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Why is True Crime Having a Moment?

Finding Comfort in the Crazy

For the past two, nearly three years, we’ve done many things but also nothing at all. There have been those things that, before our fickle world turns them away, have made our homeward bound boredom go a little smoother – whipped coffee, Tiger King, and making enough sourdough bread to feed a small army, just to name a few. However, Netflix got old quickly, whipped coffee wasn’t that great, and following Chrissy Teigen’s banana bread recipe became much less a fun alternative to sourdough and more a multi-level marketing ploy for us to begin bartering whatever we could whip up in our freshly sanitized kitchens – the scent of Lysol wafting with each bite. Yet, for some of us, that was less something we’d ever want to do and more a brutally blatant suggestion from TikTok. It’s true what they say, a nationwide pandemic causes the leisurely trip through Target to go away, but peer pressurized anxiety from strangers over the internet is forever!

The country is still in a bit of a pandemic pickle and in no way is that being discredited here; it’s just easier to discuss a healthy obsession that has really taken a choke-hold on everybody or a select group. That’s all dependent on whether or not an M.O. is presented, or has it been prematurely decided so that the entire world’s population isn’t fearing their lives? 

That’s right, we’re talking about murder! And serial killers. And cults.

The truest of true crime – the stuff that forces us to pick up the fragments of the skull from the floor due to pure, unadulterated fear. It doesn’t take much internet, or television sleuthing to uncover the vast worlds that highlight some of the world’s most heinous crimes, even decades later. 

The reason, it makes us feel safe. 

Humans need to find levels of comfort in existing in a way that grants them authenticity and serenity – whether it is making a plate of cheese and crackers at 2 AM because that’s what you craved on a random Tuesday or if it is getting a tattoo of the Brave Little Toaster to serve as a constant reminder to keep trying. However, the fascination with the weird has laid stagnant in that Frigidaire freezer for long enough and is now beginning to release its fumes of toxicity that we seemingly can not get enough of – it’s an odd fascination that has capitalized into humorous merchandise or even the permanent type of sticker that lay perfectly placed next to that animated toaster, barbed wire or tattered ribbons not included.

We are living in the era of internet streaming services and with that comes the great responsibility of which ones you subscribe to, and why. Enthusiasts may be more keen on subscribing to those that can offer stories of human trash bags as well as drownings in cesspools of manipulation. Arguably, in a world of constant movement, the pandemic truly offered us a chance to be ‘lazy;’ but if a season or series binge was not the cup of warm, cozy coffee you desired, the podcast really began to shine. 

Since May 2018 audiences have been told to, “keep it weird,” but never too weird. Morbid is seemingly the love child of this bizarre, intellectual force and effervescent charm where listeners are welcomed with open arms by Ashleigh “Ash” Kelley and Alaina Urquhart – a hairdresser and an autopsy technician who, while they could walk into a bar to make this a wonderfully humorous joke, approach these horrifying topics in two different ways. Built by humor and riddled with feminine energy, audiences are fully capable of pressing ‘play’ on the latest episode. Visual audiences may also find themselves sucking their teeth into creators like Bailey Sarian, a beauty-queen with an insatiable love for true crime with her ‘Murder, Mystery, & Makeup’ series on YouTube where she gives her subscribers or the occasional visitor who has not yet fallen victim to her witchy woman spell, a tale of dark and twisted deep-dive into any number of true crime cases that she just can’t stop thinking about.

While these cases are terrifying and often graphic, audiences are able to feel a sense of safety in both an unexplained and unorthodox way. That is because, in a way tales of murder and manipulation, tenacity and terror all align our chakras. We are now able to sit through these retellings with a sense of calm. For the past two, nearly three years, societies across the country and even the globe have experienced anxieties much larger than necessary and it got to a point where news stations were littered with the balled up remains of political turmoil and the burning embers of the “guideline” before perpetually turning to ash as it cascaded to the floor, only to be stomped out by a pair of Doc Martens. 

Amanda Vogel

Written By

I am a student and freelance writer living and working in New Jersey. I hold an A.A where I graduated with honors. I spend a lot of my free time writing and reading, and I've become an advocate of libraries due to my love and admiration of the literary arts. When I'm not creating, I'm a full-time pet mom with a severe coffee addiction!

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