Late last week, Ryan Murphy’s latest project Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story (catchy name) premiered on Netflix. Of course the serial-killer saga came with a large amount of controversy, specifically from one of the victims’ families, who said that the felt being re-traumatized by the show.
But another ugly product of Hollywood’s serial-killer fetish has reared its ugly head. The show has created another wave of thirst for Dahmer, who brutally murdered 17 men and boys then engaged in acts of necrophilia and cannibalism with their corpses.
On Twitter, there were threads lusting after Dahmer’s mugshot. On TikTok, a wave of younger viewers, who are probably learning about Dahmer for the first time from the limited series, have made videos and comments on videos showing an alarming amount of empathy for the murderer, who targeted a large number of black and brown victims, some of whom were underage.
It doesn’t help that Murphy’s take on the story is one in a series of shows and movies about infamous serial killers in history to cast young, hot actors. Zac Efron played Ted Bundy in Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile, a very generous casting for Bundy. Ross Lynch, of the boy band R5, previously played a teenage Dahmer in 2017’s My Friend Dahmer, while Evan Peters has taken over in Murphy’s series. The use of Hollywood heartthrobs have created a slew of fan videos all over the internet, overly romanticizing the real-life monsters due to their more charming counterparts.
Movies and TV shows aren’t the only reason people find themselves horny for serial killers. There are countless blogs and forums online for small but mighty stan communities who treat Bundy, Dahmer, Richard Ramirez, and others like pop stars. But the adaptations of their stories can arguably create more harm than good, as made clear by statements from Dahmer’s victims’ family members, as well as the clear empathy being wrung out of the show by some people desperate to understand a horrible white man just because they find him moderately attractive.
This week on Don’t Let This Flop, hosts Ej Dickson and Brittany Spanos discuss the controversies around Monster as well as the latest Don’t Worry Darling drama updates, the viral Miami Boys Choir, the influx of celebrity cheating scandals, kids on airplanes, and why we would fuck Gritty, marry La Bussi and kill Mr. Blobby.