Is there a Reason for the Obsession with True Crime?


Natalia Cullins, Contributor

As of late, I’ve been more obsessed with true crime documentaries than I should be. I’ve watched four true crime documentaries in the past week, and I started to wonder what my newfound obsession with true crime and everything criminal shows like Criminal Minds and NCIS could mean 

I’m not the only person loving the crime section on Netflix. Our society in general has a fascination with true crime and with shows that show the mind behind the criminal. Netflix has definitely taken advantage of this obsession and has made many shows to please our society.  

According to Rasmussen University there are four reasons why we’ve been fascinated with this type of entertainment. (Rasmussen) 

The first reason is that “we’re curious about what drives people to do the unthinkable.” People may want to figure out what drives people to do such terrible acts and if everybody has a dark side. The fascination and curiosity in watching true crime shows is based off our natural desire for mystery.   

The second reason is that “we want to preserve our belief in justice.” This means that viewers want to see if the criminal will get punished for their acts. This makes us feel accomplished and put more faith in the justice system.  

The third reason is that “we’re drawn to the adrenaline of fear.” As we watch shows with true crime themes, we watch them in fear, but the fear makes us excited and scared. The same way a rollercoaster scares us but also makes us want to go on the rollercoaster a thousand times again. It also makes us experience fear in a controlled sitting without fear of getting hurt.  

The fourth reason is that “we’re driven by our own longing for survival.” It makes us change what we do in everyday life. It also lets us know what is out in the world and what exactly we can do to not get hurt or be the next person to be in the crime shows we love so much. Women watch more crime shows because most victims are women so they think it will help them not be a victim.