Romanticising Serial Killers

With the release of a Jeffrey Dahmer series on Netflix, I noticed a lot of people including family members of some of Dahmer’s victims, expressing their outrage at how the series romanticises his crimes. Many people expect that we’ll see kids dressing up as Dahmer for Halloween which of course would be triggering for the family members.

Although I believe in creative freedom, I have to say that to some extent, I’m in agreement with the people who oppose the series. It seems that for the past few years, it has become ‘cool’ to idolise serial killers and it’s pretty weird.

Before people started wearing Ted Bundy T-shirts and dressing up as John Wayne Gacy for Halloween, people who were that way inclined chose to idolise fictional killers like Michael Myers or Freddy Krueger. Why has there been a shift to romanticing real serial killers? I can only assume that it is due to all of these Netflix series about true crimes and murderers.

I remember when we were looking for a driver for a European tour and we found a guy who was up for doing it. When you’re going on a month-long tour with people, it’s best to find out if you actually like them first so we asked him to take us to a show in the UK, just to see if we got on with him.

When he arrived at our house, the first thing I noticed was he had a lot of tattoos… nothing wrong with that of course but as I looked closely, I realised that all of his tattoos were of people… people I recognised, they were all serial killers! I asked him why he had several John Wayne Gacy tattoos and he explained how he was his favourite of all the serial killers. He talked enthusiastically about his next tattoo which would be the face of Ed Gein.

We ended up getting a different driver after an unrelated dispute and man, I was so glad to not be going to Europe with that guy. There is just something very wrong about someone who loves serial killers that much, that they’d get them permanently tattooed on their body.

I wonder if people like that guy, do it to be shocking and different and if that’s the case then fair enough but it’s still a bit insensitive and kinda lame. The only other explanation is that they genuinely look up to those guys and admire them for their crimes, that to me is incredibly worrying.

This Halloween, dress up as a ghost, ghoul or zombie, something fictional from a film or anything other than a serial killer because what’s Halloweeny about serial killers anyway?

5 thoughts on “Romanticising Serial Killers

  1. There’s a post on my blog about my experience with the producers of “Unsolved Mysteries.” We share the same perspective regarding the True Crime genre. I’m appreciative that you are helping to bring awareness of how insensitive and callous these shows can be.


  2. There’s a weird guy in my neighbourhood who wears t-shirts that have photographs of a young looking and old looking Charles Manson on them.

    I occasionally see him at the bus stop in my neighbourhood.

    I always wish that the bus would hurry up and come while I’m standing there.


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