We all love a rogue, someone that stands against the norms of society.
Often these people live outside the law. Of course, they draw our interest as they hustle through their lives with flashy gestures and seemingly easy money as hyped legends.
I believe that this same neurological pattern and yearning to escape our reality often explains the macabre interest in the deadly, naughty and sometimes downright wicked. Let’s take the Kray Twins for instance, on the surface they seem super slick, and in control. To us normal civilians, this seems sexy. To look at it plainly, we see freedom, men that at first glance create their own rules. Some of the ideals of these men, the money, control, bravado are infectious. In palatable doses, its a welcome break to the dumbed down reality most of us live.
The glamour trickles down the pages of the books we read and gives us a false rush. Why?
Well usually after many years of living by the book, paying taxes not quite earning enough, it begins to feed into this mystery of an imaginary glory villain. Often leaving out the true reality of the life of crime, the jail time, the violence and hurt that conveniently, we leave out of our thoughts during our heightened state. What really happens when someone hits you with a brass knuckle set? A broken reflection. Now even for people like me that find the crime genre interesting, I wouldn’t want that as my reality. Even If Tom Hardy made the whole scene look damn impressive.
So back to the point, we can sit back, toast a glass to the bravery of the men with big bucks, semi-automatic pistols and their lust for growing power and success, but let’s face it, a wild west type shoot-out in the Blind Beggar in 67′ might seem cool when depicted in 2015’s ‘Legend’, but I’m not so sure we would find it all that interesting if we were sat next to poor old George Cornell who copped a slug to the canister for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
As cool as they seem within the confines of our books and Hollywood scripted movies, they are capable of some seriously sad and heinous crimes.
So, I think it’s great we have the criminal genre and so long as people remember that crime isn’t glamorous, then so much can be learnt and achieved. So long as we all stay grounded, we must remember the myth is often bigger than the person.
Let me know what you think…