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Are We Sick?

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  • Are We Sick?

    I told a friend of mine that I watched a documentary about Ian Brady and he said "Oh I would never watch stuff like that. It's other people's pain."

    I had no response. What could I have said? Weeks later we were talking about it again and I said that I watch such shows to better understand evil. Evil is one of the big mysteries of life, I told him. He wasn't convinced. I recall a documentary about Stephen King and apparently he kept a scrap book as a child full of news articles about crime and serial killers. When asked why he made it he said, rather weakly, that he wanted to know evil people so he could spot them and avoid them. I thought, yeah, whatever. You just love serial killers.

    Now you may say that Jack The Ripper happened a long time ago and therefore there is no one suffering. But do you also have an interest in new serial killers and horror films?
    Do you think we are just sick?

  • #2
    Originally posted by albie View Post
    But do you also have an interest in new serial killers and horror films?
    I don't, personally. My interest in JTR is primarily historical, although I have read up on a few other high-profile serial killers. I'm not particularly a "true crime" buff, and I don't really like horror films either.
    Kind regards, Sam Flynn

    "Suche Nullen" (Nietzsche, Götzendämmerung, 1888)


    • #3
      I like old horror movies (Frankenstein, Dracula etc) but it’s beyond me how anyone could sit through something like Hostel? I saw around 10 minutes once but I couldn’t watch anymore. We’ve all seen the Kelly photograph of course but how many of us could have walked into that room knowing what was lying on that bed? Not me.

      The news is full of horror stories too of course. I think that we have a certain ability to distance ourselves to some extent or we’ would probably never leave the house. A police officer Would have to learn to deal with stuff that they would normally avoid like the plague. I’m sure that Trevor could tell about moving on from the first time that he saw some terrible sight to being able to do his job? I’m sure that things still had an effect no matter how experienced he became.

      We also tend to focus on the whodunnit and the history of course although some onlookers (HR perhaps) might feel that we’re some kind of Ripper appreciation society which we all know is a million miles from the truth.

      So I certainly don’t think that we’re sick. Just curious humans.


      "Crime is common. Logic is rare. Therefore it is upon the logic rather than upon the crime that you should dwell.”


      • #4
        I am interested in the subject , because it is most likely the most infamous unsolved series of murders of any generation to date I also find True Crime literature a good read.
        Regards Richard.


        • #5
          I like horror films, but not the modern ones which show graphic violence.

          If I watch a true crime prog my only interest is who did it, how were they caught and what sentence did they get. I don't want to hear horrific details of the crime itself.

          As for the victims, I appreciate that there must if possible be a tribute to the victims, and interviews with family members. But though I watch it, I find it terribly sad and I'm relieved when the show switches back to police work.


          • #6
            Morbid curiosity is a part of human nature.


            • #7
              Originally posted by Harry D View Post
              Morbid curiosity is a part of human nature.
              and a classic whodunnit
              "Is all that we see or seem
              but a dream within a dream?"

              -Edgar Allan Poe

              "...the man and the peaked cap he is said to have worn
              quite tallies with the descriptions I got of him."

              -Frederick G. Abberline


              • #8
                To some degree (some very large degree, quite possibly), our standards of what we consider healthy vs. sick mental processes were set in the first half of the 19th century, when ordinary people started having the leisure for instrospection. It was an entirely different world then, one where a person's experience was limited largely to the world within walking range of their home, or in what they read about in books. The emotions and mental processes of that life, sometimes hard and even dangerous, but usually distant from extremes of behaviour, was what we codified as normal. It was a life that stressed adaptive behaviour, as there was no real safety net for maladaptive behaviour.

                Modern 'hot' media such as television and the internet give us access to a range of human experience, and by their nature, tend to emphasize the bizarre and grotesque. We have enough of an instrumentality in place that we can live comfortably, for our entire lives in some cases, in ways that would have proven ruinous to prior generations. We are, I think, every one of us neurotics, if not sociopaths, by the standards of small town life that prevailed in the first half of Victoria's reign.

                Balanced against that, of course, is Niven's assertion that the majority is always sane.
                - Ginger


                • #9
                  What,in real life,if you were given the opportunity to murder a person, and knew that there was no danger of triial or punishment,would be your feelings.Yes,I was once in that position.


                  • #10
                    Sick? No. Strange? Uh....somewhat. I think it is more along the lines of trying to solve one of the world's great mysteries. Look at how many people are fixated on the JFK assassination? Now that was pretty damn morbid so are they sick or do they just want a mystery solved?



                    • #11
                      I have no interest in horror movies, but I enjoy a good weird creepy film.

                      As for serial killers, I did have an interest when I was a teen. There were so many of them in the 70's it seems. I also had a fascination for the Bermuda Triangle.

                      When it comes to JtR, it's the mix of living conditions, the press, the police, the science, the climate of the time. Sometimes I wonder if Jack didn't neutralize or at least delayed, some kind of socialist revolution or reforms.

                      I have little interest on the murderer's identity.
                      Is it progress when a cannibal uses a fork?
                      - Stanislaw Jerzy Lee


                      • #12
                        If one thinks I was maybe a little over the top in my claim above,here is the story.Sometime in the summer of 1946,I was in the British army stationed outside the town of Soes,in Germany.One day myself,a sergeant and driver,were instructed to escort a convicted war crminal to a militry prison in Hanover.H e was being held at a holding camp staffed by military police.Our transport was a 14 CWT.The sergeant and driver were in front,myself in the rear with the prisoner.He wore no restraints,but was slightly handicapped by a leg injury.I was armed with a Sten gun.The trip took about one hour.His sentence had been 10 years.The only words spoken, was a statement by him that he would give me no trouble,and a request to smoke a cigarette,to which I agreed.
                        Before we left I was taken aside by a military police captain and given the information that if the prisoner was shot,a statement by me that he was attempting escape would suffice.There would be no enquiry.He was delivered safely.Incidentally, only a fortnight before a prisoner had been shot and killed at that camp.H e however was attempting to escape though the circumstances were a little suspicious.There was no enquiry.I heard of it by the soldier that shot him, who himself was a victim of a set up that he had no part in, but was forced to act.
                        I recently became aware of sites that have information about the war crimes trials.I hope to establish the name of that prisoner.I can narrow it down to those that had ten years sentances.Not all were tried at Nuremburg,so if anyone can help with information I would be grateful.