It’s a beautiful thing when a television series is so well produced with story lines so well executed that you’re left after each episode feeling like you’re a part of that world. It’s not such a beautiful thing anymore when people actually believe they are a part of that fantasy world, and act accordingly. Case in point: police say that 23 year old Damon Perry is on charge for a murder charge after killing friend Christopher Paquin. Perry explained that the cause of the killing was that Paquin had started to “change into a zombie”, and attempted to bite him. Probing deeper into the story, it was uncovered that the friends had spent the night before the murder was committed drinking, and that Perry had been binge-watching AMC‘s The Walking Dead on Netflix recently. All this culminated in Perry beating his friend to death, with heavy objects such as an electric guitar and a microwave.
There are many factors to take into consideration here. Pop culture and video games have been blamed for acts of violence many times before, but this case is a little different. The premise of the show is just so far removed from reality, that even in an inebriated state it shouldn’t be possible for a sane mind to become convinced of a zombie uprising. A mental illness and/or heavy drug use is probably at play here.
The main question seems to be: can the creators of shows, movies, video games, etc. that feature violence be held accountable for the actions of people with minds that can’t handle processing the violence in a sane way? No matter what the answer is, this is an extremely tragic and unnecessary event, and our hearts go out to the family of the victim and all those affected by his untimely death.