Serial Killers

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Castin
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Are there any serial killers or cases that have caught your particular interest or notice? They've certainly left their footprint on pop culture.
RationalMadman
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I am a huge student of the psychopathic mindset as it taught me a lot about how to deal with them and also how to become ruthless and a winner in life without losing my emotions along the way.

I can explain both the psychopath and the sociopath to you and why one becomes a serial killer.
Zeichen
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Interesting.


lol
Castin
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Why is Jack the Ripper so much more famous and iconic than any other serial killer. He killed like five people. I know, I know, you're gonna say the Dear Boss letters, plus Jack was never caught, yellow journalism, sensationalism, blah blah. I still think his grip on the human imagination is out of proportion. I remember an episode of the original Star Trek where he turned out to be an immortal interplanetary malicious energy.

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Hrmmm, i can see ur point. He wasn't all that out of the ordinary. H.H. Holmes, or a variety of others however, thats some wtf shit. 

Maybe the Ripper just hit a sweet spot. Just heinous enough, but not too much so as to be obscenely so, and organically grew into this blown out of proportion figure. 

Plus you gotta admit, "Jack the Ripper" is hella catchy 🤔


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My father was apparently childhood friends with a future serial killer. For privacy reasons, I won't specify which.
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I'd wonder if the date is important.   Newspapers, wider literacy, the telegraph, increased mobility etc were all kicking off around that time.   We talked about the Mona Lisa which became the iconic painting around the same time and Einstein became the first scientist to be world famous then too.

I suggest such things became icons because they were the first of their kind that almost everybody had heard of.   Shakespeare and Beethoven also became iconic in the victorian era.   Once something becomes an icon it tends to stay iconic - it becomes a convenient shared reference point.

Only slightly different is the -gate suffix.
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I'd say that's a sturdy answer.
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And H. H. Holmes was from the same time period, too. I guess he just didn't catch the press.

I even saw a theory flying around that H. H. Holmes is Jack the Ripper.
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I don't think its even necessarily a lack of press

Keith's post presented a compelling angle too that i hadnt considered 🤔
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Should've said, didn't catch the same scale of press.
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Reading about their personal history, provided there is sufficient information about them, is usually illuminating enough for me.
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And H. H. Holmes was from the same time period, too. I guess he just didn't catch the press. 
The primary differences are: 

  • H.H. Holmes was identified, whereas Jack the Ripper was not.
  • Jack the Ripper openly terrorized the streets of London, whereas H.H. Holmes would bring his victims to him. To that extent, people only knew that murders were occurring upon it becoming clear that he was indeed a murderer. 


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A good point, the Zodiac Killer is probably a better comparison. But the Zodiac Killer is himself quite iconic because it happened at a time when television and the rapid news cycle were starting to get established fmpov.

It was highly sensationalized, but also presented widespread coverage and an example in action of how widespread media coverage can affect the behaviors of a killer, and even feed into it 🤔

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If there are movie classics, book classics and music classics, then there's serial killer classics. I see Jack the Ripper as a classic serial killer. 
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So does H. H. Holmes, BTK, Zodiac, etc. 

A lot of the fictional serial killers in Criminal Minds were very interesting too. If some of them were real they'd join in the classic serial killers. 

8 days later

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Well I don't know about "interest" but one of the worst I read up on was Carl Panzram, he's not even on the main circuit of who gets mentioned and he was by far the most "evil" of any I've read about. Don't get me wrong they are all bad, but this guy in particular really worries me and actually after reading his case and the notes he wrote in prison about all his alleged sodomy victims and murders made me ill, I kind of left it alone after that. Not cool, people do some twisted stuff. 
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--> @Buddamoose
A good point, the Zodiac Killer is probably a better comparison. But the Zodiac Killer is himself quite iconic because it happened at a time when television and the rapid news cycle were starting to get established fmpov.

It was highly sensationalized, but also presented widespread coverage and an example in action of how widespread media coverage can affect the behaviors of a killer, and even feed into it 🤔
I think she also made a good point about the "terror on the streets" factor. In that capacity, maybe Son of Sam would be an arguable comparison -- though again, Berkowitz was himself iconic and well publicized.
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My father was apparently childhood friends with a future serial killer. For privacy reasons, I won't specify which.
Would I recognize the name?
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If there are movie classics, book classics and music classics, then there's serial killer classics. I see Jack the Ripper as a classic serial killer. 

So does H. H. Holmes, BTK, Zodiac, etc. 

A lot of the fictional serial killers in Criminal Minds were very interesting too. If some of them were real they'd join in the classic serial killers. 
Great show. Takes a lot of inspiration from real killers and cases. The writers really do their homework.
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Well I don't know about "interest" but one of the worst I read up on was Carl Panzram, he's not even on the main circuit of who gets mentioned and he was by far the most "evil" of any I've read about. Don't get me wrong they are all bad, but this guy in particular really worries me and actually after reading his case and the notes he wrote in prison about all his alleged sodomy victims and murders made me ill, I kind of left it alone after that. Not cool, people do some twisted stuff. 
If you read up on him, doesn't that mean he caught your interest? Surprisingly I've never heard of him. I wonder how much of what he wrote about himself was true. Serial killers tend to lie, change their stories, claim different body counts at different times.

Why do you consider him the most evil?
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If you read up on him, doesn't that mean he caught your interest?

I knew you were going to ask that lol, "interest" in serial killers sounds a little creepy to me but mostly I'm just being silly I get it. But anyways his confessions are disturbing, I'm going to go out on a limb and say he was serious, have you read anything he wrote? I'm pretty darn good at reading people, there usage of words, emotions and actions ect ect...he was definitely among the most horrifying people that have walked this earth. 
His complete disdain and hate for humanity, as he so eloquently puts it in writing, at his level is higher than others I've read about. Just my opinion but even though I don't recommend it, you can read his confessions for yourself and some of those confessions were collaborated if I'm not mistaken. However, his killing spree was perpetrated over serval states in which he got away with. He would sodomize and murder hobos that were traveling the railroads which is why I believe he got away with many of the killings. 
However, if you read the sources available about him he was sent to prisons many times in which he escaped, each time committing worse crimes. 
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I wonder how much of what he wrote about himself was true. Serial killers tend to lie, change their stories, claim different body counts at different times.



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Am I reading this right? Wikipedia says Panzram broke into President William Howard Taft's home, stole his gun, and used it in his murders.

Edit: ah didn't see your last link.
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Correct, and then went and purchased a yacht with I believe 3000$ worth of money stolen from the same house, then preceded to commit horrific crimes with both the boat and the gun. I mean if you read what the guy got away with in his criminal history it's incredible. He was not very good at evading arrest but he was sent to prison over the coarse of most his life.