Every profession, or walk of life, has its peak. Its zenith. Its Mount Everest. Or, in the case of crime, its Professor Moriarty.
For me, as a purely theoretical and intellectual matter, it's the serial killer, the movie-created genius a la Hannibal Lecter. Oh, right, you know that already, I've made no secret of my interest in these people.
Someone asked me the other day, a nice young man called James, if I'd ever met one. I haven't. I write about them in my fiction, and I've met a number of convicted murders (by "met" I mean spoken to, one-on-one, even though there's been thick glass between us). Five or six of them, and as I've written before, this one was the creepiest.
But no serial killers, despite my fascination. I need to make more of an effort, obviously.
Anyway, now I have a new outlet for my interest: Dexter. Have you seen it? A brilliant concept, executed flawlessly. To be fair, I've only seen the first three episodes, and I have a tendency to get bored with series and leave them midway through (Weeds, Sopranos, that one about advertising in the '50s, Lost. . .).
I think what has me hooked thus far is that the main character is your traditional sociopath, meaning he exhibits none of the emotions of empathy that you and I have. And yet, he uses his evil to combat evil. He's like a superhero, but . . . well, evil. I'm also very interested in the relationship he had with his father, who recognized his soullessness and tried to train him never to kill people who didn't "deserve" it. I suppose one would call that mitigating one's losses.
You'll know all this if you've seen the series, of course, and if you haven't I recommend it. The first three episodes, anyway. I'll be watching the fourth tonight.
And now I'm wondering have any of my readers met a serial killer? Are any of you serial killers? I promise I won't tell . . . .