For this final blog post I wanted to focus on death as it is portrayed in crime shows on tv. Everyone knows that television shows are scripted with actors and props and that the deaths that occur within them are not real. As a person who watches as least three episodes of either Law & Order: Special Victim’s Unit or Criminal Minds per day, I can not answer the question, why? Is death not death? To an average American, death is terrifying and tragic yet we watch it on television sometimes daily. Why is death on crime shows so entertaining? Is it because the bad guy never wins and justice is always served? This can not be the answer due to the fact that sometimes justice is not served completely. Even if there is no death, something traumatic such as rape or torture occurs in these shows. So why do I watch them?
Another question I would like to raise is does watching death on TV desensitize me? Just like playing disasters such as 9/11, the Boston Bombing, or Sandy Hook on a loop on news channels, does watching numerous episodes of my two favorite shows numb me to real life events? This question I can answer and my reply is no. If I were to see someone murdered in front of my eyes or stumble upon a dead body, I would not be okay with it by any means. This says to me that the fact that I watch TV shows that display gruesome images does not affect what my reaction would be should I see these images in real life.
My original question was why do I enjoy watching crime shows that are structured around death or other disturbing likenesses? I still do not have an answer but hopefully I raised an issue that will cause the minds of others to jog a bit.