Hollywood continues to pass out rose-colored glasses to viewers with the trend of attractive actors playing psychotic characters. This trend has popped up recently with Penn Badgley as a stalker in Netflix’s series, “You,” and Zac Efron as infamous serial killer Ted Bundy in “Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile.”
This isn’t a new concept. In most cases, Hollywood glams up everyday situations to be the best version they can be.
Still, we know that movies and TV series aren’t reality, and maybe that’s why we love them so much. It’s easy to realize that the superhero series about a blind, crime-fighting vigilante isn’t actually going to happen, but it’s enjoyable to watch. However, rom-coms are little harder to discount. Their scenarios and unlikely and absurd, but impossible? Usually not.
Relationships are at the heart of every movie. Everyday relationships are too messy to be accurately shown. Instead, they are neatly boxed into common tropes with some emotional dialogue. This happens across all genres- rom-coms, dramas, actions movies, etc.
One of those tropes is that the attractive, male protagonist will “get” the equally attractive girl. However, in “You” and “Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile,” what would be a terrifying situation is romanticized by having the male protagonists played by attractive actors.
These media show our culture’s fascination with the deranged, especially when the deranged doesn’t look deadly, or think it’s deadly. Hollywood needs to be more careful in its display of the deadly, especially to impressionable, younger viewers.