The serial killer that is also a scholar, and super dreamy
I don’t know about you, but I like my serial killers to be of the tall, dark, and handsome variety. I also want them to be really smart and academic, so they can get all clever about their crimes and make them thematically appropriate.
A new breed of psychopaths is brewing in American pop culture, and I for one, and am totally on board with this change. Nowadays they are polished, cosmopolitan, literary, and worldly. It also doesn’t hurt that they’re handsome.
Perhaps we need our killers to be more sophisticated because we’re more sophisticated as viewers. Probably not. More likely, we want to be able to lust after our protagonists without having to overlook their unattractiveness or bad manners. We want to be able to ignore their murderous rampages in lieu of their dreaminess and handsomeness. It makes far more palatable for the horrible villain to be a total dreamboat rather some greasy lump with a mullet and a matching hatchet. Ugh. Who wants to be murdered up by that nonsense? Answer: nobody
There’s not shortage of big baddies in the TV universe, so they have to evolve into the best and the brightest of the bunch. There’s no room for schlubs with faded overalls and missing teeth. No way. You have to have elite tastes, exceptional skills, and you must be well read. Or else, what are you even doing with your serial killer life?
Examples: The Following and Hannibal