Cabinets full of cardboard files
Spilling out with crimes, unspeakable,
Things you couldn’t start to dream.
It feels a little like an alcoholic drink
Those thumbnails lined up on the Netflix screen,
Selling stories of the evil souls
That drift throughout this world we like
To view through glasses with that rosy tint.
But peel away those blushing lenses and you see
The darkness that would make us shudder.
That addiction that we feel, I couldn’t say just why,
Perhaps it is our safety net, to teach us what
We need to see, to dodge those tortured me that kill
Without a reason we can see.
I don’t know about you, but I absolutely love true crime. I love books and documentaries and I find myself devouring the films and series that are on Netflix. I don’t really know why I have such a fascination with them but I suppose I do have a few theories.
Perhaps I’m a bit sick in the head myself. I like to think of myself as kind and that I wouldn’t hurt somebody but I guess we all push bed things down. I’m reading Jekyll and Hyde with my Year 10 students at the moment and the novel tackles this very issue. We all have something dark, hidden deep inside; our success in life just depends on how well we can hide it.
The other theory I have is that it’s a bit of a safety thing. I catastrophise anything and everything so in my head I’m always at risk of being murdered. It makes sense that I should enjoy watching these programmes so that I can have a head start over these murderers that are sure to target me any day now.
And then there is the fascination with the psychology behind it. I love trying to work out what has gone wrong in the brain of someone who does something really bad. I truly believe that we are all born good and something bad has to happen to cause these outbursts.
If I was brave enough I would most definitely go and work in a prison, but I’d spend most of the time hiding. I take my hat off to those people who are brave enough to keep the dangerous people safe and to also keep us safe on the outside.
2 thoughts on “true crime”
Your comment omits a couple of crucial points. First, the fascination with true crime isn’t just you. The audience includes millions of fans. Why the breadth of the appeal? Factors that are ideosyncratic to you don’t explain the larger audience.
Second, a good many prisoners are innocents, convicted by a system that seeks to clear cases as fast as possible and does not seek the truth. When Illinois stopped executing prisoners, the catalyst was that a majority of those on death row were exonerated by DNA evidence. Had the execution schedule continued, innocent people would have been put to death. That’s true elsewhere, where there are lawsuits (like one in North Carolina) by people who have spent decades in prison for crimes they never committed. In court, both prosecution and defense are committed to winning regardless of truth.
There are studies indicating that there is little psychologically that distinguishes criminals from police or guards. The guards I’ve met are for the most part thugs who enjoy beating up people. So I don’t share your feelings about them.
True crime really can be fascinating. I think I’m probably more interested in the psychology than I am in anything else, actually. I do like learning what drive people to feel they have no choice (or they have the right, or whatever) to commit crimes like murder. And like you, I give all credit to those who keep s safe.