Mathew J. White
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few weeks, you have no doubt heard about the ongoing murder trial of Mark Twitchell, the man accused of killing Johnny Altinger.
Regardless of the single murder charge, however, the Twitchell trial is being extensively covered by a large number of media outlets across the country, including a few from the U.S.
Both the Edmonton Journal and the Edmonton Sun are publishing daily articles and live updates.
So why is this trial being covered so rigorously?
It’s not like Edmonton hasn’t seen a murder trial before. In fact, there have been 16 homicides this year, and we’re not even halfway through. So why the extensive coverage?
Well, besides being so close to home, it’s the bizarre circumstances and personal reference to TVs Dexter that has the Twitchell trial receiving so much attention.
The similarities between the trial and Twitchell’s own slasher flick is like something out of a movie, so naturally, we’re all going to watch it play out.
But beyond these reasons, there’s something psychological going on here.
We’re all glued to the Twitchell case for the same reason we can’t help but stop and ogle at a bloody car wreck: we’re all fucked.
I don’t want to be the person sprayed across the highway, but I’ll stop and look. I don’t want to be the suicide jumper, but I’ll watch them splat. And I don’t want to be on trial for murder, but it definitely has my attention.
People have a general interest in anything considered taboo and murder is no different. It’s a side of life that the average citizen is rarely exposed to, so whenever a window is provided, we can’t help but look through.
Why do you think gangster flicks are so successful? But what does this say about society in general?
Well, it’s like I mentioned before: we’re all fucked. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing, is it?
I, for one, am glad we don’t live in a society that caters to those who’d rather live with one eye closed.
I prefer to see the world for what it really is, no matter how ugly and morbid that may be.