2.21.2008

A day in the life of a serial killer


In the past month, I've watched 2 seasons of a Showtime program called "Dexter."

This rather delightfully dark comedy follows the life of a rather socially awkward Miami Police Department forensics investigator named Dexter Morgan, who in his spare time is also a serial killer.

Due to witnessing his mother being sawed to pieces as the tender age of 3, he has a rather strong impulse to kill others himself. He is not your a-typical, Hanibal Lecter type killer. He, infact, uses his CSI job to carefully choose and find other criminals, who themselves are serial killers, or murderers in their own right.

As I've been rather enthralled by the life of this wonderfully comical killing machine, I've also wondered why I am so amused by something I clearly should be repulsed by. I'm not going to lie, I like it when Dexter kills someone whom, in my opinion, deserves the carefully orchestrated death at the hands of Mr.Morgan. I enjoy the fact that he is smart enough to work so closely with the police, and no one is the wiser. I laugh at his quick wit and inner monologue about making his next kill, or how not to be caught when his next impulse to kill arises.

Why?

Why is this entertaining to me?

Why do I love watching one human killing another human.

I can understand the feeling of people getting what they deserve, it's in us all, justice, we seek justice. Especially in a society where many get off scott free for things that in Bible days would have lead to a granite slab being dropped on your head, we seek justice, we seek revenge.

However I have found myself enjoying Dexter killing those that are innocent of nothing, other than finding him out, or getting in his way.

I don't have an answer for this, I don't know why I feel the way I do, other than the fact that that the writers of these shows are genius in twisting my moral compass...in making my joy swell when I see the beauty and craft of this serial killers work.

I think I'm in love with the idea of a show, or a movie making me feel a certain way when inside I know I shouldn't. Feeling sad for a lunatic being repaid in "A Clockwork Orange." Of Hanibal Lectar escaping in "The Silence of the Lambs." I am glad that Catherine Zeta Jones finds a way to support herself by selling drugs in "Traffic."

So this first blog is a toast to all the writers out there that toy with my emotions, that twist my judgment, and mess with my morals! I salute you for making me appreciate my inability to think for myself!

2 comments:

Adam Green said...

Dexter! I just finished the first season today! I can't wait to see the second. Although I didn't feel for Dexter as much as I felt for Alex or cheered as much as I cheered for Hannibal.

But I totally agree, any show/book that makes you like the unlikable/despicable is brilliant in my eyes! (the book A Clockwork Orange makes Alex more likeable than the movie, IMO)

Rev Rob said...

not sure what to think of this comment yet...but stirring up my thinking and some emotions....