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#330434 - 07/23/07 04:41 AM Who put the evil in Devil?
Chris - Horror Lit Editor Offline
Newbie

Registered: 07/23/07
Posts: 30
Loc: Queensland Australia
It's a play on words, isn't it, but what do you think makes a good psychopath and why? Personally, my favourite is Jason Voorhees from Friday 13th. Through 11 movies, he's said nothing. Not a single quote. Silence is golden ... and deadly!
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Horror Literature

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#330587 - 07/23/07 03:42 PM Re: Who put the evil in Devil? [Re: Chris - Horror Lit Editor]
ChelleT&L Offline
Chimpanzee

Registered: 09/03/05
Posts: 7165
Loc: Lake Lanier, Georgia
For me, it's the ones with great intelligence and no moral compass. The Machiavallien, results jutify anything. A lot of John Saul's characters fall into this category, and quite a few of Dean Koontz's. But probably the very first to really be an example of this would be Dr. Frankenstein.

(Oh, BTW - welcome Chris!)


Edited by BellaHarmony (07/23/07 03:43 PM)

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#330705 - 07/24/07 03:04 AM Re: Who put the evil in Devil? [Re: ChelleT&L]
Shaun Offline
Amoeba

Registered: 09/09/05
Posts: 99
Probably someone who seems normal. Hannibal Lecter comes to mind.

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#330712 - 07/24/07 03:42 AM Re: Who put the evil in Devil? [Re: Shaun]
Chris - Horror Lit Editor Offline
Newbie

Registered: 07/23/07
Posts: 30
Loc: Queensland Australia
I seem normal ... kinda.

And I've worked out how to add my picture!

I have to wonder if Dr Frankenstein was a psychopath. His moral compass was influenced by his striving to achieve. Abnormal, yes (and hey: what is normal!?!?) but psychopath - I'd argue that one!

Lecter is a fantastic character and plagues the reader with its base animal and intellectual animal of psychopathology.

If a psychopath is considered as one who has no value for human life, then would characters such as Dracula be considered a psychopath, do you think?! I'd expect the classic argument for this post would be Robert Bloch's 'Psycho' in literature.
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Chris Willis
Horror Literature

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#330739 - 07/24/07 07:17 AM Re: Who put the evil in Devil? [Re: Chris - Horror Lit Editor]
ChelleT&L Offline
Chimpanzee

Registered: 09/03/05
Posts: 7165
Loc: Lake Lanier, Georgia
I guess it depends on whose version of "Frankenstein" you believe - the Dr's or the monster's?

Maybe psychopath is a little strong, possibly sociopath?

Lecter definitely qualifies!

Dracula, hmmm, since he is technically no longer human - and has not been for some time, do we get to hold him to the same criteria? (Boy, we could start a whole new theological discussion on this one!)

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#330861 - 07/24/07 05:23 PM Re: Who put the evil in Devil? [Re: ChelleT&L]
ChelleT&L Offline
Chimpanzee

Registered: 09/03/05
Posts: 7165
Loc: Lake Lanier, Georgia
I'm looking back over this thread, and it just occurred to me... it's a lot easier to think of good (ahem) psychopaths in horror films than it is in horror lit. Jason, Freddie, Lecter (yeah, I know there were books, but everyone knows the films better) - all screen psychos.

Books seem to explain the reasons behind why bad guys are the way they are, so maybe they don't seem as much like psychopaths. I'm sure Clive Barker has a couple, at least in his short stories...

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#330919 - 07/24/07 08:23 PM Re: Who put the evil in Devil? [Re: ChelleT&L]
Chris - Horror Lit Editor Offline
Newbie

Registered: 07/23/07
Posts: 30
Loc: Queensland Australia
I concur. Clive Barker's 'Pinhead' springs to mind.

Perhaps the classical psychopath needs edifying in horror literature. Lecter certainly fits the profile, but what of reality? People like Ted Bundy, Jack the Ripper, the Unabomer. Is horror literature bored with the psychopath, opting for the more sinister, supernatural explanation of human reasoning? Perhaps in our cultural environment with middle eastern conflict, terror and terrorism is over-riding the horror reaction to a psychopath. That's what horror is ultimately: a reaction; an emotion (oh! oh! I sense an article developing here).
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Chris Willis
Horror Literature

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