said in a statement following the announcement of season two.

Amanda Peet and Christian Slater will play the lead actors in the story, which occurred during the 1960s through to the 1980s.

Dirty John season 2
Amanda Peet and Christian Slater will play the lead actors in Dirty John season two. Image: Getty.

Peet will play protagonist Betty Broderick, described as "the perfect Southern California blonde wife and mother" after she fell in love and married her college boyfriend Dan, played by Christian Slater.

As Dan was studying law and medicine, Betty was a supportive girlfriend who was selfless in the sacrifices she made so that her partner could pursue his dreams.

After graduating, Dan enjoyed significant success in their San Diego community, and all seemed well for the couple.

But when Dan hired office assistant Linda Kolkena, things took a turn. Linda is described as a "bright, beautiful young woman with whom he can happily forget the struggles of his past".

This is where it gets messy, and if you don't want to know the ending, please divert your eyes.


Watch the trailer for the first season of Dirty John below. Post continues after video. 

After 16 years of marriage, Dan filed for divorce from Betty which was the catalyst for a violent and abusive separation according to Los Angeles Times.

So well known was the case at the time, Oprah Winfrey labelled the breakdown of Betty and Dan's relationship one of "America's messiest divorces".

In 1989, Linda – the aforementioned office assistant – and Dan married in an intimate ceremony that saw him hire undercover security guards to protect the couple from the potential threat posed by a devastated Betty, Los Angeles Times reported.

The same year, Betty broke into the couple's house using her daughter's keys and and murdered them both while they were in bed at night.

Broderick now serves life in jail for the murder of her ex husband, and his second wife, Linda Kolkena.

The story is complex (in the trial, Betty claimed self-defence) and deeply disturbing.

The new true crime series will premiere on the USA Network, and although there is no confirmation yet, will hopefully be bought by a streaming service who can make it available to Australian audiences.

Fans of Dirty John will know the first season, adapted from the Los Angeles Times podcast of the same name, came in eight, nail-biting parts that had viewers gripped from the get-go.

Season one, which aired on Netflix in Australia, followed the now-notorious con artist and predator, John Meehan, who impressed single mum Debra Newell on a dating site before fooling her into an intense relationship using an expertly-spun web of lies. He concealed his criminal history, falsely claimed he was a doctor, and hid a drug addiction.

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